An Interview with Mungo Thomson

Mungo Thomson, Human Behavior (2015), screenprint, image 42 1/8 x 37 1/8 inches, sheet 54 x 43 1/4 inches. Edition of 10. Printed and published by Highpoint Editions, Minneapolis, MN. Photo: David Kern.

Los Angeles-based artist Mungo Thomson has recently completed an ambitious new project at Highpoint Editions in Minneapolis. Thomson’s work is deeply rooted in the legacy of conceptual art—particularly the West Coast iteration seen in the work of such pioneering artists as John Baldessari and Edward Ruscha—and often has a strong connection between language and image. His project at Highpoint follows the artist’s mirrored paintings from 2012, which replicate the format and typography of Time magazine on their surface while also reflecting the viewer. The Highpoint prints are based on Time-Life books, a popular series of general interest volumes published in the 1960s and ’70s. One print reproduces the colorful spines of the 14-volume series Human Behavior (published in 1976); the other replicates the cover of The Forest, a volume in the Time-Life Nature Library (published in 1961). Nearly four feet high, both prints render their subjects monumental and imposing. Siri Engberg discussed the project with Thomson.

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