Hiorns ' exhibition at the Ikon Gallery in Birmingham is something of a homecoming for London-based Hiorns as the West Midlands city is where he was born. Near the entrance is a glistening blue rectangular canvas that recalls 'Seizure'. The overall range of works reflect his interest in politics teamed with his desire to make artworks out of found objects and transform matter into art.

The main installation, 'Untitled' (2014), occupying one of the gallery spaces, comprises dozens of dangling objects spewing foam. There's something strangely uncanny about these sculptures made from discarded car parts. Their dirty, dismembered state somehow makes you think of amputees on a battlefield. The human-ness of them is supported by a broadcaster's voice discussing life-support machines. This idea of the loss of life continues with stunt dummies hooked to the wall that crash, unexpectedly, to the floor.

Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery
Sexuality, as a celebration of life, is expressed through a series of homo-erotic paintings. There's more male nudity in the form of young men sitting on the floor installation of pulverised altar stone or sitting on aircraft engines.

The vulnerability of the body is evoked in a video interview with a scientist who advocates that the threat of variant CJD, which followed the 1980s/1990s BSE crisis, or “mad cow disease”, is far from over. Hiorns has allegedly also been making art from “brain matter”, using animals' brains from a butcher's and putting the mashed-up organs inside engines, stunt dummies and paint.

Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery
A softer piece is the video of the project that Hiorns made last summer with the choir of St Philip’s Cathedral in Birmingham. The choristers can be seen lying on their backs on the floor within the nave of the church, singing in Choral Evensong, rather than standing in stalls behind the altar. They suddenly seem like sleepy, individual boys rather than representatives of a religious body. The aesthetics and tradition of faith are upturned by Hiorns, who was once a chorister himself.

Throughout the show, there's the sense of Hiorns scrutinizing and interrogating society through the poetics of absurdity.

Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery
Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery
Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery
Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery
Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery
Roger Hiorns, Installation view at Ikon Gallery (2016). Photo by Stuart Whipps. Courtesy of the artist and Ikon Gallery