Helen Chadwick

1953–1996

Biography

Helen Chadwick (18 May 1953 – 15 March 1996) was a British sculptor, photographer and installation artist. In 1987, she became one of the first women artists to be nominated for the Turner Prize. Chadwick was known for "challenging stereotypical perceptions of the body in elegant yet unconventional forms. Her work draws from a range of sources, from myths to science, grappling with a plethora of unconventional, visceral materials that included chocolate, lambs tongues and rotting vegetable matter. Her skilled use of traditional fabrication methods and sophisticated technologies transform these unusual materials into complex installations. Maureen Paley noted that "Helen was always talking about craftsmanship—a constant fount of information". Binary oppositions was a strong theme in Chadwick's work; seductive/repulsive, male/female, organic/man-made. Her combinations "emphasise yet simultaneously dissolve the contrasts between them". Her gender representations forge a sense of ambiguity and a disquieting sexuality blurring the boundaries of ourselves as singular and stable beings."

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Installing Helen Chadwick's Carcass at Tate Liverpool

Nestled among other works from the 1980s, Carcass is a tall, clear glass column filled with rotting vegetable matter. The ...