Headbones Gallery presents Stephen Lee Scott - Servicemen


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Artist Catalog, Stephen Lee Scott - Servicemen Copyright © 2012, Headbones Gallery This catalog was created for the exhibition titled “Stephen Lee Scott - Servicemen” at Headbones Drawers Gallery, Vernon, BC Canada, June 30 - July 28, 2012 Artwor

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stephen lee scott


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the drawers headbones gallery contemporary drawing sculpture and works on paper stephen lee scott servicemen june 30 july 28 2012 headbones gallery


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artist catalog stephen lee scott servicemen copyright © 2012 headbones gallery this catalog was created for the exhibition titled stephen lee scott servicemen at headbones drawers gallery vernon bc canada june 30 july 28 2012 artwork copyright © 2010 2012 stephen lee scott commentary by julie oakes copyright © 2012 julie oakes another glorious day in the corps tats tattwas and wayward topologies in the extravagant skin jackets of stephen lee scott copyright © 2012 james d campbell rich fog micro publishing printed in vernon 2012 layout and design richard fogarty printed on the ricoh spc 811dn all rights reserved no part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means electronic or mechanical including photocopying and recording or by any information storage or retrieval system except as may be expressly permitted by the 1976 copyright act or in writing from headbones gallery requests for permission to use these images should be addressed in writing to stephen scott c/o headbones gallery www.headbonesgallery.com cover untitled skull 2011 ink pencil on paper 17 x 11 inches isbn 978-1-926605-54-8 rich fog micro publishing toronto canada


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stephen lee scott servicemen commentary by julie oakes essay by james d campbell


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leamas 12091 b.c 2012 ink pencil crayon wash on paper 30x22 inches


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stephen lee scott servicemen visual languages can be personal to the artist until the viewer catches up to speed it requires a conceptual leap as heady and difficult as learning an actual language and the closer the new language is to the mother tongue the quicker the translation clues are needed to start the process scott is a draftsman his hand is confident meticulous pen and ink work provide the graphic details that define stephen lee scott s tattooed decorated and tribally-young take on a complicated society not afraid to include references to difficult subjects such as war and retribution scott s visual world exhibits an eerie beauty stephen lee scott s exhibition servicemen implies a narrative he uses verbal as well as visual tropes handwritten notes or short letters addressed to leamas relate happenings in another dimension apparently a galactic country where some kind of battle is being engaged leamas painless leamas nennius leamas is one of an ongoing series of scott s characters whose names are displayed along with an ink portrait sporting tattoos leamas read backwards is samael the name adopted by the heavy metal punk band samael samael is the prince of the demons in talmudic and post-talmudic literature and is an accuser seducer and destroyer reading the note on scott s work such as duane i don t wanna sound like a wimp or nothing but me and george did some pretty messed up things over here an echo of the testimonies of soldiers returning from wars is brought to mind which war might be discerned through researching the echelon of major players in defence politics samael as the chief of satans is also known to fly through the sky like a bird intergalactic travel and to command a group of like minded beings who could be perhaps the servicemen donald is obviously donald rumsfeld for on a flying banner studded with stars and stripes beneath his portrait is the famous quote as we know there are knowns there are things we know we know that contributed to his resignation in 2006 after he lost political support for the wars in afghanistan and iraq some of the portraits are not clear as to the reason for


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the reference but part of the engagement of scott s work is the deciphering of the clues albrecht for instance seems based on the historical self portrait of albrecht durer but his role as a serviceman i have not yet deciphered the end and critical point of every work of art is of course the work itself but the process is crucial to defining the visual imagery stephen lee scott s process includes extensive story telling that begins to leak out when the puzzling protection is pierced this deconstruction serves to draw out more interest and enhance rather than distract from the visuals scott knows how to eke meaning through visuals by underlining his intent with verbal clues this makes for a layered and rich reading julie oakes 2012


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nennius leamas 2010 ink pencil crayon wash on paper 30x22 inches


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another glorious day in the corps t at s t at twasandway wa r d topologies in the extravagant skin jackets of stephen lee scott take the seven bridges of königsberg an infamous mathematical problem solved by euler and transpose it to the human epidermis [1 what do you get well something resembling the skin jackets of stephen lee scott he is a prophet of the end times for a culture caught in the tertiary grip of violence across the full array of his animated i mean ambulatory epidermal acreage and sometimes beyond scott grafts his deviant topologies with a wealth of exquisite surface detail his tatts are really topological entities fraught with tattwas topology from the greek ôüðïò place and ëüãïò study is an important branch of mathematics concerned with properties that are preserved under continuous deformations of objects it arose from conceptual evolutions in geometry and set theory including issues of space dimension and transformation notions now classified as topological were treated as early as 1736 and in the late 19th century a distinct discipline developed which was referred to in latin as the geometria situs geometry of place that became known as topology proper basically topology is the study of continuity and connectivity the geometria situs of scott s skin jackets are rife with myriad continuities and connectivities i am speaking to both body form and the morphologies of facture now it is not only how the artist presents his skin jackets but his process and ethic of making he transits from one topological space to another with a weird wired alacrity he moves the linear element from closed to open spaces with inordinate precision his tatts morph as they move across torso face hand here the continuous image of a connected space is connected by sundry inbred lineages text surface detail annotation and illicit subject matter scott is a highly talented draftsman the casual authority of his hand is such that it seems he can do wrong with a voluptuous eye for precise detail and rendering these works speak not in a loud voice but a sinister whisper of off-world realities being both connected and


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continuous scott s strange topologies collapse space and time in torus-like fashion his servicemen with their posthuman demeanours seem avatars of or escapees from some dystopian reality just around the corner of tomorrow take donald in which the erstwhile secretary of defense s torso is enlivened by all manner of skull and crossbones motifs in truly yakuza style his whole skin jacket is a declaration of war think of gunnery sergeant apone s rant to his marines in james cameron s aliens 1986 and you have the gist of his ethos all right sweethearts what are you waiting for breakfast in bed another glorious day in the corps a day in the marine corps is like a day on the farm every meal s a banquet every paycheck a fortune every formation a parade i love the corps [2 in his earlier work scott was more interested in stitching the body out of tattoos rather than drawing the outline of the body he now renders them obscenely continuous across several boundary markers the flesh itself and the space of making/marking and that of thought and writing he enmeshes them in whole-cloth narrativesthatshowremar ka b l e dovetailing his is a mortise and tenon joinery of the heart turned bad his skin jackets are overwhelmingly supple and seductive when scott has saturn devouring the ramones mask and durer having his own drawings tattooed on him depicting the apocalypse we think hard on things we know 2011 detail


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cards will prove effective in revealing the facets of solar prana as it is channelled through the etheric current so these skin jackets will prepare you for both antichrist and the rapture in scott s curious and compelling work we witness a reckless but diverting collision between the tattwas and the cultural tradition of tattoism it is hard not to think of scott s images as collapsing topologies in which his eloquent and often harrowing tatts are really epidermal flash cards for tattwa visualisation in other words his work is intended to ignite a fuse in the mind that might explode all dualities fold space and jettison us into an efflorescent elsewhere a living hell more hellraiser than dantean [4 james d campbell 2012 both armaggedon and aftermath indeed it is as though an electrical current charges these works or should one say better etheric it is one that animates his topologies and his tatts alike it carries the strangest and most compelling of messages this leads us to the pertinence of the tattwas that embody a synthesis of western and eastern ideas about the mystic elements in the western mystery schools [3 they are geometric images from india in scott s work consider the ubiquity of the circle for instance other geometric symbols emerge into the foreground with fluidity like mandalas that activate the composition lending them an unusual tuning-forkish resonance just as tattwa


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apone was born in detroit michigan-usa on september 2 2137 wiki tells us that there is scant info about his early life or how why and when he joined the colonial marines corp he later achieved the rank of gunnery sergeant [3 see goldendawn pedia your online golden dawn resource at http www.goldendawnpedia.com/literatu repages/misc/introtattwas.htm what are tattwas the word tattwa alternately spelled tattva tatwa tatva is sanskrit basically meaning essence principle or element the concept of the tattwas date back at least as early as 2000 bc and they are said to predate even the greeks own knowledge of the elements of nature and in fact that the greeks may have learned of the elements from the indian gurus in a better context the tattwas are the essence of nature through which we not only experience the world around us but give rise to the very concept of awareness this comes into play later when we learn the relationship of the five primary tattwas to the five senses but they basically are the elements that lead us to believe that we exist [4 hellraiser also known as clive barker s hellraiser was a famously harrowing 1987 british horror film based upon the novella the hellbound heart by clive barker who both wrote the screenplay and directed the film endnotes [1 the seven bridges of königsberg is a historically notable problem in mathematics euler found it was impossible to find a route through the town of königsberg now kaliningrad that would cross each of its seven bridges exactly once this result was not contingent upon the lengths of the bridges or their distances from one another but only on connectivity properties namely which bridges are connected to which islands or riverbanks if euler had mastered the tattwas or had seen in a scrying orb one of scott s works he might have reached a different conclusion [2 gunnery sergeant al apone was senior nco and second in command of the uscm squad that was sent out to acheron lv-426 to investigate the incident at hadley s hope al


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untitled 2010 ink pencil crayon wash on paper 30x22 inches


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