Collage artist and author Hormazd Narielwalla has released an artist’s book Co-published by Concentric Editions and EMH Arts, celebrating the iconic figure of David Bowie titled Diamond Dolls.
Diamond Dolls is based on a series of Narielwalla’s trademark collages exploring adornment, identity, and transformation themes, known for his pioneering artwork that portrays abstract body forms by collages from abandoned tailoring patterns of deceased clients of Saville Row tailors.
A fabulous and fascinating addition to the Bowie universe
Dylan Jones, OBE
Working over a replicated template of Bowie’s ‘Ziggy’ face and dancing form, Narielwalla has created a sequence of 36 collage images that transform a running motif of Bowie’s ‘Ziggy Stardust’ persona. Exhibiting Bowie’s figure with individual identities embellished by extravagant costumes that extend the body into the domains of cubist sculptures.
For Narielwalla, as a young gay man growing up in India, Western culture hardly filtered into India’s society until the 1990s. MTV started broadcasting western music videos, and Narielwalla’s first glimpse of David Bowie’s beauty immediately captured his imagination.
Bowie’s ability to shape-shift projecting different personas through dress, make-up and performance is the subject of Narielwalla’s images and the foundation for his dancing dolls, examining the desire to transform into another self.
Conceived as a sculptural object in three parts, Diamond Dolls is the artist’s ninth in a series of award-winning publications that pushes the boundaries of lithographic printing into the territory of an art medium.
Designed to stand like a series of shoji screens, it reflects various aspects of Japanese aesthetics that Bowie cherished. The original collage images are reproduced both front and back to reveal cutting and pasting skills involved in their construction. Including alluring distressed gold foiling of page edges and abstract patterns de-bossed into the surfaces of the book covers that gives the opening and arranging of the book a performative nature.
Narielwalla’shas embraced the essence of Bowie’s imaginative genius in an aesthetically gratifying fashion, making Diamond Dolls one for both Bowie and art lovers alike.
Diamond Dolls comes in a limited edition of 300, priced at £190 and will be launched on 15 July with an exhibition of the book in the Eagle Gallery Cabinet Room / EMH Arts, 159 Farringdon Road, London EC1R 3AL.