Vernissage Jim Shaw – The Hidden World

Chalet Society - 14, boulevard Raspail, Paris 7e


With its first exhibition, The Museum of Everything (October 2012 – March 2013), the Chalet Society, a new structure created by Marc-Olivier Wahler, made more than 65,000 people discover an ephemeral place %u2013 an abandoned school in the centre of Paris, and announced its approach: exploring the margins of artistic creation and testing the relevance of models of art institutions.

Organized in partnership with the Emerige Group, owner of the premises, the second exhibition will be held from 24 October 2013 to 24 January 2014. It will be dedicated to Jim Shaw, an outstanding Californian artist, author for over forty years of incredible paintings, drawings, videos, installations and performances. He is also an avid collector, constantly looking for objects of popular worship, comics, rock music, B movies and Sunday paintings found in flea markets or on the internet. Items, he admits, that he can “buy without fear that someone else will become more expensive.

Jim Shaw does not present here his artistic work, nor his famous “brocante paintings”, but his archives, which constitute one of the main sources of his inspiration. Chalet Society offers visitors a true dive into an abundant and illuminated universe composed of paintings, sculptures, leaflets, T-shirts, books, records and other educational illustrations that recycle the myths and beliefs of America and elsewhere.

Sects, more or less secret societies, fancy orders and fraternities, evangelical movements, Christian fundamentalists, new age spiritual movements, Scientologists, Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, followers of Masonic worship, conspiracyists of all kinds, ultraconservatives of the John Bircher Society, educational books and encyclopaedias for children or famous medical illustrations of Dr. Mormon, and others. Netter, it is a whole symbolic imagery and an unclassifiable production, realized by artists often anonymous, in response to specific orders, which will be exposed.

“The Chalet Society is thus pursuing the principle of its programming. After the outsider artists, the cursor is pushed further by revealing artists who have often disappeared behind a subject wider than them. This carte blanche given to Jim Shaw allows him to break categories in which art is sometimes confined, to test its eclecticism, its elasticity and its ability to irrigate surprising fields of knowledge,” explains Marc-Olivier Wahler.

Photos: Say Who
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