A painterly kaleidoscope of Black queer life
Bright paint, sequins, rhinestones, fabric, feathers: the paintings of Pittsburgh-based artist Devan Shimoyama (born 1989) resemble midsummer night dreams of alternative masculinities. A graduate of the Yale School of Art, Shimoyama embraces the pain and joy of Black and queer life in psychedelic day-glo colors. The majority of his works depict Black men transposed into allegorical scenes from Greek mythology and tarot imagery (Shimoyama has stated that he wants the figures in his work to be perceived as both desirable and desirous); for example, Abduction of Ganymede depicts a figure resembling the artist swept up in the air by Zeus in the form of an eagle. The painting deploys Shimoyama's signature materials: Ganymede's eyes are rhinestones and costume jewelry, and the eagle's wings are gilt.
This lavishly designed catalog, produced for his first institutional solo exhibition in Europe, provides an excellent introduction to Shimoyama's electrifying art.
Devan Shimoyama is a visual artist whose work explores depictions of the Black, queer, male body. Through the media of painting, sculpture, printmaking, and installation, he creates compositions inspired by classical painters, such as Francisco Goya and Caravaggio. However, Shimoyama's use of materials is distinctly contemporary, as is the subject matter he depicts.
Shimoyama was awarded the Al Held Fellowship at the Yale School of Art in 2013 and has had a residency at the 2015 Fire Island Artist Residency. His work has been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions throughout the United States. His recent exhibition Cry, Baby was presented at the Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, from October 13, 2018-March 17, 2019. In this exhibition, new and existing works by Shimoyama's work were juxtaposed along with a rotating selection of Warhol's Ladies and Gentlemen paintings from the 1970s. This juxtaposition offers a unique opportunity not only to interrogate the conversation between these two artists' work, but also to consider generational evolutions in the realm of how issues related to gender, sexuality, race and violence are portrayed in contemporary art.
- Publisher: Hatje Cantz (February 1, 2022)
- Language: English
- Hardcover: 176 pages
- ISBN-10: 3775751696
- ISBN-13 : 9783775751698
- Item Weight: 2.9 pounds