SUBLIMINAL PROJECTS is pleased to present A Primitive Future, an exhibition featuring new work by AJ Fosik, Ben Venom, Frohawk Two Feathers, Haroshi, Lucien Shapiro, and Ravi Zupa.

A Primitive Future focuses on the cultural, social, economic, and guiding principles of past versus future belief systems and practices. How do we determine right and wrong or acceptable and unacceptable in both the aesthetics of art and in societal behavior? How will colonialism take shape in the future? How has craft morphed with the everyday and become timeless? Has society in general become more “civilized” or are we the same just in different form? What can the future look like?

The selected artists touch on some of the above questions through form, subject matter, or both. More importantly, they question the conventional idea of what the (conflicted) term primitive means or is associated with. The late 19th century deemed ‘primitive art’ as simplistic in form and color and lacking in linear perspective and depth. This style was eventually adopted by well-known French and German artists and embraced for its honesty, spontaneity and emotional charge. In the visual arts, it stood for a rejection of the corrupt values of the West, perpetuated by the effects of industrialization and the Great War. However the term primitive, when used in an anthropological context, applied to ‘early’ cultures but was often interpreted as meaning savage or inferior. Today, that interpretation is highly criticized as narrow minded, inconsistent, and indicative of people’s inability to self-reflect.