All Images © 2012
Justin Randolph Thompson
Togged to the Bricks is an Installation and performance create for La Tache Gallery. The exhibition takes its title from the African American slang idiom Togged to the Bricks, which means “well dressed” or, as musician Cab Calloway defined it, “dressed to kill”.
Like many other projects of the artist, Togged to the Bricks is full of references, citations and allusions. The artist focuses his attention on such issues as cultural displacement, postcolonial inheritance of certain hierarchies or the historic implications of triumph. From our immediate context, he puts his attention in specific elements of the folklore, in some episodes of the Civil War, in our colonial past and in the industry taken as a symbol of a certain idea of progress. In relation to the idea of progress, Thompson manifests a special interest in the artist Josep Maria Sert. He perceives a certain ambiguity intrinsic in his projects and a fracture between them and their sociopolitical context.
The use of materials and objects loaded with symbolisms or echoes that dive into the historical cultural memory is a regular strategy in the artist process of work. In this sense, each element of the installation has its own genealogy and its own referents, thus establishing its own allusions.