The provocative artist Mike Kelley was adept at embracing the extreme contradictions of American culture, whether it be ugly or beautiful, open or deceitful, to reveal the hidden integrity at its core. A key exponent of Californian Post-Conceptualism, Kelley mined modernist and American popular culture to inspire his highly personal and socially engaged work.
Mike Kelley’s work was hugely diverse, capable of drawing on a wide range of… Read more
About the artwork
Kelley's unholy mix of skulls, national emblems, religious iconography, Satanism and heavy metal belies any coherent explanation. His banners and flags fly for a decadent and lampooned counter culture. Even the Swastika featured on one banner is stripped of its visual potency by being adorned with male genitalia. Originally conceived as outfits for a performance Kelley did with the dancer Anita Pace and performed on a cat walk style ramp to music from Motorhead. These 10 China Habotai silk banners are each numbered and signed by Kelley, one of the most influential and revered artists of our time.