Featuring puppets, masks and videos inspired by an eclectic range of artistic references, Puppets, Pawns and Prophets retains Dzama’s signature palette of earthy hues and sleek, graceful style. Dzama first received acclaim for his ink and watercolour drawings depicting surrealistic fantasy worlds; this exhibition transposes his aesthetic onto three-dimensional pieces that build on his rich visual vocabulary.
Dzama’s chess-inspired video work Death Disco Dance, Sister Squares and The Infidels will be shown at the exhibition. Death Disco Dance presents ballet-dancing characters taken from chess games, participating in improvised choreography but in total harmony. Sister Squares is screened across four screens, which evokes the quadrangles of chessboards and creates a viewing experience that mimics the back-and-forth strategies of pawn and king. His last video work, The Infidels, draws on the conflict and figurative violence intrinsic to chess and compares it to war.
Completing the exhibition is a series of works in other media, such as sculptures formed from tin and ceramic, and collages and paintings that underscore the nebulous space between imagination and truth.
Puppets, Pawns and Prophets will show at David Zwirner from 6 April to 11 May.
24 Grafton Street
London W1S 4EZ
All images courtesy of the artist and the gallery.