View of Devan Shimoyama's Fade Cut exhibition. Photo: Serlachius, Sampo Linkoneva
Photo: Serlachius, Sampo Linkoneva

Press release 18 March 2024

Devan Shimoyama brings his barbershop installation to Serlachius in Finland

Fade Cut 23 March–18 August 2024

The US artist Devan Shimoyama’s exhibition Fade Cut is a colourful barbershop that combines his personal experiences with popular culture imagery and art history influences. The exhibition, which opens at Serlachius on 23 March, is the artist’s debut in Finland and the Nordic countries.

The art of Devan Shimoyama’s (b. 1989) is rich and playful. With a carnivalesque touch, he combines in his works different techniques and adds to them sequins, feathers and rhinestones. He also creates monumental installations. 

In his art, Shimoyama explores themes of sexuality, race and gender. He reflects on queer identity, incorporating references from mythology and art history. To all this, he open-mindedly connects the imagery of popular culture and the world of advertising.

The barbershop installation illustrates the artist’s personal experiences from childhood. They combine memories of an African-American barbershop and, on the other hand, female family members carefully adorning themselves for Sunday churchgoings in a Baptist congregation. 

African-American barbershops have been places where black American men have been able to gather freely together. However, within the culture, those belonging to a minority have not necessarily experienced this hypermasculine atmosphere as their own. 

In the Fade Cut installation, the artist has transformed a barbershop into a rich and colourful queer fantasy. His barbershop is a safe space where every visitor is invited to express themselves freely.

The works of the barbershop series are portraits about boys and men that challenge traditional gender roles. Distressing memories of the artist’s own childhood are reflected in the tears on the faces of the customers seen in the works. Even so, in his art, the artist turns painful experiences into joy. 

Artist Devan Shimoyama

Devan Shimoyama was born in Philadelphia and he graduated Master of Fine Arts from Yale University in 2011. He lives and works in Pittsburgh, USA. He worked as a Teacher and Assistant Professor of Art at Carnegie Mellon University from 2014 to 2023.

Shimoyama’s works have been exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions across the USA and at leading art fairs. Outside the USA, his exhibitions have previously been shown in, among other places, the UK, South Africa, Germany, the Netherlands and Spain. 

A book related to the Fade Cut exhibition will be published at the time of the exhibition’s opening. In the publication, curators Laura Kuurne and Pauli Sivonen discuss with the artist the themes of Shimoyama’s art. The book, in Finnish and English, is published by Parvs Publishing Ltd.

Press releases and photographs:

For further information and image requests, please contact:
Susanna Yläjärvi, Information Officer, Serlachius Museums, tel. +358 50 560 0156,

The Serlachius Museums are open:

in the winter season, 1 September–31 May, from Tuesday to Sunday, 11 am–6 pm

in the summer season, 1 June–31 August, every day 10 am-6 pm

Visiting addresses:

Serlachius Museum Gösta, Joenniementie 47, Mänttä, Finland
Serlachius Museum Gustaf, R. Erik Serlachiuksen katu 2, Mänttä, Finland

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