Kate Lyddon

b.1979, London, UK. Lives and works in London, UK


Kate Lyddon
Kate Lyddon, Man Up, 2013 (detail)


Working across painting, drawing and sculpture, Kate Lyddon creates scenes of bodily absurdity and dark humour. A cast of characters, sometimes cartoon-like and often grotesque, enact a variety of nonsensical actions and poses. Resisting stability or repetition, Lyddon allows chance to play an active role in determining the direction in which her imagery grows. Cloakroom Exchange originated in a joke between the artist and a friend when queuing outside an art fair. Realising he had nothing to check in to the cloakroom, he suggested he might check in his belly instead. Running with this visual idea, Lyddon painted a fleshy part of the body hanging over a structural support. As she developed the work the body changed from male to female, shifting the theme to the effects of pregnancy and ageing. In balancing the composition, the head of the character became tree-like – a motif Lyddon often utilises. It acts to pull her contemporary and autobiographical starting points in the direction of the fantastic, but brutal, realm of folk tales.