Crawford Art Gallerypermanent collection

Der Angstlustbaum
Der Angstlustbaum
English school
Pen drawing on vinyl
230 X 305cm


Stephen Brandes
English School

Born in Wolverhampton, Stephen Brandes has lived and worked in Cork since moving to Ireland in 1993. His complex and detailed ink drawing Der Angstlustbaum, is inspired by a wide range of cultural references, including Charles Darwin´s “Tree of Evolution”, but the term, (not a recognized German word, but an invented word translating roughly as “anxiety driven tree”) also features in a quote from the band “The Fall”. The inspiration for this drawing, and other works by Brandes, stems partly from a visual diary the artist made in 1999 when he retraced his grandmother's 1903 journey through Europe, when she fled pogroms and persecution in Romania. Brandes´ work has developed into a series of elaborate visual fictions, interweaving this family history with his own experience and invention. His work is infused with often, dark humour and is influenced by European fairytales, graphic novels and underground comics.

Recent solo exhibitions by Brandes include “Chutsparadiso” at the West Cork Arts Centre in 2007; “Travelogue” at the Rubicon Gallery in 2005, ‘Ways of Escape´, at Temple Bar Gallery and Studios, Dublin, in 2004. Brandes represented Ireland at the Venice Biennale in 2005. Brandes has also worked as a curator of independent art projects, notably Superbia (2003) and Superbia 2 (2005).