Young Masters: Focus on Mixed Media|Bex Massey

Bex Massey, He’s So Hot Right Now, detail, 2014, oil on canvas with inflatable palm tree and toys, 91x100x95cm

Bex Massey, He’s So Hot Right Now, detail, 2014, oil on canvas with inflatable palm tree and toys, 91x100x95cm

Bex Massey’s work is drawn from the excess of images and narratives that invade our everyday experiences. Her practice sits between painting, sculpture and archive, and the history of art is critical to her examination of the role of painting and the language of display in the face of contemporary culture. Like mass media, the history of art is peppered with contradictory facts, political agendas, and misrepresentations. Drawing on classical narratives, such as Narcissus, and the cabinet of curiosities, Massey’s work is a contemporary commentary on the past.

Massey received her BA in Fine Art from The Cass School of Art, and her MA Fine Art from Chelsea College of Art and Design. She had a solo show, March, at A-Side B-Side Gallery, London, 2012, and has featured in group shows including Ladyfest Ten, Ground Floor Left Gallery, London, 2010, Graduate Showcase, Royal Overseas League, London, 2007 and Young Masters Tour, Sphinx Fine Art, 2013.  In 2007 Massey was awarded the Pages fellowship and in 2014 she was shortlisted for The Signature Art Prize.  Her work features in collections including the Leslie Collection, UK, Trollhattans Konsthall, Sweden and in private collections.

INTERVIEW

What is it about Young Masters that you are most interested in?

Young Masters offers a platform to exhibit and interact with other artists who are directly influenced by art history.

Can you explain to us what your work is about?

I am fascinated by narratives in popular culture and how they are being continually mis/represented and reinvented in everything from tabloids to folk tales.  ‘He’s so hot right now’ (based on the Hansel and Gretel fable) is part of a recent series inspired by the Grimm Fairy Tales.  Like current affairs reportage, these children’s stories continue to evolve from their original themes.  By combining traditional painting techniques and ready-made objects I am trying to reinvent these stories once more within the context of history of art and the language of contemporary display.

Which artist/s are you most inspired by?

Eberhard Havekost, David Hockney, Hans Holbein, Jim Shaw, Haim Steinbach
Can you tell us something about your background?

I was born in Newcastle. I moved to London in 2004 to complete a BA hons in Fine Art.  In 2013 I graduated with Merit in MA Fine Art from Chelsea.  I have lived and worked in east London since moving to the smoke.

What inspired you to become an artist?

David Hockney

If you weren’t an artist what would you be?

My aptitude test said fireman

What is your greatest achievement as an artist to date?

Being shortlisted for two art prizes this year was pretty great.

What are your plans for the future?

Keep making.  Keep thinking.  Move forward.

 

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