Divine Narratives: Alice Maher and Celine Bodin

Purdy Hicks, London

Divine Narratives brings together the works of Alice Maher (born 1956 Co. Tipperary Ireland) and Celine Bodin (born 1990 Louviers France).


Purdy Hicks Gallery, London

26 October – 25 November 2023


Alice Maher's series of drawings in watercolour and pencil, Women in Ecstasy, looks at female saints in ecstasy as depicted by artists over the centuries. Zoning in on their tripped-out faces, Maher chooses not to interpret these as instances of objectification, but rather small pools of subjective pleasure and personal freedom. Enclosed in her individual world of secret joy and intense communion, each saint elides the bonds of earthly control by turning inward to her own heart's content.

Celine Bodin's series, Venus Variations, explores the diverse representations in art of Aphrodite and Venus, delving into the origins of the female nude and conjuring the myths surrounding it. The evocative photographs focus our attention on the subtleties of the classic pose and its rhythm. Complexities of gender and identity are investigated through the character that became an iconic genre saturating cultures all around the world, to convey the ambivalent truth of a subject that is part mythology and part carnality.

25 October 2023