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issue 37 - April/May 2017
CURVE magazine cover April/May 2017
Push  Art  

HEROIC ART

The Rise of Comic Book Inspired Art

When Quebecoise artist Sandra Chevrier started toying with comic book strips, the idea of creating a series based around modern women and human fragility wasn't yet formulated. In fact, it seemed as though her 'Cages' series was a magnet in the future, pulling her in to create a work of art that would capture the now. Today, the artist has produced a large number of artworks, and experimented with a range of mediums. She tells Curve about her inspirations and what we can understand from her powerful pieces.

Tell us about your work. How did it start?
The series 'Cages' started when I was doing crafts with my then two year old son. I found an old sketch of a woman's portrait and passed over it with heavy textures of dollar store toll paints. I found the result very striking the woman seemed like she was trapped in her own skin, as though in a prison, and thus it was a very humble beginning to a lengthy series.

And then you transitioned to comic book collaging?
That happened later. I was looking to push this series further and it's upon embarking on a DIY home project that I got the idea. I had an old, small and cheap IKEA dresser that I had planned to cover in comic book collage, but not long after planning this small home project, the dresser broke. So I was left with a broken piece of furniture and dozens of copies of comic books that I had picked up at a nearby flea market. So I put them to use, and thus the comic book 'Cages' series took off.

Is there any intention behind the images, or are they spontaneous ?
The aesthetic was now very much like pop art, and the meaning was even more powerful. With work demanding to be dissected beyond its surface value, my portraits are quite literally torn between the fantastical heroics and iconography of comic books and the harsher underlying tragedy of oppressed female identity and the exposed superficial illusion therein. Exhibiting a male dominated world within the 'Cages' series, my subjects denounce the role given to the female counterpart,refusing to play the part of seducer or victim. The images used in 'Cages' range between scenes of conflict, triumph and defeat. I choose to highlight the fragility of the superhero, their struggles and weaknesses, exposing the humanity within the superhuman. Despite all the playfulness of the thing itself and all the "CRASH BAM POW," superheroes are also fragile. We are merely men and women, and we are entitled to flaws and errors.

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