The art of Alva Bernadine is a delightful mixture of surrealism and glamour photography. His images are filled with twisted fantasies and an abundant amount of personal, often Christian or Freudian, iconography.
He labels himself “a one Man Subculture”, however his work clearly sprouted from the richness of the Surreal Manifesto written by André Breton in 1924.
But Alva Bernadine isn’t just a follower of this Surreal movement, and he’s surely not repeating the imagery of the old masters. He invents new concepts, extends the often sexual themed scenery and incorporates new media in his oeuvre. An other big difference is that sex, eroticism and fetishes are no linger hidden behind symbols or metaphors, but shown directly in an often confronting manner.
The images in the gallery are taken from one of Bernadine’s movies, titled “The Artist as a Megalomaniac”. It’s the visualization of a dream where a woman is used as furniture by two men, then spanked by one of them. After that she starts piercing herself in her face and body. Between the scenes you see how Alva creates these “dual torso’s”, a woman with 4 legs or just two upper bodies. The movie let’s you follow the creation of his work AND provides a glimpse inside this masters brain.
If you never experienced the work of Alva Bernadine ( and you live in/or near London ), you now have the opportunity to do so. His work is shown in the Urban Angel gallery in London from August 13th until August 31th 2009.