Using indigo, grass stain, and gel pen, Dillon Gray continues to explore the mediums of his past. For Gray, nothing is more intentional than drawing on the walls or his jeans. Creating patterns reminiscent of wallpaper through the use of ubiquitous symbols, scribbles and teen brands, Gray builds from his previous series in the visual translation of nostalgia that dominates his work. The primary inquiry of his work being the use of lowbrow mediums, drawing comparison to the black velvet paintings of kitsch iconography. Gray’s previous work involved the use of deadstock vinyl wallpaper on panel board, an homage to his working-class upbringing and the spaces that formed his aesthetics, identity and sense of home.
As a queer artist, the series honors the boyhood he lived and the boyhoods (and girlhoods) he never had. Born in 1994 and coming of age through the early 2000’s, Gray taps into themes of youth romance, playfulness, skateboarding, angst and apathy, and the values that he and his friends displayed on their sleeves, or rather, their pant legs. The semi-sculptural series, Indigo Child (a play on words referencing the psychically gifted children of the 90’s), explores the denim culture of Gray’s childhood and conceptually investigates the use of denim as a substitute for stretched canvas.
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