Monday, October 17, 2011

The Meta Artist: Shea Hembrey

Shea Hembrey blew my mind.

When I saw him speak at TED this year the first thing that went through my mind was, wow, that is brilliant, I wish I had thought of that!

Frustrated with the contemporary art world, Hembrey wanted to stage his own biennial exhibition that was guided by the principles he considers essential in art: heart, head and hands. When he thought through how much work it would entail to solicit and curate artists for the exhibition, he decided it would be much more interesting to create fictional artists--thinking through their history, their points of view, their motivations--and have "them" create work for his biennial.

The work is art, there is no question, but he manages to inject humor and commentary on the art world in the process. Watch his TED talk for yourself -- 18 minutes well spent!

My favorites from those Hembrey described are the "Artist in Residence" and the "Sober Dobermans" whose work is a commentary on how over-coddled our society has become (this one made me laugh out loud).

"Horse Sense Fence" by the Sober Doberman Collective
by Shea Hembrey

I found myself wishing that he had actually physically staged the "Seek" exhibition. I was prepared to travel to Arkansas.  Instead, he captured the work in a catalogue that is for sale. The catalogue, Seek: 100 in 2011--The Inaugural Exhibition, is a signed and numbered work of art by Shea Hembrey in a singular edition of 1,000.  Each work of art is $1,000 and can be purchased on Shea Hembrey's website. 

What were your favorite artists in Seek?

No comments:

Post a Comment