Jake and Dinos Chapman create work that aims to be deliberately shocking, they have even used original watercolors by Adolf Hitler in a series of works in 2008. In the mid 1990’s, their sculptures were included in the YBA showcase exhibitions “Brilliant!” and “Sensation”. The two brothers were also nominated for the annual Turner Prize. In 2013 one of their paintings (One Day You Will No Longer Be Loved III) was used as the subject for a Channel 4 special of Derren Brown (The Great Art Robbery.)
Jake was born in Cheltenham and Dinos was born in London, their mother being an orthodox Greek Cypriot and their father an English art teacher. They were brought up in Cheltenham, but later moved Hastings where they attended William Parker School. Dinos studied at the Ravensbourne College of Art, from 1980 – 1983, and Jake studies the North East London Polytechnic, from 1985 – 1988. Later they both enrolled into a school together (The Royal College of Art) they studied there from 1988 – 1990, while there they worked as assistants to Gilbert and George.
They began collaborating in 1991, for most of their work they have made plastic/fiberglass mannequins. One of their earlier pieces, which was inspired by Francisco Goya, consisted of 83 scenes of torture, disfigurement and pain, similar to Goya’s etchings. They have even turned some of their plastic models into life-sized works of art such as The Disasters of War.
The chapman brothers have always continued this theme of the anatomical, pornographic and grotesque, they have made mannequins of children with genitalia in place of facial features, sometimes a group of children fused together. Their sculpture “Hell” (2000) consisted of a large number of miniature figures of Nazi’s arranged in nine glass cases lay out in the shape of a swastika. In 2003, in “Insult to Injury”, they altered a set of Goya’s etchings by adding funny faces. “As a protest against this piece, Aaron Barschak (who later gate-crashed Prince William’s 21st birthday party dressed as Osama bin Laden in a frock) threw a pot of red paint over Jake Chapman during a talk he was giving in May 2003.”
The Chapman brother’s body of work has also referenced work by William Blake, Auguste Rodin and Nicolas Poussin.
This was the second sample I done using string to “cage” the mannequin but this time I also used bandages, at this point I was planning for the photo shoot and was trying to picture different things I could do and the different types of images I could take.
I like how the string and the bandages look next to each other, I feel the string looks tighter and stronger vs. the bandage, and it would press and burn the skin, whereas the bandages would just softly lay on top, but visually the bandages offer up something more, especially since we associate them with injuries and as a way to “fix something which is broken”, so using them almost tells a story and obviously makes the viewer wonder.
Throughout this project I have liked/enjoyed the idea of being caged or trapped in something whether literal or emotionally, possibly even spiritually. I’ve always dabbled a bit into this within my imagery and samples, but this is more of an obvious example of this, by wrapping the mannequin in string you “cage” it but the ironic thing is that its already “caged” because the mannequin itself can’t just get p and easily move anyway, so you’re trapping something that is already closed off and caged anyway.
I like the way these pictures came out and I wanted to use this string for the photo shoot I done, but due to a short time frame and a lack of notice I couldn’t.
Even though this is an exhibition I went to a year ago, for completely different reasons, this is this a trip I find inspiring, at the time I went because my sole focus was on fashion, and even though this is still something I am interested in, I now see how it is so much more than that.
The dark romantic nature of his work is truly astounding, and I often catch myself looking back to it for inspiration, its amazing how his work transcends time and will continue to inspire millions for years to come!
Now that I have two options to choose from I have come up with two “spaces” I can have for the exhibition, they are both very similar but one of the main changes between them is the lighting and color.
If I was to just display my photographs I would do them on 3 white walls and in a well lit room, because I would want it to look clean and modern, it also means that you are given more space and time to take in the images and enjoy them for what they are.
My second idea is the Satanic ritual, for this space I would still need the 3 walls but they would be painted black and would be in a dimly lit corner of the room, you would have a wall either side of you and one at the end in front of you, this is so you “walk into” the world of Satanic worship and beliefs.
If I am lucky I will try to put them both together and add the images on the wall in the satanic corner!
After making the candles I decided to jump straight into making the arm/hand casts, but because this is something I hadn’t done before it proved to be quite difficult. The arm was the easiest section, but the hands are what took the most effort and time.
Because the fingers were so closely spaced together I had to cut the plaster into much smaller strips to be able to fit inside the caps.
To create the mannequin hand was the hardest part, luckily there were 3 fingers that were spaced-out enough so I could cast them with ease, unfortunately the ring and middle finger were a lot harder to do.
Fortunately because these casts were meant to be remains of the dead who have been used in sacrifice, they could be missing a finger or two, but I still wanted to attempt to do at least the base of the finger instead of having a huge gap.
To do this I needed the assistance of my mother, because I would need her to hold things together while I made the mold, she used a thin butter knife to get in between the gaps between the fingers and I would put pressure under the strips to make the natural curves on the fingers, after doing this for about an hour we finally managed to join it all up and be finished, now all we had to do was remove it from the fiber glass arm.
Because there wasn’t a barrier between the plaster steps and the fiber glass arm, the plaster stuck and proved to be difficult to remove, this mean that we would have to cut it in half and plaster the two sides together again, this too took a while but we managed in the end.
Since the first arm took so long to do and required too much effort we decided to just use the mannequins arm for the next cast but use my mothers fingers, even though my mothers fingers were slightly larger than that of the mannequins, I like the effect it has and it also shows that these Satanists sacrificed more than one person.
We manipulated the wet plaster strips and would press/squeeze them to form vein lines to make them more realistic.