Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Funny but it is not that funny

David Shrigley occupies a strange place within British art, being at once admired by critics for his loose drawing style and admonished for his sloppy penmanship; applauded for his sense of humour and yet being dismissed by some because of it. With his work as likely to adorn a T-shirt or greetings card as it is to appear in a gallery, Shrigley is very much a populist; his cartoon-style drawings are on show in books, the pages of the Guardian and in advertising. Something of an artistic fidget, he makes sculpture and films, and has designed record sleeves and recorded a spoken word CD.
But think of the British art establishment and Shrigley’s is not a name on the tip of your tongue. On the level of pure popularity and ease of recognition of his work, he should be up there with the Chapmans or Tracey Emin, yet the tall, softly spoken 38-year-old seems as far as ever from a Turner Prize nomination.
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