Anthony James – Consciousness And Portraits Of Sacrifice
January 12 – February 23, 2012
Opening: 12 January | 7-9pm
Brand New Gallery – Via Farini 32 – Milan
Consciousness And Portraits Of Sacrifice is the first Italian one man show by Anglo-American artist Anthony James. In a synthesis of formal and conceptual elegance, the works of Anthony James blend technical precision, repetition and spectacle, revealing the mythical and persistent influence of a veiled surreal minimalism in art and contemporary culture. The Milanese space hosts two installations by the artist of the series Birch Cube, from which are configured as two transparent light boxes, luminous cubes that contain intricate virgin forests of birch wood, multiplies infinitely thanks to mirrors cleverly positioned to disorientate the gaze, which is absorbed in an evocative image capable of relocating spectators in an unnaturally distant and reflective space. The wood thus remains trapped in this game of illusions, tremendously immobile and removed from the hand of man; the works of Anthony James become minimalist showcases similar to a temple, reliquaries of large dimensions.
In the past the artist has already interred the charred remains of his Ferrari 355 Spider, now for his future projects he turns to objects of fetishism from war, such as the AK-47 assault rifle or the Russian MIG-15 warplane, which he seeks to immortalise in a dystrophic entanglement of mirrors and reflecting lights. The interest of the artist for the war topic is also evident in the works in the show from the series Today Was A Good Day: these are three “shotgun paintings”, mirrored polished steel sheets that the artist riddles with gun-bullets from the back. A sensation of lascivious and stylised violence that adorns the vestiges of death is inevitably affirmed in the representation of James’ works, protected in an abyss of solitary space, ending up representing the contemporary conservation of progress in the 21st century.