USA/Indonesia

Ashley Bickerton

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Ashley Bickerton (b. 1959, Barbados) is a contemporary artist presently living in Bali. A mixed-media artist, Bickerton combines photographic and painterly elements with assemblages of industrial found objects.

A seminal figure in New York’s East Village scene, Bickerton was one of the original members of the Neo-Geo artist collective; standing alongside Jeff Koons, Peter Halley, and Meyer Vaisman. Neo-Geometric Conceptualism rejected the Neo-Expressionist trends in painting, criticising the mechanisation and commercialisation of modern world by using geometry as a metaphor.

When Bickerton moved to the Indonesian island of Bali, his work became increasingly figurative, populated by a cast of grotesque and exotic characters – from voluptuous indigenous women, to the grimacing serpents with human-like characteristics. Conscious of the distortion in his objects, the works are a critique of capitalism and an exploration of issues in contemporary art related to the commodification of the art object itself. Whether painting directly on the human body, making sculpture, or creating large-scale hyper-realistic paintings, the artist remains an influential figure with a younger generation of artists.

During his residency, he created mixed-media pieces of “spooky images”, representing green-skinned creatures emerging from a sea of  litter, cans, and bottles. These works were exhibited in STPI, titled Ashley Bickerton: …Just This! (2006).

His works are showcased internationally and are in various public art and museum collections; including the Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain in Paris, Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, Berardo Collection Museum in Lisbon, Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, Hara Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo, and the Tate Britain in London.

His recent exhibitions include Art Bali, Indonesia (2018); Ashley Bickerton, The FLAG Art Foundation, New York (2017); Human Interest: Portraits from the Whitney’s Collection, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York (2016); Painting 2.0: Expression in the Information Age, Museum Brandhorst, Munich, Germany (2015); Ileana Sonnabend: Ambassador for the New, The Museum of Modern Art, New York (2013); Postmodernism: Style and Subversion 1970-1990, Victoria and Albert Museum, London (2011); Skin Fruit: Selections from the Dakis Joannou Collection, New Museum, New York (2010); and Pop Life: Art in a Material World, Tate Modern, London (2009).

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