Hand crafted with a quality of finish and detail that has thrilled seasoned art collectors and children alike, Jake & Dinos Chapman’s sculptures and 2-D works bring together elements from a range of subjects and sources – the works of Goya, low points of World War II, highlights of African Tribal Art and the visual universe of McDonald’s – into exciting and dynamic new wholes, articulating their profound belief in the radiant divinity that underlies and infuses all of existence.
The Rainbow of Human Kindness at H.E.R.O. brings together a judicious selection of Jake & Dinos Chapman’s finest recent works into a powerful statement of their artistic and moral philosophy. In sharp contradistinction to their YBA peers it is laudable that the Chapman brothers have used their big brains neither for self-enrichment nor the spread of a virulent pessimism in which hope and humans are as insignificant as specks of cosmic dust
Instead is clear Jake & Dinos want to touch each and every one of us in the place that really matters – the heart.
A short guide to highlights of The Rainbow of Human Kindness:
An engagement with love, affection and cuddles forms one of the most persistent lines of enquiry of the Chapman’s artistic practice. Someone offered me money to do it (2008), is one of a number of the Chapman brothers’ works inspired by the nature documentary March of the Penguins (2005) which celebrates the triumph of the penguin spirit over adversity and the touchingly insoluble nature of the pair bonding of Emperor Penguins. Here, much like two severely injured Emperor Penguins, the two elements of biomass depicted in the sculpture struggle over their compromised physicality to find their way towards each other and blissful union.
The Larger Rainbow of Human Kindness (2017) is a recent set of etchings from which the exhibition takes its title. These superb essays in the etcher’s craft are perhaps the ultimate statement of the Chapman brothers’ profound belief in the unity of all things. Here we find, collaged together, quotations of Modernist masterpieces, Gunther von Hagens’ plastinated bodies, cartoon robot, tribal sculptures, soft toys and images of Jake & Dinos’ own work all brought together under the uplifting umbrella of a universal rainbow. In a very real sense these works are ‘the pot at the end of the rainbow’, a saying that is thought to have its origin in this old Irish folktale:
“A poor man and his wife meet a leprechaun, and he tells them that he’ll grant them one wish. The couple take a while to decide before telling the leprechaun. The wife says she wants money, and then the husband wants tools and a new house. Then the wife says shoes and fine clothes. Needless to say, that is not one wish. The leprechaun then chides them for being selfish, saying, “For this, I will not grant any wish of yours. But, since you are in need, I will give you a hint. I have hidden a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. All you have to do is find it.” The couple goes to search for the pot of gold, and nobody knows if they ever found it.
Unhappy Feet (2010) is an evolution from Jake & Dinos Chapman’s famed Hellscape series that reinvigorated War Art and imbued it with a new acute moral dimension, making it fit for purpose for the 21st century. In Unhappy Feet (2010) mutant Nazi toy soldiers are replaced by a heartbreakingly unhappy and fractious meeting of Arctic and Antarctic fauna imagined as a consequence of untrammeled Climate Change. A desperate warning infused by the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr’s injunction that we should be moved by ‘the fierce urgency of now’ – the work asks us to act before it is too late.
Text by Nick Hackworth
Creative Director Modern Forms
- - verberg extra tekst