Would you be comfortable with being photographed while asleep? What if your photograph ended up, one among dozens, on a giant canvas on a wall of a major museum, scrutinised by thousands of visitors, be it art lovers, habitual museum-goers or the occasional curious?
For Sleep II Shearer amassed thousands of found images of people sleeping. He painstakingly crafted the work into a rhythmically balanced composition, paying special attention to combinations of subject matter, scale and colour. Some individuals sleep peacefully, some in a near ecstatic state, while others seem eerily close to death. In representing the universal state of sleeping, the artist invites us to witness a vast and intimate record of anonymity.
National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa
October 29th, 2017