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HICKS, Nicola

The work of British sculptor Nicola Hicks is almost exclusively concerned with animals. Her striking, often life-size creatures are typically executed in straw and plaster and sometimes cast in bronze. Born in 1960, Hicks studied at the Chelsea School of Art before completing her master’s degree at the Royal College of Art in 1985. From the outset she worked in a figurative mode, building her career as a sculptor of animals at a time when abstract and conceptual trends dominated British art. She has since become celebrated for her striking and mysteriously lifelike creatures, exhibiting them in solo and group shows at leading museums and galleries in Britain and around the world. In 1995 she was appointed a Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (MBE) for her contribution to the visual arts.
Creating her vivid animalistic forms both in three dimensions and as large-scale drawings in charcoal and pastel, her practice is rooted in the study of anatomy and observation from life. But Hicks is not concerned with mimetic representation. At times realistic, at other times fable-like, her creatures capture something of the physical and psychological power of living beings, animalistic in form and body, yet uncannily human in character

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