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Hew Locke

Solo show at The New Art Gallery Walsall. 2005
Date: 29 April, 2005 until 26 June, 2005
Organiser: New Art Gallery Walsall

A major exhibition of Hew Locke’s work, held at The New Art Gallery Walsall, in 2005. Locke’s distinctive work is widely celebrated for what sometimes appear at first glance to be somewhat offbeat and slightly eccentric scuptural forms, including renditions of prominent members of the British royal family. Closer inspection of his work reveals, for some, much more intellectually textured and heavily nuanced readings.

Kris Kuramitsu, who wrote the essay for the Hew Locke catalogue for this exhibition, described the artist’s practice as follows: “Locke has created an ongoing series of portrait heads of the Royal Family that he calls simply The House of Windsor. Locke engages with notions of empire by engaging with the embodiment of that power itself, playing with with our great symbolic investment in these individuals. It might seem impossible to successfully intervene in these images, as it is so easy for them to become dismissable cartoons. But Locke renders them with a lavish attention that denies a simple negative reading. ‘The House of Windsor’ includes charcoal drawings, elaborately cut and monochromatically painted cardboard heads on a monumental scale, and a series of collaged object portraits, such as Black Queen (2004). Using mass-produced plastic toys and decorations, found in pound shops and second-hand stores, Locke paints portraits of the Queen through artful accumulation…

Hew Locke produces work that does not simply disavow the colonial past, but acknowledges its foundational role in a contemporary urban postcoloniality…”

Related items

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»  Hew Locke

Catalogue relating to an exhibition, 2005

People in this exhibition

»  Hew Locke

Born, 1959 in Edinburgh

Exhibition venues

»  The New Art Gallery Walsall

Walsall, United Kingdom