|from Idea Generation Gallery's Celebrity Flickr set|
For example, the canvas called Richard Pryor (right) is a quietly dynamic rush of overlapping, repeating pattern units. There is some character here, not simply the suggestion of Pryor's unruly Afro-hair barnet but also his extraordinary, scatterbrain comic genius - and possibly the pathos of his subsequent MS affliction, with all its connotations of loss of motor control.
But this is, I guess, the point of Squire's work - that not only the value of an image but also its very content is simply an opinion held in the viewer's mind. Instead of a worth being not only provided but positively thrust upon us, we are invited - by the virtue of a name alone - to invest the image with worth, with the first clear hurdle being an Emperor's-new-clothes complication that the figure doesn't exist at all.
However, I don't believe that Squire is being insufferably postmodern (i.e. trying to make fun of us). The key element here is, naturally, the Islamic designs that are the idiom of the pieces.
I applied this concept to the gods chosen by modern Western culture; those whose stories have been told and retold and whose images have been mass produced to such an extent that they are granted a kind of immortalitySquire says, reminding us obliquely of Muslim censure in representing the Prophet figuratively.