gatesheadnewcastle-uk

Jim Shaw, Untitled (U.S. Presidents), 2006, acrylic on muslin, 16 x 38'. BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, UK.

Jim Shaw

BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

Jim Shaw, Untitled (U.S. Presidents), 2006, acrylic on muslin, 16 x 38'. BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead, UK.

The Jim Shaw retrospective “The Rinse Cycle” successfully represented nearly all the artist’s major projects since 1978, the year he received his MFA from the California Institute of the Arts. The exhibition even included the “Thrift Store Paintings” that Shaw has been accumulating since 1974, though they were on view across the river from the main show, at project space BALTIC 39 under the title “You think you own your stuff but your stuff owns you.” There was only one notable absence: that of The Donner Party, 2003, a cannibalism-inspired Judy Chicago “tribute” installation. The show thus set out the full, bewildering plethora of Shavian themes, which range from the perennial big topics (sex, religion, myth, the unconscious, cultism, consumerism, advertising, US politics, history, and culture) to a tsunami of minutiae: obscure rock groups, comics, holy imagery seen in pizza

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