Petrina Hicks: Bleached Gothic is the first major survey exhibition of Australian photographer Petrina Hicks. More than 50 photographs and videos will be on display at NGV Australia, Federation Square until 29 March 2020.
Over her fifteen-year career, Hicks (1972– ) has gained a strong reputation for her large-scale, hyperreal photographs that subvert and disrupt the photographic language of advertising and portraiture. Hicks photographs children, animals and young women against simple backgrounds, returning to the same models and motifs frequently to define and hone her distinctive style.
Hicks’s photographs are notable for their duality; pristine and benign at first glance, the works are undercut with a sense of the uncanny. The tension between seduction and danger, familiarity and strangeness, intimacy and distance are present in many of Hicks’s works, which are rich with mythological and historical symbolism.
Petrina Hicks: Bleached Gothic includes more than 50 photographs and video works spanning the period 2003 to 2019. Seen together for the first time, Hicks’s shimmering, enigmatic and surreal compositions convey the inherent ambiguity and complexity of the female experience. At a time when issues of gender and representation are more culturally relevant than ever before, Hicks’s photographs interrogate the cultural and visual representation of women and children in contemporary society and throughout history.
Cover image: Petrina Hicks, Australia born 1972, Shenae and Jade 2005 from Untitled series 2005 pigment inkjet print 100.0 x 93.0 (image) Collection of the artist, Michael Reid, Sydney; and This Is No Fantasy, Melbourne© Petrina Hicks. Courtesy of Michael Reid, Sydney; and This Is No Fantasy, Melbourne
Petrina Hicks: Bleached Gothic
Date: on until 29 March 2020
Time: 10am–5pm daily
Location: NGV Australia, Federation, Level 3, Melbourne