Grimes is getting ready to launch her first official fine art gallery show, but in classic Grimes fashion it has a very strange, shocking twist.
The singer born Claire Boucher, recently spoke to Bloomberg News to explain the origin of the show, which will appear simultaneously online at the Gallery Platform Los Angeles (May 28-June 3) and Maccarone Los Angeles gallery (May 28-Aug. 31), featuring a selection of her photos, drawings, prints and conceptual pieces crafted over the past decade.
The show is cheekily titled, Selling Out, and the title piece is getting the most attention, as Bloomberg reports that it contains a legal document that allows the purchaser to buy a percentage of the singer’s soul. “I didn’t want anyone to buy it, so I said we should just make it $10 million and then it probably won’t sell,” she says of her original (high) concept for the showpiece item.
After speaking to her lawyer and getting help drafting the sale contract for the slice of soul, “the deeper we got with it, the more philosophically interesting it became. Also, I really wanted to collaborate with my lawyer on art. The idea of fantastical art in the form of legal documents just seems very intriguing to me.”
But with the whole world shut down due to COVID-19 and a global recession taking hold, Grimes figured pricing her soul at a cool $10 mill seemed like a more transgressive act than even the always boundary-pushing singer could conceivably pull off, so she pivoted and decided to ask the public to make their “best offer” and decide what her soul was worth.
“I made art 10, 12 years before I ever touched a keyboard,” she explains about the decision to share her non-musical side with the public after years of designing her album covers and tour merch. “I see myself as a visual artist first and foremost, and I’ve always felt strange that people know me for music.” Bloomberg describes how the pieces are in keeping with Grimes’ futuristic, Manga/anime/horror aesthetic, with one (WarNymph Prototype #3 WarMachine) featuring a bald, naked winged female angel — the WarNymph — sitting atop a mechanical city with weapons pointed toward the sky, as well as seated on an enormous pig burping bubbles and another populated with baby winged angels wielding knives flying over a neon wasteland.
In the interview, Grimes also reveals that she refers to the child she recently had with SpaceX/Tesla boss Elon Musk, X Æ A-12, as “Little X.” Though she’s gained worldwide fame as a musician and the anticipation for her first gallery show is likely to be very high, some of the pieces are modestly priced. Prints in editions of 30 cost $500, with ink-on-paper drawings ranging from $2,000-$3,000 and archival pigment prints of digital works featuring a digital avatar scanned from the singer’s body, “WarNymph,” ranging from $5,000-$15,000 depending on size.
Check out some of the prints below.