For his third solo exhibition at Backwoods Gallery, Stephen Ives dives into a raw purgative interpretation of death and fate on the personal as well as grand human scale. Drawing inspiration from the iconic equestrian figures of classical Europe, their heroic portrayal of Great Men and the symbiotic relationship with their mounts carrying them unwittingly onward, Ives attempts to create moments of truth expressing the corruption and purity of the human situation as well as the diminutive nature of our endeavours.
Each sculpture is like an apocalyptic harbinger, a tale within itself of human-kinds majesty and failure and yet also a structure on which to examine his own fallibility by peeling back the layers of his own existence and emotions.
His complex works show great artistic skill and embody different initial impulses into majestic individual pieces.
Stephen Ives was born in England in 1970 and grew up in idyllic surrounds in the historic town of Lewes. Throughout his childhood he was surrounded by opportunities to be creative whether it was drawing, cooking, sculpting, Lego or making model kits.
Before becoming a professional artist in his mid-twenties, Ives worked as a a chef, barista, barman, waiter, market porter, grocer, cheese hand, carpenter’s assistant, mudbrick maker, paste up artist in a small advertising agency, food stylist’s assistant and forklift driver. He is the creator of an up coming toy-sculpture series titled “Mr. Dictator”.
Ives’ works have been exhibited in many private exhibitions in Melbourne and Denmark (his home of several years), he has participated in numerous group exhibitions and art fairs; Art Brussels, Affordable Art Fair (London, Paris, New York), Santa Fe Contemporary Art Fair, and Copenhagen Art Fair. He has work in collections in Australia, England, America and Germany as well as some of the foremost art collectors in Denmark including Christian Stadil (Hummel Sport), Lars Christian Brask (EFG International) and the Danske Bank.