Temples and Theatres
10 October – 9 November 2008
Temples and Theatres
British artist Adam Dant has been compared to the 18th century English artist, William Hogarth, in satirically exposing human folly. Last year he spent six months in the offices of the major English hedge fund companies studying the architecture, appointments, and the socio-behavioral aspects of the participants. Recently he has been interested in architecture, especially buildings and public spaces. This exhibition of new work includes sepia ink drawings that incorporate European myths and histories into the architecture and public arenas of New York City—in effect, a view of the New World from the very Old. Dant’s method of transforming the familiar architecture of New York reveals a world of the everyday and of the individual’s aspirations and achievements that is infused with and conditioned by the beliefs, systems and cultural constants of society in general. In a series of works depicting the Brooklyn Bridge, one of the bridges’ hefty towers is transformed into cathedral doors of the gates of the Garden of Eden to frame various types of Adam and Eve figures; skeletal, historical, edible, etc. In another new sequence of drawings the vast concourse of Grand Central Station is occupied ineach by a different oversize ‘beast.’ These prone and restrained creatures—a whale, an eagle, a bear—are all plundered as valuableon its side so that it resembles a ship at dry-dock in the middle of a medieval monastery settlement. Canons point out the side windows and the levels that form the top of the building, which resemble the receding decks of a cruise ship, provide a place for tethered farm animals and various human activities.
Adam Dant has significant artworks, in particular very large narrative drawings and maps in the collections of The Victoria and Albert Museum, London, The Government Art Collection, Musee de L’Art Contemporain, Lyon, MOMA New York, San Diego Museum of Art, Deutsche Bank and various other public and private collections. His work is currently on tour in the US as part of “Art and Advertising.” He has recently published two books with Redstone Press, London. Dant is currently working on a Museum show for Walsall Art Gallery, England and a major publication for 2010.