Time Spent with DavidShrigley.com


Screenshot of the website under

Work>>Drawing and Painting

This guy is fun. He is a TriDisciplinarian based out of the UK with a penchant for mischievous pairings of phrase and drawing. He also does odd, little, short-phrase audio collaborations, occasionally with well known indie bands. It is unclear how involved he is in the making of the audio that is paired with his phrase irony but there is certain, concerted linkage. The key to the success of the work is it’s puns, clever humor and reduced formats.

The photo that greets a websurfer is of a 9 or 10 meter stone slab engraved with a rather ordinary shopping list erected at the entrance to a park. People are mostly ignoring the object in the photo which is fitting the clever but sardonic humor in his work.

David Shrigley is currently 49 years old. His visual work is very simple, childlike and innocent. It consists of line drawings, presumably in paint or ink on canvas or paper with solid color filled in on occasion. The media seems secondary but I imagine the pieces themselves are quite enjoyable in simple surfaces. That is where the medium ends for the most part. An awkwardly simple outline of the back of figure with a hand holding a rustic tattoo needle reminds one of the wishes of a young boy to be cool in receiving his ‘FIRST TATTOO’, printed at the bottom of the illustration. Where as ‘BLACK POLISH’ has a scrawled sketch of a single, white shoe with a hand holding a brush with the title and ‘WHITE SHOE’ written above it on horizontal black lines. It is innocently naughty the thought of black-shining a white shoe. Something a son might do to their father’s wingtips.

I am currently listening to ‘Late Night Tales Presents Shirley Forced to Speak to Others’. It contains titles such as Rock Festival , Eggs, Loathsome, I am Good, Snowman… These are literally what the song is about; short and ironic riffs on silly, simple themes that are quite drole and awkward puns that are slight and darkly comical.

The visual work kindof sits there staring you in the face making obscene little gestures under the desk. And I feel innocently naughty after finishing the album as if I were scolded by an approving rebel parent or read outloud a a Shel Silverstein poem by a best friend while being ejected from a school play.

Shrigley has 2-D, Spoken word collaborations and a slew of other projects on his website as well as a store to purchase albums and prints. His other projects range from a skate park adorned with his large scale drawings to photos of ‘A restaurant with artwork and tableware by DS’.

I love the work. Some of the better feelings of being a kid are evoked. For someone with difficult memories or not, the act of innocent mischief makes everything better.


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