Monday, 22 August 2011

Pandemonia in Athens

Post Card from Athens. Filmed May 2011




Pop Artist Pandemonia is given a tour of the city. She visits the markets in Monastiraki, fashion in Voukourestiou, coffee in Eleftheriou Venizelou and ancient Greek artefacts at the Gate Of Adrianos.

Related Links.

Fashion front row at London Fashion Week

Shopping in Down town Athens.

Hair & Beauty tips. Pandemonia chats with Sallon spotter
Pandemonia goes to the hair dressers video Children of Vision

Food. Talking with Jamie Cotter Cra​ig

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Agent 2 Magazine

PANDEMONIA PANACEA: AGENT2 INTERVIEWS THE PRINCESS OF PLASTIC
INTERVIEW TAMSIN WORRAD

Original article Agent 2 Magazine



IF YOU WERE AT LONDON FASHION WEEK THIS FEBRUARY, YOU’RE PROBABLY AWARE OF PANDEMONIA. AS A 7FT TALL, LATEX COVERED, CARTOONISH CHARACTER, SHE’S SOMEWHAT DIFFICULT TO MISS. ALTHOUGH SHE’S SEEMINGLY EVERYWHERE RIGHT NOW, LITTLE IS KNOWN ABOUT THIS SELF MADE CELEBRITY. IS SHE A LIVING HOMAGE TO THE POP ART MOVEMENT, A WAY OF COMMENTING ON CONSUMER CULTURE, A PR EXERCISE IN BRANDING? AGENT2 TALKED TO HER TO SEE IF WE COULD GET TO THE BOTTOM OF MYSTERY.

There’s a huge amount of discussion surrounding what Pandemonia stands for and what you’re trying to say. Are you making a fixed statement or are you open to interpretation?

Discussion is a good thing. Traditionally, art is illusive; does any one know the meaning of Mona Lisa’s smile and isn’t it all ‘in the eye of the beholder’ anyway? Can a person be a statement? Pandemonia is a cartoon reflection of metropolitan life in the 21st Century.

You talk about products being the new celebrities: conversely, how much do you think celebrities have become a product or brand themselves? Is your plastic nature a commentary on this?

Products hold the real power and celebrities are products in the media. Being a celebrity you have to manage your image in exactly the same way as a brand does. It’s only the branding that distinguishes one thing from another.

Presentation means everything and it all comes wrapped in plastic. Who needs content when the surface says it all? Commodities are no longer just things of use: they have become part of what we are. I went straight for that laminated look.

You’re placing yourself in the public eye in a huge way, but remaining anonymous at the same time. How do you deal with this duality and is it a deliberate comment on celebrity?

There’s nothing new about anonymity and being in the public eye. Just look at all the advertising. Those images are flawless, and you can’t get beyond the surface.

I live beyond my self as an act of self creation. I’m a conceptual artist presenting the concept of “A Pop Up Celebrity”. Like an advert, I am another image in the media. Pandemonia is a story with legs and mysteries make good copy.

You’ve talked about being the creation of the ideal female shape – blonde, leggy, thin. Are you deriding society’s obsession with feminine perfection or are you part of it?

I’m just as influenced by the current aesthetics as anyone else. I take everything at face value.

The nature of Pandemonia means that you’ll never age – you’ll forever be shiny and new. Are you therefore the ultimate celebrity?


Yes! I’ve taken it to its ultimate conclusion as another pre-packaged multi platform commodity. I work well in print, web, moving image and reality. Its catch up time for the cosmetics industry, they’ve missed a trick or two.

Would you say that becoming part of celebrity culture is the best way to comment on it, or is your immersion into the ‘it crowd’ just a way of getting yourself and your work known?

Definitely! I place myself in the public eye so that I have a bigger impact on objective culture. News is spread in the market place. Celebrities make good press and people relate to them so being one of them is like giving your ideas a free ride. In the glossiest of magazines my ideas get exhibited right next to their influences. And of course the ready made audience is a big bonus. You can’t just buy PR like that!

Are you ever going to reveal what’s behind the latex?

There’s nothing there; isn’t that the point?

Finally, why Pandemonia?

Pandemonium means chaos. In Milton’s Paradise Lost pandemonium

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Vice Style

Pandemonia

When Pandemonia turns up at art openings and fashion shows it’s like Roy Lichtenstein’s blonde caricatures have been brought to life as a 7ft Jeff Koons inflatable...

Full interview on Vice Style.

VICE: Hey, How's it all going? What you wearing right now?

Pandemonia: Hey. I've just flown back from Athens where I was hanging with Charlie Le Mindu and Gareth Pugh at the ARRRGH! Monsters in Fashion exhibition. Right now I’m wearing my Marlboro dress. It's my favorite creation. It sits in a space halfway between reality and advertising. When I wear it I am imbued with the force of nature, the power of the Marlboro mountain symbolizing freedom. The design has an underlying message of purity, strength, and the force of nature. When I wear the Marlboro brand I am tapping into the mythology and psychology of the brand image and the alchemy of advertising.

Yeah? And what does that feel like?


As an artist I try and be a reflection of the world. My existence is unlikely to change anything, but it is likely to make the world more interesting. I'm bringing to life popular myths and aspirations, such as being slim, tall, and glossy. We constantly modify and make nature better than it already is. Plastic surgery and photo manipulation are good examples of the fact that we're all seduced by illusion. The virtual is better than the real. That's why we like films and computer games so much.

Would you say fame was ever a pursuit of yours?

Fame is recognition. Just look at The X Factor. I designed myself as a logo, so I would be instantly recognizable. If you’re putting your ideas out there, fame gets you noticed quicker.

So this counter-person of yours is the celebrity and you’re viewing this elitist celebrity circle from behind a mask.

When I pop up in celebrity circles I can see the mechanism of fame from both the inside and outside. Just as celebrities presented their image to the public, I present the celebrities my image. At least I know I'm acting out celebrity. My dog, Snowy, breaks the ice. People relate to him. Funny how people relate to an inflatable dog, isn’t it?

Does it really suck that much being a celebrity, though?

Fame performs the function of village gossip. Popular media has experienced a great deal of expansion during the last century. As a species we’re moving into a new era - celebrity is only the beginning. At least with celebrity it focuses us on a set number of people, it gives us an anchor. In the future will there be celebrity as it is now or will it become dissipated through endless social networks?

Shit, yeah. So what would you say you personally fear?


Deflation. Luckily there's not much of it around at the moment. These days Inflation is still all the rage. That's good for me, it keeps me buoyant.

Most of your outfits are made out of rubber, would you say there’s a fetish aspect?


We’re all, to some degree, fetishist over commodities, lifestyle, and brands. We are programmed to reach for the unobtainable—which I am—and fetish is that one step further. Rubber in my case is used as a metaphor: it’s elastic like cartoon skin and shiny like a new car or jewelry.

But why was it that you chose to express your work through a female? Was it purely the design side of things or is there an underlying transgender voice to your work?


In art, the female form has always being rearranged and reworked—I like to replicate the world’s mechanisms. For example, advertisers use women because it gets the attention of both genders. I am working with symbols and male and female are binary forms. The ability to experience the other, to be able to stand outside yourself creates a different perspective. In using the female form I am undermining the image and pointing to its construction. The very identity of Pandemonia is a fabrication.

Which designers would you say you’re most inspired by?

Rob Janoff's Apple Computers logo and it's biblical connotations. From the apple seed grows the forest, it’s an organic whole, and the logo is so simple yet contains everything. Another favorite is the Nike Swoosh logo by
Carolyn Davidson which infers speed, victory, and the teacher’s tick of approval. It’s universal, people just get it.

So, if you were to have one designer design an outfit for you who would it be?

I met Philip Treacy at Boy George’s party and he wanted to do a collaboration with me. Sometime in the future you might see my blonde locks supporting one of his hats.

Awesome. And let’s say you were to bump into another version of Pandemonia at LFW this September, what would your reaction be?

Pandemonia has to stay unique or she will lose her irony and possibly become fashion.

TEXT: KATIA GANFIELD