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Scott Campbell “Noblesse Oblige”

This past weekend, we put on our fanciest art gallery outfits and hit the town in LA. First stop was the Scott Campbell, Noblesse Oblige exhibit, at the OHWOW Gallery, in West Hollywood. This just happened to be the inaugural show at this space, and also Campbell’s West Coast debut. Unless you have been sleeping in a closet, you should be familiar with Campbell’s work. It all started at a tattoo shop on Berry St. in Williamsburg (remember those Camel ads?!) and now, he has become and international sensation within the art and fashion set, selling pieces for extraordinary prices as well as designing bags for high-end houses like Vuitton.

The pieces were pretty impressive, and a definite evolution of Campbells earlier works which include uncut sheets of US currency, etched copper plates, graphite on ostrich eggs and cheeky neon light arrangements. Iconic tattoo flash art was also incorporated, with evident nods to skate-culture and metal themes. Our particular favorite was Campbell’s ode to the Powell- Peralta Bones Brigade Ripper.

“The title Noblesse Oblige implies that whoever claims to be noble must conduct their life accordingly, and in a manner that conforms to one’s position. In Campbell’s case, his “nobility” is his tattoo-artist origin, and it is to that position and reputation his compliance is fashioned. In exhibiting a chronicle of working class imagery, customarily inked onto skin, Campbell seeks to construct a new context for the genre – an alternative narrative for consideration.”

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