Coleman’s career has been colorful, to say the least. He’s panicked audiences with transgressive performances in which he spit the bitten-off heads of mice into crowds, or hung upside down as fireworks strapped to his chest exploded (unsurprisingly, these events sometimes attracted the attention of law enforcement). He also tests viewers with visionary paintings that meld intricate details of weird Americana with Grand Guignol, as if Hieronymus Bosch were limning sideshow banners for P.T. Barnum. This exhibit explores 20 years of the artist’s output on canvas with a focus on his “degenerate and deviant” portraits featuring himself and infamous historical figures that he admires like the radical abolitionist John Brown.
“Joe Coleman and The Shadow Self”
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