Howard Griffin Gallery Los Angeles
Journey Galactiko centres around a large 150 cubic metre temple presented in the middle of the gallery space. This monolithic structure constructed of wood and found materials will be the context for an exploration of the universal pervasiveness of the image, through Broken Fingaz’ unique graphic style and imagery. The concepts presented in Journey Galactiko are the product of several months of travelling and working across India, during which time Broken Fingaz absorbed and assimilated myriad cultural influences that permeate every aspect of their widespread artistic output.
In the installation, Broken Fingaz visually depict their artistic journey from India to Los Angeles, intertwining spiritual motifs and icons from the Indian religious tradition with the ubiquitous tropes of Western capitalist advertising. In this way, they seek to explore the power of image making and its diverse manifestations across both Eastern and Western cultures. The physical construct of a temple as a place of spirituality and interiority is employed to stand in stark contrast with the Western world’s focus on external appearances and the physical world. Within the temple, Broken Fingaz reveal an insight into their own private, introspective world through forms and imagery that envelop the viewer in an enclosed, claustrophobic space of inner reflection. The duality between interior and exterior is interrogated once the viewer steps out of the safety of the temple space into the gaudy, overwhelming world outside, filled with sounds, colours, lights and slogans that arrest the eye and manipulate the mind. The temple represents a retreat for the artists within the gallery space, a place in which they can be obscured from the consumerist world that surrounds them.
At the same time, Journey Galactiko acknowledges how emotive imagery, repetitive language and bright colours are used in both religious iconography and capitalist advertising as a form of propaganda to influence and manipulate the viewer. Sharing this mode of communication, capitalism and religion can thus be seen to have many parallels. As prolific image makers themselves, Broken Fingaz aim to subvert their own mode in Journey Galactiko to comment on how images surround us, influence us and ultimately control us. The exterior of the temple is designed to affect people’s thoughts and world view in the same way as advertising and brand packaging. Broken Fingaz combine spiritual motifs with postmodern neon signage, rotating billboards and the bright, affective colours of advertising to draw parallels between East and West, exploring the power of the image and visual representation as a form of mind control. This tension is at the heart of the exhibition, posing important questions about the nature of our reality and what affects our consciousness.