The ‘Doomsday Papers’ is Mysterious Al’s debut solo show, which opened last week Thursday at Stolen Space Gallery. Originating from a street art background after working with the likes of D*Face, Al’s work has transcended illustrative, commercial and graphic design work. After being in the profession for ten years, the theme of the ‘Doomsday Papers’ combines the primitiveness of Mesoamerican Gods, Wicca and the Occult with Graffiti and Celebrity culture.
On one wall there are framed pictures of cinematic monsters such as Bella Lugosi’s Dracula, Boris Karloff’s Frankenstein’s Monster, the Phantom of the Opera and Mummy, whose eyes are all mutilated by Al’s trademark cartoony eyes. Tellingly Amy Winehouse and Kate Moss are included in this gallery of monsters, and you may not want to argue with the point Al is making here.
There is an eerie looking altar complete with wooden crosses and found sacrificial objects. This is Al’s take on the English Occult and Witchcraft, which are the opposite of the morbidity and evil of pentagrams or the clichéd stuff of Satanism.
The most striking aspect of the exhibition is the Mayan style wooden masks which are each given their own distinguishing characteristic. Another wall complements these masks well with print versions set against a white background.
The Doomsday Papers is a body of work that concentrates on updating different pagan faiths and beliefs, (including Wicca and Mayan) in a colourful way. Thematically it is hardly a departure from your typical Mysterious Al artwork which includes dark material set against an ironic and satirical viewpoint. Walking around the gallery you may wonder that if this is Al’s interpretation of the end, then the end may not be that bad.
Show is open from 04/03/11 until 27th March 2011 at the Stolen Space Gallery
Check Out his Mysterious Al website