Thursday, 6 June 2013

Screenshot Appropriation: Illusion City by Cameo

If you ever find yourself with an insatiable addiction to looking at pictures of art then I would, without thought or hesitation, suggest that you sign up to Tumblr. Search for the tag #art and the bottom falls out of your browser, revealing an endless scrolling tunnel in which time is compressed and the stars drift at an uncomfortable speed. (As I write this I notice cobwebs have formed at my window.) Which is to say, in a much simpler way, Tumblr has heaps of art on it. Lots of it is amazing and it's one of the reasons I use Tumblr almost every day to pass the time. Every now and then however you come across an artist whose posts you really look forward to seeing and whose work you notice progress and change over time. One artist which I have followed for a while and whose work and posts have continued to interest me is a girl/guy (not actually sure...) named Cameos and whose blog is called Illusion City.

Their work courts that strange 80s/90s sleazy non-sense which we saw filtering through Hotline Miami last year. Lots of palm trees, hazy cityscapes, partly dressed young women and strangely disingenuous phrases. Also, similar to the work of some recent musicians, these images, for me, seem to take quite a bit from the superficiality of commercial imagery. This leaves some of them feeling eerily vacant - like images from Policenauts divorced from their original meaning.

I asked the artist whether the images were their own and they answered that some were but that they take some from screen shots of old PC98 games, though I think that a lot of them are collages of some kind. I love the feelings of foreignness (I promised myself I wouldn't say 'otherness') which comes from Japanese popular culture and these images use those feelings to create an eerie, sleazy, neon hued image of a just-passed moment in time.

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