Gary Hume was born in Kent, England in 1962. He studied at Liverpool Polytechnic and then Goldsmiths’ College, London where he became associated with the Young British Artists (YBAs) group in the late 1980s. In 1996 he was shortlisted for the Turner Prize and his work was shown at the São Paulo Biennial, Brazil. In the following year, he was awarded the Jerwood Prize for Painting and in 1999 he represented Britain at the Venice Biennale. In 2001 he was elected to the Royal Academy. Hume has exhibited widely both in Britain and internationally, with recent solo exhibitions including: White Cube Gallery, São Paulo, 2014; Tate Britain, London, 2013; Pinchuk Art Centre, Kiev, 2012; Matthew Marks Gallery, New York, 2009; Modern Art Oxford, 2008; Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin, 2003 and Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Dean Gallery, Edinburgh, 1999. Hume lives and works in London and Accord, New York.
Gary Hume (1962 – )
Hume is best known for his bright, flat, colourful paintings, produced using household gloss paint. His style features expanses of solid colour broken up with subtle, graphic details and lines through which a familiar subject or form begins to emerge. He came to prominence in the early 1990s with a series of ‘Door Paintings’ which feature simplified images of the municipal features familiar in hospitals. His subject matter has since expanded to include portraits, figures and gardens; the portraits in particular (including the supermodel Kate Moss) demonstrate his fascination with popular culture.
The graphic quality of Hume's work lends itself to printmaking, especially screen-printing. In the portfolio The Sister Troop (2009), the iconic form of the American cheerleader is abstracted into expanses of colour against the shimmer of brushed metal. Alluding to the American dream, Hume hints at a disquiet that lies beyond the fake smiles, patriotism and perfect tans.