Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Jaimie Warren, "The Whoas of Female Tragedy II" opens January 10th

Self-Portrait as Kali Conner, digital C-print, 2012


The Whoas of Female Tragedy II

January 10 - February 9, 2013

OPENING January 10, 6-9PM

The Hole is proud to announce a new solo exhibition by Kansas City-based artist Jaimie Warren. In photographs that explore different female stereotypes from both art history and celebrity culture, distorted through the internet’s bizarre juxtapositions, disposable imagery and memes, this new body of work features the artist and her friends in roles as diverse as Zsa Zsa Gabor, Easy E, The Virgin Mary, Lana Del Rey or Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon.

Like a digital age, Midwestern Cindy Sherman, Warren camouflages herself in handmade costumes, sets and extensive makeup to impersonate internet-distorted celebrities, including a section of “food-lebrities” which you can perhaps imagine (“Lasagna Del Rey”). Unlike self-portrait artist Nikki Lee who aims to “pass” in various subcultures, Warren with her Rubenesque body, big blonde hair and rosy cheeks never quite fits in anywhere, perhaps best as her idol Roseanne Barr. The juxtaposition of her non-celebrity appearance with the sculpted and contrived publicity shots of Lil' Kim or Madonna bring the unreachably idealized form back to its much funner corporeal reality.

The everyday disruptions of reality or offences to taste, perhaps, put her in some relationship to Wegee or Martin Parr, while her work overall defies specific reference to the history of photography, as perhaps she has more in common with the history of camp and the films of John Waters. The works feel as they came out of a young lady in the Midwest with a vivid imagination who had to make her own fun with her friends, and she has indeed collaborated with long time friends and fellow Kansas City artists Cody Critcheloe (SSION) and fashion designer Peggy Noland. Warren writes: “The self-portraits have always been a way of entertaining myself, as I live in a smaller city, and I have been taking them long before any one noticed let alone requested more. This is also why I co-created Whoop Dee Doo [a faux public access television show for children] as we are always creating our own projects and entertainment, essentially out of necessity”

In this exhibition there are three different series of new works: one where Warren is re-creating found Photoshopped paintings from art history; the second body of work takes on found Photoshopped images that mix celebrities with food; while the last is from totallylookslike.com where people pair images of celebrities with objects, animals, food, other celebrities, etc. to show how they humorously look alike.  Warren puts in an enormous amount of handmade energy to recreate these Photoshop Frankensteins without the use of Photoshop, and all works in the show are unadulterated photographic prints.  Part of the insanity is to figure out why.

Warren is interested in the anonymous nature of “bored at work” Photoshoppers especially in the art history series where venerated works of art history are ridiculously and abjectly altered in the most curious ways. Many sites feature famous paintings that are “pimped out” by adding Versace clothes and glittery phones or even racy lingerie to paintings of nudes. The ersatz humour of the internet and the slightly creepy concoctions of the public when bored with the barrage of celebrity images all fit well into her vaudevillian, Roseanne Barr-ean sense of humour that pervades all her art and performances.

Jaimie Warren (b. 1980 Kansas City) is a photographer, performance artist and curator known for her theatrical, humorous self-portraits set in various scenarios and locations, whether constructed or real.   Her first solo exhibition was at Higher Pictures in NYC in 2009 and was reviewed in Artforum and many other well-known publications.  Warren’s first monograph was published by Aperture in 2008. Her work was debuted on tinyvices.com by curator Tim Barber who has also included her work in many group shows. She has participated in group exhibitions at Max Wigram in London, The MACRO Museum in Rome, Colette in Paris, Deitch Projects, NYC and many more. She and Matt Roche are co-directors of Whoop Dee Doo, a faux public access television show for kids.

This exhibition is variation of The WHOAS of Female Tragedy presented at the Miami Dade College Museum of Art and Design this past fall. Warren collaborated with artist Lee Heinemann who created custom costumes and props.

The Hole is open Tuesday through Saturday, 12 – 7PM
For available works please contact k


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