Painter Lewis Hammond Explores the Dark Side of Intimacy in a Moody New Show in Mexico City—See It Here

Take a sneak peek at a gallery that has just reopened to the public.

Lewis Hammond, No Rest (The Flight) (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.
Lewis Hammond, No Rest (The Flight) (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

As galleries around the world begin to slowly reopen, we are focusing on exhibitions at spaces that are now open to public visitors. Check out this show at a newly reopened gallery below.

 

Lewis Hammond: Still Life
Through June 27 at Lulu, Mexico City

 

What the gallery says: “The work of London-based painter Lewis Hammond seems to embody if not the macro aspect of the moment, then the micro, the personal, private experience of what many of us may currently be experiencing. Indeed, if Hammond’s tenebrous pictures felt relevant in a pre-pandemic world, their portrayal of extreme states of mind, such as fear, anxiety, desire and claustrophobia, feels more pertinent than ever now.

The work in this exhibition, which was made [before and during] the crisis in Mexico and then completed en pleine crise in London, is liable to bring to mind many things. The artist’s dark and moody palette, not to mention phantasmagoric subject matter, deliberately evokes a whole host of old masters, particularly Goya and the “Black Paintings,” as well as other examples of the Spanish baroque, like Ribera.”

Why it’s worth a look: The subjects of these moody, thick, chalky works seem at first to be relishing their closeness to one another. A couple spoons in bed; another two embrace, their heads almost fused together. Such pictures are interspersed with others that veer toward danger, though it’s never realized. In one painting, three thorny branches stand in domed interior frames; in another, there is an arrangement of knives and sharp tools; in a third, we see a scavenging animal with his fangs out.

The heavy colors can be more calming than aggressive though, and it seems as if the exhibition’s title, “Still Life,” refers not to the art-historical term, but to the artist’s vision of people and things existing in a still, unhurried life.

What it looks like:

Installation view, "Lewis Hammond: Still Life" at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, “Lewis Hammond: Still Life” at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, "Lewis Hammond: Still Life" at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, “Lewis Hammond: Still Life” at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, "Lewis Hammond: Still Life" at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, “Lewis Hammond: Still Life” at Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, Attachment (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, "Lewis Hammond" at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, “Lewis Hammond: Still Life” at Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, Talisman (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, "Lewis Hammond" at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, “Lewis Hammond: Still Life” at Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, Kyur (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, "Lewis Hammond" at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, “Lewis Hammond: Still Life” at Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, <i>The Alcovene II</i> (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, The Alcovene II (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, "Lewis Hammond" at Lulu, Mexico City.

Installation view, “Lewis Hammond” at Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, <i>Nachtjäger / Only Knowing Hunger,</i> (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, Nachtjäger / Only Knowing Hunger, (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.

Lewis Hammond, Sorro (2020). Courtesy of the artist and Lulu, Mexico City.


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