london

View of “DIS,” 2016. From left: Becoming Genre, 2016; Serenity Now, 2016; Apology, 2016. Photo: Michael Heilgemeir.

DIS

Project Native Informant

View of “DIS,” 2016. From left: Becoming Genre, 2016; Serenity Now, 2016; Apology, 2016. Photo: Michael Heilgemeir.

Remember those Benetton ads from the 1980s and ’90s? Their contrived rainbow of human skin tones and Pantone-color-chart clothes and their public support of victims of the AIDS crisis were considered representationally radical by the mainstream press at the time. Central to “Image Life,” the first London solo exhibition by the DIS collective, was the video installation Image Life (Related by Contour) (all works 2016): It depicts a similar hybrid of performed racial inclusivity and inclusive chromatics but aspires to stock-photography genericism. The work comprises a flatscreen inside a bespoke cabinet, wrapped in a print of a multiracial “family.” They smile beatifically at the camera, their faces covered in streaks of dark and light highlighter—the kind of contour makeup created especially to enhance one’s bone structure on-screen, and made famous by the likes of Kim

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