eX de Medici

Although continually shifting in subject matter, eX de Medici’s intricate watercolours form ongoing interrogations of the politics of power and the relationship between life and death. Beneath their beautiful ornamentations, themes of violence and destruction are orchestrated through the imagery of firearms, helmets and other military paraphernalia wreathed by organic detritus. This unique aesthetic draws from the artist’s background as a tattooist and recalls the vanitas tradition. De Medici’s miniaturist technique and technical virtuosity invites close examination through which the spectator becomes caught in a paradoxical vacillation between the beautiful and the repulsive.

In her recent watercolours, alive with nests of mobile phone towers, gas masks, clusters of surveillance cameras and rounds of “expanded ammunition”, the language of flower painting is juxtaposed against emblems of power and death. de Medici warns of the dangers of governmental control in an increasingly digitised world. 

de Medici’s work is held in numerous public collections in Australia including the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra and most State Galleries. Selected solo exhibitions include, Smithereens, Sullivan+Strumpf Singapore (2018);Cold Blooded: eX de Medici, Drill Hall Gallery, Australian National University, Canberra (2013); eX de Medici, Urima University, Iran (2013); eX de Medici/Vexed Generation, Fashion Space Gallery, London College of Fashion, London, UK (2010); and Soft Steel, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne (2003). 

Recent group exhibitions include The Ideal Home, Penrith Regional Gallery and the Lewers Bequest (2018/19); Two Houses: Politics and histories in the contemporary art collections of John Chia and Yeap Lam YangInstitute of Contemporary Arts Singapore, LASALLE College of the Arts (2018)Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art: Dark Heart, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide (2014); Conflict: contemporary responses to war, University of Queensland Art Museum, Brisbane (2014); Like, Casula Powerhouse, Sydney (2012); Freehand: Recent Australian Drawing, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne (2010); and Perspectives, Australian War Memorial, Canberra (2010). In 2009, de Medici participated in the Artist in War Program as an Official War Artist through the Australian War Memorial, ACT, in the Solomon Islands Peace Keeping Mission. De Medici won the National Works on Paper Prize in 2002, and was a finalist for the Rockhampton Gold Award 2016.

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