History of Collage & Photomontage: Joni Cobarrubias


This photo depicts different types of design elements such as repetition, shape and contrast. All of these elements work together to create this illusional collage. “A wisp of a smile,” by Matthieu Bourel, 2014. http://dojo.electrickettle.fr/collages/duplicity-serie/


The artist that I chose is Matthieu Bourel, a surreal collage artist. This piece stood out to me because of its simple, yet complex nature. The artist does several collage styles, which he separates into various series. Each series has a central theme that explores different layering style collages. He creates these collages with the juxtaposition of real photographs and digital art. His method, in his words, is a lot of playing around with old magazines and images. His own unique style of real collage layers and digital art make him standout among other collage artists.

His other pieces are clearly inspired by pop-culture, such as using Dorothy from Wizard of Oz as his subject. Bourel was quoted saying he takes in the commercialism, television, and digital era we currently have, and channels it into his own interpretation: “data-ism” (Leavitt, via Georgie publication).


This example showcases a different style collage that Bourel creates. “Migrant,” photo by Matthieu Bourel, 2010. http://dojo.electrickettle.fr/projects/collage-serie-ii/

According to Bourel, he loves getting the viewer to interact with his art in their own provocative thoughts and connections. Many of his works have been analyzed for their underlying messages on society, emotion, time, space, and more (The Re Art). This can be clearly seen in the image to the right. This collage consists of magazine cut outs as well as newspaper cutouts. The man’s face is covered in the words in a mask-like state. This could convey many different narratives, possibly relating to racism or being held captive. Whatever the case, Bourel clearly compiles these images to showcase an idea.

His choice materials is key to interpreting the messages he is conveying. With Bourel’s handmade paper collages, he really develops and creates a storyline with every image he cuts. This technique personally affects the way I interpret his art because of the particular placement of each piece. These layers are not just images piled into Photoshop, they are real, cut out newspaper or magazine images, and this adds authenticity.


Other sources used:



About jonironi

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