AMERICAN CULTURE BY JIM SHAW

by Ariadna Zierold

jim shaw, media, imagery, painting, american culture, comic book, pulp novels, posters, pop culture, symbols, narrative, landscape, upper playground, los angeles

The practice of Los Angeles based artist Jim Shaw spans a wide range of both artistic media and visual imagery. Since the 1970s, Shaw has mined the detritus of American culture, finding inspiration for his artworks in comic books, pulp novels, rock albums, protest posters, thrift store paintings and advertisements.

jim shaw, media, imagery, painting, american culture, comic book, pulp novels, posters, pop culture, symbols, narrative, landscape, upper playground, los angeles

Providing a blend of the personal, the commonplace and the uncanny, Shaw’s works frequently place in dialogue images of friends, family members, world events, pop culture and alternate realities. Often unfolding in long-term, narrative cycles, the works contains systems of cross-references and repetitions, which rework similar symbols and motifs, allowing a story-like thread to be perceived.

jim shaw, media, imagery, painting, american culture, comic book, pulp novels, posters, pop culture, symbols, narrative, landscape, upper playground, los angeles jim shaw, media, imagery, painting, american culture, comic book, pulp novels, posters, pop culture, symbols, narrative, landscape, upper playground, los angeles jim shaw, media, imagery, painting, american culture, comic book, pulp novels, posters, pop culture, symbols, narrative, landscape, upper playground, los angeles jim shaw, media, imagery, painting, american culture, comic book, pulp novels, posters, pop culture, symbols, narrative, landscape, upper playground, los angeles

 

 

ENTERTAINING DOUBTS BY JIM SHAW

by Ariadna Zierold

jim shaw, entertaining doubts, exhibition, painting, retrospective, the citrus report

Since the 1970s, Jim Shaw has created a vast body of work spanning diverse media and reference points. Shaw’s work mines the essentials of American culture, from comic books, pulp novels, and album covers, to vintage advertisements, movie posters, and noise rock.

jim shaw, entertaining doubts, exhibition, painting, retrospective, the citrus report

Originating from these sources, the work often features recurring characters including himself, his friends, fictional superheroes, politicians, and film stars. Combining text and the painted figure with objects and drawings from his unconscious, Shaw’s works consistently illustrate purposely bad puns, while twisting politics, religion, and belief into one long dream sequence.

jim shaw, entertaining doubts, exhibition, painting, retrospective, the citrus report

Shaw focuses on over-arching themes of failure – fallen heroes, collapsed economies and political figures, and the idea of sin and doomsday predictions. The centerpiece of Entertaining Doubts is a series of large-scale paintings that Shaw began in 2004, utilizing old theatrical backdrops that he cuts apart.

jim shaw, entertaining doubts, exhibition, painting, retrospective, the citrus report

Turning painting into architecture, these works essentially function as political cartoons, populated by figures such as Barbara Bush, 20th-century religious prophet Aleister Crowley, and Dan Quayle, with themes ranging from the seven deadly sins and the four horsemen of the apocalypse to the great deluge.

jim shaw, entertaining doubts, exhibition, painting, retrospective, the citrus report jim shaw, entertaining doubts, exhibition, painting, retrospective, the citrus report jim shaw, entertaining doubts, exhibition, painting, retrospective, the citrus report