Jim Riswold

Jim Riswold was the former creative director for Portland, Oregon based advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy and an instructor for the agency’s experimental advertising school, WK12: subject for WKE (WKEntertainment)’s upcoming web episodic documentary, 12. After being diagnosed with leukemia in 2000 and surviving for five years, Riswold quit advertising to become a full-time contemporary artist. He went from “a career of selling people things they don’t need to making things that people don’t want”. Riswold’s photographs have been shown in galleries throughout the Northwest and hang in the permanent collections of several museums. Most of his works poke fun at historically taboo figures Mao Zedong, Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini by constructing monumental setting in which the figurines were photographer. Jim explained in his 2005 Esquire article, Hitler Saved My Life that “Instead of providing […] grand expositions mythologizing the dictator, toys, by definition, make their subjects seem small, childish, and trifling.”

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