“A post-industrial Rococo master, Kris Kuksi obsessively arranges characters and architecture in asymmetric compositions with an exquisite sense of drama. Instead of stones and shells he uses screaming plastic soldiers, miniature engine blocks, towering spires and assorted debris to form his landscapes. The political, spiritual and material conflict within these shrines is enacted under the calm gaze of remote deities and august statuary. Kuksi manages to evoke, at once, a sanctum and a mausoleum for our suffocated spirit.”
Guillermo del Toro
Born in Springfield, Missouri (1973) and growing up in neighbouring Kansas, Kris Kuksi, creates incredible mixed media assemblages from found objects. He meticulously crafts incredible scenes and then paints the entire sculpture to tie it all together. In his artist statement, Kuksi explains:
“I get inspired by the industrial world, all the rigidity of machinery, the network of pipes, wires, refineries, etc. Then I join that with an opposite of flowing graceful, harmonious, and pleasing design of the Baroque and Rococo. And of course I add a bit weirdness and the macabre. It’s all about how I see the evolution of what man makes his created environment look like.
I had such a major emphasis in painting and drawing earlier in my career, and had a great time with it but I always felt something was missing. I knew deep inside I was a builder, and so my 3-d work is the expansion into that realm. I still enjoy painting and doing figurative work, but those moments are reserved for special times. Yet [my] sculptural works are wonderfully intricate constructions of pop culture effluvia like plastic model kits, injection molded toys, dolls, plastic skulls, knick-knack figurines, miniature fencing, toy animals, mechanical parts and ornate frames or furniture parts; assembled into grotesque tableaux that look a bit like an explosion in Hieronymus Bosch’s attic.”
Viewers tend to get lost in Kuksi’s sculptures. There is so much going on, with the intricate detail, the present-day iconography; it’s overwhelming and amazing. You can find many more samples of his artwork on his website and Facebook page.
Kris is represented by the Joshua Liner Gallery in NYC and Mark Moore Gallery in LA (where you can find links to many interesting interviews). His 140-page book, Divination and Delusion, is available through Last Gasp.
32″ h x 46″ w x 12″ d
Neo-Roman Opera House
60″ h x 61″ w x 24″ d
80″ x 72″ x 28″
The Evidence of Tyranny
41″ x 34″ x 13″
Reign of Ceasar
46″ h x 34″ w x 9″ d
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