Coco Dávez brings her faceless pop art to London

The Spanish artist opens her first UK solo exhibition, Faceless, featuring influential icons like Yayoi Kusama, Grace Jones and Jean-Michel Basquiat

David Bowie by Coco Dávez

Now based in Madrid, the self-taught artist is returning to London for her new exhibition – the city where her professional career first took off back in 2010. Showing at Maddox Gallery, Faceless showcases Dávez’s punchy artistic style and clever visual interpretation of some of the world’s most celebrated creatives.

Colour plays a significant role in her work, the vibrant clash of acrylics punctuated by crisp lines. It’s perhaps little surprise, then, that her practice has been heavily inspired by both Fauvism as well as pop art. Coco encountered her own artistic trademark inadvertently: she was once working on a painting of Patti Smith but, when she wasn’t satisfied with the facial features, she painted over them so that she could start again – and realised Smith’s identity was still recognisable.

Frida Kahlo by Coco Dávez

Since then, she has gone on to depict a wild variety of subjects, among them David Bowie, Yayoi Kusama, Picasso, Jackie Kennedy, Amy Winehouse, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Coco Chanel. Not only are they all leaders in their respective creative fields, her subjects are distinctive in their appearance, so much so that it’s clear who they are even with the absence of their facial characteristics.

Beyond her personal artwork, Dávez’s striking style has seen her collaborate with a number of high-profile brands, including fashion behemoths like Chanel, Prada and Kenzo.

Faceless runs at Maddox Gallery, Westbourne Grove from 10 – 31 May; maddoxgallery.com

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London