The exhibition will include 'dreamt-of' images and sculptures which continue his Surrealist-inspired interrogation of the unconscious. Fundamental to Shaw's oeuvre to date, the 'automatic scribble drawings', 'dream drawings' and 'dream objects' are recreations of imagery and objects from the artist's dreams and a fundamental exploration of artistic intent and identity.
Emily Tsingou Gallery presents the third one-person exhibition of Los Angeles-based artist Jim Shaw.
The exhibition will include 'dreamt-of' images and sculptures which continue Shaw's Surrealist-inspired interrogation of the unconscious. Fundamental to Shaw's oeuvre to date, the 'automatic scribble drawings' 'dream drawings' and 'dream objects' are recreations of imagery and objects from the artist's dreams and a fundamental exploration of artistic intent and identity.
Also included in the exhibition will be new work which explores the pseudo-religion 'Oism'. Conceived by Shaw as a fictional religion, Oism's doctrines uphold the belief in reincarnation, the backwards regression of time, the prohibition of figurative representation and the worship of a female deity (signified by 'O'). This paradigm draws upon sectarian religious practice in the USA, in particular Mormonism and the religious fundamentalism of the mid-West. The religious works will include pages from an Oist comic-book and graphic elements sourced from childrens' bible illustrations.
By attributing works to fictitious creators, or in his dream-time 'collaborations' with figures from art history, Shaw destabilises the tenets of artistic authorship. Resisting one identifiable, signature "style", his work instead embraces ambivalence, drawing-on disparate visual languages from American subcultures: B-movies; video games; thrift stores; comics; Christian cults and iconography; consumer packaging. By appealing to a collective unconscious, Shaw subverts the mainstream and creates a critical view of American social values.
Jim Shaw (b. 1953) is based in Los Angeles. A retrospective of his work traveled to: Casino Luxembourg, Luxembourg, 1999; MAMCO, Geneva, 2000; Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati (2000). Shaw's 'Thrift Store Paintings' were exhibited at the ICA, London (2002).
His work has been included in major survey shows of LA artists, including Helter Skelter, MOCA Los Angeles (1992); Sunshine and Noir, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebaek, Denmark (1997).
'Oism' was the subject of the exhibition O, shown at Le Magasin CNAC, Grenoble (2003) and the Kunsthaus Glarus, (2004).
Public collections include: Guggenheim Museum, New York; MOMA, New York; MOCA, Los Angeles; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; MAMCO, Geneva, among others
Image: Untitled (Sliced Obliterated Self Portrait), 2004
Ink and graphite on ripped canvas 70 x 52 Inch / 178 x 132 cm
Private view: 6 April 2006 18:00-20:00
Emily Tsingou gallery
10 Charles II street London AWTY 4AA
Opening hours: Tuesday - Friday 10 - 8, Saturday 10 - 1, Monday by appointment