Complex Emotions Unravelled In Expressive Digital Collage – DaDa Art Therapy by Stan Reed | Alternative Fruit
Digital and analogue collage involves taking images from one media and mixing them into a new media. We combine various things with differing artists and design objectives to combine their stories. This can leave us with a deep and interesting picture that, with a little help from designers and artists, we can create for the first time. This juxtaposition of thoughts, ideas, and feelings in novel ways is a concept used in DaDa. This form of comedy takes random statements and re-enactments that have a humorous jump between them. It's the linking of the two elements which creates the form, and the skill of the art is in how well this is done. Collage of action to collage of image, the link formed by artist, professional dog walker, and music wizard Stan Reed is DaDa too.
Stan Reed isn't just any image creator. His life has involved some unusual and harrowing circumstances which ultimately make his work even more potent. Since being given up for adoption as a new-born, Stan struggled to find a place of belonging. When adopted, his new family treated him poorly. They would beat him, and Stan ended up being placed in mental health care as a teenager. One particular institution that hasn't been named had some disturbing practices. Apart from humiliation and deprivation of necessities such as food and sleep, a form of therapy put in place was attack therapy. This involved sudden and unexpected assaults on the mind and body.
Clearly this would leave anyone battered and bruised with a serious need to escape from life as we know it. For Stan, and like many others who suffer with CPTSD, he turned to drugs. Those who know the on-going Our Nexus Of Sorrows poetry series by Scott Free will be familiar with CPTSD. This happens when traumatic events occur during development for prolonged periods of time with no reasonable means of escaping them. For children this is especially common as they are mostly powerless throughout this period.
Now at the tender age of 50 and over two decades clean, Stan Reed takes art to the next level. His digital collages use literature, pamphlets, illustrations, and magazine clippings among many other things. Stan even goes hunting for skulls of wild animals to add to his macabre collection. Is Stan Reed using art and collage to explore the landscape of memories and feelings that exist within his soul? Are these images a reflection of the inward chapters that flicker from page to page? To us, as viewers, the symbology and emotivations have a personal language to ourselves. Our own subconscious can draw on each image and its constituent parts to form likenesses with our own stories and situations. This open ended strategy helps the work to be accessible and full of extra dimensions perhaps the artist did not even contemplate.
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