STACKS PROJECTS | 25 February - 20 March 2016


by Guy Peppin


Territus Aspicio
(Fearful Gazes)

Straight men fear women will laugh at them
(corpus vile, worthless body)

Women fear straight men will rape them
(corpus abusi, abused body)

Straight men fear gay men will treat them
like (they treat) women
(corpus servum, slave body)

Gay men fear straight men will kill them
(corpore fractus, broken body)



The Latin word for body is corpus, and this body of works questions the traditional ideas, and preconceived notions of masculinity, identity, and desire. Scraping beyond the surface of traditional and popular culture, we behold the body, admired or shamed, embraced or rejected – a necessary sack of meat and bones, dung and joy.

The classical figure of Eros; or Venus as a boy, is central to the ideas embodied in the exhibition, as is removing the sanitization of culture, the moral dictates of what we should do with our bodies, and with whom. Cultural history is full of archetypes embodying the forms of the beautiful male image, that endure, but also challenge commonly held stereotypes when reading beyond Victorian sanitization, from the muscular, bearishly masculine, yet bisexual Hercules, completing his 12 heroic labours, to the twinkishly beautiful Antinoüs, drowned lover of Emperor Hadrian, worshipped posthumously throughout the empire by decree.

Then there is our curiosity, and our attraction to, and love of the broken and fallen. The aesthetic of the ruin in western art has been prominent for centuries, but the collage technique of cutting up and juxtaposing is a more recent twentieth-century phenomenon, as is cropping the face off the torso in the Grindr app for anonymity. To the romantic eye, the incomplete statue or image is perhaps more beautiful than the complete one, perhaps due to its mystery, and the imagination required to perceive it. A statue of Hercules, with his broken profile; like a boxer, beautiful and beaten, turning back into rocks. The found image, the lost, unclaimed or discarded image, serendipitously discovered at a flea market, charity shop, garage sale, rubbish bin. Decontextualized of narrative, the image of the body can be re-contextualized with new meaning.

The privileged heterosexual male gaze in traditional western culture has traditionally been directed possessively, upon the submissive female body on one hand, and in admiration on the heroic male figure on the other, but also more furtively upon beautiful men. Moreover, what of this queer gaze? It has always been dangerous to be a voyeur, to be caught looking, some have even argued that homophobia derives from men’s fear of sexual objectification by other men. In this digital age, the gay man is more likely to hide behind an arsenal of dating apps rather than meet new people in person, and apps are places where rejection and malaise are more common than any chance of a real connection.

The experience of the modern city is as a place of fleeting, never to be repeated experiences. Social interaction is a basic human need and momentary meetings than can change a life. But in the act of looking risks the voyeur becoming the victim. The simplest walk down the street for a gay man can be fraught with tension. You glimpse another man, he’s attractive, he sees your gaze, his reaction may be flattered, inviting, ambivalent, uncomfortable, or even violent and disgusted. Will he want to kiss you, or kill you? What is a boy to do? Keep his eyes on the ground? Look and run? And what of the future? Those who have experienced objectification know it may feel uncomfortable on an animal level. But does the gaze; wherever it falls, always have to objectify its target and empower its wielder? As society evolves, we can only hope that relations between people come to a place of safety and mutual respect.

Here: http://www.stacksprojects.com/corpus-artists.html




Guy Peppin Afterglow: Writing the Landscape | 3 February - 27 February 2016

Guy Peppin’s latest body of work Silent Argument in Light of Recent Eventstranslates written poetry into contemporary art utilising a studio process that involves the conversion of written text into softly poetic abstract artworks defined by their light, colour, and emotion. Investigating the connections between poetry and visual arts, from the language of semiotics to the long art historical tradition of ekphrasis, Peppin works from personal and collected text sources to create artworks which blur the line and defy easy classification.

The works from my ‘Silent Argument in Light of Recent Event’ series are neither poems or paintings nor photographs, not landscapes or pure abstractions; they sit somewhere within the expanded field of contemporary art, as something like chromatic graphic immersions. They are not limited by the traditional techniques that I have used previously, but by the parameters of my studio investigation, and the expanded options of twenty first century technology.
These recent works were an enquiry into the development of new processes and techniques, focusing on creating art which I consider more of its time, that is, refining a process in the studio that uses a synthesis of both the traditional and hand made, with new digital studio techniques to achieve experiential works. These works, which are text and drawing based, are painted with light and colour, becoming something like colour poems.
Writing and making visual art have both become equally important to my art practice, my research initially began as a project to understand the relationship between writing and art making in contemporary art. Through research into historical and cultural ideas on colour theory I developed a colour wheel based on colour and emotion in order to translate my poetry into a series of chromatic fade artworks.
(Guy Peppin. Artist #1 Statement, 2015)

Guy Peppin is a Sydney based interdisciplinary artist who has recently completed his Masters of Fine Arts at Sydney College of the Arts. Peppin has previously held solo exhibitions at Liverpool Street Gallery as well as internationally, and was a recipient of the Storrier Onslow National Art School Paris Studio Residency in 2010.

Website: http://artereal.com.au/exhibition/afterglow-writing-the-landscape/





Private Viewing Thursday 3 December 6-8pm
Please join us to celebrate the achievements of our postgraduate students completing degrees in December 2015. A special private viewing of their examination work will be held from 6-8pm on Thursday 3 December, hosted by Justin Trendall, Graduate School Director.

Exhibition Hours
Friday 4 December 11am - 5pm
Saturday 5 December 11am - 4pm

SCA Galleries, Sydney College of the Arts, The University of Sydney
Kirkbride Way, off Park Drive, Lilyfield, NSW (enter opposite Cecily Street)


LSG 2013 | 30 Jan - 28 Feb 2013. Opening: Thursday 31 January 2013, 6-8pm. www.liverpoolstgallery.com.au

Rick Amor, John Beard, Tony Bevan, Seth Birchall, Kevin Connor, Virginia Coventry, Steven Harvey, Daniel Hollier, Christopher Horder, Anwen Keeling, John Kelly, Jennifer Lee, Kevin Lincoln, Enrique Martínez Celaya, Kirstin McIver, Ken Mihara, Allan Mitelman, Suzanne Moss, Guy Peppin, The Estate of Jon Schueler, David Serisier, Peter Sharp, Jeannette Siebols, Aida Tomescu, Kate Turner Fairfax, Dick Watkins, Karl Wiebke.




Guy Peppin - Voyager 2011. 29 January - 24th February 2011 Liverpool Street Gallery. Opening drinks with the artist Thursday 3rd February 2011 6-8pm. www.liverpoolstgallery.com.au


Wilder Shores

Again, on a wild and burning shore,
deep with salt and thick with weeds,
swept-up, beached and beckoned,
by an unseen moon, unreasonable winds
and waves tug at jetsam; like all waves,
and push towards those fatal shores,
what fortunate gales will have me
surging on those scattered coral sands
bleached and broken by underlining currents,
I will write to you in wind and running waters,
shooting at the sky to free a firmament,
while night seas, stars and storms glisten,
swing and batter; as I, long foam bordered,
sky driven and sea blown, drift and sunder
in waves, coming and going on gleaning tides,
again drawn-out beyond depth, clutching
flotsam fragments to wilder shores.

Guy Peppin from Voyager 2010


Liverpool Street Gallery 243a Liverpool Street East Sydney NSW 2010 Australia  
T. +61 2 8353 7799  F. +61 2 8353 7798  info@liverpoolstgallery.com.au




Guy Peppin Return to Sender 11 July – 6 August 2009
Opening drinks with the artist Thursday 16 July 2009, 6-8pm

The body of work in Return to Sender functions as a series of unreadable, ‘impossible’ letters: the scribbled and tactile surfaces contain private, hidden ruminations to friends and family, irrespective of time and place, at home and abroad, living and dead. The works are an introspective, epistolary response to personal relationships, history and culture – moments of condensed creativity in the studio. They contain elements of painting, drawing, sculpture and installation, placing the works into the expanded field of contemporary practice.
Language is the basis of the work; they are handwriting as art, correspondence as image. The canvases are palimpsests of obfuscations and submerged excisions acting as liminal, poetic mindscapes that evoke rather than describe the subject. Art being, obliquely a kind of confession.
My work concentrates on making without being ritualistic and connecting to materials without fetishising them. I enjoy the tactility of applying paint directly; I use my fingers, a pencil or a sharp stick, scraffito, smearing, pouring or splashing the paint onto the surface, letting it run wherever it may. I have also used materials that come to hand including natural charcoal, ashes and earth pigments.
Layers of paint and marks are laid down, and then whitewashed in a continuing process of creation and erasure. The works are shredded and reassembled, resulting in legible words or marks being rendered illegible or fragmented for the viewer. In the process of reassembling the torn strips of canvas, the marks become scattered and seemingly random within this now overlapping and horizontal plane.
The newly formed horizontal stripes are a compression of nervous, frayed edges – they do not deny their physicality. The juxtaposition of the lyrical marks against the stripes’ horizontality on a linear field creates moments of visual tension; the fragmented work is read as a limitative state. This process of creation, erasure and fragmentation ensures ambiguity, and with no possible acknowledgement from the subject. The works remain as transitional objects, potent yet inert as in-between spaces of a transitional threshold.
Here one views a contradiction of art as confession; the intended recipient will never, ever have the opportunity to read the original letter. What freedom this invites.
Sincerely— Guy Peppin

Liverpool Street Gallery 243a Liverpool Street East Sydney NSW 2010 Australia
T. +61 2 8353 7799F. +61 2 8353 7798info@liverpoolstgallery.com.au