Lucie Bennett's controlled lines deftly describe the subject of her oeuvre, women, with elegant simplicity. Her haunting sirens, alluring pin-ups, supernatural nymphs and gun wielding playboy bunnies bring to mind the golden age B movie heroines of the 1960's & 70's. Works such as Tahiti Nighttime and those of her Naked Burgundy series, exude this strong feminine sexuality with the girls directly confronting the viewer in overtly coquettish poses. At other times, her women are more elusive, oblivious to the viewer’s gaze. The relaxed elegant poses in Green Felt Tip Girl and Angel, suggest the viewer is an unseen voyeur of an intimate moment.
In the studio Bennett produces an abundance of drawn, painted and collaged sketches as she develops her ideas, minimising the elements and honing in on the desired essence of the final work. Her artistic mediums began with liquid latex, painting and card collage. She has since embraced working on brushed aluminium with card or gloss paint, which introduces a tantalising contrast between the cold material and the warm curves of the depicted bodies. Her giclee prints are made from digitally-created imagery and her original screenprints are handmade from scratch by pulling ink through screens in layers to dictate lines drawn by hand, showing her prowess with both modern and traditional techniques.
Inspired by her regular visits to Kew Gardens and the work of the biologist and artist Ernst Haeckel, Bennett began, in 2011, to develop a bold and more experimental strand to her work. She states that she felt “a need to explode, to reach mental freedom” which she accomplishes with large scale works in which organic shapes 'which merge botanical and human anatomy' become key to the composition. Only glimpses of the female form are visible, obscured or engulfed by abstract shapes which are at once an amalgamation of plants, flowers, internal organs, amoebas, bacteria, puddles or cloud formations. With Kuniyoshi the silhouette is framed by seaweed like entrails reminiscent of Matisse's famous cut outs. The head is engulfed with a wave of mammary glands with a crest of nipples. The ability to create life and the female as a representation of mother nature is not lost with these works as her women become symbols of sex, pollination and reproduction.
Bennett gained a BA from Manchester Metropolitan University in Interactive Arts, graduating in 1997. She also studied at L’Ecole Regionale des Beaux-Arts de Nantes in France. Exhibiting internationally including London, New York, San Francisco and Miami Her work has been featured in a number of BBC television programmes and a feature film. She has work in a number of permanent collections including the Groucho Club, London and Virgin Group and has been specially commissioned to produce work for Selfridges and House Of Fraser. Bennett’s work is shown regularly at art fairs including the Armory Fair in New York. She has made charitable donations to the Terrence Higgins Trust, Paintings In Hospitals, NHS Healing in the Environment and the British Red Cross among others. Bennett lives and works in London.
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