fig. 1. ‘I want my daddy’, antyphayes, 2023.
I make collages. I have been doing so since at least 1986, probably longer—surely I made some in my school daze?
Random if important influences: Hannah Hock, John Heartfield, Raoul Hausmann, Max Ernst, Gerald Keaney.
The collage above was made in April of this year using images and text from a magazine and comic book + glue. Is it a message from the unconscious? Is it some random stuff stuck together? Both? Neither? You decide.
In 1986, age 18, I made a christmas card that I distributed among friends and family. It was produced by way of cutting up newspapers and magazines to produce a collage that was then photocopied on a coin operated photocopier at my local: the St George College of TAFE library in Kogarah, Sydney. In part, I had been inspired by my older brother Martin who had made birthday and christmas cards in the 1980s written on the back of photocopies of quotes and phrases from books and magazines. In part, I had begun my long encounter with the fruits and flavours of artistic modernism.
Today, across the intervening years of rapid technological progress, I can still recall just how impressed I was in the 1980s with the possibilities I detected in the photocopier. At 10 or 20 cents a slice a method of photographic mass production was placed at one’s disposal. Admittedly it is low res by today’s standards. But the charms of this burgeoning aesthetic were not lost upon us. Indeed, it was a boon to what could be rung out of a photocopier, given time and experiment.
The same year I made my first collage christmas card I came across stories of André Breton and the original surrealists—for instance, in Lisa Golstein’s speculative fiction novel, The Dream Years. Soon after I tracked down a copy of Breton’s Manifestoes of Surrealism in the original Gleebooks in Sydney, near the lofty top of Glebe Point Road.
Thus, I was priming myself for making collages, among other things.
I will post more collages over the coming weeks.
Every Tuesday will be Collage Tuesday.
Or should that be choose-day (or chews-day?) as I will not only post new collages, like Today’s feature, but also choooooooose from my back catalogue of over 30 years.
Next week I will take you back all the way back to 1993.