Gareth Ernst's work focusses on the intimate and fleeting. His sketches are photographs. They are rapid, urgent and complete. Once a line is made it is rarely unmade or corrected – the moment has passed.
His studies of the human form are uncompromising and direct. Gareth's work disrupts the tradition of idealising the naked male form, and instead uses it as a vehicle for exploring the themes of power, vulnerability, mortality and innocence. He often achieves this through unorthodox pop culture inclusions and juxtapositions – Darth Vader masks, stuffed Pokémon dolls and even mice dress his nudes. For his audience, these juxtapositions are destabilising and contradictory, creating tension with the erotic charge of the subject's exposure.
The setting for this exhibition is Gareth's Chippendale studio, where he has lived and worked for sixteen years. It is his home, workspace and archive. It is an alive and deeply personal place that displays Gareth's own history and the evolution of his work.
Gareth has completed his Fine Arts degree in Drawing (Honours) at the National Art School and is currently a Masters student at the National Art School specialising in Painting.