28 May – 25 June 2015
'DShK' by Stefan Blom consists of 11 lifesize polychrome fiberglass sculptures meticulously constructed with an industrial and machine-like finish, albeit by the artist’s hand. The title of the show refers to the Russian-made heavy artillery machine gun invented in the 1930s and nicknamed ‘Dushka’ or ‘sweetie’. This kind of contradictory reference pervades the show; figures appear as both innocent and disarming and gestures of power are playfully rendered harmless. By connecting personal and communal experiences of trauma and abuses of power, Blom’s sculptures suggests a continuum between the victim and perpetrator. The soft pastel colours of the dream-inspired characters are impotent despite their poise and armour. In 'DShK', Blom presents a unique language to describe the scenarios and characters at play in our fantastical yet at times deeply wounded individual and collective psyches.
Stefan Blom’s (b.1963, Kimberley) early adulthood was spent in the South African Defence Force as an infantry soldier. After a brief period in the advertising world he became immersed within the arts as an artist and activist. Blom’s work has been shown in both national and international joint exhibitions. He has exhibited widely with solo exhibitions in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Germany and New York at establishments such as District Six Museum, Hänel Gallery (Cape Town and Germany), the AVA, JAG and The South African National Gallery.