Derek Aylward is a Massachusetts-based artist who creates bold compositions that teeter between folklore and pop cultural characters. V1 Gallery is currently exhibiting a new body of work by Aylward at its sister location, Eighteen Gallery.
“Gone Fishing” presents a suite of new paintings that explode with color. Tennis players, animals, mystical creatures and superheroes are some of the many wild and far-reaching references overlaid across each canvas. In Ship of Super Fools, 2022, Aylward depicts a range of superheroes, including Batman, Robin, Spiderman and Superman utterly confused and dejected as they sit helplessly next to each other in a tightly packed yellow canoe. The painting interestingly references Géricault’s famous painting The Raft of the Medusa (1818-19), which similarly imbues a mixture of hope, confusion and madness.
In Aylward’s smaller studies, he pares back the action to paint a series of totemic busts that hark back to the many sculptural works found across the history of ancient civilizations. “Gone Fishing” is on view at Eighteen Gallery until May 28.