Harland Miller at TYPE
From the rhetoric relationship of Medieval Christian manuscripts interlaced with illustrations, to the Dadaists and Surrealists who appropriated fragmented found text with images, text and image have gone hand-in-hand in art for centuries. Opening in London this week, group show TYPE will explore the persuasive power of language in art with work by Harland Miller, Banksy, David Shrigley and The Connor Brothers.
Aside from the fact that all four artists are celebrated for their painterly aesthetic and narrative work, they have something else in common too; an unmistakeable British humour. As a nation we’re known for using our wit to excavate the truths of our daily lives in a manner that makes the dark and controversial more approachable, and these artists are no exception.
Employing the ambiguous relationship between image and text, sarcasm cleverly facilitates the participation of the viewer in creating the meaning of their works, which allows the artists to not only make us laugh but to also connect with us on a much deeper level.
In an increasingly chaotic world 24/7 connectivity and limitless access to information have triggered a paradigm shift in our temporality, and comedy provides a welcome respite from the madness – which explains why auctions houses, galleries, dealers and collectors are crossing the globe to add these works to their collections. After all, it is said that laughter decreases stress hormones and promotes an overall sense of wellbeing, and who doesn’t want that in their private collection?