Tom Sachs

Islandia

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Islandia

Islandia

Press release

« It's in the details that there is spiritual power, I'd even risk calling it soul. »

Eagerly anticipated, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac, Paris is pleased to present an exhibition of new works by American artist Tom Sachs.

Tom Sachs is not part of a current movement in contemporary art, rather he has developed his own artistic language. He is particularly interested in the function, the form and the essence of everyday common objects. In the manner of a bricoleur, he expresses a very personal connection to these « things », dissects, reconstructs and appropriates them by handcrafting meticulous personal replicas thereof.

Consumerism, corporate identity, cultural imperialism, technological progress, identity and the loss of it, the relationship of survival and destruction are all at the heart of Tom Sachs' sculpture and drawings.

This latest body of work exposes the genetics and behaviour of technology, using refrigeration, chemicals, insects, corporations and a trash can among other left-overs as a way to mirror and diagram the push/pull of physics. Sachs is interested in acts of displacement, where one thing, person or company overrides or attempts to consume another. In paintings and sculptures of CHLORDANE and COMBAT, Sachs magnifies the common warnings found on these packages. Repeated as a hand-written label, the warnings appear even more naïve and illustrate humankinds' vain efforts to defy nature.

In the painting, Raytheon, Sachs has encased the company's mission statement in a wood frame. Raytheon, (which means "light of the gods,") is a leading defence contractor, responsible for guided missiles since 1948, including the Patriot, Maverick, Sidewinder and Tomahawk. As Sachs says: "Raytheon is about human eradication and intolerance, which is also what the Holocaust was about. Advertising has a way of ignoring that reality, telling us to buy the product and everything will be fine, but it doesn't talk about cause and effect."

In re-presenting common items, like a refrigerator, an air-conditioner, a New York City trash can, and a Hooter's menu, Sachs stages these objects not only as visual propaganda, but as an indication of a failed promise. But what should that promise have been and why are we left with such degradation? As Sachs reveals, in a world that's no longer analog, "human traces have been erased."

Tom Sachs lives and works in New York. His work has been widely shown in Europe and in the United States. Recent solo exhibitions include NUTSY's at the Deutsche Guggenheim, Berlin, SURVEY at Astrup Fearnley Museum, Oslo and a large-scale project at FONDAZIONE PRADA, Milan. His work is present in many public and private collections around the world.