7-Foot Inflatable Personality Chats with Incite
Interview by Mark Belan March 14, 2011
Few things I have stumbled upon online have excited me as much as Pandemonia. It isn’t that this artist sits with some of the most respected names in the fashion industry, or carries an inflatable puppy. It was the artist’s look and style that I found so incredibly captivating. This woman dresses in latex...from head to toe.
Everything about Pandemonia is shiny and plastic. Her hair, face, hands, and even clothing are all tailored and trimmed with the glossy material, and she exhibits herself as a walking and talking piece of art. A fine artist hailing from London, UK, Pandemonia and I have recently become acquainted and have been chatting about our interests in the art and fashion world, while she continues to step out to some of the hottest events for a little camera-time. I had the opportunity to interview Pandemonia for this issue of Incite.
First off, a little bit of history. How was Pandemonia born? Where did she come from? For what reason(s) was she created?
Pandemonia was born on a drawing board. For a long time I had been thinking about how to do a piece of art that is relevant to today's society. In the UK, celebrity is everything; Pandemonia is a story, a celebrity, and a current media item. She is based on the language of advertising - the logo, the silhouette etc. Pandemonia works extremely well in the media. My image has appeared right around the world.
“Pandemonia” is an interesting name. Why did you choose that name?
I chose Pandemonia because it’s a feminisation of the word ‘Pandemonium’. [Carl] Jung says, ‘Out of chaos comes creativity’. Chaos and creativity are some of the elements that make up Pandemonia.
How does the general public react to you when you step out? Do people give you compliments? Complaints?
[Usually] with amazement. Generally, they want to photograph me.
Why do you choose to display your artwork in this way?
I present myself as a celebrity. After all, is celebrity not the currency all over the world? To me, it makes sense to show my work directly to the public. It's the interaction between myself and the public that becomes interesting. I think I look best when I'm photographed in the media. What better way is there to comment on celebrity than to be in the very same publications they are in?
PVC and latex design have been around for a while now. How do you think you compare to other “plastic artists” that make work similar to yours?
Physically, my work is cutting edge. I'm not aware of anyone else working at my level. My work also has a conceptual side. Everything’s plastic these days. I simply went the full way [since] going totally glossy is the next logical step in perfection. It’s the ultimate packaging! I’ve got that shiny, ‘new-you’ look. I create and make all my work. The intention behind my work is quite different from a fashion designer.
Have you created any pieces for other artists or clients?
So far I have refused to design for other artists. I would do something for someone else if it fitted into my concept. Last year, Lady Gaga's people contacted me about doing something for her, [but] I didn't feel it was right and so I didn't get back. I might do something in the future, but I don't want my work subverted or overshadowed.
Why do you do what you do?
I am exploring age-old questions surrounding who we are and what we are, and the things that drive us.
Do you think it is difficult to make an impression on the art world? Are there challenges associated with trying to stay current and maintaining a lasting impression?
I don't know enough about the inner-workings. I suspect the art market is like the corporate world. If you have an excess of a commodity, the price will fall. There can only be a few artists or the market will drop.
In a hundred years time it will be interesting to see what history remembers about our era of art.
Who are some of your favourite artists? Elsa Schiaparelli, Jean Cocteau, and Zaha Hadid for her 3D [work].
What message would you send to people who are interested in pursuing artistic careers? Any advice?
To do something good, you need to find your own angle.
For the record – male or female?
Pandemonia is obviously female!
Next year I am doing a sculpture show. It is going to be a continuation of my ideas, a blend of commercialism, fashion and art; a temple to commercialism! I am taking it to the next level.
For those interested in learning more about Pandemonia, check out the following links:
pandemonia on Facebook
Contact Mark Blean and twitter.com/markbelan