Golden Parachutes and Tin Handcuffs, works by James Bills

Yes Gallery is proud to present Golden Parachutes andTin Handcuffs, an exhibition by James


Bills curated by Lesley Doukhowetzky. “Golden Parachutes and Tin Handcuffs are catchphrases


from the financial industry to describe the bonuses executives receive when dismissed


from their failing companies. Golden Parachutes, used pre-recession, are large payments with


few strings attached. Tin Handcuffs, used post-recession, are smaller payments with restrictions.


Either way, the contradiction of rewarding failure still stands as an example of the bad


logic that is rampant in the financial industry.  e works in this show take this illogical


stance as a point of inspiration, using charts and renderings that defy straight forward analysis


and focus on random data and it’s complex and intricate nature.


Inspired by mathematics, these drawings fuse a variety of visualization tools, graphs, and


diagrams with elements of architectural drafting, isometric projection and scalar measurements.


Each piece can be seen as a chart of data or a rendering of a building or sculpture.


However, rather than objectively collecting data, mapping it and presenting it for analysis, the


artist is more concerned with the aesthetics and allure of the visualization process itself.  e


data is generated by chance using polyhedral dice found often with role playing games.  ese


dice come in a variety of shapes, with 4 to 20 sides, and create random numbers within


certain parameters (between 4 to 20) as well as bringing an element of fantasy.  e numbers


rolled are recorded and then meticulously applied to measurements in the drawing. Decorative


finishes of gilding and colored pencil are then applied, providing more prominence on


glamour, intricacy and beauty rather than a practical use.  ese familiar tools of mathematics


are subverted to present not an explanation but a sense of natural and compelling disorder.


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