– Laith McGregor –

By Summer 2011

Long, fantastical beards punctuate Laith McGregor’s blue-biro-on-paper renderings of men with metronomic regularity. Set against starkly empty backdrops, these self-portraits and portraits of friends and family members are usually densely detailed, integrating figuration, abstraction, patterning and sometimes text into the hirsute subjects. What begin as facial studies slowly morph into strangely hypnotic representations as McGregor alters the scale of certain features and allegorically combines his photographic realism with fragments of history, fiction, popular culture and other mythologies. – Helen Hughes

Laith McGregor, Opal, 2011, detail; permanent marker on tarpaulin, 300 x 240 cm; ARTAND Australia Emerging Artist Collection; courtesy the artist and Sullivan+Strumpf Fine Art, Sydney; photograph Jeremy Dillon