Wrestling with Angels Ellen Antico

Cologne 2023/07/08 2023/10/01

Ellen Antico (b. 1989, Sydney, AU) presents her first solo exhibition Wrestling with Angels at Pop;68 in Cologne.

For this body of work, Antico depicts notions of mutual resonances and conditions, attempting to capture the rawness and intensity at the climax of a fight.

At this precise point of highly entangled and intertwined figures, it is not a combative spirit that stands out most, but rather the sensual intimacy of bodies relating to each other. Contours merge, dissolve, and only let fragmentary body parts appear clearly.

A monochrome color scheme of blues, greens and reds occupies the canvases, unfolding the depiction of movement, of gestures and facial expressions. The intentionality of the encounters as fights, performances or loving acts recedes from the surface to open up a field in which the pure beauty of human bodies is explored.

Deconstructed forms of these acts of wrestling, reduced to charcoal strokes on canvas that seem like preliminary drawings, appear like a study of faces, hands and feet, revealing perceptions of the nature of physical existence. Between competition, humor and sensual seduction a profound fascination for the inherent beauty of embodiment emanates, and is substantiated throughout the exhibition.