C. Lucy. R. Whitehead (b.1991) is a painter from Liverpool, England. She has lived and worked in London ever since completing a BA (Hons) in Drawing at Camberwell College of Arts in 2010. With the exception of one year in 2016 where she had a studio at the Baumwolle Spinnerei in Leipzig, Germany. She has training in anatomical and architectural drawing which has greatly influenced her paintings on the human form. She is currently in her final year of the MA Painting programme at the Royal College of Art. Recent exhibitions include a group show Final, Not Over - again, at Unit 1 Gallery and two two-person shows, HELD at Blue Shop Cottage and Fragmented Intimacy at Grove Collective. She is a recipient of the Basil. H. Alkazzi Scholarship 2019-2021.
C Lucy R Whitehead
My work explores our increasingly fragile relationship with the physical. Both in the sense of the awareness we have with our own bodies as a material structure and with the spaces we inhabit. I am fascinated with the quirks of our bodies beyond our control. The swelling, burning blushing pinks which bloat or sag and serve as the signals we need to see beneath the surface. The physicality of our exterior which is often filtered out by mass media but are the very things that makes us, us. The notion of us, or I, is a battle fought internally and externally when attempting to occupy the boxes constructed by society which tell you how to look and behave.
Gender and sexuality materialise out of the boundaries of this aesthetic expectation, with the history of painting acting as a kind of agent in reinforcing such ideals. My work instead removes itself from this through varying degrees of abstraction, with the transition between these two states indicative of my own fluctuating relationship on the matter. From fragmented fleshy structures to something which appears more whole; anthropomorphic figures are stripped bare of their exterior and of any discernible identity or gender. Reduced down to their mechanical functions bodies of bodies push and pull at the edges of the canvas in an attempt to free themselves from the constraints of the framework it has been bound by throughout history.