Fresh (or rather, exhausted) from having held residency at 45 Park Lane at The Dorchester, two months of record breaking visitor numbers not there merely for the luxury stay or lip smacking cocktails have left Lhouette inspired, humbled and not a little tired. Presenting a definitive collection in his own cool brand of cultural satire infused with 21st Century pop art, Post Urban Glamour intrigued swarms of collectors keen to ensure their art choices reflected an intelligent and challenging choice, rather than the hum drum of banality which fills so many commercial galleries.
A collection filled with free-standing sculptures and a return to the reclaimed wooden pallets demonstrate Lhouette at the height of creative output, seamlessly marrying his updated stripped back portraiture, more mature and subversive in tone alongside his trademark silhouetted females, emerging from candy coloured stripes. Two such rare original works have entered portfolio of the Wyecliffe Galleries; 'Firecracker' and 'Click Bang' currently hang either side of the doorway, enticing all who pass by to do a double take or push forward through the glass door. to take a closer look.
The exciting commitment Lhouette showcases to fusing the raw and the refined has entered new territory in the production of a small international boutique edition of silk screens on scraps of heavy decoupage paper charged with diamond dust. Madbomb entered the market a little over the week ago and is all but sold out, collectors not only falling head over heels for the seductive raised eyebrow and gaze of the model subject, but the crown of brands adorning her pretty head. Is she a fierce female in control of the visually arresting deluge of commercials seen every day, or is she a victim of mass consumption? Lhouette admits that his recent reading of Grayson Perry’s The Descent of Man has influenced his perception of gender, introducing a new take on the social commentary of what masculinity and femininity should or shouldn’t be in modern times.
Wyecliffe Galleries has amongst its offerings a rare set of not only the Artist Proof 1 (AP1) of Mad Bomb, but of precursor works Bentley and Texaco. Prized amongst collectors as the very first work produced and often never entering the market for sale, the collection when hung together eloquently realises a concept fascinated by iconic culture and its fundamental relationship with the power of currency. Quotes amongst the colour emerge on closer inspection, on Bentley italicised whispers firmly pronounce “No matter what price, I have to pay”.
As Lhouette enters the doors of Wyecliffe Galleries to put the finishing touches to a golden palette commissioned for a private collection, his previous shows held within the sprawling York Road spaces can’t help but come to mind. Art de Populaire (2014) and Video Heaven (2016) paved the way for the artist to form fully assembled collections, playing with cartoon and pixelated graphic design, altarpieces to the vast development of technology. The artist is clearly weary and invigorated from the success of Park Lane for the Dorchester Collection, in no small way assisted by high profile appearances on the BBC television and radio. The world is bombarding Lhouette with requests for interviews, commissions and exhibitions – art commentators are marking him out as an investment waiting to happen. The artist himself is nonplussed by such claims, a Navy boy at heart he is disciplined and not easy distracted from the task at hand; turning his gaze to us, society and turning us on our heads....