Intoxicated by the human form, Chris Devour kinks and contorts beauty into something that can only be expressed as superlative artistry.
With a continued grace the Romanian born artist fuses graphic design with his own flourishes of illustration and timeless black and white photography that would gratify the cover of any reputable fashion publication or look good gracing the wall of a fine art collector. Minimalism is an abundant characteristic in Devour's work, but delve closer and you can see a myriad of layers and depth. Compositions within compositions at the same time confuse and elevate the viewers perception of form and reality. Minimalism becomes abstract and fashion forms fine art. Studying Political Science as a masters his influence is stated to come from his Post-Communist surroundings which can be seen to compare modernity with a timeless tradition. An almost dystopian point of view is evident here which both enthrals you into delving deeper whilst at the same time places you firmly at safe distance. A wondrous window into the creative mind of a fast developing artistic heavy weight. And he is still only in his early 20's.
Your compositions are very striking in their simplistic distortions of the human body. What has inspired you to use this technique?
I am really fascinated with the human body and contortions or distortions done digitally, thus I either explore the body in detail through various positions or I love to distort it virtually through simple glitch post/processing.
Your series of self-portraits all predominantly mask your face. Can you explain your choice in doing this?
I wanted to try something different, portray various states of mind or expressions without actually showing the face, most of my projects such as the Faceless, are also inspired by this, it gives it a twist, because we cannot see the persons face, which is important in our everyday interactions or perceptions as human beings.
Black and white is major feature of your work where colour is only sometimes used in some of your earlier work. Do you feel this has become a staple to your style?
I prefer black and white because it gives me a clear view of my subject. Colors can be overwhelming for me, also because of my dichromacy, too many colors are distracting for my eyes, thus I only shoot in color if i have either clear warm tones or cold ones. I do find black and white more pleasing to my eyes and I can see pictures better when I think in black and white, depending on the light I shoot color too.
You can see flourishes of your illustrations and typographic work mixed with your imagery. Do you find that this helps you to compose your shots?
The best thing about art is that you can mix it. Photography with graphic design, or sketches or typography and so on. I used to draw a lot and do collages and collect things from a young age, and all that seems to now come back in a mixture with photography, and I find it really helpful for some projects. I love being able to try and experiment something new all the time.
Your work can be seen to embody both fine art leanings as well as high fashion. What predominantly interests you?
Depends on the mood and the project. However, for the fine art part there is more thinking involved and it takes longer to put together. I cannot decide between them, because I love doing them both if i am in the mood and I feel creative.
Much of your more abstract work such as The Faceless and BLK_GLITCH feels both gothic and hyperreal. This fusion of the futuristic and past creates a haunting and beauty. What process do you follow in your ideas and what influences you?
One of the main concepts I used in both of them was the covering of the face as mentioned above. A mixture of futuristic virtual reality where we will hardly know each others actual features, instead we will only settle for the virtual ones, thus covering our true identity, while this is already beginning to take shape, it is quite haunting if we think about it, but like everything it does have beauty and it can inspire. What if this becomes norm in the future.
Can you tell us a little about your shooting preferences? Do you shoot all digital or analogue also? What is your kit of choice?
It is all digital, however, I want to try film sometimes soon, I tried it before, for some personal work. As long as you have a strong concept, I honestly don't think it really it matters how and what you shoot it with, digital or film, phone camera or DSLR.. and so on.
You are based in Bucharest, Romania. Does the mix of contemporary and medieval architecture influence your work?
I was born in Oradea, a town in the north-west region of Romania, and moved to Bucharest to study political science for my Masters. The architecture does influence me, and I love the post-communist feeling that some of the places in the country still bare, however, I also love the modern buildings and I find them inspiring for many of my projects. My favorite place to shoot would be a minimal white room with little or no furniture and wooden floors and big windows.
Can you tell us a little about your past and current exhibitions and any future plans to showcase your collection to the World?
I had no exhibitions so far, I was happy with just being able to showcase my work online and through magazines or websites where I got featured. Hopefully one day in the future I can work on planning an exhibition too.
You are still very young and have achieved an impressive body of work so far. What can we expect to see from Chris Devour in the next year?
More work. I love the fact that I do not really know what the future looks like, and hope to meet and work with new and inspiring people around the world for the future. One thing is for certain I could never give up photography.