Artist: Francis Upritchard
Exhibition title: Big Fish Eat Little Fish
Venue: Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens, Deurle, Belgium
Date: March 1 – May 31, 2020
Photography: Rik Vannevel / images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens
Note: Exhibition brochure is available here
With her enigmatic figurative sculptures, New Zealand artist Francis Upritchard (born 1976) occupies a unique position within the contemporary sculpture scene. Upritchard’s oeuvre is characterized by in-depth experimentation with material, colour, shape and scale. The sculptures are devoid of any cultural, geographical or chronological boundaries. References can range from mokomokai and Japanese folklore to futuristic hippies. Fascinated by museology and design, Upritchard often presents her sculptures in self-designed displays and scenography.
The project at the museum Dhondt-Dhaenens is a reinterpretation of the Wetwang Slack exhibition at the Barbican Centre (London, 2018). Wetwang Slack, an archaeological site in East Yorkshire, was the starting point for exploring unusual materials such as balata, a rare Brazilian rubber from the Amazon forest. For Big Fish Eat Little Fish, Upritchard will create a number of new works in a scenography that embraces the architecture of MDD. The title refers to a drawing by Bruegel who, just like Upritchard’s work, alludes to a meaningless world in which the powerful instinctively prey on the weak.