MARTIN MALONEY (B. 1961)
signed, titled and dated ' ''SHAG PILE'' MARTIN MALONEY 2004' (on the overlap)
vinyl collage on plasticated canvas
60 x 72in. (152.5 x 183cm.)
Executed in 2004
Xavier Hufkens, Brussels.
Acquired from the above by the present owner.
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In Calendar Boys (2000) and Shag Pile (2004) Martin Maloney transfers the cartoonish vibrancy of his painting to vinyl and paper collage, producing bright, witty vignettes that reflect on modern life and modern sex. In some senses inheriting the mantle of the 1980s work of Kippenberger and Oehlen, Maloney’s style is defined by a deliberate formal crudity and cheerfully lurid colour; the artist’s compressed forms and fluorescent tones combine to produce an immediately recognisable figurative language. Within this idiosyncratic language, Maloney brings his figures to life with a remarkable articulacy; as Adrian Searle has said of Maloney, ‘The awkwardness begins to have a kind of emotional tenor and expressiveness. All the figures are painted as individuals; each one is a problem to be resolved. No one is a cipher, and Maloney tries to give his subjects a character, a singular demeanour and poise.’ (A. Searle, ‘Don’t talk Maloney’, The Guardian, Feb 1, 2000, https://www.theguardian.com/books/2000/feb/01/artsfeatures.art [accessed Mar 22, 2017]). This individuation and intelligent sensitivity is clear in both these works: Calendar Boys offers a series of bizarre pin-ups, with each model given their own surreal, misshapen identity, while Shag Pile laughingly juxtaposes the subversiveness of a sex game gone wrong with the overwhelming kitsch of the domestic, suburban room in which it takes place.
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