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Cthulu Lies by MANDEM

MANDEM is the art name for a pair of collaborative artists, Maize and Moco Steinman-Arendsee. Our illustration work has appeared previously in in roleplaying games, album art, poetry collections, and book and magazine covers, and their fine art work has an international distribution in art shows and literary journals. Maize has an MA in Interdisciplinary Humanities and is currently enrolled in the Studio Art MFA program at Florida State University.We are a transdigital artist. Our art is an exercise in categorical violations, simulation, and narrative (translation: we are makers, rule-breakers, tricksters, and storytellers). We work across media and materials: painting, assemblage/collage, film, sculpture, and book-making, and purposefully refuse to discriminate between physical and digital tools. (This is an integration we refer to as “transdigital”).

The final products are often a union of digital and physical medium such that the two become indistinguishable, and this ambiguity of medium is utterly intentional. This is a both-neither art — a cyborg art — half digital and half organic.

The work is deeply informed by our academic background in antiquities, mythography, intellectual history, and literary theory — our paintings, assemblages, and films transform the foundational myths and metaphors of Western culture to hint at a new post-postmodern (and quite often post-apocalyptic and post-human) mythos.

“Cthulhu Lies” in particular was inspired by the intersection of H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu mythos, the ancient stories of Tiamat, and feminist literary theory about gender and madness. Lovecraft’s descriptions of Cthulhu have always reminded us very much of the stories of Tiamat, but of course Tiamat is a primeval goddess. The historical association of women with madness/hysteria also suggests a regendering of the mythos of the sleeping old god(dess?). But the figure here is fragile and seems imperiled. Our re-exploration looks at the ambiguity of power and victimhood; as a suggestivist piece, it leaves the resolution of the image to the viewer.

SHOW INFO:
POP Femme Sugar Coated Strange 2014
October 3 – 31, 2014 (Santa Fe, NM)
Cthulu Lies by MANDEM

Cthulu Lies by MANDEM

POP Gallery / Invitational Group Show
POP Femme features the Women of New Brow Contemporary Art creating works beyond mere whimsy, often dark and mysterious and taking cues from old masters and religious icons while referencing the ancient myths of feminine power. Internationally acclaimed artists include Carrie Ann Baade, Tammy Otis, Zoe Williams, Phresha LeVandale, Stefanie Vega, Marie Sena, Kristen Margiotta, Julie Zarate, and Lea Barozzi among others. Visit Pop Gallery’s Website to learn more.

POP Gallery
125 Lincoln Avenue Suite 111
Santa Fe, NM 87501
505.820.0788
www.popsantafe.com

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