Art Nerd New York | Los Angeles

Barnaby Conquers Copenhagen

We are so in love with Barnaby Whitfield, and so very sad we couldn’t hop over the Copenhagen for the opening his solo show “There’s A Story in Which My Eyes Shut” at Gallery Poulsen. He offered up one of his fantastically beautifully creepy pastels for our George Hearts Maria show last September, and continues his haunting oeuvre with his new body of allegorical selfies.

And yes, he tells us, that is his dick.





“There’s A Story in Which My Eyes Shut”
Barnaby Whitfield (US), solo
April 5th to April 27th 2013
Opening Friday April 5th from 5-8 pm

Barnaby Whitfield’s works are at once hopelessly romantic and urgently contemporary, simultaneously drawing inspiration from Rococo era portraiture and contemporary fashion advertising. His work is seamlessly weaving Old-Master quotations with images sifted spontaneously from internet sources, creating a result loaded with inside jokes belonging to our twenty-first century psyche.
Whitfield’s characters are rendered in gorgeously soft and dreamy chalk pastel, their bodies glowing with eerie internal light, but perversely marred with sickly hues that allude to bruising, rotting, sweltering flesh. Something menacing seems to have a grip on these pastel beauties and the narrative clues are compellingly composed to allow the viewer partial access, but ultimate suspense.The indecipherability of Whitfield’s highly personal symbolism begins to breakdown as clues to the artist’s appropriations surface, illuminating the development of his personal artistic vocabulary. He has placed his characters into a bizarre contextual universe of his uniquely singular imaging, where women balloon out of scattered spermata and the laws of the land are dictated by an unashamed phallocentrism.A bubbling, rainbow hued life force often emanates from behind to lift the subject’s presence, giving physicality to the artist’s childlike fascination with love and horror. Within this constructed context, he questions his role as a contemporary artist, casting himself sometimes as the jester with a jealousy complex. The Hero and the whore.

Aaron Johnson, New York 2009

2 Responses to “Barnaby Conquers Copenhagen”
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