Way, way, wayyyy back in 2011, in the first year of CVLT Nation, I wrote an article about the stunning artwork of Chet Zar. I figure that 11 years later, it’s time to revisit his gloriously textured, dreamlike horror portraits. His creatures are equal parts monstrous and sympathetic. If I somehow stepped into his decrepit hellscapes and encountered one of these beings, I’m not sure if I would run in terror or ask them if they’re okay. They exist in their own world, one where my face would inspire nausea and fear, where their sightless eyes encounter their own kind of beauty. I can’t really explain how these portraits make me feel. They upend everything I thought I knew about love and hate, beauty and ugliness.
Zar has some gorgeous books in his web store along with prints, so check those out here, and if you love or make dark art, also check out the Dark Art Society, a cooperative of Dark Artists, and a prolific podcast.
If I still lived in Santa Monica, I would be heading to Bergamont Station to check out his exhibit at Copro Gallery which runs until October 29th. I never thought I’d be annoyed that I don’t live in Santa Monica, but I would kill to be at the closing party on October 28th, dressed up in some horrific costume and seeing Zar’s paintings in real life! If you’re in LA, you should go for me.