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Polly Apfelbaum

Ikon Gallery, Birmingham

19 Sep - 18 Nov 2018

Waiting for the UFOs (a space set between a landscape and a bunch of flowers)

This exhibition of new and recent work by the New York-based artist Polly Apfelbaum features colourful textile installations, ceramics and drawings. The title comes from the 1970s song ‘Waiting for the UFOs’ by British singer-songwriter Graham Parker, combined with René Magritte’s definition of a garden as ‘a space set between a landscape and a bunch of flowers’ and makes reference to his landscape painting The Plagiarism (1940). The idea of appropriation is explored throughout Apfelbaum’s work in the use of allusion and quotation, blurring the lines drawn between popular culture, craft, and high art.

Within the exhibition, Apfelbaum’s artistic practice is framed within wider sociological and political contexts, and the legacy of post-war American art. Placing emphasis on formal qualities such as colour and texture, Apfelbaum asserts the importance of popular culture and craft activity whilst subtly assuming a political and feminist position. Find out more about the Polly Apfelbaum exhibition from the Ikon’s website.

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Wallflowers (Mixed Emotions) (1990 & 2018), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

Wallflowers (Mixed Emotions) (1990/2018), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

Basic Division (Wavy Gravy) (2012), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London © Polly Apfelbaum

Basic Division (Wavy Gravy) (2012), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London; © Polly Apfelbaum

Basic Division (Wavy Gravy) (2012), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London © Polly Apfelbaum

Basic Division (Wavy Gravy) (2012), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London; © Polly Apfelbaum

Aquarius (2018), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

Aquarius (2018), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

Antlia (2018), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

Antlia (2018), Polly Apfelbaum. Courtesy the artist and Frith Street Gallery, London

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