Blog – Petrina Hicks

Crossing highly polished still life and commercial portraits with fine art concepts is no easy feat. Petrina Hicks series Every Rose Has Its Thorn is outstanding! I’ll let her explain more:

In her latest series Every Rose Has Its Thorn, Hicks subtly and quietly teases the threads of consumerism and unravels the relationship between beauty and money. Hicks is adept at using the seductive and glossy language of commercial photography to create works that probe the false promises of perfection. In a time when so much fine art photography embraces the banal and anti-aesthetic as a distancing device from ever-seductive commercial imagery, Hicks has taken a radically alternative approach. 

Continuing a preoccupation with the aesthetics of advertising, Hicks explores the high and low art of persuasion. As if to understand the mechanics of this art she pulls it apart, extracting, classifying and itemizing elements of visual seduction. Perfect pink roses, bunches of grapes, fluffy white kittens, and stone statues of an idealized human form, reappear as Hicks distils recurring motifs, singles-out illusory devices and over-saturates symbolism. 

As if removed from their original placement such as in an historic still life or TV commercial, these usually loaded figures and objects take on an unnerving ambiguity. They are full of empty promise, deliberately absent of meaning in their context-less, slogan-free state. Using solid-colour backgrounds of sweet pink, electric blue and nuclear greens, her works appear like single-layers in Photoshop, lacking the insertion of generic scenery, the overlayed picture of a perfume bottle or a cleverly placed brand logo.

www.petrinahicks.com