About the work
In Fencing Dispute, a white picket fence is adorned with masks of various shapes and sizes. The work is built around the ancient and fundamental notion of private property: a boundary is carved into the land, a blockade erected and a space defined. A fence delineates inside from out, acting as a tool of exclusion and [dis]possession. As a visual symbol of legal authority, the fence marks a space as private property, protected by the law of torts (i.e. trespass) and criminal sanctions. Here, the fence meets the many ceremonial faces and characters that adorn its history – warring neighbours, authors of the Fences Amendment Act 2014, various fence-based deities and Boundary Gods, a sprinkling of noses, Roman coins and fence-based memorabilia.
About the artist
Nick Modrzewski is a Naarm (Melbourne) based artist whose work investigates law and social ritual. Densely layered acrylic paintings and sculptural masks form the backbone of his practice, where he depicts figures enmeshed in legal processes or bureaucratic systems: naked neighbours wrestle over a fencing dispute; a congregation of medieval noses gather to draft legislation; and suited men compete in a plant watering competition. Modrzewski holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Victorian College of the Arts and a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Melbourne. He has exhibited locally and internationally, including at COMA (Sydney); Discordia (Melbourne); First Draft (Sydney); the Institute of Contemporary Arts (Singapore); Blindside (Melbourne); Fort Delta (Melbourne); KINGS ARI (Melbourne); OH Open House (Singapore); and the Australian High Commission (Singapore).
Represented by COMA Gallery