OX-OP ARTS Presents:
Dalek-Two Fingers of Milk
To Open 7-10pm SATURDAY, April 5th
Running April 5th-30th
Two Fingers of Milk
To Open 7-10pm SATURDAY, April 5th
Running April 5th-30th
AT THE NEWLY OPENED OX-OP GALLERY
OX-Op gallery is pleased to bring emerging artist Dalek for his first solo show in Minneapolis. Dalek is amongst the new breed of artists who bring their learned aesthetics of graffiti and street art in to new arenas such as galleries, while still keeping one foot in the culture from which they were spawned. His contemporaries include Shepard Fairey aka Obey Giant (whom which he as exhibited with), Dave Kinsey, and Barry McGee. The past several years have seen Dalek’s colorful characters, affectionately known to the artist as “Space Monkeys”, popping up all over the place. These ever present creatures with their googlie eyes and fixed toothy grins are the basis for Dalek’s paintings and the vibrant world they conjure up. In April 2003, DALEK will see the release of his first book, “Nickel Plated Angels”, published by Gingko, which his paintings as well as photographs, will be the subject of.
Dalek aka James Marshall is currently based in Brooklyn, NY. Before Brooklyn, his upbringing as well as art career had brought him all over the US. "I have always been interested in art although I was never any good at it. I never really tried painting until I started college in 1988 (VCU in Richmond, VA). I took a few art history courses and messed around a bit painting abstract messes... but that was really about the extent of it. I didn't get into graffiti until 1993 when I was living in Chicago. Although I had messed around with tagging, it wasn't until '93 that I started painting walls and came up with the tag name Dalek." 1995 saw Dalek graduate with his BFA at the School of the Art Institute, Chicago and by 1996 his Space Monkey characters had started to take their form. "The monkey image evolved out of painting graffiti.... trying to find something to set myself apart from the other writers... it just came from messing around." Through the next several years, Dalek put in extensive work in the graffiti underground, painting publicly in Chicago and Cincinnati, with frequent excursions to other cities in the Midwest and trips to the Coasts. His characters built up a name for himself and it wasn’t long until he started to break into the gallery world.
By 2003, Dalek has a host of solo and group shows under his belt. Just prior to his solo show here, the graffiti fueled group show “Career Day” at Moca DC in Washington DC, with Richard Coleman, ESPO, GIANT and NEWA kicks off. Last year he was part of the mobile exhibition “Player Haters” with Ron English, Shepard Fairey and Richard Coleman that exhibited in D.C., San Francisco, and Los Angeles. He has been in numerous solo and group shows at C-Pop in Detroit, Dirt Gallery in Kansas City, Merry Karnowsky Gallery and New Image Art in Los Angeles, and 111 Minna Gallery in San Francisco. DALEK also managed to find time to be Takashi Murakami's assistant, in 2001. He has also been included in such publications at Art Papers, Strength Magazine, Artikip, Flux Magazine, and the Kansas City Star, Juxtapoz, and Tokion.
OX-OP is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday 4-8pm as well as by appointment, with new shows opening the first Saturday of every month.
FOR FURTHER INFO AND PHOTOS, CONTACT:
Rob or Tiff
1111 Washington Ave S.
(Behind Grumpy’s Bar)
Minneapolis, MN 55415
DALEK – TWO FINGERS OF MILK, AND MAKE THAT A STIFF ONE.
April 26, 2003
"Dalek: Two Fingers of Milk" is the local debut of the artist Dalek, working in a mode that derives in some ways from graffiti and in other ways from comics and commercial imagery.
Hurry in: the show is up only through the end of April. It's all at the new Ox-Op Gallery, at 1111 Washington Ave. S. (behind Grumpy’s Bar in Minneapolis). Hours are 4-8 pm, Tuesday through Saturday, or by appointment. Call 612.259.0085 for upcoming shows.
I worry about the ozone hole but what really scares me are the toxic levels of kitsch showing up in the milk and cookies of our children. Drip-fed massive infusions of sweetness, pictures of Barney all over their pajamas, they will toddle through the rest of their lives in clouds of potpourri and baby powder, bidding up Beanie Babies on eBay, buying any figurine with big wet eyes, sippy cups of pop forever full to overflowing.
Mickey Mouse is the world’s most beloved rodent because he never leaves droppings but nevertheless spreads the virus of happiness everywhere he goes. He lights up the faces of millions of children who, left to their own devices, would otherwise be miserable and cranky forever. He is asexual, a creature entirely without menace, the very embodiment of American optimism--cheerful, plucky, game for whatever comes his way. It’s time to take the little bastard down a notch.
An artist with the graffiti tag of Dalek has risen to the task with the savage, detached glee of a cat who likes to toy with mice before biting their heads off. “Two Fingers of Milk,” a show of Dalek’s work, will be up for a few more days (through April 30) at Ox-Op, a curious little gallery situated in the dangling appendix of the building behind Grumpy’s Bar, a location as off-the-wall as the artists of comic subversion that the gallery represents.
Dalek, whose legal name is James Marshall, worked out his characters, his id-Mickeys, on the grimy brick walls of Chicago and Cincinnati. Further evolved in the work at Ox-Op (mostly acrylic drawings on paper) the figures are set in an infinite white vacuity of space, and sometimes placed far off to one corner of an otherwise blank sheet to emphasize the emptiness they inhabit. Mutated from the adorable archetype into beings that Dalek affectionately calls “space monkeys,” the name is not nearly sinister enough for personages this psychotic. His Mickeys are utterly demented. Every sentimentally beloved detail is expropriated, wracked, torqued, and wrenched around to a lunatic degree. The innocuous three-fingered hands, thumbs, index fingers are now contorted into spreadfingered, downpointing gang signals, or snapped fascist salutes, or upraised like John Travolta’s hand in Saturday Night Fever. In some of the drawings, Mickey’s stick-legs are plunged into hilarious 3-toed boots, way oversized, like kids’ rubber galoshes.
The heads atop these Mickey Morphs can trouble your dreams. Their features are as formalized as those of icons of the Orthodox church. Always presented from the same angle, the head and ears are like a cluster of three soap bubbles, or the earliest stage of embryonic cell division, the blastula. On a few, the ears morph and bulge into large pneumatic breasts with the suggestion of flowery aureoles around the nipples. Some of the heads are abstracted with features blank as the drilled-out holes of bowling balls, but most have the aspect of a cyborg fitted with replacement parts for its original organs-- “makeovers” with 90 percent of their heads now comprised of bizarre prosthetics, one eye socket empty, a rabid pink tongue behind a set of can-opener teeth, and inexplicable warts of hardware for a nose. Even the delineation of the lunatic gleam in the creature’s one good eye is crazier than the usual cartoonist’s device of the reflected image of a rectangular window—it’s a reflection of the creature itself. No matter how scabrous the scenes of havoc it’s involved in--standing disemboweled with a length of sausagelike intestine in its hand, radiating or impaled by (hard to say which) Dunkin’ Donut-pink laser rays, or enduring the most unspeakable chemical green farts and spillages escaping from its body--the creature always wears the same, fixed, maniacal grin.
Employing the universal shorthand of cartooning--arcs of circles, straight lines, simple shapes, “excitement” marks, speech balloons (which are always left blank, some of them inked in completely with black) Dalek is ruthless. Turning every sugared detail of Mickey Mouse against itself, he has devised a mordantly funny hieroglyphics for deriding America’s inane, kitsch-addled fantasies of innocence and power. Depicting the horrors seeping into our psyches, Dalek has the makings of a Goya for our times.
Art Attack on the Suburbs-Grumpy’s Art Unveiling Party
Aesthetic Apparatus-"2nd Annual Kindling & Litter-Box-Liner Sale"
"Rome is Burning/The New School"
Aesthetic Apparatus-"The Official Aesthetic Apparatus Kindling & Litter-Box-Liner Sale"
Gary Baseman- "MOD Manifestations Of Desire"
Mark Mothersbaugh-"Postcard Diaries"
Gary Taxali-"Chumpy's Specials"
Nathan Jurevicius-"Tunnel Vision"
Shepard Fairey "Visual Disobedience"
Jaime Hayon: "Mon Cirque"
Derek Hess: "Descent from Grace"
Shag-"Push Your Luck"
Billy Childish-Paintings, Prints, Poetry & Performance
Kii Arens-"The Yard Sale"
Burlesque of North America: First Blood, Part III
"Triangulated Fire" paintings by Naoto Hattori, Ryan Kelly & Chris Ryniak
Dalek- "The Return of the Space Monkey"
Yumiko Kayukawa & Oksana Badrak
Glenn Barr-"New Paintings & Prints"
KRK Ryden-"The Atomic Glob Show"
Camille Rose Garcia-"Works on Paper"
Frank Kozik-"All Your Base Are Belong to Us"
Bwana Spoons & Martin Ontiveros "Like Sqeezing Juice from a Stone"
George Thompson-"Bachelor of Fine Arts"
Mark Mothersbaugh-"Beautiful Mutants"
Charles S. Anderson Design-"Awful Pretty: Original Art"
Jeff Soto-"Complete Domination"
Dave Burke-"New Paintings"
Tim Biskup-"The Phantom Thread"
Shag-"Tell No One: Paintings and Prints"
Niagara-"Paintings,Prints and General Artistic Mayhem
Shepard Fairey -"Prints and the Revolution"
Gary Baseman-"Open Wounds (and other paintings about vulnerability)"
Dalek-"Two Fingers of Milk"