Distorted faces & portraits 1978- 2007
Portraiture and misrepresentation
Editor: Marc Blondeau, Lionel Bovier, Philippe Davet
Design Gavillet & Rust, Geneva
Photo: Patrick Goettelen (paintings) Olivier Pascal (drawings)
Published: JRP Ringier
Dedicated to different types of portraits realized by the American artist between the end of the 1970s and today, this publication is presented as a luxurious, large-format album, with a dust jacket-cum-poster. The format, layout, and mode of printing underlines the graphic talent of the artist, while the gathering of the works juxtaposes the famous "Distorted Faces" series with the hyperreal portraits, symbolic depictions—such as that of Ronald Reagan whose face is literally haunted by figures from the American culture of violence (Charles Manson, Rambo, etc.)—and Hollywood subjects. We thus rediscover the stylistic and anthropological range of the approach of Jim Shaw, that formidable reader of his country’s popular culture, from which he extracts perverse scenarios with a disquieting realism.
Accompanied by a text by Alison Gingeras, this limited edition publication, which echoes the narrative logic of the artist, is based on fragmentation and improbable mixtures of culture: serious and popular, personal and collective, real and fictional.