Currently on display at the Bendigo Art Gallery, Gimme Freedom (or gimme death) is a major sculptural installation combining the iconography of fast food with the tactics of warfare, utilizing humour to draw attention to the darker side of consumerism and the artifice of freedom.
He questions if we really do have as much choice as we think we do and if this choice actually brings us freedom? If so, do we take this freedom for granted and in the Western world are we so distracted by the daily entourage of small choices (like what we will have for lunch) that we are missing the bigger picture?
In his predominantly three-dimensional work, Jud Wimhurst references pop and street culture as a mode of social commentary exploring ideas of consumption, choice and mortality. In Gimme Freedom (or gimme death), two opposing teams of oversized toy soldiers engage in a fictitious battle.
Each team is outfitted in the corporate colours of an iconic fast food empire and fight with impotent weapons of mass consumption. The messy scene is ultimately frivolous, highlighting the excess and wastefulness of our contemporary lives of convenience. He is process-driven, hand building, casting and applying slick commercial finishes to objects in his home studio.
Jud is the 2016 Bendigo Art Gallery Going Solo artist – an initiative providing contemporary artists living and working in central Victoria the unique opportunity to work collaboratively with curators and produce a new body of work for solo exhibition at the Gallery.
Jud Wimhurst lives and works in Kyneton and has a Bachelor of Fine Art from RMIT University. Recent solo exhibitions include, Protection at the La Trobe University Visual Arts Centre, Bendigo, Safe/Secure at [MARS] Gallery, Melbourne and Future Primitive at the 2012 Melbourne Art Fair.
Jud’s work has also been included in group exhibitions at TarraWarra Museum of Art, Healesville, McClelland Gallery and Sculpture Park, Langwarrin and Bayside Arts and Cultural Centre, Brighton. His work is held in a number of public and private collections including Deakin University, The Macquarie Group and Art Bank.
Gimme Freedom (or gimme death): Jud Wimhurst
Bendigo Art Gallery, View Street, Bendigo
Exhibition continues to 12 February 2017
For more information, visit: www.bendigoartgallery.com.au for details.
Image: Jud Wimhurst, Gimme Freedom (or gimme death), 2016. Installation view. Image courtesy of the artist and MARS Gallery – photo by Ian Hill