Who is Cold War Steve?
Over the last few years more and more collage artwork pieces emerged under the name ‘Cold War Steve’. Christopher Spencer, the man behind the artwork specialises in satirical collage works. In a sense, using ‘Cold War Steve’ separates the artist from the art. As a way to be a silent observer in the strange culture around us, putting people and things into an art form that stands alone in being comedic and honest. The pieces take on a Banksy like feel where they look to people and life and politics and place them out to the world.
Dark times that are put onto a visual form, posting daily on social media accounts. Rather than use a written format a visual format is progressive. Spencer shows life as it is in a comedic, satirical and honest way. The art takes on a new level of comedy that hasn’t been since within art in the modern age. Key figures in society, plastered on a photograph with an ordinary British background, full of strange objects. The pieces tell a story, you piece together culture and what is happening at the moment. They are very present and for the day, they aren’t about standing still and being on a wall in the Tate. It is made for the internet because it is quick. They are detailed but because they encapsulate comedy and life at the moment, they are something to see in an instant.
They are not preservation pieces. That’s what makes them brilliant. They draw you in. Like Sgt. Peppers album artwork there is so much going on in one piece. A collage has the feeling of being messy with the layers of imagery you place upon another. However, there is a structure to a collage. That unless you get this structure of looking messy yet having a correlative pattern, then it won’t work.
Cold War Steve brings to life the issues we have within society at the very instant they happen. It is a brilliant way to merge art and social media together. Encapsulating the essence of art in a political and news-worthy manner. Yet colliding comedy at the same time brings in a new format of humour before our eyes. Taking away the concept of stand-up and bringing it in a creative way.