Goodman Gallery Johannesburg presents WELL WORN Lisa Brice’s new body of work. It features a cast of female protagonists, engaged/absorbed in autobiographical acts of looking, and being looked at.
Grooming, making up, stripping down, dressing up within the confines of domestic, private or veiled interiors, they are involved in self scrutiny, awareness, consciousness, affirmation, adoration, promotion, loathing, deprecation, defence, defiance, protection, reinvention, presentation. The mirror reflection reoccurs as a central property, simultaneously functioning as an alter ego and an imagined audience beyond the private, as well as formal device within the painting.
Brice incorporates re-imagined art historical references as well as those from popular culture, and digital media, where the hand held mirror is frequently replaced by a camera or more specifically a Smartphone, capable of producing a digital portrait of a mirror image with an unprecedented capability for dissemination and extreme narcissism. It’s a confusing state of affairs and in turn the paintings aim to disorientate the viewer in their own act of looking. Reflecting these repetitive rituals, the relentless recording of self and the multiplicity of media images, Brice incorporates offset printing techniques on a variety of surfaces in the paintings, allowing for several versions of the same motif. These smaller figure studies function as proposals for possible inclusion in larger works. Like a train of thought, they reveal the development of ideas and narratives as they evolved in her studio practice, devoid of hierarchy. Brice imagines the central exhibition space as a stage; where the paintings are simultaneously props, back drops, screens and performers in their own right, allowing for layered meaning, with the mirror as the main player.
OPENING: Thursday 16 April 2015, 6pm
Lisa Brice was born in 1968 in Cape Town, South Africa; she currently lives and works in London. Brice majored in painting at Michaelis UCT, her early work included constructed artworks combining found objects, or domestic materials such as linoleum, with steel to make wall artworks, installations and sculptural pieces. In last decade she returned to painting, her work negotiates with authority the difficult terrain between spontaneous drawing and figure painting. She uses various painting and off set printing techniques on a variety of surfaces from canvas to tracing paper, which often leads to repetition of a similar motifs or figure’s in her work, sometimes biographical, at other times referencing art history.