M HKA, Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp

  • The Squash
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : The Squash
    Date(s) : 2018
    Credit : Courtesy the artist, Thomas Dane Gallery and Kaufmann Repetto.Photo, Seraphina Neville
  • Giant Pumpkin No.2
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : Giant Pumpkin No.2
    Date(s) : 2022
    Material : hand-painted leather, foam, timber, metal fixings
  • Installation shot
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : Installation shot
  • The Squash (Look 7)
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : The Squash (Look 7)
    Date(s) : 2018
    Material : Costumes: Life size. Helmets: 45 x 50 x 45 cm, fiber glass head covered in white hand painted napa, white leather bolero, yracksuit in white knit with hand painted squash texture
    Credit : Courtesy of Jonathan Anderson
  • Kabuki Chef (detail)
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : Kabuki Chef (detail)
    Date(s) : 2012
    Credit : Courtesy the artist, Thomas Dane Gallery and Kaufmann Repetto. Photo, Andy Keate
  • Leg Chair John Travolta
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : Leg Chair John Travolta
    Date(s) : 2010
    Credit : Courtesy the artist, Thomas Dane Gallery and Kaufmann Repetto.
  • Curve Proposal
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : Curve Proposal
    Date(s) : 2012
    Material : digital collage
    Credit : Courtesy and copyright of the artist
  • Wavy Thigh High Giallo Boot
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : Wavy Thigh High Giallo Boot
    Date(s) : 2016
    Material : wood, brass, aluminium, acrylic, alabaster, model trees
    Credit : Private Collection Milan / Genoa / Rome
  • Blasians (Flavour of Green Tea over Rice)
    Artist : Anthea Hamilton
    Title : Blasians (Flavour of Green Tea over Rice)
    Date(s) : 2022
    Material : digital glow in the dark print on wall-tex
    Credit : Courtesy of the artist, Kaufmann Repetto and Thomas Dane Gallery

Anthea Hamilton | Mash Up

Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp

From the press release

Until 15 May 2022

Mash Up, the first major survey exhibition of works by British artist Anthea Hamilton, opens at M HKA, Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp.

For nearly two decades, Anthea Hamilton has developed a complex practise that spans sculpture, installation, film and performance. Hamilton dives without restraint into the meandering history of visual and cultural production, using her eye as both a subjective and productive lens through which to view (and recreate) the world. Her installations—which combine unexpected materials, scale and humour—propose an alternative and fragmented reality where gender roles, sexualities, food, domestic life, nature, and the traditions of different cultures, all rescind their status of firmly established clichés and become fluid notions. Hamilton’s practice, therefore, relies on a strong belief in cohabitation, complexity and, by extension, imagination, positing the artworks’ ontological ambiguity as a means to constantly challenge our perceived realities.

Using the ‘mash up’ as her method, she masterfully filters and assesses elements culled from the present and recent past of fashion, art, food, nature, design, architecture and pop culture. She then resituates what we might otherwise consider familiar or comforting tropes and motifs in a continuous bid to sidestep obvious and hegemonic meanings.

Influenced by the early 20th-century French writer and dramatist Antonin Artaud and his call for the ‘physical knowledge of images’, Hamilton aims to elicit a bodily response to an idea or an image when we encounter her works. The artist is best known for creating compelling and immersive large-scale statement pieces in which bodies, images, materials and spaces perform under the terms and conditions of a particular frame.

Mash Up seeks to consolidate Hamilton’s artistic language and further establish the artist’s idiosyncratic voice. Its aim is to draw a comprehensive and precise picture of a practice characterised by devotional creativity, unexpected research trajectories, highly visual aesthetics, cross-cultural interests, and interdisciplinary modes of production. Visitors are confronted by an exhibition of strong visual impact, inhabited by performative spaces and physical manifestations of images. Hamilton’s exhibition invites us to think about the knowledge of forms and images and raises relevant questions on representation, identity politics, and methodologies of freedom.

The exhibition at M HKA is the first opportunity to share an in-depth reading and articulation of Hamilton’s practice, whilst also opening up new perspectives and interpretations. Mash Up comprises no less than 70 works created by the artist throughout her career, alongside a series of new works, performances and exhibition-specific situations. Across 1800 square metres of exhibition space, existing works are staged alongside both new commissions and ways of looking at iconic past installations such as The Squash (Tate Britain, 2018), The New Life (Venice Biennale, 2019, and Secession, 2018), and Lichen! Libido! Chastity! (Turner Prize, 2016 and SculptureCenter, 2015). The exhibition testifies to the collaborative dynamic inherent to Hamilton’s practice by featuring co-creations with and affiliations to (amongst others): artist Nicholas Byrne, architect and designer Gaetano Pesce, gardener and writer Roger Phillips, performer Carlos Maria Romera, photographer Lewis Ronald, and LOEWE fashion house as directed by designer Jonathan Anderson.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a substantial monographic publication co-published by M HKA and Triangle Books. Commissioned texts by Cédric Fauq, Milovan Farronato, Anthea Hamilton, Anne-Claire Schmitz, and Linsey Young.

The publication will be available in English and Dutch. Release date: Spring 2022
Editor: Anne-Claire Schmitz

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