JIM RICKS



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"Additional Seating"
Temple Bar Gallery + Studios are Dead with Barbara Knezevic, Sean Meehan, Prinz Gholam, Jim Ricks, Iain Sinclair, Josh Tonsfeldt, curated by Chris Fite-Wassilak
Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, Dublin,
22 November 2013 - 25 January 2014

jim ricks

Who’s There?

            - Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 1, Line 1

In this exhibition, guest curator Chris Fite Wassilak takes the 30th anniversary of Temple Bar Gallery + Studios(TBG+S) in 2013 as his starting point. Thinking about the history and uses of the TBG+S building, Fite- Wassilak proposes a temporary reorganisation of the gallery and the studios, a gesture intended to raise questions of accessibility, audiences, and the aspirations and realisation of the Temple Bar area itself as a ‘cultural quarter’.

In preparation for the exhibition, Fite-Wassilak invited a series of short-term residencies and site-specific commissions which resulted in a variety of artistic responses to the TBG+S building. These works look at urban space, cultural distances, and alternate histories. From an ‘Immodest Proposal’ pamphlet by renowned author Iain Sinclair, New York based artist Josh Tonsfeldt’s visit to the gallery in absentia via an Italian novelist, to Jim Ricks’ ‘gift’ to the new McDonald’s restaurant opening next door to the gallery, each contributor to the exhibition provides their own dislocated commentary on the exhibition space.

Under the proclamatory title ‘Temple Bar Gallery and Studios Are Dead’ (inspired by Tom Stoppard’s playful post-modern excavation of Hamlet in his 1966 play (and later film) Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.), the exhibition poses a series of reversals and re-imaginings, both hypothetical and real, across a range of media that cast a view askance on the TBG+S building and its roles as a social institution and physical presence.

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"We don’t know much about McArt. But we’re lovin’ it."

– Broadsheet

"Jim Ricks offers a mirror image of the McDonald’s opposite, a mini pop-up McDonald’s in the gallery."

– Aidan Dunne

I decided to create a piece that made no one happy, yet was not explicitly against anything. The new McDonald's across the street has raised the ire of many, but I felt some of the criticisms were unfair, yet do understand that it is a symbolic blow to Temple Bar as a cultural quarter. The multinationals are moving in. After repeated attempts to contact McDonald's to propose an exchange of seating for artwork, I settled on creating a work that was a gift to McDonald's, as well as suitably fitting the curatorial brief. I used the blueprints available from planning to make or approximate the seating as closely as possible. The work can also be descibed as the result of a sort of Photoshop 'Rubber Stamp Tool' approach, that echoes and mirrors the gallery's neighbour, while simultaneously blurring the social boundaries; out and in.

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