Jonathan Monaghan, ‘Alien Fanfare’, 2014, bitforms gallery
Jonathan Monaghan, ‘Alien Fanfare’, 2014, bitforms gallery
Jonathan Monaghan, ‘Alien Fanfare’, 2014, bitforms gallery
Jonathan Monaghan, ‘Alien Fanfare’, 2014, bitforms gallery
Jonathan Monaghan, ‘Alien Fanfare’, 2014, bitforms gallery

"Alien Fanfare" chronicles a majestic invasion of a fantastical spacecraft that is part flesh, part baroque architecture. This rotating spaceship, decorated with gold filigree and Goya's royal tapestry cartoons from the Prado, gives birth to a winged probe, that flys towards earth. The probe in turn gives birth to a dragon-like creature that is part couch, part flesh. The invasion ends with a riff of Albrecht Durer’s 15th century woodcut The Triumphal Arch, re-imagined as a boutique hotel topped with a recreation of Madrid's iconic Beaux Arts style Edificio Metrópolis. "Alien Fanfare" plays with our desires and anxieties, while creating a surreal vision of a possible future.

About Jonathan Monaghan

To create his CGI animations, Jonathan Monaghan mines and appropriates the characters and environments from the video games of his youth, as well as incorporating references to art history, Wall Street, consumer products, and other aspects of contemporary culture. “Pitting these ridiculous-looking video game characters and environments with recreations of real, “evil” power is very much what I was doing,” he has said. “By trying to create a coherent reality or a narrative where these absurd manifestations of power interact with actual power structures, my viewers can approach how power works through a different lens.” He likens this process of appropriation and reinterpretation to hacking—pulling images from culture and reversing their meaning, so that they subvert the very structures that produced them.

American, b. 1986, New York, New York, based in Washington, D.C.

Solo Shows

2015
2014
Curator's Office, 
Jonathan Monaghan | Alien Fanfare