30 January 2017
Nihilism and Blunder
A messy and uncomfortable truth is on the rampage in Alex Jenkins’ art. Outlandish figures, brash psychedelic colours, obsessive marks and throbbing lines populate the London-based illustrator’s work. Teaming with dysfunctional, angry protagonists dripping in sweat, phlegm and frustration, eyeballs and organs trailing from their billowy bodies, out on a stampede of utter nihilism and blunder armed with their mobile devices, bananas and lager cans, Jenkins’ work is subversive and unforgiving, painting a dark and raw portrait of contemporary times and expectations.
Philip Guston’s paintings come to mind, but so too does the counterculture scene of the 70s / 80s and, of course, R. Crumb’s favourite abode, Underground Comix. The trials and tribulations of modern life in all its gory glory are not only satirized but ripped apart and torn into tiny bloody pieces, then thrown back together into Jenkins’ creative furnace to create these surreal, funny and grotesque visual concoctions.