David Shrigley was born in 1968 in Macclesfield, UK. He lives and works in Brighton and Devon, UK. In January 2020 the artist was awarded the decoration of Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire or OBE.
David Shrigley’s quick-witted drawings and hand-rendered texts are typically deadpan in their humour and reveal chance utterings like snippets of over-heard conversations. Recurring themes and thoughts pervade his storytelling, capturing deliberately two-dimensional views of the world, the perspective of aliens and monsters or the compulsive habits of an eavesdropper shouting out loud. While drawing is at the centre of his practice, Shrigley also works across an extensive range of media including sculpture, large-scale installation, animation, painting, photography and music. Shrigley consistently seeks to widen his audience by operating outside the gallery sphere, including producing artist publications and creating collaborative music projects.
His digital animations such as ‘Headless Drummer’ and ‘The Artist’ demonstrate what Shrigley calls ‘the economy of telling stories’, delivering a deftly crafted mix of dark and light through the simplest of forms. In his sculptural works, rendered in materials such as bronze and ceramic, the artist makes physical some of his more curious and eccentric propositions by transforming found objects or by playing with their scale. Taking Lewis Carroll's perspective of Wonderland, Shrigley enlarges objects and imbues them with curious proportions.
Shrigley was a Turner Prize nominee in 2013, following his major mid-career retrospective ‘Brain Activity' at the Hayward Gallery, London. In September 2016, his monumental sculpture ‘Really Good' was unveiled in Trafalgar Square, London for the Fourth Plinth Commission. The artist was commissioned to transform the Gallery at sketch, London in 2018 as part of a long-term programme of artist-conceived restaurants. From 2015 to 2018 the British Council-organised exhibition 'Lose Your Mind' travelled to six venues including Power Station of Art, Shanghai, China; Storage by Hyundai Card in Seoul, Korea and Instituto-Cultural-Cabañas in Guadalajara, Mexico.
Other solo museum exhibitions include those at Copenhagen Contemporary, Denmark (2020); Newstead Abbey Historic House & Gardens, Nottinghamshire, England (2019); Museo de arte Carrillo Gil, Mexico City, Mexico (2019); Art Omi, Ghent, New York, USA (2019); Spritmuseum, Stockholm, Sweden (2018); Deste Foundation Project Space, Greece (2018); Fabrica, Brighton, England (2018); Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Massachusetts, USA (2016); National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia (2014); Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich, Germany (2014); Hayward Gallery, London, England touring to Yerba Beuna Centre for the Arts, San Francisco, USA (2013); Cornerhouse, Manchester, UK (2012); Mumbai Art Rooms, Mumbai, India (2012); Turku Art Museum, Turku, Finland (2011) and Bergen Kunsthall, Bergen, Norway (2009).
Shrigley’s works are included in prominent collections internationally, including Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA; Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois, USA; Museum Ludwig, Cologne, Germany; Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich, Germany; Centre Pompidou, Paris, France; Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen, Denmark; Thyssen-Bornemisza Contemporary Art Foundation, Vienna, Austria; Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh, Scotland; Tate, London, England; British Council, London, England; and National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia.