Tom Delaney – Kill Yourself Death Cult Goes Door to Door to Spread the Word of Love, June 18 – August 6, 2016
Big Pictures Los Angeles is proud to present Brooklyn based artist Tom DeLaney’s L.A. debut. The show will feature 20 drawings, 1 sculpture, and 1 painting. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, June 18th from 6:00pm – 9:00pm.
Seeking within the language of painting an encounter with mechanical reproduction and sublimation, DeLaney presents us with groupings of unique ink on paper works that have been hand-rendered to create distinct versions of the same image. The images consist of stills from Cecil B. Demille’s 1934 Cleopatra and are rendered with a delicate eye toward their original greyscale configuration. DeLaney’s titular painting Kill Yourself Death Cult Goes Door to Door to Spread the Word of Love documents a process in which original photographs, stock images and patterns are combined into new configurations inconsistent with a single, identifiable aesthetic or painting technique.
The show illustrates the artist’s occupation with modes of reproduction, empire, and cultural decline. Conceptually the work explores possible alignments between the collapse of the ancient Egyptian Ptolemaic dynasty and the unraveling of post-industrial European-American supremacy. In this context the suicide of Cleopatra, ending a dynasty, bridges individual death with cultural demise. Similarly the Kill Yourself Death Cult, is a refence to the Church of Euthanasia, who is famous for the slogan “Save the Planet—Kill Yourself”. DeLaney uses this language as a parody of present-day unsustainability and sensationalism and to provide insight into his interest in cultural entropy.