Duncan Wylie was born in Harare, Zimbabwe in 1975 and obtained French citizenship in 2005. He graduated with honours from the Ecole National Supérieure des Beaux Arts de Paris, and lives and works between Paris and London. In 2009, the Musée de Grenoble devoted a solo exhibition to the artist, entitled ‘Duncan Wylie Open House’ (curated by Guy Tosatto). Duncan Wylie has participated in numerous group exhibitions: ‘Poétique du Chantier’ (Musée Château d'Annecy, 2010); DYNASTY Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris (MAMVP) and Palais de Tokyo, 2010); ‘Beyond the Crisis’ (6th Curitiba Biennale, Brazil, 2011); ‘De Leur Temps 4’ (Centre d'art Le Hangar à Bananes, Collections de L'ADIAF, Nantes, 2013); and ‘Facing Nature’ (Museum Belvédère, Heerenveen, The Netherlands, 2014).
His work has recently been included in important exhibitions such as:
- Louvre Abu Dhabi (UAE), A global stage: contemporary permanent collection, inaugural exhibition, November 2017 - September 2019
- Zeitz MOCAA (SA), Five Bhobh - painting at the end of an era. A survey of contemporary Zimbabwean painting. Zeitz MOCAA, September 2018 - March 2019.
His works are featured in the collections of the Fondation Salomon, the Musée de Grenoble, the CNAP in France, the MUDAM in Luxembourg, and the Louvre Abu Dhabi in UAE.
‘Anarchitect in the style of a Gordon Matta-Clark, Duncan Wylie goes against the constructs of classical Greek thought, those masters of the “art of memory.” He builds demolitions. He digs the fault lines of the memory of the world, of the history of art, of his own story. He juxtaposes images while playing with the effects of reduction and mirrors, a process amplified through the use of the diptych in this series. In the end, the structured chaos of his paintings, far from being apocalyptic, is the product of a constant energetic rebirth, as loud and clear as a trumpet call. Fed with a perpetual movement of destruction and creation open to all possibilities, the space of the canvas lets the paint win over the image, and the energy of renewal overcome the ruins.’
Juliette Singer, curator of modern and contemporary art, Louvre Abu Dhabi