jim shaw


Traditionally the preserve of superheroes and anti-heroes, the comic book provides Jim Shaw with a structural framework that, either visibly or invisibly, is central to the works shown at Emily Tsingou Gallery. Comic Book Drawing (1–7) (all works 2006) is a seven-part project, the narrative form of which adds further to Shaw’s pseudo-religion ‘Oism’. The comic tells the Biblical-like story of a scribe and dreamer named Julo. Set in the queendom of O, where figurative representation is prohibited, the Kafkaesque authorities of Oism take offence when Julo proposes to draw a picture of an invented musical instrument. Although the work follows the stylized conventions of the comic medium, its text has been collaged onto the surface of the paper. This piecing-together wryly undermines the work, proposing as it does that the content either has been, or could have been, tampered with or censored – also affirming that Shaw’s interest in the comic book is structural and extends beyond appropriation and reproduction.

more from Frieze here.