Saturday, January 8, 2011

It'd probably be best not to leave Hans Bellmer alone with your kids.

Despite the fact that I attended and graduated from Columbia College Chicago back in the mid-aughts, I managed to learn and retain a few bits of information that I found to be useful later in life.  During a drawing class I learned about and revered two artists from the last century, in particular.  One was Chicago-area artist Ivan Albright (whom I'll write about later) and the second was Hans Bellmer (1902-1975). 

From Hans Bellmer's Art Directory biography page:
In the post-war era Bellmer succeeded in rendering the subconscious aspect of sexuality in intoxicatingly hallucinatory dream pictures, working with the precision of the Old Masters and soon supplementing this approach with an infusion of Mannerist influences and beautiful, fluid line which recalls Jugendstil/Art Nouveau.
In Hans Bellmer's mature late work, line is refined to a filigree tracery, the eroticism is even more pronounced, partly because death is now included as the opposite pole of lust.
Like most Americans who enjoy videogames nowadays, I was unwittingly introduced to Bellmer via Silent Hill 2 back in 2001 in the form of these disturbing monsters that moved and groaned erratically.

I chose this over not eating only ramen for two weeks when I was a freshman.  So worth it.
Oh, four legged mannequin monster... it wasn't until the following year in art class that I learned it was all inspired by Hans Bellmer.  Say what you will about Hans, but thank goodness he pursued art and not something like childcare or social services. 

... now go enjoy your Saturday morning cartoons.

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