Cristiana Minelli

Jamie Reid, Ragged Kingdom (part.), s.d., courtesy Isis Gallery, UK, photo Declan O'Neil

A man who has always gone against the grain, with the soul of a shaman. A British artist close to the anarchist movements, well-known above all for his name having been linked in the second half of the ‘70s to the graphics of the Sex Pistols, and more recently having become a modern-day druid, the author of works midway between the installation and an ode to peace and dialogue. From 12th September at Palazzo Santa Margherita, the exhibition dedicated to Jamie Reid will feature drawings, paintings, collages and photographs that offer an account of the talent of an artist who has always been in conflict with the powers that be, and who has beaten new paths into the world of imagery and communication.

The Main Hall will host the installation from which the title of the exhibition is taken (‘Ragged Kingdom’) made up of a number of North American tepees – symbols of welcome, shelter, protection and thus of peace and dialogue – painted and printed with images by the artist, inside which each visitor will find a pile of sheets with which s/he may piece together his/her own exhibition ‘catalogue’.

Instead, on the upper floor there are around 60 drawings, paintings, collages, graphics, projects and photographs tracing Reid’s artistic career ever since his early days, during which he elaborated the style through a number of the images – such as the buses on the way to ‘Nowhere’ – which were to become part and parcel of punk iconography, then focusing more in detail on the period most closely connected to his collaboration with the Sex Pistols. Of this intense activity, which lasted from 1976 to 1980, around 30 works may be found on show, including a collage almost eight metres long (‘Mural’), which represents the apex of his production over this period. There is also a selected range of his more recent work, in which the anarchic and situationist themes go hand in hand with motifs linked to a magical and shamanic universe very dear to the artist, expressed through cosmological, druidic and exoteric symbols.

Staged in collaboration with Isis Gallery of Brighton, and sponsored by the Hera Group, the exhibition is part of a programme of events for the festivalfilosofia, the theme of which this year has been identified in the concept of ‘glory’.

An exhibition for all the fans of the genre, until 6th January, at Palazzo Santa Margherita, so as not to forget ‘Who Killed Bambi?’ (a ’78 collage), ‘We don’t care about the music’ (a ’79 collage), with a bed bearing the words ‘Fuck forever’ and the cover of an LP, still playing ‘Los Pistoleros del Sexo’.