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In the heart of London’s Davies Street, Gagosian proudly presents “Ekkyklema,” a new exhibition by renowned artist Jenny Saville. Opening its doors on November 30, this showcase of new paintings and works on paper draws inspiration from the collision of our tangible and screen-centric worlds.

Saville’s Pictorial Odyssey:

The project’s title, “Ekkyklema,” evokes the wheeled platforms used in ancient Greek dramas, thrusting interior scenes into the audience’s view. Saville, in her quest for a visual language that encapsulates our coexistence in material and digital realms, presents a truly universal subject— the moment and mystery of conception.

Intersecting Realities:

Saville’s artistic journey unfolds against the backdrop of giant digital screens at stadiums, akin to religious spectacles. In “Ekkyklema,” she dissects body parts into angular screen-like panels, reminiscent of desktop computing windows and news broadcasts. This visual system, developed over the past year, blends figuration and abstraction, capturing the essence of our intersecting physical and electronic realities.

Reclining Figures and Mythological Allusions:

Drawing from Greek mythology, Saville’s reclining figures pay homage to Danaë, whose prophesied child would alter destiny. The myth, previously depicted by artists like Rembrandt and Titian, takes on new life in Saville’s palette, inspired by watercolour studies of the ever-changing Greek sky at sunset.

Picasso’s Echo:

In a nod to Picasso, Saville’s fragmented portraits echo the master’s Cubist exploration. Active lines of intense colour suggest frenzied motion, while overlaid “screens” disrupt the conventional, offering fragmented glimpses into past, future, or alternate realities.

Jenny Saville: A Trailblazer in Contemporary Art:

Born in 1970 in Cambridge, England, Jenny Saville stands as a trailblazer in contemporary art. Her works grace esteemed collections worldwide, from Tate in London to The Broad in Los Angeles. “Ekkyklema” adds another chapter to her artistic legacy, inviting viewers to explore the intersection of ancient myth and the digital canvas.

November 30, 2023–February 10, 2024
17–19 Davies Street, London

Elena Leo is the Arts & Lifestyle Editor of Ikon London Magazine.