Art Basel

June 12, 2012

Art Basel opens this week and – for the first time – Hipkiss is represented there. Visit the Galerie Susanne Zander booth to see four new works – the outsize Birds of Europe and the three-work ‘Sun’ series. They were created this year.

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Summary of a conversation we were having today re. the meaning of The Birds of Europe:

It’s a quantum theory puzzle in landscape form. A kitsch (kind of throwaway), personal, ‘family’ landscape to showcase the fundamentals of nature. Daily life (as usual) – the Pyrenees, what cats do, the birds around us, the presidential election, etc. – mixed with thoughts about the laws of physics. Mocking the ‘unmockable’. The birds are like chemical elements…

Images courtesy of Galerie Susanne Zander



Chris Hipkiss
“The L.I.E.S.”
11. November – 22. December 2011
opening: Friday, 11. November 6 – 9 pm

“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).

Hipkiss will be present at the opening in Cologne.

Delmes & Zander GbR
Antwerpener Str. 1
50672 Cologne
+49-221-52 16 25
Tue-Fr 12-6pm, Sat 11-2pm

Chris Hipkiss
“The L.I.E.S.”
11. November – 22. Dezember 2011
Eröffnung: Freitag, 11. November 18 – 21 Uhr

“The L.I.E.S” ist ein Akronym von “London In Europe” – London In Europa – eine
Tatsache die, auch wenn keine wirkliche Lüge, eine Realität ist, die von einigen nur
widerwillig akzeptiert wird. Das Ausstellungskonzept ist darüber hinaus eine
selbstreflexive Simulation einer Museumsausstellung und spielt mit Formaten und
Hängung in enger Auseinandersetzung mit dem Ausstellungsraum. In diesen Sinne
enthüllt die Ausstellung “The L.I.E.S” auch die inhärenten kreativen Prozesse und
verdeutlich gleichzeitig eine Tatsache die gerne übersehen wird: dass die
Zeichnungen von Hipkiss nicht bloß das Ergebnis weltfremder Eigenbrödelei sind,
sondern vielmehr von Fantasie und Realitätsbezug lebende Visionen unserer Welt.

Seit über 20 Jahren arbeiten Chris Hipkiss und Alpha Mason zusammen an einer
kompromisslosen visuellen Ikonographie, die hypnotisierend, wenn nicht geradezu
visionär wirkt. Nachdem sie 2000 ihrer Heimat England den Rücken kehrten, zogen
sie kurz nach 9 / 11 in die französische Provinz. Das produktive Hipkiss-Ouvre ist
seither das Ergebnis eines symbiotischen Zusammenspiels zweier Individuen,
zweier Komplizen vereinigt in einem kreativen Prozess der sowohl thematisch wie
auch formell von einer Beziehung geprägt ist und sich durch einen
kontinuierlichen Austausch von Ideen und Techniken weiterentwickelt.

Typisch für die überdimensionalen Hipkiss-Panoramen ist ein detailtreuer und
gleichzeitig anarchischer Stil von außerordentlicher Präzision und formeller
Beherrschung, der eine oftmals von mutierten Cyber-Dominas (und Hipkiss
Alter Egos) besiedelten post-industrielle Parallelwelt darstellt. Die
Unterschwellige Bedrohung in den technoiiden Landschaften Hipkiss wird von
utopischen Gegenentwürfen unheimlicher Schönheit gekontert.

Hipkiss Arbeiten sind weltweit in Sammlungen vertreten wie zum Beispiel in
der Sammlung Antoine de Galbert (Paris), der Cindy Sherman Collection (New
York), dem Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen (Rotterdam) und der John
Michael Kohler Arts Center (Sheboygan, WI).

Die Künstler sind bei der Ausstellungseröffnung in Köln anwesend.


April 10, 2011

I am very happy to report that our latest large work, and the first for over fifteen years, is nearing completion. A∴C∴H∴E∴ is a seven-paneled, eight-metre landscape made using pencil, ink and gold/silver leaf and destined to be first exhibited in a German/Swiss gallery in the near future. The drawing will also be the basis of its “Doppelganger”, a stitched, life-size canvas of the seven parts reworked by us (using various media) to consolidate the composition and all the various themes of the original. The idea behind A∴C∴H∴E∴ is to showcase our vision for future large projects: landscapes that ‘work’ individually and collectively as pencil-based drawings, but also as unique one-piece panoramas when transformed onto canvas. The intention is to have both works exhibited in the same space.

This idea is a response to the need to create vast works without the practical and psychological problems I have had in the past when using rolled paper. Inspired by processes used to create Grayson Perry’s The Walthamstow Tapestry, the resulting canvas will also expand on the continuing debate surrounding appropriation and conceptual art.

I always find it difficult to adequately explain my work, but I can say that I am conscious, now, of an attempt to distance myself from the ‘apocalyptic’ label; whether or not I have succeeded is for you to judge…

Chris Hipkiss


A∴C∴H∴E∴, complete drawings, 31 May 2011

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