A dual exhibition of works by Akira Beard and James Charles, called American Iconomics, is now showing at the Shooting Gallery in San Francisco. The idea of the “contemporary American icon” ties both artists’ bodies of work together.
Using ink and other materials, San Francisco based artist James Charles alters the faces, fonts and script on bank notes. Altering currency in this irreverent way raises issues about the inherent value of the paper bills, as well as the value our society places on money in general. Through his art James has declared these specific bills to transcend currency, and become art objects valuable to all.
San Francisco based artist Akira Beard uses the faces of cultural icons to examine the fallibility of our cultural tendency for viewing people who are somehow deemed important as symbols rather than as people like ourselves. Beard works in a variety of media – oils, watercolors – and even packages some works in cellophane, price-tagged and hung up 99-cent-store-style.
American Iconomics is showing at the Shooting Gallery through Saturday June 4, 2011.
*Photos courtesy of the Shooting Gallery.