Studio Visit: Adam Helms

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Adam Helms is known for drawing radicals and constructing ominous wooden watch towers.  His current project is a series of 48 charcoal portraits in response to Gerhard Richter’s “48 Portraits.”  Richter’s work used encyclopedia photos to catalog the iconic males of Western culture.  Helms is also cataloging icons, but shifts focus to the dangerous fringes where civil wars and insurrections take place.  Ranging over the entire political spectrum, from anti-establishment and anti-government groups to official government troops, Helms’ portraits are intentionally politically ambiguous, stating “The politics are less interesting to me then this idea of a repeated identity.”