Mickey Hampshire (The Masonics/Milkshakes) – art exhibition

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A rare exhibition of the work of Mickey Hampshire (The Masonics/ The Milkshakes) is set to take place at the Intoxica Gallery in the basement of Intoxica Records in the heart of vibrant Portobello at 231 Portobello Road London W11 1LT.

The exhibition runs from Thursday 29 March to Sunday 29 April and entry to the exhibition is free.

The exhibition is open during Intoxica! Shop hours which are 10.30am to 6.30pm Monday to Saturday and 12 noon to 5pm on Sundays.

This exhibition, his first for several years, showcases Mickey’s breadth of talent, ranging from very detailed paintings to abstracts. At first these styles seem quite distinct from each other but at a deeper level there is an underlying, unsettling narrative which connects and draws them together.

The detailed paintings are intricate, horrifying and beautiful, full of troubling images, reminiscent of themes explored by Giorgio De Chirico, Hieronymus Bosch, and Max Ernst. Surrealistic and sinister characters exist in a medieval landscape realised with an unsettling feeling of the impossible yet familiar.

Abstract 15

The paintings in this exhibition were created as the artwork for album covers for recordings by the Masonics and are shown alongside the LP sleeves.

The abstracts are quite different, yet clearly by the same hand; these powerful and muscular pictures are almost a distilled-spirit version of the others.
Three dimensional forms loom out of flat landscapes; dark figures resolve themselves in slabs of alternating vibrant and gloomy colour. In others shapes only possible in dreams crawl onto the canvas, ghostly grey – not quite skeletal bones and not quite flesh, but somewhere disquietingly in-between.

Abstract 6

Mickey was a member of the legendary Medway band Thee Milkshakes along with Billy Childish. Today he plays in The Masonics, a stripped-down trio of guitar, bass and drums, combining sixties beat, US garage and instrumental stylings with a punk rock attitude. His instinct for simple timeless rock’n’roll melodies and lyrics is a counterpoint to his complex, deliberate paintings.

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