Collective Cuts: Introducing the Age of Collage

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Duplicity, 2014Matthieu Bourel, from The Age of Collage Vol. 2, Copyright Gestalten 2016

The new second volume of the Gestalten-published book is set to distill the medium's most pioneering minds in one fantastic tome

“I use bits and pieces of others’ personalities to form my own,” Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain once wrote, wisely demonstrating that cutting and pasting from pop culture always makes for more intriguing combinations than simply plucking an idea from one's own mind. It’s a philosophy which rings especially true in the highly anticipated second volume of The Age of Collage, subtitled Contemporary Collage in Modern Art, due for release this month, and it promises even more of a visual feast than its predecessor. The new book introduces an impressively broad range of artists and their work, all with particular inspirations, manual and digital techniques, colour palettes and eye-catching subjects. 

Inside, themes oscillate from botany to geometry, architecture to fashion, and deformity to hyper-sexuality, creating a playfully diverse and nostalgic pastiche of references. While artists such as Tal R and Sarah Mosk to Bjorn Copeland and Bedelgeuse, prove that the very best of cutters and pasters are all to be found in this one weighty tome. Some harness dynamic movement – Matthieu Bourel’s hyperactive portraits of womens’ heads, for example – while other pieces feel like monuments to surrealism, juxtaposing unrelated objects to create a whole image which looks unlike anything else. Marvel at Japanese artist Keiichi Tanaami's chaotic and cheeky distillations of popular culture, or Thomas Robson's telling reflections on the mundanity of everyday life, and just see if you can resist claiming scissors and Pritt-stick for your own. 

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