Andy Wicks lives and works in London having graduated from BA Fine Art at Middlesex University in 2006. He co-curated Superunknown at Edel Assanti (Oct/Nov 2010) and is currently on a year long studio residency at The Florence Trust. He previously organized group exhibition ULTRAMEGAOK in pop up space The Framery in Hoxton, London (Dec 09) and has exhibited widely across London at venue including Transition Gallery, Brown Gallery, The Old Police Station, The Commonwealth Club, The Empire, Vyner Street.
My work explores the mundane and the extraordinary in man made landscape, taking discarded, rotting structures and recreating their form against imagined surroundings. The loss of location and reference point leaves the object sitting between the representational and abstract, seemingly familiar while somewhat alien.
Working from photographs of sites and objects sourced from field research, internet tip offs and found images I seek a certain rusting and decaying aesthetic. Previous work used fortifications and industrial sites while my current paintings feature wooden dolphins (mooring constructions for barges) along the River Thames. I look for ambiguous forms, weathered and worn, with discoloured moulding surfaces. The use of scale is important and the smaller paintings are more successful at disorientating the viewer with the true nature of the structure, with large towering dolphins passing for small domestic or agricultural paraphernalia. I am fascinated by the way such alien structures exist today, blending into their surroundings without purpose or identifiable future use. With their history fixed they slowly begin to rot away gently being reclaimed by the river and mud banks below.
I work mainly with portrait canvases which channel a fine line between the modern landscape, portraiture and the abstract. Through my painting process I seek to remove the structure from its surroundings, striping away any distinguishing marks or clues to its identity. The scaling and centring of the composition is reminiscent of a formal portrait, while the titles add to the human quality of the ‘portrait’, with each image taking its name from the Atlantic hurricane names list. This titling process provides a gender and year of creation, further obscuring the objects real world reference.