My work is bricolage, it is about contrast and balance and the meaning within the juxtaposition, whether it is the bringing together of disparate contemporary ideas and materials or a synaesthetic sculptural emoticon, it is about appeasement, the conjunction of objects, themes, colours and overall placement.
On the surface level aesthetic and skill need to be balanced, the integrity of the structure fusing with overall feel creating strength, flow or beauty. The surface then has to be balanced with the content, the underlying conceptual structure supporting the roof of craftsmanship; this often takes the form of a humorous counterpoint, a poignant miniature scene or a moment of reflective beauty.
Belief has to be suspended to enter the worlds I create, (when the audience no longer see the puppets strings they will then believe the puppet is real), the audience can then be taken on the journey that I wish them to experience.
”Stephen Ives has the ability to think out and shape scenarios which are rich on detail and in the midst of all the gruesomeness and absurdity have humorous and surprising traits too. Elements from popular culture are mixed with style and art history and sometimes you find peculiar changes in scale, which emphasise the smallness of mankind.”
Stephen Ives was born in England in 1970 to an Australian mother and English father, he spent the first twelve years of his life living on the outskirts of the historic town of Lewes before moving to Australia when he was 12. Most of his childhood was spent in a large pile of Lego creating whatever he could imagine, if he wasn’t distracted with this he was running around on the South Downs having adventures, drawing, playing with dolls, Action men and puppets, pressing wild flowers, sword fighting, climbing trees, crashing billy carts, stealing fruit and making bad paper sculpture.
As a teenager in Australia he practiced drawing as well as making model tanks and planes.
He completed his High School Certificate with distinction but failed to get into any fine art courses.
He has had his work exhibited in London, Paris, Brussels, New York, Santa Fe and Copenhagen under the aegis of several galleries.
His work has been bought by collectors in Australia, England, America and Germany as well as some of the foremost art collectors in Denmark including Christian Stadil (Hummel Sport), Lars Christian Brask (EFG International) and the Danske Bank.
Solo Exhibitions (selected)
2022 Aug- Spiritus Mundi, Beinart Gallery, Melbourne
2017 July- The Resistible Rise of a Bear of Little Brain (redux), sculpture & drawing, Backwoods Gallery, Melbourne
2016 June- POSTCARD, drawings, online exhibiiton
2016 Feb- COURAGE, sculpture (jewellery), online exhibition
2015 Apr- Fragment, drawings, Backwoods Gallery, Melbourne
2015 Mar- BLEAK, sculpture, Backwoods Gallery, Melbourne
2013 May- HERO, sculpture and drawing, Backwoods Gallery, Melbourne
2012 Aug- JET, sculpture and drawing, Backwoods Gallery, Melbourne
2011 July- 36 Views of My Latte, drawings, No Vacancy, Federation Square, Melbourne
2011 Apr- TOY, sculpture, drawing & painting, No Vacancy, QV Building, Melbourne
2010 Sept- Recent Works, drawings, Marios, Melbourne
2009 Aug- The Resistible Rise of a Bear of Little Brain, sculpture, drawing & painting ADCO:VENUE, Copenhagen
2007 Sept- Mechanical Dreams, drawings & sculpture, Rumkammerat, Copenhagen
2005 April- The Return of Pooh, sculpture, Journal cafe, Melbourne
2005 April- Works on paper, Fitzroy Gallery, Melbourne
2003 March- Ridiculous Mouse, sculpture, Fish Space, Fitzroy, Melbourne
2000 Aug- The Last Sunday, drawings, The Hang Suite, Melbourne
2000 May- Plastic Baby OK, drawings & paintings, Zartowa Gallery, Melbourne
1999 May- Tits and Feathers and Blood and Stuff, drawings & paintings, Zartowa Gallery, Melbourne
1997 March- Collected Works, Zartowa Gallery, Melbourne.
Group Shows (selected)
2010 Oct- Selected for Brunswick Street Gallery group show, Melbourne
2010 Sept- Copenhagen Art Fair (ADCO:VENUE) Denmark
2010 Aug- Selected for Marie Ellis OAM prize for Drawing, Queensland
2009 Apr- Selected for Brunswick Street Gallery group show, Melbourne
2009 Nov- Art & Climate 09, Øksnehallen, Copenhagen
2009 Sept- Copenhagen Art Fair (ADCO:VENUE)
2009 Sept- 'Body' show, Øksnehallen, Copenhagen
2009 March- Group show with ADCO:VENUE, Copenhagen
2008 Dec- Villain, Vinyl Toy Show, No Vacancy, Melbourne
2008 July- Santa Fe Contemporary Art Fair, represented by Envie d’Art
2008 June- New York AAF, represented by Envie d’Art
2008 April- Art Brussels, represented by Envie d’Art
2007 Oct- London Affordable Art Fair, represented by Envie d’Art
2007 Sept- “A New Generation”, represented by Envie d’Art, London
2007 April- Sculpture exhibition with Dalip Kryeziu, Andersen Art. Denmark
2007 Feb- Copenhagen Kunstmesse (Art Fair), Denmark
2002 Dec- End of Year Show, Paintings, Gamma Space, Melbourne
2002 May- Woomera benefit exhibition, Mixed Media, Gamma Space, Melbourne
2000 March- Un-magazine, Best Street Folly, Melbourne.
1999 July- "Greatness Bound", Drawings , Le Coq, Melbourne.
1993 Oct- "Not the Archibald", Special prize winner with "Christ Elvis", Melbourne Fringe
1988 May- "Top Cats", Exhibition of Top HSC Art students
2015 June- Painting, Silkeborg Gymnasium, Denmark
2009 Sept- Mural wall, Kørup Castle (Christian Stadil), Fyn, Denmark
2002 March- Mural wall, interior Earwax records, St.Kilda, Melbourne
2002 Jan- Three wall sculptures and screen, Slap Records, Fitzroy, Melbourne
2001 Aug- Life size puppets for Solution Red, Flemington, Melbourne
Danske Bank (Denmark)
Christian Stadil (Hummel Sport, Denmark)
L C Brask (EFG International, Denmark)
Christian Have Christian (Have Kommunication, Denmark)
Sonja Toft (Denmark)
Jesper Wung-Sung (Denmark)
Michael Ellis (ME Architecture, Melbourne)
Ian Blokkeerus (Melbourne)
Dr Anand Kumar (Melbourne)
Matt Kuperholz (PricewaterhouseCoopers, Melbourne)
2019 May- Feature, Weekend Australian Magazine
2015 Mar- BLEAK, Juxtapoz website
2014 Feb- Mr Dictator Head sculpture, featured Juxtapoz Magazine
2012 Nov- Mr Dictator Head sculpture, featured Juxtapoz website
2012 Jan- Mr Dictator Head sculpture, featured on Gizmodo and Designboom
2011 Nov- Article, Alice Brody, Stuff Happening Blog (www.stuffhappening.com.au)
2011 Apr- Desktop magazine (www.desktopmag.com.au)
2011 Apr- Dogmatic Blog (www.dogmaticblog.com)
2011 Apr- Interview with Invurt online magazine, (www.invurt.com)
2010 May- Co featured, Tour magazine, Denmark
2010 Apr- Co featured, Safari magazine, Japan
2009 Nov- Co featured, Stern magazine, Germany
2009 Aug- Article, Arbejderen Newspaper, Communist newspaper, Denmark
2009 Aug- Essay, Torben Weirup, Art editor Politiken Newspaper (The Age equivalent) Denmark
2008 Sept- Featured, Juxtapoz Reader art website
He is currently represented in Melbourne by Backwoods Gallery as well as exhibiting with Jon Beinart Gallery