Featured Artist: Dead Galaxy

FK talks to Presser from Dead Galaxy about the art of his collage making, and his upcoming exhibition Life Dust.

Tell us about the world of Dead Galaxy.
Dead Galaxy is the name of my art project/ company name. It is named after of 1 of my collages. I used to joke with friends that my house was a dead galaxy, a other universe where strange shit would happen. I guess it’s in reference to a loss that made me fall apart but now it’s just a name I like to work under.

Give us a little insight into your history and how you discovered art making?
I played drums in Gerling for 14 years. During that time Darren (Gerling) and myself did the artwork for our albums. I would spend most my time off tours and on weekends doing collages, kinda bedroom art. Nothing really left my house, I sold a piece to a friend and rest sat in the spare room of my house. When I moved out, my Aunty was intrigued by the collages and said ” You gotta do an exhibition!” so I did. That was November 2007, and I’ve spent the past 2 years getting this exhibition together.

Where do you gather all the resources to make your awesome collages?
I use books and magazines from the 60’s-80’s. I spend hours in op shops and second hand book shops digging through the fantastic old and forgotten images. I give them a new life as part of a collage. I don’t use computers, everything is handmade and considered.

What kind of messages do you like to convey in your work? are they planned before hand or do you let the images do the talking?
Most of my work features a subliminal message, subtle or immediate. I name each piece but I prefer people to get their own translation of the artwork, rather than explaining the purpose. I’ve created a few pieces by having a vision in my head, and searching hours on end to create the piece. Some take forever to finish, some could be finished overnight, and sometimes adding 1 tiny thing will change the outcome.

What inspires you and what are you always searching for?
My inspirations come from alot of different elements. Sometimes a dream, music or a certain emotion can draw out those components that I can react with. I was on valium for a a while, shit I created some very interesting work… I don’t think I’m really searching for anything, just set a goal one after the next.

You had your debut exhibition last year, what was the reaction like and what did you learn most about running your own show?
Yeh, the first exhibition was in 2007. It was only up for one night, I wouldn’t do that again though. Too much work and stress for a 4 hour display! The main thing I learnt about doing a show is that you need plenty of time and good people to help along the way. The exhibition itself was a total success and I was so emotionally impressed by the response, and being basically a word-of-mouth event, there was plenty of people and it was pretty much a sell out show.

What would be your ultimate project to work on?
I got a few projects I’d like to do. I’ve started doing t-shirts for bands, so far I’ve done t-shirts for Decoder Ring and Dappled Cities. I’d like to do album covers and even do skateboard decks. I wrote a book that hopefully will see the light of day, but also to be able to do exhibitions overseas would be fantastic.

Can you give us some insight to what new things we can expect to discover at your new exhibition Life Dust on Feb 25th?
All this work for Life Dust was created while dealing with depression. The artwork itself helped me regain my life, pulled me out of the shit hole that I was in. To me this exhibition is very personal, almost an insight into a mind that was lost for a long time. To me, this is a start of a new life and I hope that people will see the light that I have been rewarded with. 2010 = good times!

Life Dust will be showing at:

Mart Gallery
156 Commonwealth Street, Surry Hills
26th Feb to 13th March
Gallery open 12-5pm Tues – Sat


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