Saturday 12 November 2011

New Chris Hipkiss show in Cologne

Chris Hipkiss
"The L.I.E.S"

11.11. - 22.12.2011

"The L.I.E.S" is an acronym of "London In Europe", a fact which, though not a real lie, is a reality accepted with reluctance by some. Wordplay is recurrent in the Hipkiss universe and a formal element essential to the idiosyncratic visual language that shapes the panoramic parallel worlds on the walls. Emblematic is an anarchic-style of hypnotic precision and restraint, intricately repetitive and laying bare an anthropomorphic, post-industrial world populated by mutant cyber-dominas – an army of Hipkiss alter-egos. For over 20 years Chris Hipkiss and Alpha Mason have been working together steadily on an uncompromising visual iconography which is mesmerizing, if not downright visionary. Turning their backs on the British suburban landscape they disliked, they moved to the French countryside in the early 2000s shortly after 9/11. The prolific body of Hipkiss-work is the result of a symbiotic interplay between two individuals, two co-conspirators in a creative process shaped by a relationship and its themes and the continuous exchange of ideas and techniques.

Self-reflexive and innovative, the works shown here lays bare the very processes of creation behind the concept of "The L.I.E.S.", allowing the viewer to catch a glimpse at the potential of revisiting and recreating landscapes. The exhibition is the culmination of a year's work and a mock-up of a museum show. It is precisely in the dialectic with the exhibition space that "The L.I.E.S" exposes the reinvented possibilities of large-format Hipkiss works which a restricted gallery space can only hope to allude to. The current body of work also highlights a fact often forgotten: that the drawings are not about repetitive detail drawn by an obsessive loner in seclusion, but about landscape, life and the world around us. Hipkiss work is represented in several collections such as the Collection Antoine de Galbert (Paris), the Cindy Sherman Collection (New York), the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen (Rotterdam) and the John Michael Kohler Arts Center (Sheboygan, WI).

The show is on until 22. December at Galerie Susanne Zander in Cologne

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