AC:DC Electricity Diptych

Chris Plowman (1952 - 2009)


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© Chris Plowman

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  • About the work
    Chris Plowman's prints juxtapose ordinary household objects against urban landscapes. 

    In AC: DC Electricity Diptych, above each of the two shots of Battersea Power Station, with its looming chimneys, we see giant images of a wall socket and an electric lampshade. The discrepancy in size between the large building and what are normally smaller objects unsettles our expectations. The power station seems to be a miniature building in an invisible giant’s world where it has shrunk to the size of a child’s toy. 

    Plowman’s prints owe much to the spirit of Dada and Surrealist art from the 1900s to the early 1930s. In 1868 the French poet Isidore Ducasse, known by his pseudonym Comte de Lautréamont, famously described a character ‘ beautiful as the chance meeting on a dissecting table of a sewing machine and an umbrella.’ The incongruity of Lautréamont’s images inspired Surrealist visual artists including Man Ray and René Magritte. The use of objects in Plowman’s works pays homage to Surrealist compositional devices.
  • About the artist
    Chris Plowman was born in Hampshire. He studied at the Winchester School of Art from 1969–70, and then at Wolverhampton Polytechnic (1970–73) and the Royal College of Art (1973–76). He completed several public commissions including works for the British Library, Guy's and St Thomas's Hospitals, London. Plowman had numerous solo and group exhibitions in the UK including shows at Wolverhampton Art Gallery; Royal Academy; and Flowers East, London. His works are represented in many public collections including in London, Tate, Victoria and Albert Museum and Science Museum; and at Southampton Art Gallery, Graves Art Gallery, Sheffield; and the John Hechinger Collection, Washington.
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    England, London
    Materials & Techniques
  • Details
    AC:DC Electricity Diptych
    height: 54.00 cm, width: 70.00 cm
    Purchased 1990
    GAC number