Kanye West caused some controversy when he released the designs for his Yeezus tour merchandise, including T-shirts that featured the Confederate flag, skulls, Native Americans, and the Grim Reaper. This loaded imagery was the work of Wes Lang, an artist whose drawings present a dark and twisted version of America that is both uncomfortable and tantalizing at the same time. Yesterday, Lang opened a solo show at Half Gallery in New York called "Blessings."
For "Blessings," Lang exhibits drawings and doodles that look like combinations of cave drawings, scientific sketches, and pin-up magazines. He explains his attraction to strange (and often times offensive—he has been known to draw blackface) imagery in an interview with Interview Magazine in 2009: "I'm covered in it, personally. [Lang indicates his tattoos of women, skulls, crosses, and Indians] I've always been a collector of weird imagery, even when I was little. There was no question what I wanted to do with myself, since I was very small."
Next year, in March 2014, the Aros Museum in Denmark will host a mid-career survey of Lang's work.
"Blessings" is on view at Half Gallery in New York until Dec. 15, 3013.