2–26 NOV 2011
Simon Kennedy’s third show at Gallery 9 presents the nostalgia of a bygone era which is uncannily crossed with a gothic sensibility. Known for his sublime paintings of animals (stoats, polar bears, pigs and horses) and disembodied limbs, for his new show, Simon Kennedy has created exquisitely detailed charcoal drawings of female spies from World War II. With their titles names of animals, the works allude to code names given to secret operations.
Alongside these beautiful renditions of iconic women is a series of small paintings of taxidermied animals which are presented alongside a portrait of their creator The Preserver, and a sublime mountainous landscape which appears to have come directly from a fairytale. At once familiar and foreign, Kennedy takes inspiration from found images from historical times. Interested in the way original photographs become more manufactured and loses their sense of “realness”, in Kennedy’s detailed reinterpretations, the drawings appear more real than the source material he worked from.
Simon Kennedy is a New Zealand born, Sydney based artist who graduated from the Otago Polytechnic School of Art in Dunedin. He has won the Waiheke Art Prize in 2005 and has exhibited in solo shows and group shows in Sydney, Melbourne and New Zealand.