Monday, February 15, 2010
Marcel Dzama's The Infidels
Atomic Books publishes a monograph collection of uber-hip artist Marcel Dzama's work
Marcel Dzama is an illustrator and filmmaker. He's known for illustrations in which he utilizes a limited palette of crimson, root beer-colored browns, various hues of gray, cream, navy blue and more crimson. Absurd humor is employed often. Dzama will give the viewer a naked woman holding the mouth of a goat, while a dog does a front-paw handstand atop the goat's back. Or he'll have a line of balletic masked females wielding AK-47's (as seen in both illustrations and a music video for the Department of Eagles' song "No One Does It Like You"). Or a weird film set where nooses hang from the ceiling, with people either climbing up or hanging from the ropes. You get the idea.
Dzama's artwork taps into that age-old cliche of you either love it or hate it. It has that sort of knowing homage to outsider art without actually being outsider; which drives many people insane. And so much of his work borders on the kitschy as well. Of course, this says nothing about his talent and execution; he definitely has talent and a distinct style. And Dzama's style works wonderfully within the confines of a book.
Nestled in the middle of the book are monographs of some of his collage work, which I think are more impressive than a lot of his illustrations.
This book is definitely one to check out, particularly when you consider Atomic Books' loving packaging.