For his third exhibition at Sadie Coles HQ, American artist T.J. Wilcox presents twelve new films as a series of sketches representing the artist’s varied methodology. All sub-titled Garlands, and made to be shown together, the short silent films will be screened simultaneously on three projectors.
As in previous works, Wilcox uses a combination of found footage, collaged animation and his own films to make mini-narratives. The works in this show include Strawberry, a film of a fetishized strawberry plant in the artist’s garden which came to obliquely represent innocence and growth post 9/11. There are also Garlands about the artist’s beloved stepmother, Ann; a segment about Ortino, the pet dog of the Romanoff Princesses who was massacred alongside his owners which uses archive footage of Tatiana and Ortino to narrate the death of the innocent; a tribute to the romance of travel with Around the World in 80 Seconds using money shots of the world’s great tourist destinations; Bee Movie, about beekeeping and the magical rituals and mythology inherent in the production of nature’s most impressive alchemical substance; the story of Ara Tripp, a transsexual from Wilcox’s home town, a former construction worker who had a sex change and who climbed to the top of a local powerline, topless, to campaign about a woman’s right to bare breasts. Other films examine melting polar ice caps, Humpty Dumpty, sunsets, tree planting and the annunciation of Christ. Linking the Garlands is their melancholic ruminations on innocence, romance and courage.
T.J. Wilcox will be showing all his earlier films, The Escape (of Marie Antoinette), The Death and Burial
of the First Emperor of China, Stephen Tennant Homage,