'YOU CAN’T OUTRUN THIS'
“The only place you’ve got to go after St Ives is the ocean”
Henry Hussey has been creating deeply personal and emotionally raw artworks for several years, mainly through the paradoxically labored medium of textiles. Whether through a steadily growing vocabulary of quasi-mythological symbols, or in embroidered lines of text extracted from performative situations, he has sought to create expressions of perceived truth in response to aggravating relationships and events from his life.
The work has long framed these aggravating experiences dichotomously, with clear lines drawn between an external antagonist and the artist whose reactions they provoke. However, Hussey has recently begun to acknowledge his own role in events, somethin to which he had previously paid little attention.
The self is part of the problem but—as this exhibition’s title suggests—it cannot be escaped. Whether because there is nowhere left to run, or simply due to personal growth, sooner or later acknowledgement must come. 'You Can’t Outrun This' is a showdown.
In preparation for new inquiries that will look outwards to broader social and politics issues — as well as toward new materials and uses of space — the exhibition will present a saturation point in the Hussey’s ongoing self-confrontation. This standoff between the artist, himself, and his internalized antagonists will comprise works created in 2015-16, and will include an unprecedented number of pieces displaying his own image — one last, long look in the mirror.
At the center of it all will be a triptych of works — 'Eclipse', 'Locking Horns' and 'Reformation' — exhibited together for the first time. Each of these textile works has at its core an image of violence and defiance — accompanied in the former two parts by visions of toxic intimacy — where embroidered quotations and symbols with their roots in diverse artistic traditions simultaneously provide both context and shifting points of focus.
While pieces deal with purely personal themes, and are psychologically suggestive in their treatment of the figures they portray, works also incorporate a complex array of historical imagery, textual clippings, stylized figures, and humorous personal history to create an image of the past where the possibility of locating any fixed perspective is suitably difficult.
There are, besides, a number of the artist’s recent, untitled glass sculptures. Contorted busts in imperfect black glass, these forms are the product of more violent and spontaneous processes than the Hussey’s textile works, and allow a vision not just of his image, but also of his action. Intended to stand away from the wall, they signify one of many ways the young artist is bidding farewell to the tenets of his practice thus far, and venturing into new, previously unexplored spaces.
Nick Carter Miles. 2017
EXHIBITION IMAGES (click to enlarge)
ARTIST INTERVIEW FILM & EXHIBITION VIDEO TOUR :
Henry Hussey is a British artist born in London in 1990 where he still resides.
His artworks are emotionally raw, created mainly through the paradoxically laboured and intricate medium of textiles. Whether through an expanding vocabulary of quasi-mythological symbols, or in embroidered lines of text extracted from performative situations, he explores personal and national identity in response to aggravating relationships and events. Recent experimentations with other materials including glass and bronze reveal a deeper concern with control and chaos and the sweet spot in between these two distinctive states.
Hussey studied Textiles at Chelsea College of Art before completing an MA in Textiles at the Royal Academy.
His work is widely respected and has been exhibited in notable exhibitions and collections including Textiel Biennale 2017 at Museum Rijswijk in the Hague, a Solo presentation at Art Central in Hong Kong, the Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2014, the Institute of Contemporary Art in London and Volta NY, New York. His inaugural solo exhibition at Anima-Mundi was held in 2017. His work is already held in collections worldwide. Henry Hussey is represented by Anima-Mundi.