Assistant Professor of Art Devan Shimoyama exhibits in “Cultural Landscapes” November 1, 2016 – January 28, 2017 at The Fed Galleries, Kendall College of Art and Design, MI. The group exhibition also features work by Ebitenyefa Baralaye, Carlos Diaz, Zackary Drucker, Shilpa Gupta, Jiha Moon, Alexandria Smith, and Ryan Trecartin.
From the exhibition website “Landscapes are complex and can be examined on many levels. We may look at nature, history, artifacts, or aesthetics when attempting to read a space, but we must also consider how our landscapes are influenced by the people and things who inhabit them during a specific place and time. The artists represented in this exhibition tackle identity formation, material culture and the digital landscape in a personal and direct way. Their activity in social, political and cultural constructs not only shape the living landscape, but also depict how they self-describe and connect to the world. It’s through their ability to share such intimacies that these artists affirm cultural values and provide us a greater understanding of our larger collective identity.
Shimoyama is a painter who reimagines black queer masculinity as both desirous and desirable through the use of narrative and self-portraiture. Figures find themselves echoed throughout the paintings, attempting to connect, but failing to join and fulfill their sensual desires within these dreamscapes. His work raises questions about gay male sexuality, followed by an exploration of locating where the queer black male fits into contemporary society and within the microcosm of queer politics.