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Nicola Tyson
Nicola Tyson


The most comprehensive overview of the artist’s paintings to date, Nicola Tyson: Selected Paintings 1993-2022 provides a thorough investigation of the artist’s evolving lexicon.

“Tyson’s paintings do not mirror the world that we see with our eyes. Rather, they invoke a kind of dreamscape; the forms are familiar, we understand them, but we cannot quite place how we know them, or where we saw them, or why we are seeing them again now.” –Kathy Noble, Artforum

Known primarily as a painter, Nicola Tyson adds psychological weight to eroticized flesh. She enlivens her canvases with a motley of biomorphic creatures, amalgamated from partly recognizable coordinates of corporeal and animalistic appendages. Her enigmatic mutations, borne out of what she calls “psycho-figuration,” explore the possibilities unlatched by a bodily orientation to painting, informed as much by identity, gender and sexuality as by recesses of the unconscious. The paintings often become a surprise to the artist herself. By relying less on reason, Tyson carves a humorous, unsettling, as well as liberating approach to painting the female body, which roots it in experience rather than the merely observed.

The most comprehensive survey on Nicola Tyson’s paintings to date, spanning three decades of her career, Selected Paintings 1993-2022 provides a panoramic view of the evolving language in her paintings. With more than 150 illustrated pages dedicated to the artist’s chromatically saturated palette, the book boasts over 50 full-color reproductions of her paintings, supplemented by close-up detail images, installation shots and photographs of the artist in her studio.

The monograph includes an essay by Jennifer Higgie, which elaborates on Tyson’s feminist-informed yet intuitive methods to subjective painting. Higgie illuminates the paintings against the backdrop of the carnivalesque ethos of 1970s queer life in London, in which Tyson came of age, as well as the fertile experiments of Trial BALLOON – the feminist-collective space that the artist founded in the 1990s upon her move to New York. Selected Paintings 1993-2022 offers readers the opportunity to delectate in the sumptuous details of Nicola Tyson’s idiosyncratic and startlingly mysterious vision, all while gaining a thorough understanding of what drives her painting practice.