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DAMIEN COMMENT
Hunting Season (la chasse est ouverte), 2007


   


"Damien Comment is leading youth into a coolly tempered world of longing. The feelings are in a jam at the gate to paradise. .."

The paintings of Damien Comment who works in Switzerland are like sliding on thin ice. Which is holding. Now, regarding youth on the path of virtue: As soon as they have received the blessing of the church, the blood is already rising, and the faces turn red, and not only honourable thoughts are forming like mists around his small portraits (not presented here). Later, in the Garden of Eden, where everything began, adolescence poses as untouchable and yet predatorily fixed on each other. It seems as if, in a matter of seconds, the barely contained energy will discharge. Damien Comments pictures, sketchy and seemingly unfinished, leave many things unsaid. Desire and waking dreams, experiments and temptations, premonitions and reminders merge on an unstable terrain. You enter at your own risk.

In the forest and the meadows, the bodies are distancing themselves from the viewer ... The basic blur - this desire of the young people which is tamed through coolness - is not weakened through that distance. The tension is also created by means of juxtaposing various techniques, first the figures in graphite, later in ink the surroundings, and finally the colours over everything with a lively almost destructive swing. "I like to release the energy but also to work in precision, almost photo-realistically," says the artist.

The open workings reflect the almost outlawish freedom from shelter of his young subjects who only meet on paper now, taken from various magazines or internet pictures as a model and then put into the collage by means of the computer. "I think of myself as a director who works with his characters", says Comment. He tests the effects of various constellations, lets emissaries of the imaginary float above the picture. A bird of prey in a grid - or the young deer (which is a symbol for homosexuality in South America as Comment found out).

For some images, there is an explanation. He shows us youths who have a sexual freedom which the artist himself did not have. This does not explain everything in regard to the intensity of these visions. A distinct flair for composition keeps the tension high, and the artistic talent keeps the motives in balance. The ice is thin, but it holds. Upon reaching the other shore, it is only a stone's throw (or "a cat's jump", as you would say in German) to the Garden of Eden ...