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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

In Focus: Ashley Bickerton


Lehmann Maupin / New York / Art

A wrack zone is the area on a beach where the high tide leaves life, death, and litter. Grasses, shells, egg cases, crabs, and carcasses mix with plastics, fishing line, flip flops, and other stuff left by humans. Taking inspiration from this flux and flow of matter, the artist Ashley Bickerton, who lives in Bali, developed a technique to capture it on canvas. “I am obsessed with this earth-sky binary,” says Bickerton. “Matter and emptiness. And keep returning to it throughout this series. Actually throughout my career.” He calls these paintings his “Flotsam” series, and for him they are both seascapes and culturescapes—powerful vortexes, elemental and exquisite, that pull all free-floating things into the zone. —L.J.

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