CONTROL Gallery is pleased to announce When the Ship Goes Down, the Los Angeles solo debut of Irish artist Conor Harrington. The show leans into the absurdity of politics and hyper-masculinity in today’s society, exploring division, polarity and the resurgence of hyper-nationalism through satirical paintings questioning systems of power.
“I’ve been painting 18th Century European archetypes for many years now, as for me they represent an almost cartoon-like representation of European excess and arrogance. It was a time of great opulence and ego and this is best summed up in their clothes. The men wore frock coats, silk stockings, shoes with stacked heels, shiny buckles and coloured ribbons. They look incredibly feminine by today’s standards and I find this an interesting way to explore questions around masculinity and gender,” shares Conor Harrington.
When the Ship Goes Down will feature both paintings and works on paper, and explores the use of bunting - a delicate object originally utilized by the navy but now used to celebrate special occasions and patriotic events. Many figures in the works can be seen ceremoniously wrapping themselves in bunting, in a process of self-congratulation, serving as an emblem and excess of the establishment and offering a contrast between the seriousness and weight of plinth politics with the playfulness, kitschiness and incongruity that a celebratory object can represent.
“Conor’s work offers an elegant and highly elevated perspective of the natural distrust of authority we develop as young artists. He questions hierarchical structures and the figures who symbolize them –in a way few others can. We’re proud to be able to share this new body of work in Los Angeles as the world around us watches,” shares CONTROL Gallery Co-Founder Roger Gastman.
The opening reception for When the Ship Goes Down will take place on March 31, 2023 from 7PM to 9PM, with the show running through April 29, 2023.
434 N La Brea Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90036
Wednesday – Saturday: 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. | Sunday – Tuesday: Closed
About Conor Harrington
Conor Harrington is an Irish artist wielding an aesthetic both classical and contemporary. He has been painting on canvas and concrete for over 25 years, with his bold and expressive large-scale works exploring age-old themes of conflict, masculinity and power, often beckoning viewers into the scene. Utilizing oils, spray paint and the occasional fire extinguisher, Harrington creates modern-day epics for the Instagram age.