Raymond Pettibon Artist Research

It was suggested that my work is in some ways a little bit like Raymond Pettibon[1], so I decided to look him up. I actually found his work connected a lot to what I’ve been aiming to do. He creates ironic images which mask a darker message. An example being;


‘How Comes It So Great A Silence Has Fallen?’ (2000)

In one way of viewing this image, it can be seen to be a tropical tree in a lush environment, giving the impression that the message is about nature. In another way, the ‘tropical tree’ can actually be viewed as a mushroom cloud, created by a nuclear blast which kills millions of people, giving the message a chilling meaning.

Human Torch

‘The Human Torch’ 1981

The above piece, ‘The Human Torch’, could be connected to the Buddhist monk who burned himself alive in protest during the Vietnam war. Although there is no confirmation to be found about this, it can be compared to one of the infamous photos, and it can be seen that the positioning is the same. This again shows how the imagery can be deemed to look harmless, whilst depicting a deeply dark back story.

This twisted irony is much like how I want to present some of my work, beautiful yet dark.

[1] Art Space – Raymond Pettibon


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