Standing room only: A modern human portrait

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The Independent Culture

An exhibition of full-body portraits opened at the Flowers gallery in London this week. Depicting the human shape in its different forms - male, female, clothed, naked, twisted, aggressive or impassive, varied works by 15 artists reveal what makes us unique.

Claerwen James, Ken Currie and Ishbel Myerscough are among the contributors to ‘Standing Room Only,’ a modern look at the tradition of portrait painting and in particular the human physique as a whole.

The portraits exhibited attack traditional representations of the body as beautiful; instead the show offers twisted, confrontational physicality that is at once seductive and repellent.

Boshier’s ‘The Bride’ is faceless, wearing conventional white lace in stark contrast to a blood-red background. John Kirby’s ‘Transfiguration’ is a grotesque, yet appealing, portrayal of a little boy wearing girl’s ballet tights and slippers, set against a sublime backdrop. Alison Watt’s ‘Disposition of Linen’ is overtly sexual, yet the draped fabrics and discarded flowers and wreaths are reminiscent of more classical poses.

Click here or on the image above to preview the exhibition

‘Standing Room Only’ is at the Flowers Gallery in London until 4 September,