July 2017

Garden Of Eden

Martin BellMartin BellMartin BellMartin BellMartin BellMartin BellMartin BellMartin BellMartin BellMartin BellWords: Tristan Ceddia Images: Martin Bell

I met Martin one night in a bush near North Melbourne around eight years ago. We became friends immediately and soon he showed me his caravan which was parked at a squat where he and another friend were living. They had a chicken coop and a kitchen sink with an ice cream bucket attached as a shower. Since then, Martin has shown work in Canberra with the National Gallery of Australia, been in numerous group shows around the country, and in 2007 released his first book, My Birthday Party.

Working on My Birthday Party with Mr. Bell was probably one of the loosest experiences I have ever had as a designer. We would lay the pages out on the computer, then he would go home, print them out and collage the images back together how he wanted them. The result is literally a snapshot of Martin as an erratically calculated human.

He has a one-off hand made wooden guitar in the shape of Australia and was once caught on camera kicking in the back panel of his car, only to reach inside the boot, pop out the dint and give the camera a thumbs up.

Martin’s installations form enlarged 3D collaged shrines blending nature and sculpture while paying homage to his favorite films and other elements of popular culture. His ink and pencil drawings drawings explore a fantasy world of dolls and He Man figurines while his collage work seems to be the result of a porno, a glossy magazine and a comic book thrown in the blender.

More info on Martins Bell’s book My Birthday Party here and at The Serps here.

The Blackmail is lucky enough to have two copies of My Birthday Party to give away. For your chance to win a copy just email [email protected]

Next Article