Kirsty Lillico, Viscera
“The work in Viscera developed from an attempt to rid my art practice of animal products. I had some misgivings about the leather and wool I had been using in the studio. I wondered whether it would be possible to substitute painted canvas for skin and hair, while still alluding to bodies.”
Kirsty Lillico 2022
In the work Traveller, an intestine-like mass is entombed in a canvas of shiny grey, as if cryogenically frozen for space-flight. The use of a necrotic greyed-out palette applied to biomorphic forms evokes the distressed body and more broadly, the realm of technology. In other works, paint has been applied in thin transparent layers that pool like secretions in the crevices of the canvas, puckered through the process of sewing and stuffing.
This new series of works by Kirsty Lillico attempt to collapse the definitions of painting/sculpture, internal/external, technology/biology, to evoke anxieties that permeate our shared experience. As writer Sam Te Kani says, “If you’re not anxious, you’re probably dead.” As we face a future that seems more fractured than ever, Lillico vacuum-seals and offers back repurposed remnants of our current selves, to help us navigate these uncertain times.