The print is available in blue, red, orange and yellow, each showing the artist’s characteristic stick figure in white.
Despite the stickmen’s apparent stillness, Stik has remarked that he is primarily interested in movement: breathing, emoting, unsteady bodies. “They’re not just stickmen, they’re people. People became stickmen. They’re shorthand for emotions. They reflect how I feel. The curve of the back, how tucked in the chest is, if the arse is sticking out, whether they are knock-kneed. There’s a lot in the bend of a knee or the shrug of a shoulder”.
In Hip, the standing figure awkwardly rests a hand on the hip, its gaze characteristically pointed to the side, as if observing action beyond the edges of the print. There is discomfort and nervousness in the figure’s posture; the stickman poses uncomfortably, perhaps taking a moment to regain stability or take a breath.
Though he didn’t have a formal artistic education, Stik recalls being inspired by sculptors like Anthony Gormely and Giacometti on his frequent visits to art galleries.
Stik’s figure in Hip, in their wavering stance, recalls an interest in human experience and how it feels to inhabit the body. This is something that is largely influenced by the sculptor Giacometti.
In Giacometti’s Bust of a Seated Man, the contortions of clay across the face and body hint at the body’s exertions. They have no defining features rendering them anonymous. The inherent stillness of the medium of sculpture is contrasted with the subtle evocations of movement and life. Likewise, Stik’s figures are, on the one hand, two-dimensional and wooden-looking, defined by their six-line frame and featureless faces. But there is always movement beneath the surface of the works he paints.
Stik’s working methods are designed to save time, and avoid arrest. Intensive practice and preparation are a reflection of necessity and of the difficulties in working on the street.
Selling for more than double is pre-sale estimate, a complete portfolio of Stik’s Hip from 2013 went for a total of £32,760 at Sotheby’s London in Sepetember 2021.
Natural frames, such as doors or shutters, are particularly attractive to Stik. According to the artist, these urban features help his artworks to attract the attention of passers-by. Unlike the gallery visitor, members of the unsuspecting public are 'switched off' to their surroundings, and so these organic 'frames' become important in helping us absorb the meanings and critiques in Stik's work.
The isolation invoked by the period of homelessness which Stik refers to as pivotal in the birth of his signature stickman is present in Hip, which depicts a lone figure.
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