Thursday, July 8, 2010

Dangerkoma - Modern surrealist collages

Reviewed by Batcheeba.

Let Dangerkoma show you the world as it really it. This cultural terrorist, this misantrophic anarchist, will not wait until your mind is ready. His art functions as a two dimensional traumatic experience, and once you've looked, you will never see the world the same way ever again.

Welcome to the world of Dangerkoma. This man from California is a visual genius on a mission. He masters the art of collage like few others in modern time, both in technique and content. He has the one thing most art today is so desperately lacking: intent.

Dangerkoma knows what he wants, and he goes about it with a vengeance. He uses his scissors and glue, to cut up and reshape both beauty and the grotesque. He is a cut up artists in the truest sense, worthy of standing side by side with Genesis P-Orridge, William S. Burroughs and Brion Gysin themselves.

Dangerkoma's intention is not to confuse. Nor is his purpose to enlighten the people who don't understand. The world he portrays is not surreal to me, on the contrary it's a familiar world. It might be surreal to those who are not able to understand his work, but that does not make Dangerkoma's work Dada. It only makes him an elitist.
Stylistically however, I would place Dangerkoma more in the vein of surrealism, his work depicts internal landscapes and fragments of the world around us, filtered to make them more lucid.

Dangerkoma speaks through his art directly to his own choir, and his work is a message to the people he detests: The capitalists, the ignorant, the followers - and he is brutal in every sense of the word.

He only cares about the reaction he creates - even if it is only hate. He creates anti-apathy - and that is to me the core of his work. It's seething out of every collage he's made: it's an intelligent hate, focused and directed. It's intended. Hate is not a valid emotion in our day of age. Dangerkoma states he "hates responsibly". I stand by that statement.

There is so much beauty in his work, most of his pieces are in constant motion, with perfect golden ratio and perfect composition, and while looking your eyes are led through this motion picture of impressions, colors, sensuous shapes and textures. Dangerkoma is in control and drags you, be it kicking and screaming, through this traumatic battlefield of imagery. His work comes alive before your eyes and taps into your brain, then starts working on a whole different psychological level. Dangerkoma's work is the perfect mind drug. It takes a certain someone to see the stunning beauty in say skulls and dead animals. You have to be able to see the beauty in the grotesque, and since that has been one of my mantras for years, his work really hits home with me. His colors varies from rusty dirty brown, red, yellow, black onto crisp and cold, clean and bright, over into black and white. He covers it all, leaving nothing out. His lighting is perfection, in many of his pictures it's hard to understand that it is in fact a collage as they are seamless and technically perfect executions. Dangerkoma is in short, old school.

His works are also filled with magickal references, symbols and religion with references to both Christianity and occultism. The human body is often combined with skulls or other symbols of death, dead animals, skeletons and bones. Baphomet is referenced in several of his works, while others contain iconography lifted from secret societies and mystic religion. His work captures the dream and the nightmare all in one.

I see humor in his work, sarcasm and tongue in cheek irony, and I see playfulness. Sometimes it seems like the shapes and/or patterns themselves triggered his collage, not only anger, hate and social critisism. And I appreciate that because it is yet another stamp of quality. A true artist can lose him or herself in textures, colors and shapes just because thar is what gives them pleasure, and it also is a true form of escapism.

Dangerkoma has clear references to the Renaissance, his collages are sultry, pompous and in lack of a better word: grandiose. His collages employs a drama we recognize from masters such as the medieval surrealist Hieronymus Bosch, both use the surreal and the potent imagery of religion, death, politics, sin and evil. Even though Dangerkoma depicts a world that is unmistakably contemporary, he manages to make use of a sensibility that has more in common with the old masters. His work is so vibrant one can almost taste it, it literally makes me short of breath to study his art. It's a very bodily experience. We know grand architecture can cause people to faint due to the massive impressions, and I certainly feel faint hearted in the house of Dangerkoma.

To see more of his work please follow these links:

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