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ANTONY MICALLEF
Head, 2005

Edition of 95
23(w) x 32(h) cm
9.06(w) x 12.60(h) inches
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Head, 2005

INFORMATION
23(w) x 32(h) cm
9.06(w) x 12.60(h) inches
Show scale of piece
Giclee print

Signed and numbered on front.

Edition of 95

Antony Micallef Biography

(British, b. 1975)
Antony Micallef’s ‘bubblegum pop’ paintings combine skilled brushwork with references to old masters and graphic design. Dealing with the subject of portraiture in a dark and slightly twisted, Bacon-esque way, human forms are placed in artificial, unnatural environments that are influenced by popular culture in the forms of fashion, music and design.

By shaping an artificial ‘stage’ for his ‘characters’ to inhabit, Micallef attempts to capture and reveal their personality. He states, “When I begin painting a face it feels like I’m facing for marks randomly, trying to catch an expression of a character, an identity”. Japan became a major influence in Micallef’s work after a visit to Tokyo in 1999, where he developed a fascination with cultural icons and motifs and their relation to society and the individual. The artist states: “The culture there is completely twisted. You have that real sugar side, but there’s always a dark side underneath. I’m trying to look at that in-between space in pop”. This marked a new development in Micallef’s work and it was the body of work that followed that contributed hugely into making him into a cultural icon as an artist.

Awarded second price of BP’s Portrait Awards in 2000 at The National Portrait Gallery in London, the young Antony Micallef - twenty-five years old and a recent graduate of Fine Art from University of Plymouth - were about to embark on a journey and become one of Britain’s promising contemporary artists. The representation by Banksy’s dealer, Lazarides, in 2006 catapulted Micallef to overnight fame, seeing collectors paying significant premiums for the limited work available; valuations that eventually had to come back to reality. In the fifteen years that have passed since his first solo show, the artist’s works have been exhibited widely at major art fairs, museums and institutions such as Royal Academy of Arts and Tate Modern, and is currently touring the world as a ‘Visionaries’ by LVMH. Micallef lives and works in London.

Based on paintings and sketches from his years on Tokyo, a series of ten print editions were released as part of an exclusive collaboration between Antony Micallef and Eyestorm in 2005. Together, two archival prints titled 21st Century Love and Dirty Deluxe, six lithographs from Tokyo, plus a portrait and a self-portrait, are the first signed multiples by Micallef and represent an important series of the artist’s genre of critical pop. All in editions of 95, each print is signed and numbered on front.

 
Recommended Reading
Portraits that burst with tense and fiery energy, Antony Micallef reflects on the storm that’s lurks just beneath the surface of anyone. The monochrome brushy self-portraits from his early twenties slowly absorbed the elated lights of Tokyo cityscapes and later shaped a practice which today is focused on highly expressive, sculptural impasto paintings. Micallef’s extended residence in Japan became a major inspiration for the series of print editions released in 2005; a street-art style of ragged lines, super brands and cultural icons. 21st Century Love in particular hit the zeitgeist, portraying the divine resurrection of the modern everyday consumerist.
Read more ...
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