Sentient Flesh, 2020
Oil on canvas
About the Artist
Ariane Heloise Hughes (b.1997, British-Austalian) navigates the tenuous threshold of the subject/object dichotomy through her practice. By blending contemporary and traditional imagery with the amalgamation of figuration and setting, she challenges this rigid paradigm. Throughout Ariane’s practice, the female nude is a recurring subject, personifying the subject/object dualism within the Western Canon of Art. Through investigating this traditional trope and by playing on both sides of the threshold between the mundane and the surreal, Ariane hopes to conceive of a new visual vernacular for desire. One that operates outside the norms of conventional beauty and ‘the gaze’.
About the Artwork
Sentient Flesh is an interrogation of the faux subject object dichotomy. In the canon of Western Art the female body is aligned with the passive an object to be looked at and consumed by men. By rendering the body to almost dissipate into the background it fulfils this stereotype, providing a sardonic critique on the reductive nature of the traditional portrayal of the female nude. The pastel palette and delicate rendering is at odds with the piece’s deeper interrogation, revealing the paradigm to be farcical and outdated.