Johnny Romeo


New Paintings

Following his hugely successful New York debut, Grindhouse, ANGRY BIRDS is the highly anticipated second New York exhibition from internationally acclaimed Australian Pop painter Johnny Romeo. A neon-drenched celebration of female empowerment, the show is a coruscating collision of comic book heroines, explosive colour arrangements and riotous energy from the leading force in Australian Pop Art. ANGRY BIRDS sees Romeo at the forefront of the global Neo-Expressionist Pop movement, taking his distinctive style to glorious new heights with his powerful blend of graphic gusto and invigorating, in-your-face attitude.

Referencing the title of the hugely popular Apple app game of the same name, ANGRY BIRDS features brazen, liberated female superheroes that soar through the canvas with whiplash velocity. These pulp fiction Amazons are brave and unapologetically brazen, railing against the rigid gendered strictures of society with an unwavering confidence and an intoxicating taste for danger.

Comic book superheroes and villains have long played an integral role in Johnny Romeo’s paintings. In ANGRY BIRDS, Romeo draws on a rich cast of comic book vicious vixens, ranging from Cat Woman to Bat Girl. Cheekily subverting our often male-centric associations with superheroes, Romeo’s alluringly aggressive heroines re-envision the comic book landscape as a Technicolour Gotham of bodacious bad-ass women. The focus on masked super women hitting out against injustice also sees Romeo merge fiction with reality, recalling the balaclava-donning Russian Fem-punk activists Pussy Riot.

A fusion of Romeo’s love for comic book aesthetics with a deep fascination for Grindhouse cinema, ANGRY BIRDS is a Neo-Expressionist Pop powerhouse that masterfully straddles the line between seduction and ultra-violence. With their skin-tight latex costumes and exaggerated, acrobatic poses, the femme fatales captured by Romeo see the artist fully embracing the sensual curves of the female figure. Romeo’s potent use of text imbues his renditions of figures such as Super Girl with an undeniable swagger and self-assuredness. Phrases such as ‘lawless’ and ‘new age’ take on a declaratory nature, like lines screamed in a riot grrrl Feminist manifesto. The inherent confidence and white-knuckled fury captured through Romeo’s electrifying works draws attention to emboldened women who are in complete control of their bodies and negotiate their sexuality entirely on their own terms.

Like shots of pure adrenaline, the works in ANGRY BIRDS are thrilling tour de forces of sensual anarchy that represent some of Romeo’s strongest paintings to date. Painted with slick commanding lines and a palpable, physical intensity, the femme fatales captured by Romeo bristle with an insatiable sense of urgency and rebellion. Colours sputter and slash through the paintings with reckless abandon, a sultry combination of raw, bloodied backdrops and saccharine hues that teeter between the violent and the sweet. The series sees Romeo amp up the aggression and punk-rock energy of his work, experimenting with unorthodox angles to depict super heroines that threaten to rip through the very fabric of the canvas.

ANGRY BIRDS is righteously rollicking celebration of kick-ass women from Australia’s leading Pop artist. Triumphantly combining brash, expressive colour, frenetic yet sleek imagery, and punk rock attitude, the much-anticipated new series sees Romeo at the top of his game, delivering his most dynamic and exhilarating collection of Neo-Expressionist Pop works yet.

Opening night – Thursday 10th September, 2015 @ 6-8pm.

Porter Contemporary   |   145 Plymouth Street, Brooklyn, New York, USA   |   www.portercontemporary.com

Any enquires regarding ANGRY BIRDS can be made directly through Porter Contemporary (info@portercontemporary.com) or by calling the gallery on +1 212 696 7432.

Exhibition Dates:
September 10th – October 11th, 2015

August 27, 2015