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Nick Sheehy (Showchicken): Conversations I’ve Never Had, 2010 (detail). Pencil, paper, Cyber colour

Work / Art

For the birds: enter the fantastical feathered worlds of Nick Sheehy (aka Showchicken)

Tasmanian-born Nick Sheehy (also knows as Showchicken) has a background in bronze sculpture, and rediscovered his love of drawing when he moved to the UK where he is currently based. Using pencil, paper, and layers of colour, he draws us into vivid dream-like feathered worlds, where multi-eyed birds dress as jesters, examine constellations, confront enemies, exist within larger birds, and make tribal offerings.

Indeed, there is an atmosphere of pre- or early civilisation, and we get the sense that there are strict social codes in the various outfits and rituals depicted. Sheehy provies us with hugely skilled glimpese into these strange bird-societies, with extremely detailed drawings and structurings of its beaked members and their accoutrements. The combination of mutating creatures, soft palettes, flat waters, assorted headgear and geometric structures is remeniscent of Hieronymous Bosch, and the presentation of fairytale motifs with a crueller sense of social hierarchy and terrified subservience is arresting, if a tad sinister. High-flying stuff.

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Nick Sheehy (Showchicken): People I’ve Never Met, 2010. Pencil, paper.

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Nick Sheehy (Showchicken): Before the Fire, 2011. Pencil, paper, digital colour

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Nick Sheehy (Showchicken): Nobrow 7, 2012

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Nick Sheehy (Showchicken): The Map, 2010. Pencil, Bristol board

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Nick Sheehy (Showchicken): The Offering, 2009. Pencil, paper

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Nick Sheehy (Showchicken): The Journey, 2009. Pencil, paper, cyber colour