Over her fifteen-year career, Sydney-based artist Petrina Hicks has gained a strong reputation for her large-scale, hyperreal photographs that subvert and disrupt the photographic language of portraiture. Hicks photographs children, animals, and young women against simple backgrounds, returning to the same models and motifs frequently to define and hone her distinctive style. Hicks’s photographs are notable for their duality; pristine and benign at first glance, the works are undercut with a sense of the uncanny and surreal. The tension between seduction and danger, familiarity and strangeness, intimacy and distance are present in many of Hicks’s works, which are rich with mythological and historical symbolism.
Petrina Hicks: Gothique Blanc brings together works made between 2003 and 2019, as part of ‘Australia Now’. Seen together, Hicks’s shimmering, enigmatic and surreal compositions convey the inherent ambiguity and complexity of the female experience. At a time when issues of gender and representation are more culturally relevant than ever before, Hicks’s photographs interrogate the cultural and visual representation of women and children in contemporary society and throughout history.
‘Australia Now’ is a celebration of events bringing France and Australia together — in business, research, technology, education, tourism, sport and the arts. This program, spread over 2021-22, gives unique opportunities for international market development and promotes Australia’s creative excellence, cultural diversity, and open economy.
Petrina Hicks: Gothique Blanc is the first international exhibition of Petrina Hicks’ major mid-career survey show, Bleached Gothic, which exhibited at the National Gallery of Victoria in 2019.
Ambassade d’Australie en France
4 Rue Jean Rey
75015 Paris 15