Hannah Tilson - Whitechapel Gallery Art Icon: Charity Online Auction London Tuesday, March 12, 2024 | Phillips

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  • Draped in pattern and moving within a pattern-filled landscape, Hannah Tilson takes pleasure in acts of camouflage and of revelation. The term ‘pattern-scape’ is used by the artist to describe the rhythmic geometry of her work; her luminous self-portraits vividly blur figure and foreground, body and enveloping fabric. The City Speaks to Her, 2023, is, in Tilson’s words, ‘simultaneously body, pattern and architectural form’.

    'Body and building morphing together, becoming one. Fabrics that swoosh perpetually in front of our eyes, a river unfolding in front of us …'
    —Hannah Tilson

    Tilson exerts skilful control of her materials; she makes her own paints, working with raw powder pigments and binder, building colour in thinly-applied layers. By measuring and controlling levels of translucency and opacity, elements of the image are concealed and revealed, and the image of the artist is effectively camouflaged within a vibrant and fragmented space. If clashing surfaces and image overload speak to our experience of urban life, they might also offer an escape route. Tilson has been thinking of the use of curtains prominently positioned at the front of Vermeer's paintings, they give you the feeling that you might be looking somewhere you shouldn’t. For Tilson, working the image through these layers or veils, is like ‘escaping into a different world’.  


    Hannah Tilson in her studio at Palazzo Monti, Brescia, Italy. Photo: Courtesy of Palazzo Monti Residency 

    Hannah Tilson (b. 1995, London, UK) lives and works in London. She graduated from the Slade School of Fine Art in 2018, and has studied on exchange at the New York Studio School. Tilson completed the Drawing Year at the Royal Drawing School in 2021. She presented a solo exhibition, Soft Cut, at Cedric Bardawil, London in 2023. Tilson has exhibited with A Plus A, Venice; Baert Gallery, Los Angeles; Christie’s, London; Berntson Bhattacharjee, London; Guts Gallery, London; Badr El Jundi, Madrid; London Original Print Fair at Somerset House; MINT, Munich. A monograph spanning Hannah Tilson’s work between 2010 and 2023 was published in 2023.

    • Provenance

      Donated by the artist and Cedric Bardawil, London


The City Speaks To Her

signed, titled and dated 'Hannah Tilson The City Speaks to Her, 2023' on the reverse
pigment in binder on watercolor paper
108.6 x 75.6 cm (42 3/4 x 29 3/4 in.)
Executed in 2023.

Full Cataloguing

£3,000 - 4,000 


Contact Specialist

Olivia Taylor
Head of Sale
+44 7823 791 633

Whitechapel Gallery Art Icon: Charity Online Auction

12 - 19 March 2024