virgil abloh's solo exhibition interrogates advertising and the symbolic power of the media
 

virgil abloh's solo exhibition interrogates advertising and the symbolic power of the media

virgil abloh‘s latest art exhibition, ‘PAY PER VIEW’, does well to capture the designer’s hyper-meta approach to art and design, presenting a somewhat dystopian world inspired by mass communication and the logo boom of 20th century. currently on display at kaikai kiki gallery in tokyo, japan, the recently announced new menswear designer for louis vuitton examines the role of advertising and its contribution to the shaping of our consciousness. an array of ominous objects posing the question ‘are you a product of your consumption?’ whilst at the sametime reminding the audience of the art inherent in marketing methodology presenting an overall dichotomous narrative. 

virgil abloh's solo exhibition interrogates advertising and the symbolic power of the media

all photos by koichiro matsui

 

 

the contemporary art exhibition engages the audience in experiences embodying a multitude of messages which coexist within a single object. abloh reworked objects with famous logos such as petrol supplier sunoco, blacked out billboards by jcdecaux and the media company outfront. throughout branding is employed as an art form to provoke analysis of advertising’s symbolic expression.

virgil abloh's solo exhibition interrogates advertising and the symbolic power of the media

 

 

the dark silhouettes emblazoned with advertising jargon, whether it be ‘advertise here’ or the description of an art work ‘oil on canvas’ form a proverbial mannequin for their text or visualization. using advertising as a discourse virgil abloh employs the visual language of black squares used by russian avant-garde artist kazimir malevich to illustrate the inherent intention that the viewer is a distilled crux of the power of advertising. the audience is left to wonder if their analysis of the narrative in front of them and their possible self-awareness is enough to prove otherwise.

virgil abloh's solo exhibition interrogates advertising and the symbolic power of the media

 

 

iconic artist and japanese artist takashi murakami offered the following statement about abloh:even as the boundaries between art, fashion, instagram, race, market, timezones, values, and originality become blurry and vague, the creator himself is brought into ever-sharper relief. virgil abloh is sitting there with a smile on his face. or rather, even when virgil the person is not there, you feel him when you encounter the projects he has handled.’

virgil abloh's solo exhibition interrogates advertising and the symbolic power of the media

 

 

‘PAY PER VIEW’ is on show until april 1st at takashi murakami‘s kaikai kiki gallery.

 

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