Lebanese artist Huguette Caland (b. 1931) and her exploratory practice have had a key, yet under-recognized, role in the development of international modern art. In the 1970s, after moving to Paris from Beirut, she created exuberant and erotically-charged paintings, which challenged traditional conventions of beauty and desire.
The female physique is a recurrent motif in her work, depicted as landscapes or amorphous forms. Caland has often used her own body as a subject, and her self-representation comes from a desire to liberate and control how both hers and other women's bodies are depicted.
This exhibition at Tate St Ives includes large canvases with bright colours, such as her Bribes de corps (Body Parts) series from the 1970s, softly moving from abstraction into figuration, with shapes suggesting fleshy forms. Alongside these paintings are Caland's intricate drawings, which demonstrate her mastery of line. In these works, portraits of friends and lovers transform into landscapes, and landscapes into overtly sexualized body parts.
24 May – 1 September 2019
Tate St Ives | St Ives, UK