Francis' work looks at the forces of power, position and prestige through the prisms of contemporary economic anxiety, cultural phenomenon and personal heritage. His practice conflates painting, sculpture, photography and performance to create works that satirise the pretensions of portraiture, exploit alpha male insecurities and Western assumptions/expectations of success.
My work also examines the complexity of mixed race heritage (Filipino/English) and identity. The work harnesses mixed identity as a whole and as a form of resistance in a world increasingly showing examples of hostility to the ‘other’ and a divergence back towards a ‘purer’ sense of nationhood. The work draws upon Pinoy Folklore via the writings of Nick Joaquin and his writings that are rooted in matriarchy and the supernatural.
The work looks at the intersection of two distinct genealogies within himself. I use familiar and idealised examples of supreme Western superheroes/leaders (in the tradition of classical heroes of Greek and Roman antiquity) and then look to occupy this character to trace my genealogy on my mother’s side. Here, I channel the frustration and confusion that can manifest itself in performative acts that exhibit violence, domesticity and the appropriation of heroic dialogue.
Francis Olvez-Wilshaw is a multi-media artist currently living and working in London.
MFA Sculpture Royal College of Art. 2016-18
BA Hons Sculpture Camberwell College of Art, UAL. 2010-13. 1st Class Honours
Selected solo exhibitions:
‘Stick a Fork In It’, Visual Arts Centre, Austin, TX, USA. December 2017
Silanaiai Project, Kaunas, Lithuania- July 2016
‘Aether Shrugged’ Curious Projects, Eastbourne. April 2016
‘If you want me to stay’ The Green Man Gallery Buxton. May 2014
Selected group exhibitions:
RCA Degree Show. June 2018. Group show
W.I.P Show, Royal College of Art, London. January 2017
Summer Show 2015 Florence Trust, London. June 2015
Winter Open 2015 Florence Trust, London. January 2015
RCA/University of Texas Exchange. August- December 2017
Florence Trust Residency 2014-15, Highbury, London
Artist-in-residence at The Green Man Gallery Buxton. October 2013- May 2014