Edition of 175
18×26 inches / 46x66cm
Fine art print on 290gsm paper
Hand signed and numbered
Josh Keyes was born in 1969, in Tacoma, Washington. He was raised surrounded by forest and witnessed gradual their destroying by the grasp of industry, so it is no wonder that the environmentalist ideas grew on him. Keyes starts his career soon after graduation in 1992 at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and couple of years later at Yale University School of Art where he collected MFA in Painting and Printmaking. During the course of time, the work of Keyes’s has been exhibited in gallery spaces in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York and published in New American Painters.
Although, Keyes’s works are critical, they are infused with the sincere admiration to our planet. The strange and sometimes funny, these paintings are produced as an effect of careful observation. It seems that the artist tries to articulate the system and the complexity behind but not to beautify it. By depicting animals in various states Keyes is eager to suggest a debate in order to problematize rather an intense relationship between biological and human world. The awareness of nature being fully disposable to and exploited by the humans is undermined in rather a blatant manner and that layer transfers the whole opus from just art to activist practice since it is philosophically driven cogitation inseparable from the political, economic and social changes.
The dystopian and fantastic narratives of Josh Keyes are realized in hyper-realistic manner and they represent some kind of hybrids in regards to the references from both art history and kitschy animal illustrations. That is an effect of his fascination with photorealist paintings and science fiction and suggests the continuum of artist’s desire to depart from reality and create some other world, which in the case of his art is somehow a mix of reality and illusion. With lots of ironies, he conducted a social commentary, sending us practically a warning of the present state.