Lazarides Gallery gives us the new World Domination, a solo exhibition by celebrated New York artist Todd James, who will present a selection of work in different media for his first solo show in London since 2008.
In a new collection of acrylic paintings, James continues his iconic Somali Pirate series. Often in headgear and masks, and brandishing secondhand AK-47s and RPGs, these pirates perform a range of quotidian activities: smoking cigarettes, drinking tea at sunset, preparing
weapons, standing guard. Rendered in a vivid tropical palette, these works vibrate with goodnatured menace, and pointedly address David and Goliath themes of survival, justice, ingenuity, and ownership.
In addition to this series of new works, the exhibition will feature a recreation of Vandal’s Bedroom, the sprawling, graffiti-filled structure that was a highlight of the Art in the Streets exhibition at the LA MOCA.
Part object, part installation, this bedroom-turned-graffiti-battle-station gives glimpses of plans for an imaginary artistic takeover.
The vandals and pirates that people the works of World Domination share a common thread; both parties sidestep invisible boundaries erected by controlling factions. A familiar theme in the artist’s work is to
challenge dictated notions of right and wrong. It’s James’ ability to do so successfully that makes him unique.