Catalogue Work - Believer Magazine

Catalogue Work

by Todd Colby
October 29th, 2019

Catalogue Work has its genesis in a visit I made to Ikea years ago during a breakup. As I wandered through the vast store in a wounded, panicked state, I envisioned all sorts of domestic heartbreak and drama unfolding in each themed module with the furniture arranged like a stage set for a bland and tragic play. The next logical step for me was pulling furniture catalogues out of the recycling bin and drawing figures lounging on the furniture while speaking the words I would want to say in such uniformly lit and “tastefully” decorated environments. I think of the pieces in my Catalogue Work as mini one-act plays that set up a situation that the characters in each piece speak through their dialogue balloons. My work as a graffiti artist adds a sense of mischief and vandalism to the safe confines of a printed catalogue. I like to feel like I’m about to get in trouble while I’m making these pieces. It propels me through my work. That, and a joyful embrace of the absolute absurdity of it all.

—Todd Colby

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