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Golden Parachutes and Tin Handcuffs works by James Bills

YES gallery
147 India Street, 917.593.9237
February 25 - March 31, 2011
Reception: Friday, February 25, 7 - 10 PM
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Yes Gallery is proud to present Golden Parachutes Tin Handcuffs, an exhibition by James Bills curated by Lesley Doukhowetzky.”Golden Parachutes and Tin Handcuffs are catchphrases from the financial industry to describe the bonuses executives receive when dismissed from their failing companies. Golden Parachutes, used pre-recession, are large payments with few strings attached. Tin Handcuffs, used post-recession, are smaller payments with restrictions. Either way, the contradiction of rewarding failure still stands as an example of the false logic that is rampant in the financial industry. The works in this show take this illogical stance as a point of inspiration, using charts and renderings that defy straight forward analysis and focus on random data and it’s complex and intricate nature.” Inspired by mathematics, these drawings fuse a variety of visualization tools, graphs, and diagrams with elements of architectural drafting, isometric projection and scalar measurements. Each piece can be seen as a chart of data or a rendering of a building or sculpture. However, rather than objectively collecting data, mapping it and presenting it for analysis, the artist is more concerned with the aesthetics and allure of the visualization process itself. The data is generated by chance using polyhedral dice found often with role playing games. These dice come in a variety of shapes, with 4 to 20 sides, and create random numbers within certain parameters (between 4 to 20) as well as bringing an element of fantasy. The numbers rolled are recorded and then meticulously applied to measurements in the drawing. Decorative finishes of gilding and colored pencil are then applied, providing more prominence on glamor, intricacy and beauty rather than a practical use. These familiar tools of mathematics are subverted to present not an explanation but a sense of natural and compelling disorder.
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