As he prepared himself to break through the opening doors, the man's eyes became veiled in deep red. Without hesitation, he threw up his arms and climbed through the crowd. As he made his way through the barrage of bodies and boxes of discounted products, he could not help but notice the trail of blood behind him.
He thought back to the Sardine Run- the ultimate display of gluttonous freedom. Thousands of fish in a frenzy trying to escape the shadow of predators, each trying to optimize their feeding opportunity.
The man poeticized to himself, " How wonderful it must be, to be so free, as a fish in the sea-"
He was suddenly interrupted as he almost slipped when turning into a vacant aisle. The ground was a treacherous territory, littered with coupons soaked in the industrial feces of Coca Cola.
As he paced through aisles, trying to find his prize, the crowd continued the chaotic riot. The man thought to himself, " Who is a sardine?"
The super store trembled, boxes were claimed like children and bodies were overrun. The shelves were about to be restocked. The crowd screamed, but for what? It did not matter. Drunk on the smell plastic wrap and sweat, the crowd only wished for one thing- the satisfaction of other shopper's defeat.
Rod Barton is pleased to announce the first UK solo exhibition by Alex Ito, Tales from a Sardine Run, an exploration of corporately produced affects of success and well-being. Ito's new sculpture and wall-hung works explore the artificial intimacy that is induced by corporate objects because of their promises of beauty, luck and success that are mere façades of function. Through excessive production, distribution and consumption of products, the marketplace becomes a supercharged feeding frenzy where there are winners and losers; a consistent system of defeat. This proliferation and participation into this system of defeat is the subtle violence that consumers self-inflict upon themselves- thus feeding upon their own oppression.
Alex Ito was born in 1991 in Los Angeles and lives and works in Brooklyn, New York. Forthcoming and recent solo and two-person exhibitions include Alex Ito & Erika Ceruzzi, Springsteen Gallery, Baltimore, MD, 2014; Alex Ito, Think of Me Fondly, Water McBeer Gallery, San Francisco, CA, 2014; Alex Ito, The Home of Tao Hsiao, Art in General, New York, 2014; Single Image (with Brendan Lynch), Steve Turner Contemporary, Los Angeles, 2014; Alex Ito, Victory, The Still House Group, New York, 2014