ian andrews, poisoner, AI art, artificial intelligence art, dark art

Ian "POISONER" Andrews - Rise of the Art-AI

"Generate" instead of "create"- Interview with Ian "Poisoner" Andrews about artificial intelligence in art

Is AI in art evil? For us? Have we let a genie out of the bottle, perfecting itself more and more with every one of the millions of clicks it gets every day? It is difficult to say where this will end, but one can assume that the abilities of an "artificial intelligence", due to its much higher pool of material, will eventually overtake the ability of humans for creativity! In terms of speed, this has already happened.
We talked to someone who should know: American artist Ian "Poisoner" Andrews is a master of the art of engaging with an AI trained to create art. Let's just follow him...

ian andrews, poisoner, AI art, artificial intelligence art, dark art

I think many art lovers do not (yet) know what “MidJourney” or “Prompts” are. Please explain how your art is created from a purely technical point of view.

“I’ve been an artist in various forms over the years, including an amateur writer. The Prompts are the language used to essentially tell the AI, in this case Midjourney, what the parameters are for the generation. Prompts are composed of three sections. A main theme, the first section of the prompt sequence; secondary details like setting, atmosphere, type of image (photograph versus oil painting, for example); and the third section of the prompt is all the tweaks, like Finely Detailed, or Photo taken by Sony. These are the embellishments. It’s about understanding how the AI interprets key words and phrases, and it creates weights or priorities to these words based largely on if they appear earlier or later in the prompt.”

You could almost say that the real “art” in this kind of artistic implementation is the definition of an idea and no longer the craftsmanship of this idea. Since AI makes it possible to create any motif in any imaginable style: How concrete is your idea before you start? Or do you also work with the possibility of how the AI deals with your idea?

“I almost look at myself and my relationship to the AI as being a director working with an actor. The AI is the artist, but I am the one telling the story through the prompt. I have a specific style that I lean towards, mainly fantasy type art, but the idea isn’t always completely formed. I may start with a prompt that says “Female Assassin in tactical gear” and then see what comes out the other side. If there are other elements that come to mind during this process, I will copy the prompt and add until I land on something that I like. I do think I have learned through experience how to get the AI to produce a certain result in terms of style, but there are still things that happen for unknown reasons. I was trying to generate an image of a dark elf laying on a bed, and it was giving me just a normal image of a normal woman laying her head on a pillow”

ian andrews, poisoner, AI art, artificial intelligence art, dark art

You can find it frightening or fascinating: How do you see AI’s performance in this process? Is it a purely technical matter of computing power and programming or are we entering areas where we admire the result of the machine even though we can no longer understand exactly how it came to this result (called a “black box” in technical language)? The disturbing mystery of an artificial intelligence….

“I can see both sides, but I favor the more optimistic view. There are some phrases I use in my prompts that I have no clue what actual affect it has on the overall image. This comes from the early days of copying other people’s prompts in the event that had a good looking generation. But as time has gone on and AI has improved so much in such a short time, less words will be needed to generate even more amazing results. Even now that Midjourney has entered into its fourth version, with a fifth just a few short months away, it’s already creating results far superior to even the most accomplished artists. But words will still be needed, and people who understand how the AI communicates will always produce better results than those who don’t. I see it all the time on DeviantArt, my online art community. There is plenty of AI garbage being churned out at an impressive speed. I always try to generate quality over quantity.”

As long as “Ai art” is labeled as such, the viewer can decide for himself whether he wants to look only at the idea or at the idea AND the craftsmanship of the artist. If these markings are missing, it becomes difficult in my eyes. Isn’t that a kind of fraud?

“I have been in this conversation many times. I understand why traditional artists are annoyed or even pissed that it is now easier for a layperson to sit down in front of their computer, type a few words, and end up with an amazing piece of art. You’ll noticed I’ve used the term ‘generate’ instead of ‘create’. I don’t view myself as the creator of these works. I add my edits and special touches through Photoshop and various other programs, but by and large, I didn’t create the piece. And I feel for the artists who have had their work be the foundation for training the AI. I won’t go as far to say that it is a copyright issue. If you think about it, all art is derivative. We all get inspiration from other people, and we tend to adopt what we like into our own work. Some of my earlier traditional art when I was younger was heavily influenced by H.R. Giger, although I have no where near the talent he had. So in that sense, the AI never copies an artist, it merely emulates and produces an unique piece in the style of said artist. I personally do not reference any artists in my prompt because it does feel like cheating, but I know a lot of people who don’t have such reservations.”

Finally, a look into the future: this way of creating art (and in my opinion it is!) is very new and its development is certainly not yet at its end. Where do you see future dangers, what will revolutionize art and our view of it?

“Not to sound cliché but the cat is out of the bag when it comes to AI art. There is no putting it back. On the one hand, this has made the act of creation itself so much more accessible to so many people who may not have had the same creative outlet. People with disabilities are able to express themselves in newer ways. And it’s only going to continue to get better over time. Art will be more accessible to the average person, and great artists will still be in demand because AI is far from perfect. As for the future, I know that deepfakes are a real issue in many cases. Pornography, love it or hate it, will be much easier to create. Many working traditional artists will need to adapt to survive. But like all advancements in technology, the industry will adjust and change. New opportunities will present themselves. Since I have been generating AI art, I have created an album cover for an established music group, I’ve been commissioned to create works of art using photographs, I’ve been commissioned to help with a board game. And I was asked to be a part of your publication. None of these things would have happened had it not been for my involvement in AI art generation. I think this shifts the meaning of ‘art’ to something that was once only attainable by the few, to something that is achievable by the many.”

Ian “Poisoner” Andrews Website: Deviant Art
AI recourses for art:
Dall-E 2
Stable Diffusion

Or if you want to start right away: https://huggingface.co/spaces/stabilityai/stable-diffusion

Thanks for the interview. If someone would ask the questioner for his opinion… In my mind, looking at the pure creative output of high quality art, AI is an asset to art. Many people who have great artistic visions and ideas now have a tool to implement them. What otherwise would not have been possible due to a lack of craftsmanship. The more people on this planet who create art, the better off we are. However, if at some point the Chinese (or whoever from our political alpha plague) hacks the internet and destroys it, then AI is dead. And we will have forgotten the craft of painting pictures….

ian andrews, poisoner, AI art, artificial intelligence art, dark art

Sarah Miller / Painting (USA) - unpublished submission + interview

So much great art out there in the mental maelstroms of dark creativity.

Too much to print them all in the magazine. “Unpublished Submissions” is your gallery. For more evil art propaganda, check out INSIDE artzine

preview, cover, click, dark art





Sarah Miller Creations

Artist • Writer • Wanderer (USA)
Contact: sarah@sarahmillercreations.com
Website: sarahmillercreations.com

“Very few things are more beautiful to me than our own ugliness.”

sarah miller, stap you in the back, dark art

artscum.org: What I find fascinating about your great work is this contrast between often bright colors and a very sinister mood. To me, they rarely seem threatening, rather melancholic and somehow familiar. Surprisingly, many people can quickly agree on what they find ugly. When it comes to describing “beauty,” opinions often differ widely. How would you describe these two poles of perception. Is there beauty in ugliness and vice versa?

Sarah: Absolutely! At least, to me there is. Beauty may be subjective but at its core there is also a universal language, unspoken and deep-rooted, that guides our aesthetic preferences. We are collectively drawn to symmetry, to symbols of health and fertility, to nature, to death even—images that trigger biological and psychological responses so deep within us we often aren’t even aware of them. The same goes for repulsion, motivated instead by fear and the unfamiliar. “Beauty” and “ugliness” are really just measurements of feeling and association. And though they are often at odds, one cannot exist without the other, and they can easily coexist.

For example, I paint a lot of death and horror, and to some, the inherent fear of dying might cause my art to translate as “ugly.” At the same time, however, one might simultaneously feel comfort in openly contemplating their own mortality and impermanence, and therefore find my work beautiful. (I’ve actually had many people tell me my art was “beautiful and terrifying!”)
What we find familiar in the dark and sinister are often just pieces of ourselves we don’t yet know how to name. We can be both horrified and enchanted by the same ideas, by the same unknowns within us, and that’s why I find these subjects so fascinating. In the deepest parts of our existence is a language we all feel but don’t know how to speak.
And what is art if not the unspoken conversation of these concepts and connections.

That’s what much of my original work is about: exploring the bridge between art and psychology, having conversations in pictures what may not be able to be shared in words. I am an autistic artist, after all, and am better versed in speaking feeling through creative outlets.

Is there beauty in ugliness (and vice versa)? I believe there is.
Very few things are more beautiful to me than our own ugliness.

artscum.org: In the course of the Corona pandemic, a survey was conducted in Germany on the social relevance of occupations. “The artist” was one of the last to rank. I think that art is the only language that can be understood by everyone. The visible bridge between reality and fantasy. What “function” does art have for you and what relevance could or should art have in a society?

Sarah: It’s a shame the public stance on that is taking so long to evolve. (Though I’m glad you personally agree on the importance and reach art has in society!) The answer to this question bridges quite nicely from the last: if art is a universal language embedded deep within us thanks to evolution and expression, I daresay it’s as important as language itself, if not more so.

Picture a world without art of any kind—painting, graphics, architecture, illustration, film, fashion, music, dance, literature—and what you’re left with is a void of existence unimaginable because of just how essential expression is to living. It doesn’t matter the form it takes; we evolved to need art as a way to communicate, to reach one another beyond the borders of standard language.

Thanks to entertainment and mass media, “art” is often mislabeled as a luxury or privilege. But art should be treated with more widespread reverence. It should be more commonly practiced, shared, and celebrated—accessible regardless of class, grown and nourished regardless of what “value” one’s current skill level offers society. Let art be spoken without need of cause or reward, without comparison of voice. Let it be as natural as our right to speech

artscum.org: I read that you can speak Japanese!? Apart from the fact that it’s a very difficult language, what fascinates you about the country where even adults are allowed to find everything cute (keyword “kawaii”)? Are Japanese allowed to be kids longer? Do you have a connection to the anime/manga culture of Japan?

Sarah: Oh yes, I am a huge nerd for anime & manga! I grew up on fantasy, comics, and anime, and also happened to be a big nerd for languages (I considered studying linguistics among my many interests before I decided to be an art student), so studying Japanese was inevitable for me.
I took classes in high school and college and just sort of kept up with my lessons (thanks to language apps). I can’t comment much on the culture itself as an American, but there are definitely differences in lifestyle that have always fascinated me. It’s been a long-time dream of mine to visit Japan one day and learn more about the culture and its people firsthand!

artscum.org: If you met the most evil person on this planet, what would you ask that person?

Sarah: I don’t believe a person is inherently good or evil, and don’t even truly believe in evil beyond in concept. People can be born without empathy for other humans, or raised in an environment that does not teach them to value compassion for others, and most people we see as “evil” may well have turned out differently if their life circumstances had been different. Even the most cruel person can be guided toward understanding if given the right amount of time and support.

But, hypothetically, I might ask the most “cruel” or “wicked” person, “What is the most painful thing that has happened to you?”
Or maybe about the last time they felt happy.

artscum.org: If we want to see more of your art: Are there any exhibitions, books, prints of yours? Can you be booked for commissioned work?

Sarah: Yes! You can find my work on my website, sarahmillercreations.com, and buy your favorite pieces, or sign up for my newsletter to get updates on future projects and exhibitions! You can also check out my upcoming psychological web comic, Crow & Arrow, on my Patreon: patreon.com/sarahmillercreations (in fact, the piece ‘Crow’ you’ve featured is concept art for an upcoming cover page).
I have other projects in the works as well, including my first Art Book, which I plan to release soon!

As for commissions, I have worked with game companies and individuals on a variety of different pieces, and I always encourage people to reach out with commission opportunities (even if my waitlist status is closed on my FAQ page). Just drop me an email at sarah@sarahmillercreations.com and I’ll let you know if I can work with you!

But, hypothetically, I might ask the most “cruel” or “wicked” person, “What is the most painful thing that has happened to you?”
Or maybe about the last time they felt happy.

artscum.org: Mankind more and more develops into a heap of selfish, daft selfdestructors, both as for globalization and respect for one another.What is left of the beauty of the cosmic creation? Of the creative spark for perfection? Does Mankind still have a chance, or would it be better to flush the whole shit down the toilet of the evolutionary failure to give the future protozoa a shot for life?

Sarah: These are quite possibly the best questions I’ve ever been asked, formally. Hahah
I’m an existential optimist at heart, so I’d like to believe Mankind has not quite doomed itself. Not yet, anyway. Though we’re likely to suffer through many more fumblings of progress while we wrestle with our greed and learn to prioritize the good of all over the good of one.
There is still so much yet for us to learn, to grow from, to see and understand—about ourselves and one another. Better to keep trying to get it right, so long as we’re able to try.

Hercules Trigo, graphic design, collage, brazil, dark art

Hércules Santos Trigo / Graphic artist (BRA) - unpublished submission

So much great art out there in the mental maelstroms of dark creativity.

Too much to print them all in the magazine. “Unpublished Submissions” is your gallery. For more evil art propaganda, check out INSIDE artzine

preview, cover, click, dark art





Hércules Santos Trigo

– Concept Artist and Visual Development (Brasil)
Contact: contactme@hstrigo.com
Website: www.hstrigo.com

“…everything is in our mind, we just look for places to enhance the unknown.”

Q: Who are you?

Well, my name is Hércules Santos Trigo, I’m Brazilian and I’m trained in fine arts and graphic design.

Q: Darkness is not only the absence of light. What more is lurking in the shadows (of mind)?!

We can find everything we want there. Because everything is in our mind, we just look for places to enhance the unknown.

Q: What is the most important taboo in art?

For me there is no taboo for the art world, at least there shouldn’t be. The way each artist expresses himself is unique and necessary. There are those who express themselves through classical painting, sculpture, engraving, some are very expressive, others not so much, some with more color, others with less.

Q: Why is the beauty in ugliness so fatal?

In general, the beautiful is placed in art as a form of perfection, a way of subjugating everything that is considered ugly. However, such perfection and beauty loses its position when we have new perspectives in the art world. In this sense, new conceptions are acquired giving us different options and access. All this generates representation. Therefore, this question about beauty in art is very subjective, because what is beautiful for some may not be beautiful for others.

Q: What question would you ask the most evil person on this planet?

I never thought about it…. but I think I would ask: Do you have a cigarette? ha ha…

Q: The world seems to become more and more a violent, unkind place. Greed and egoism seems to be the only impulse of any change. Did mankind still have the chance to build a peaceful, sustainable world for every living and feeling being or would it be better if somebody dispose everything in the sewer of the evolutionary failure?

Well, we are driven by desires and many end up generating greed, envy, neglect and a hundred adjectives that disqualify human beings. I think that we are very attached to the matter and that makes it difficult to have a true look at the other, in the human sense. I personally believe in the human race. I believe that one day we will be able to overcome many of these vices that torment us and that our evolution will not only be technological, but human.

Griffin D’Zmura McGuire / Painter (USA) - unpublished submission

So much great art out there in the mental maelstroms of dark creativity.

Too much to print them all in the magazine. “Unpublished Submissions” is your gallery. For more evil art propaganda, check out INSIDE artzine

preview, cover, click, dark art





Griffin D’Zmura McGuire

– mixed media painter (USA)
Contact: griffindmcguire@gmail.com
Website: Linktree griffindart

“The looking glass has broken, we must brave the Kaleidoscope mirage…”

Q: Who are you?

I’m Griffin, an artist on the other side of a degree in Philosophy from UC Berkeley. My favorite mediums are acrylic paint and ink. One of my aims is to invite viewers into another world, one which will remain with them in the hidden alleyway of the subconscious mind.

Q: Darkness is not only the absence of light. What more is lurking in the shadows (of mind)?!

Shadows conceal, but also provide form and feature. The play between shadow as a metaphor and shadow as absence of light provides an interesting field of exploration. In my work I often explore autonomously without intention. I feel that this allows me to explore the shadows in my own mind without censorship.

Q: What is the most important taboo in art?

For me, I find the association of a price tag with a piece of to be a taboo that is worthy of deeper exploration. Many of the artists that are most widely spoken of are known in part due to the notoriety of their sales volume as opposed to the questions their work explores. In this strange dynamism between value and creativity there’s much more to think on and is one of the reasons I decided to move my digital work into the blockchain space.

Q: Why is the beauty in ugliness so fatal?

Art is not just a pursuit of Beauty. In the unsettling, and disturbing, a whole range of emotions which are under-explored and critical to artistic exploration are able to be brought into the open.

Q: What question would you ask the most evil person on this planet?

Though I’m not sure there’s someone who is the most evil, I’ll ask them if they enjoy Pineapple on pizza.

Q: The world seems to become more and more a violent, unkind place. Greed and egoism seems to be the only impulse of any change. Did mankind still have the chance to build a peaceful, sustainable world for every living and feeling being or would it be better if somebody dispose everything in the sewer of the evolutionary failure?

From my perspective, it seems that history shows us a world in which violence is the norm. We see much more of the ugliness in the world with news and the advances in new media, though this doesn’t imply that the world is actually more violent than it was in the past. A new slate, a Tabula Rasa, can be an appealing idea but in practice only leads to forgetting our standing as humans and moves us away from working on the problems we face.

Richard A. Kirk, black and white drawing, dark art

Richard A. Kirk - STRANGER IN A STRANGE MIND: Black and White madness

Gallery and gonzo interview from the fever dreams of  a drugless mind

+++ Chris Mars (USA), Seth Siro Anton (GRE), John Santerinerros (USA), Absumaniac (Poland)

INSIDE artzine #18, dark art magazine, H.R. Giger, Chris Mars, Seth Siro Anton

richard A. Kirk, black and white drawing, dark art

“There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion” Sir Frances Bacon, Of Beauty, Essays” 1625

When, finally, I felt strong enough to open my tired eyes completely I realized I wasn’t alone. Not very far away from me, there was an inconspicuous guy in white clothes sitting huddled in the corner, drawing on the wall with a black pen. A black-and-white flood of details arose behind him, like the arms of a naked, dancing octopus. All over the windowless walls, the inaccessible ceiling, the pristine-white PVC floor, up my legs, and out into the crowded, dysfunctional universe of a world without brains. And the things that trickled onto my tense retinas really frightened me. ME! A human-looking bird skull which was entwined with sly, plant-like vines. Swollen flowers, their delicate heads bent into the urinary puddle of daze. Thin skulls, filled with empty eyes. Mouldy mushrooms on seething bodies. Dumb figures in poisonous flower meadows. A woman like weaved of chlorophyll. Spiky insect arms, spindly child legs, torn skin, proliferating, sprawling, weird. And all that in such an obsessive, nightmarish wealth of detail that you had to gasp heavily.

Richard A. Kirk, black and white drawing, dark art

“If you want me to help you, you have to talk to me.” His voice made me wince like a pig at the
butcher’s. I heaved my skull but couldn’t see very much because of all that drool and snot. All I could do was hissing, “… call my lawyer then, asshole!” His pen continued scratching on the wall while he talked to me, “Nobody is here without a reason…” His voice sounded polite and bored, but between his words I could perceive something powerful, something freaky. Something authoritative. I could feel the taste of burning styrofoam trickle into my thoughts: “Who the fuck are you?”
„I am Richard Kirk, a 59-year-old artist – illustrator born in Hull, England in 1962. I grew up in a small industrial city in Ontario, Canada. I’m a draughtsman by nature and the vast majority of my artistic production is done in ink. I also work in silverpoint, a technique with its own special challenges. My choice of technique and subject matter compliment each other. The images come from my imagination, and I represent them in naturalistically, drawing much inspiration from form found in nature. My art explores natural processes. This interest is the focus of my work that lies beneath the narrative: decay, transformation, growth, evolution, and dissolution. My work is frequently described as organic. I am the owner of Pekoe the wonder-dog.“

I stared on the floor in front of me, my balls dug into the ice field. Directly from under my fastened feet, a
walking beetle wriggled itself out which had strange mush-rooms on its head
growing into its mouth. The floor was completely full with his drawings. They seemed to creep towards me and invade through my soles into my skin. It was itching terribly. I wondered whether I should ask him. Beg him. To unfasten me. Or at least scratching me. But then I preferred him staying in his corner. “Eh mate, you’re
frightening me. I really don’t want to know where do you get your ideas…”
His voice sounded as comfy as HAL9000 now: „Nature provides me with a lot of inspiration, as does literature, but it helps to be open to many things. Ultimately, when I sit down to draw I’m not that conscious of external inspiration… “


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Nihil, ventre, art book, review, dark art

NIHIL (France/Norway) - VENTRE - art book review

INSIDE artzine shop

Nihil, ventre, art book, review, dark art

Artist images & texts: Nihil
Artist music: In Slaughter Natives
Titel: Ventre
Features: Hardcover, 17x25cm/7×10“, Book 115 pages, CD 39:18 min
Contact: www.nihil.fr
Purchase: www.nihil.fr/shop/artbook

Nihil’s work has been accompanying me for several years now through the hidden valleys of a remote art taste. The French photographer and picture manipulator has always been a welcome guest in our mental asylum for a reason  – his works conceal something that only comes to light under the most extensive physical effort in a genre, characterized by darkness and despair: elegance! Sublime poses burst upon grotesque wrenches here, graceful silence upon seething menaces. And the pictures always seem to lack something. The iris in the eye. The expression of the face. The hairs on the heads. White surfaces where secondary habits expect primary sexual characteristics. This lack of physical identity puts his figures into the fleshless light of saints and martyrs. Because they suffer. This is the last remaining expression which cannot be taken away from them. Heavily depressing and wonderful at the same time.
The dark, brooding soundscapes of the industrial band IN SLAUGHTER NATIVES of the enclosed audio CD are integrated perfectly between the full-screen refined pages. A perfectly successful cooperation of two masters of dark art. And finally, to draw a line between the two unholy covers of this publication, Nihil provides us with reflective, dark stories for our restless sleep, all of which confidently float between dark dignity and menacing doom. An amazing artistic synthesis!!

felix roca, plastic bag on head, dark art

Felix Roca / Painter (Spain) - unpublished submission

So much great art out there in the mental maelstroms of dark creativity.

Too much to print them all in the magazine. “Unpublished Submissions” is your gallery. For more evil art propaganda, check out INSIDE artzine

preview, cover, click, dark art





Felix Roca – Figurative painter (Spain)

Contact: frocaganges@gmail.com
Website: @felixrocaart


Faith and fear of Death, an action reaction to each other, come together to be opposed, for the same duality,
by Childhood and Game. The Summing of the four concepts can be understood as the day to day struggle of the adult life. Not as a pessimist view, neiter, as a chant to innocence, but a consecutive presentation of individual postcards as allegories in which one of those four concepts is more imperant than the others.

Q: Who are you?

I am a Barcelona Based painter. born in 19991 who is scared of death and paints about it, and what it means or we have been told it is supposed to be an adult, that will be all.

Q: Darkness is not only the absence of light. What more is lurking in the shadows (of mind)?!

Answers, the shadows are those spots on your mind that you have been luring into, your self doubts and where you really find yourself, if you are sure about everything, which is imossible, you are dead and an estatich creature. Is that doubt that will move you forward and keep evolving. Like the Age of Empires Pc game map.

Q: What is the most important taboo in art?

Money, everyone works and paints for it, but it is supposed for us painters, in the art business, to paint and draw because we need to express ourselves, and to have a large mistic reason paint for paying your bills is not what it is expected for us to say.

Q: Why is the beauty in ugliness so fatal?

Those fucking greeks and the renaissanse, god is beauty and the devil is ugly.

Q: What question would you ask the most evil person on this planet?

Would you pose for a portrait? The prison guards will let me in once a week if that’s ok for you.

Q: The world seems to become more and more a violent, unkind place. Greed and egoism seems to be the only impulse of any change. Did mankind still have the chance to build a peaceful, sustainable world for every living and feeling being or would it be better if somebody dispose everything in the sewer of the evolutionary failure?

Self destruction is an inner part of human nature. Technology has put it on a great scale. But at the same time humor and going down the pub is as human as well, and for those as we are, interested in creation and art, let’s have a beer an art talk and paint it until the bomb explodes near us.

SBRGENk (Japan) - BLOODBLISTER IV - art book review

Girls & Gore: BLOODBLISTER IV - Unknown Cults


+++ Chris Mars (USA), Menton 3 (USA), Absumaniac (POL), Trevor Brown (Japan) +++

preview INSIDE 21, cover, slime. dark art




SBRGENk art book, cover, blood, young girl, dark art

SRBGENk – Bloodblister IV Unknown Cults
Softcover A4, 68pages, english/japanese
Contact: http://sweetrubberberry.sakura.ne.jp/
Purchase: artscum.org shop

Probably the best known incarnation of the Japanese attitude “Kawaii” – which I immensely adore – is undoubtedly young girls. Although in Japan there are also “cute” dustbins, traffic signs, shopping trolleys, sex toys and so on, the beauty i.e. “cuteness” of the female appearance is increased to iconic proportions in the Japanese world of art and therefore basically present. And here in particular, wild excrescences are becoming more and more prevalent, to tailor new, absurd facets into this beauty’s dainty face. SBRGENk has chosen an especially radical way. Many of his portraits of young Japanese girls and women show the actually
opposite side of “Kawaii:” Violence. And it’s not the supposed domestic violence which grows, for instance, in the blue eyes of Trevor Brown’s works – here are heads flying. But no matter how bloody things are (and yes, there is also a lot of undamaged stuff), the ubiquitous beauty of his models is always preserved and remains always in the centre of his talent as a painter. This has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with splatter films and glorification of violence; rather a completely new form of aesthetics is created out of the struggle of the two poles “cute” and “des-
truction:” an undestroyable and superior beauty. And admiration. At least mine.

Joseph D. Myers, USA, classic collages, R.I.P., bizzare, grotesque, depression, dead eyes, bloody hands, dark art magazine

Joseph D. Myers (USA) - DEEP IN A HAPPY MIND LURKS RUIN: Bizarre collages from hell

Gallery and interview with the master of the visual abyss.

+++ Matt Lombard (USA), Seth Siro Anton (GRE), Marcelo Vasco (BRA), Yukaman (Japan) +++

Joseph D. Myers, USA, classic collages, R.I.P., bizzare, grotesque, depressionThe truly bizarre creates fear. Fear of the things that dwell in the things. That even in the most “normal” things, something is lurking, just waiting to jump out of cover and take over our minds. Rarely has this fear of going crazy been manifested more intensely in pictures than in the collages of the American Joseph D. Myers. Bizarre, macabre, disturbing… weak words that cast only a faint light on the monster that will one day devour us all irretrievably. Joseph D. Myers died in 2014 at the age of only 38. We conducted this interview with him shortly before his death. Rest in peace Joe, your art will forever remain in our world.

Joseph D. Myers, USA, classic collages, R.I.P., bizzare, grotesque, depression, dead eyes, bloody hands, dark art magazine

INTERVIEW with Joseph D. Myers (1974-2014)

artscum.org: First, I have to admit, that I have never seen such powerful collages for a long time. They are confusing, disturbing but nevertheless absolutely intriguing in the same time. GREAT JOB! You named your own blog „The Terrible Art of Joseph Donald Myers“. That‘s pretty good description of this wonderful gloomy gallery. Think, „terrible“ is a negative term for most of the people. Can you describe your art in your own words? What is this „terrible“ thing in your art?

JOSEPH:Thanks for the kind words! I think I settled on “terrible” because it describes, both literally and ironically, what my art is about and what I think others may think of it. My work has always been very strange and scary, and I have always wanted people to react strongly, to get some sort of emotional response. I remember back in my high school days a woman (an English teacher, I think) was watching me hang some of my crazy drawings and she looked at me and frowned, not saying anything. After a bit she asked: “What are those supposed to mean?” I said, “I don’t know!” and she walked away. I want my work to be like a beautiful car accident… something you can’t take your eyes away from even if your brain is telling you “Stop looking at this!” I think that’s terrible in the best sense of the word.

artscum.org: The omnipresent deformation steps to a new dimension of ugliness. Do you think ugliness touched the people more than beauty? Think we can imagine, what do think about ugliness so what is your definition of „Beauty“?!

JOSEPH: I think there is so much inherent beauty in what is normally considered “repulsive”, like the grin of a decayed corpse. These “accidental” results of decomposition and nature and humanity – all of this is so deeply fascinating to me. I find beauty in the skeletal remains of a dog, an abandoned home, a stormy sky, a stern portrait of a mother from the 19th century, an image of space captured by the Hubble telescope… the list goes on and on and on. There is so much beauty in darkness. So many details overlooked because of fear.

Joseph D. Myers, classic collages, R.I.P., bizzare, grotesque, depression, child, fire, nightmare, artscum

artscum.org: I‘m curious about your inspirations. Are there any historical examples like the collage dada heros or modern artists like Winston Smith/Dead Kennedys? Any current favorite (collage)artists we should know? What is the fascination of the collage method?!

JOSEPH: As far as my artistic inspirations are concerned, they are many and varied: Salvador Dali, Francis Bacon, Joel Peter Witkin, Al Columbia, Chris Ware, Stanley Kubrick, Stephen King, Robert Crumb, H.R. Giger, Robt. Williams, H.P. Lovecraft, Berni Wrightson, the list goes on and on. So many amazing visions from these wonderful minds. I have learned so much from so many.
I think the digital collage method grew out of me out of necessity, because I was spending so many hours working with Photoshop because of my career. Up until this recent series of digital works my art was created with pens and pencils and pastels, but when I discovered the complexity and depth of the Adobe software, especially Photoshop, my creative world was changed forever. There’s a magical world of creative power contained in what many consider to be a fairly benign yet powerful piece of software. It has allowed me to combine all of the things I find interesting, layer by layer, until the resulting image is born. I always listen to music when I make these things, so I’m tapping into a very deep place, and the art blossoms from these improvisational experiments. It’s very close to what I would consider genuine magic. Because of the ability to find images of literally anything you can imagine or that has existed within seconds (thanks to Google and such), I am able to create these collages as if I were a musician, or a chef… or Dr. Frankenstien. Gathering disparate ingredients and putting them together to create a completely original image. That’s what keeps me interested and amazed. The benign and mundane and feared parts of our world, meeting in a unique way.

artscum.org: Most of your work looks like nightmare visions of a madman. Do think the mind of man is a fragile thing? What must happened to lose control about reality?

JOSEPH: It’s funny, because I’m a pretty “normal”, very happy person. I am a father of three wonderful boys and a husband to an amazing wife, and I grew up with very few worries. But I have also confronted many different demons over the years that have contributed to my macabre artistic tendencies. So I am a bit of a contradiction, I suppose. Which is fine. That adds to the whole mysterious nature of my artwork. J No one really knows what’s going on in my mind except for me, and that’s probably a good thing. But I am so full of love and happiness, many people are quite shocked to see what pours from my imagination. So, yes, I think the mind of man is a very fragile thing… but a fertile ground as well. I am lucky that I have the ability to do something “productive” with my nightmares. Because I think a lot of people, if they were honest, would admit to thinking about some crazy shit from time to time. But instead of tucking those thoughts away, I embrace them and celebrate them. I become friends with them. Much better to be friends with darkness and fear and horror than enemies.

artscum.org: Do think that everything that seems to be possible use as an object in art? Or is there are anything that be taboo, even in art?!

JOSEPH: I think the “taboo” has to play a part in what I’m doing in order to make the viewer question their own sensibilities about what is “gross” or “perverse” or “forbidden”. I try to avoid gratuitous violence or pornography, but sometimes the animal tendencies that lie within the heart of man have no choice but to show themselves, especially in my art. One thing that I explore and embrace in my work is post-mortem photography from the 19th century. There are so many hauntingly beautiful images of loved ones that died too young before their time… because the mortality rate was so high back then, and photography was such a new technology, people were embracing it as a means to keep the memory of the dead alive forever. So people would sometimes pose the departed in a natural setting, or simply take a picture of them during a funeral viewing. Anything to hold onto the memory through photography. That’s so fascinating to me… and these slices of time/space are captured like magic, the subjects never knowing that someday, some guy with a computer would be staring into those eyes to find beauty and inspiration.

Joseph D. Myers, USA, classic collages, R.I.P., bizzare, grotesque, depression, children has the faces of their puppets, bed, puppets, black and white, nightmare, dark art magazine

artscum.org: I‘m always curious about the man behind the art. Often the audience compare the artist with his art. So are you an incurable lunatic with bad dreams or an intellectual visionary who can see things we can not see? What do you tell your new girlfriend, parents, neighbors about your art. Or do give a damn about the reaction/opinion of your audience?

JOSEPH: I think I’m someone who’s not afraid to find beauty in horror, order in chaos, and translate that into something interesting and powerful for the viewer to appreciate. Maybe they’ll look at the world a little differently after studying my work, who knows… I just don’t want people to dismiss what I do as the artistic equivalent of a raving lunatic. The world is a scary, scary place. I’m just holding up a funhouse mirror for everyone to see a little bit more.

artscum.org: Mankind more and more develops into a heap of selfish, daft self-destructors, both as for globalization and respect for one another. What is left of the beauty of the cosmic creation? Of the creative spark for perfection? Does Mankind still have a chance, or would it be better to flush the whole shit down the toilet of the evolutionary failure to give the future protozoa a shot for life?

JOSEPH: Best question ever! The state of modern humanity frightens me deeply. I think the human race is pushing itself to extremes, both positive and negative. This balancing act, although important, is very nerve-wracking. I fear that there is a very fine line between control and chaos, civility and barbarism. But I also think that there is so much love, so much good in the world. It’s disturbing how ignorant and shallow-minded many people have become, and I truly hope that people will begin to truly understand the power of compromise and love and peace. Maybe this obsession with self-destruction will fade away someday, but it may take an “act of God” to truly correct all of the problems on our wonderful planet. A wildfire to even things out, create a fresh stage for true spiritual rebirth. But until that time, we have to maintain our corners of the universe and try to appreciate the good aspects of life. But we can’t always turn away from the darkness, the horrible, the terrifying. Sometimes we have to face and embrace these things like dear friends.

Joseph D. Myers, USA, classic collages, R.I.P., bizzare, grotesque, depression, tooth, starry eyes, butterflies

JOSEPH: Jenz, one very important thing that I forgot to mention was my fascination with TEETH! Teeth are a HUGE part of my aesthetic, and I will forever be fascinated by how deeply primal and scary they can be. One of those things we take for granted, but can be so much more than what they are designed for. Sort of like how the female breast has taken on a sexual appeal… I mean, they were designed as very efficient and well-designed food producers/containers when you think about it. Only through human perception have they become sex objects. Just like teeth, although designed to be perfect food cutters and smashers, have become much more interesting to me over the years. So powerful and frightening, and very much a part of our Mammal heritage.

My current body of work, which I began in early 2009, is an almost direct response to the death of my mother. Although the Number One Champion of my artwork, Mrs. Linda Myers did not, however, enjoy my more sinister sensibilities. “Why don’t you do something nice?” she’d ask on a regular basis. “Because I don’t really know how”, I’d reply. As I struggled with the idea that she was no longer physically present, I also realized that I could explore death and dying (and the beauty that surrounds it) to my heart’s content without the worry of disappointing her. Sounds strange, especially since my mom was/is The Most Amazing Mother a son could have asked for and her loss is a void that will never truly be filled. All the same, she taught me how to find silver linings in the strangest of places. The result has been close to 200 unique pieces since April of 2009.

My creative process is relatively complex, albeit one that has become deeply intuitive over the past few years. My essential goal to tap into the deep fears of my childhood as well as the fears I have developed as an adult. It all starts with a scavenger hunt of sorts. I scour the internet for images that involve, but are not limited to: death, dying, old portraits, wars, mouths and teeth, insanity, deformity, landscapes, insects that scare me (especially wasps), aggressive animals, humanity in general… the list could go on and on. I will also photograph parts of my own body or use original nature photography if there’s a certain “something” I’m attempting to capture. Then, like an improvisational chef or musician (or Dr. Frankenstein), I start assembling bits and pieces of the images that have spoken to me using Photoshop. Many times I will create separate illustrations that will fill in certain gaps or add to the overall effect. If there is any need for text in the piece I will hand draw and scan that as well. Sometimes I attempt to incorporate a theme, other times the themes emerge like long-silenced screams from the past. I want to present to the world unique images that are at once familiar and terribly alien; comforting and disturbing; beautiful and terrifying. I want to welcome you into my brightly-lit home on a pleasant Spring morning, then slam the door, turn out the lights and strap you to a chair with eyelids held open forcing you to see what lurks in the dark, mad corners of the universe.

Or something like that.

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Seth Siro Anton, woman in a dark mood, dark art

Seth Siro Anton (Greece) - DEATH METAL FOR THE EYES: "...simulate the state of mind of clear dreaming."

Digital paintings, dark music & burning churches...

6-PAGE SPECIAL (inkl. Interview) IN
INSIDE artzine #16 (PREVIEW/BUY)
+++ Matt Lombard (USA), Chris Mars (USA), Dan Verkys (AUS), Yang Xueguo (China) +++


INSIDE artzine no16, tentacles and a cute girl, dark art

seth siro anton portrait, dark artTo get closer to the deeply disturbing surrealistic work of the digital painter Seth Siro Anton, it helps to turn the loudspeakers as far as it will go! Seth, who was born as Spiros Antoniou in his home country Greece, is the mastermind of the death metal band SEPTICFLESH. Besides vocals and bass he is also responsible for the complete artwork. And it doesn’t happen often that artwork and music are such a dense, disturbing unity, as they are here. The dark, threatening expression of Anton’s visual works finds a brutal, perfect counterpart in the sonic outbursts of his music. When you look at Anton’s pictures, the darkness in them softly seeps into your mind, but when you listen to the music, the visions are mercilessly beaten right between your eyes. With all their black violence, their disturbing madness, and, last but not least, with sublime beauty. An album like “Great Mass” leaves its marks on your imagination! Septicflesh cover by Seth Siro Anton, dark artAt first you scream like crazy; then you pull the plugs out of the loudspeakers. After that, you are left in a strangely soothing silence in front of Seth Siro’s pictures. Only then, after the surreal madness of the first viewing has faded away, you will be able to notice the fragile textures in the faces of the tragic actors. The insectoid melancholy that is unerringly established under the skin of your own otherness. The surreal second when you woke up from a nightmare.

seth siro anton, decadence scene with two women, dark art


Art is always a question of tools. What I call “digital painting” is a multitude of different artistic disciplines. In addition to the composition of evil things on the computer, Seth’s digital collages are primarily based on his photography. Their realism is the basis that looks at us through his bizarre work and reminds us that every nightmare is nourished by the real world out there.


Even though the Seth Siro Anton (Gonzo) interview in INSIDE artzine #16 ended in chaos and fire (and with his expulsion from the country), it contains some clues about the state of mind of the exceptional artist from Greece. As so often in the murky mud of underground surrealism, it is our dreams that poison the health of mankind. “Dreams are valuable because they release the primordial chaos stored in our neurons, by resetting the power of the time-space continuum. When I paint, I’m trying to simulate the state of mind of clear dreaming.“ In the interview, I had tried to confuse Seth with quotes from Nietzsche, but he was not impressed and stroke back with Carl Jung: “Jung defines the Collective Unconscious as the area of the soul which is infinitely older than the personal life of the individual.“ Therefore the psychic fever that Anton’s art triggers in all of us is not caused by random cosmic coincidences. Seth Siro Anton knows what he is doing. Wherever from.

Beside SEPTICFLESH his work can be found on the covers of other metal albums like MOONSPELL, PARADISE LOST or VADER. Check his website and listen to the music of SEPTICFLESH and read the interview with him in INSIDE artzine #16. It wasn’t my fault that the whole church had burned down in the end. At least not really.