Dexter Dalwood

b. 1960, Bristol, UK. Lives and works in London, UK


Dexter Dalwood
Dexter Dalwood, Room 100, Chelsea Hotel, 1999



Dalwood is often described as creating 'history painting' for the modern day. Drawing on events that many collectively remember but few have actually seen, narrative fragments are carefully composed into imagined settings for political scandal or celebrity deaths. Room 100, Chelsea Hotel (1999) depicts the New York hotel room where Sid Vicious was accused of murdering his girlfriend Nancy Spungen. These 'portraits without people' provide clues to their subject matter through iconic accessories, era-specific products and traces of past action. Dalwood's titles explicitly reveal what the artist is portraying, but these too require fluency with popular culture. The scenes highlight the familiarity we often have to these events, whilst simultaneously revealing the mythologies which emerge from their unreachable reality.