Stephen Bush is a painter who explores modes of representational painting and its history. Known for his use of amplified colour and experimentation with the techniques and processes of painting, Bush reinvents its narrative possibilities. Revision, contradiction and juxtaposition are key elements of his work. Costumed figures often mingle with modernist forms in idealised, hypnotic landscapes. Picturing the tensions that exist between the original and reproduction; old and new; natural and man-made; the arbitrary and rational, are fundamental to his practice.
Select solo exhibitions: From the Rubber Room, Darren Knight Gallery, Sydney, 2020; Mule Skin, Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, 2018; Festooned, Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, 2016; MCA Foyer Wall Commission, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 2016; Whipped Foulard, Michael Reid Gallery, Berlin, 2015; Open the Boxoctosis, Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, 2014; Steenhuffel, Ian Potter Museum of Art, Melbourne, 2014; VOLTA Art Fair, New York, 2012; Melbourne Art Fair, Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, 2010; Gelderland, SITE: Santa Fe, 2007; Hoevelaken, Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, 2006; Penetrol, Goff + Rosenthal Gallery, New York, 2005; Blackwood Skyline, Stephen Bush: work in progress #5, The Ian Potter Museum of Art, the University of Melbourne, 2003.
Select group exhibitions: Melbourne Now, The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia at Fed Square, Melbourne, 2023; XXX: Celebrating 30 years of Sutton Gallery, Sutton Gallery, Melbourne, 2022; Zombie Eaters, Murray Art Museum, Albury, 2022; Carnivalesque, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 2018; Sugar Spin, GOMA, Brisbane, 2017; Panorama, TarraWarra Museum of Art, Healsville, 2016; Hiding in Plain Sight: A Selection of Works from The Michael Buxton Collection, Bendigo Art Gallery, Bendigo, 2015; In Your Dreams, Counihan Gallery, Melbourne, 2014; Mix Tape 1980s: Appropriation, Subculture, Critical Style, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2013; Negotiating This World: Contemporary Australian Art, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2012; Marie Celeste, Artspace, Connecticut, 2011; Contemporary Encounters, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2010.Artist's CV (PDF)
Bush’s paintings are manifestly organic in both their process and progress. Carefully orchestrated collisions (or collusions) between image and accident conspire to generate bizarre and discordant relationships.David Burnett, 2008