Julian Opie. New works - Berardo Museum
Julian Opie is regarded as one of the most important contemporary artists in the world and most of the works on display were produced specifically for this exhibition and gallery, making use not just of the walls, which stand eight metres tall, but also, going even higher, the roof. People are the central theme of the exhibition, portrayed in various ways and with various materials; sometimes static, sometimes moving; sometimes painted, sometimes sculpted.
His works are immediately recognisable for their distinct formal language and for the simplicity of representation of portraits, figures, and landscapes, resulting from digital manipulation. In his works, the stylised treatment of the subjects portrayed—painted in solid colours, with thick black outlines for their features—is inspired by art, design, and language, as well as Japanese prints, seventeenth- and eighteenth-century portraits, nineteenth-century silhouettes, Roman busts, and Ancient Egyptian art. Opie is able to bring all these established artistic genres into the twenty-first century.