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Sunday, May 24, 2009


(Pic: Scene 4 from The Travels of Bad – First Glimpse of Paradise: Magical Alternate Universe, Tasty Jungle Beast World 2009. Archival 300 gsm Giclée Fourdrinier Fiber Print. 590 x 836 mm (paper size. Edition of 100)

Exhibition by Zander Blom at the KZNSA Gallery.

After two years in the making, Zander Blom launches his latest publication and major solo exhibition. The show documents the travels of an idealist Machiavellian hero, guitar in hand, on a crusade to revitalise the arts of the culture capital of the world. Fuelled by equal measures of blind optimism and hedonism, the search for new ideas and exotic flavours takes our hero to a fictional paradise setting where this bizarre satirical action tragedy literally starts to unravel.

The Travels of Bad comprises a 48-page mini-novella with 17 photographic works and a 17-track album soundtrack. The exhibition includes a selection of sculptures and merchandise and is presented in association with the Rooke Gallery. The album is available for free download from the Rooke Gallery website.

The prologue reads: “A massive slime void has appeared in the sky above the earth’s civilized centre as a result of outdated aesthetics, stale, tired, worn-out ideas and pervading mediocre insipid vacuity. The slime entity feeds off the silence of the tons of bland, academic, crap in art museums. The void grows bigger year by year, and if not stopped, will annihilate the universe and all of mankind. Doom is imminent. Brooding and looming. Human survival hangs in the balance. Our hero protagonist genius hard-bastard motherfucker artist, pale vampire, the machismo Machiavellian, the god from the machine, the magical universe exorcist needs to journey to the ends of the known world, back to the savage, the primitive, the naïve, the origin of man, and find new strange exotic weird shit, deliver it from the colourful world of indifference, use it to revitalise the creative spirit of the pale world of intelligence, and have enough pompous misadventures along the way to make cult status.

“Adventure, alienation, tragedy, stupidity, high amplified distortion, extended guitar solos, and machinegun measures. A journey, a coma, a rollercoaster-ride, a damn endurance test! A certified party-bus escapade.

“Somewhere a guitar solo is vaguely audible over the sound of amazingness… Somewhere a lizard’s purr echoes in a deathcave, and somewhere on the filth ridden backstreets of the over-developed metropolis Earth universe, our disgruntled idealist hero bursts onto the scene. At the exact moment that our death-sex, drone-thrash, action-tragedy breaks into a thick riff.

“Hard... fast... bad!!! No illusion-destroying interruptions!!! Go forth! Find the cure of primitive juice!!! The damn exotic art elixir!!! Save the rotting core of the universe... AWESOME!!!”

Zander Blom maintains that The Travels of Bad is essentially a satire that looks critically at the influence that exotic cultures and their artefacts have had on the avant-garde system of European visual art from the end of the 19th century onwards. The critique comes in the shape of mini-novella that is illustrated by a series of photographic works and accompanied by a pseudo rock-opera type symphonic drone thrash metal rock album.”

The Travels of Bad runs at the KZNSA Gallery until May 31. The KZNSA Gallery is situated at 166 Bulwer Road, Glenwood, in Durban. More information on 031 277 1703, fax 031 201 8051 or cell 082 220 0368 or visit