Cameron Platter (who lives in Kwa-Zulu Natal) makes prints, paintings, and drawings, sculpture, video and animation. He engages with popular culture, current politics, and everyday longing and desires – with a great sense of sardonic humour and irony. He seems to comment on our world of consumption: or at least a certain kind of consumption, in which we fill our lives with easy entertainment, spending, and “cheap promises”: “You Always Win. Unlock Your Life Now!!!”
His work Bang reminds us of images we find in mass-produced print – especially in comics. But in fact it is laboriously on a huge sheet of Fabriano paper, with coloured pencils – as is the image above. Bang is built up of layers and layers of pencil crayon lines, until the surface is covered with a dense and solid field of colour.
Talk About This
Cameron Platter uses text (words, numbers and phrases) in Shaka’s Best Chicken Shack + Roti House + Eternal Love and Happiness, above. What kinds of texts are these? What does this combination of imagery and text remind you of?
Why does he combine all these in this way?
Do you think the artist is making a comment, or conveying a specific attitude or point of view? If so, what might this be?
The word “irony” as been used to describe Platter’s work. What does that mean to you? Why is his work called ironic?
What do you think about the time-consuming, hand-drawn nature of his technique, to produce an image that is derived from cheaply-printed popular imagery? Why would the artist do this, do you think?