Desire Obtain Cherish (DOC) is a LA-based artist that graduated from the Parson’s School of Design. In the 2000s, he emerged into the art scene as a street artist and since then he has been speaking out about desire, addiction, gender, celebrity, media, commerce and fame through his controversial yet engaging artwork. The artist’s name, Desire Obtain Cherish, comes from the idea that society influences us to constantly want, want and want. Once we obtain the object or person that we desire, we then want to love and cherish it. But, the wanting never stops and the cycle repeats. It is a never-ending cycle of desiring, then obtaining and cherishing.
Stepping into the McLoughlin Gallery, the first object that captured my attention was the beautifully wrapped piece of candy that was hanging on the wall. It was more than just a piece of candy as this piece titled, Blood Sugar High, conveys a strong message about gender, sex and desire. In this piece a life–size female mannequin is inside the pretty and shiny wrapped candy. She depicts how society puts much pressure on women to have the perfect hair, body and be perfectly made up to be presented to society in an attractive package as the object of desire. The title, Blood Sugar High, stems from the idea that sometimes we desire the perfect girl or the perfect guy so intensely that it makes our blood boil and it makes us feel high off of sugar. But, when we want too much of what we desire, it can become an addiction and this addiction can starts to feel like it’s suffocating us. Then, once we have what we thought we always wanted, how long do we keep it?
The pieces, Sugarcane Bubblegum Meltdown and Black Licorice Meltdown address society’s habit of instantly disposing of things, relationships, people, etc. In this piece, two perfectly edible blow pops are tossed away before they are devoured completely. This depicts society’s habit of getting bored, then throwing away and then moving onto the next best thing or the next relationship. The loss of appreciation for things generate beautiful waste such as the two perfectly edible blow pop sculptures.
Another major theme in DOC’s work is being under the influence of drugs. Every person has their own drugs, whether it’s fashion, a relationship, or a person, and we all are addicted to something or someone. In the piece, Jim Morrison’s Bet, 1700 individually wrapped pills were used to create the image of Jim Morrison. Media, society and all his fans were addicted to him. He was their drug. He was their addiction. Jim Morrison, like everyone else, had his own addiction and was under the influence of his own drug. This piece depicts the idea that we each desire something or someone sometimes so much that we become under the influence and sometimes when we get too much of what we want, it can be detrimental to us.
I was blown away by these visually pleasing pieces and the messages that are behind them. DOC is truly an amazing artist that is not afraid to shake it up and address societal issues in his own unique way. This is DOC’s first solo exhibition in San Francisco. He previously shown his work at the KM Fine Arts where 10 percent of each sale from his #undertheinfluence series benefited the Friendly House LA, the oldest women’s drug and alcohol recovery home in the United States. It was founded in 1951 and since then has been providing a safe place for women that are addicted to drug and alcohol. Desire Obtain Cherish solo exhibition will be at the McLoughlin Gallery in San Francisco from July 11th – August 31st, 2013.
WHEN: Thursday, July 11, 2013 – Saturday, August 31, 2013
49 Geary Street, Suite 200
San Francisco, CA 94108