Professor Devan Shimoyama‘s solo show “Cry, Baby,” on view at The Andy Warhol Museum through March 17, recently received positive reviews in three major art and culture publications: Artforum, Bomb Magazine, and The Burlington Magazine.
In the March issue of Artforum, Ikechukwu Onyewuenyi writes that through his work, Shimoyama “quietly questions the modernist conceptions of nature and feminine and culture as masculine, lavishly queering both categories. Ultimately, the canvas becomes a space of gender performativity where, as the feminist scholar Hortense Spillers might have said, black queer men ‘learn who the female is’ within themselves, using myth and reality as signposts.”
“Shimoyama has created a divine series of doorways that open onto radically imagined safe spaces for black queerness,” Jessica Lanay writes for Bomb Magazine. Against a disturbing mythic ur-text of clean racial and gendered categorizations, the emergence of these glitter-peppered figures is a breathtaking rebuttal to harmful and sometimes deadly categories. Shimoyama’s work demonstrates that topographies of interiority can barely be contained, and in their material and immaterial freedom and wildness they manifest a reality that is always beautifully operating against restriction.”
For Burlington Contemporary, the online magazine published by The Burlington Magazine, Jareh Das writes that Shimoyama’s “paintings are both arresting and timely as they deftly consider the conditions of Black masculinity and stake a claim for the often overlooked narratives of queer individuals within it. […] The slipperiness of Blackness and the American experience is something dealt with deftly in the exhibition through painting, photography and sculpture.”