Alex Da Corte (b.1981)


Alex Da Corte was born in Camden, New Jersey. Having been awarded his MFA by Yale University in 2010, Da Corte currently lives and works in Philadelphia.

An heir to Pop, Da Corte is fully invested in the culture of consumption which he manipulates in his artworks. Relishing the moment when the object of a marketing campaign attracts his attention, the incorporation of these "found" objects into his works makes each profoundly personal. Combined with his belief that colour is linked to emotion, his brightly coloured installations in which such objects are placed become immersive and transformative as personal connections with these objects take on a new colouring, a new emotion. Behind the glass of a frame, found objects, which can take the form of magazine clippings or the work of other artists, are brought together to create meanings in excess of the items taken individually. Da Corte could be labelled a surrealist poet of consumerism, a post-pop Comte de Lautreamont who, rather than creating encounters by pure chance, covers an orchid in his chosen brand of shampoo.

The sense of the uncanny which surrounds Da Corte's found objects as they take on unfamiliar meanings can be traced back to Da Corte's upbringing in Venezuela. Da Corte tells us that "There is a certain decorative motif to Latin American culture that inspires me, like the festive nature of the Day of the Dead and the life-size piñatas with lots of sequins and glitz." "Found" objects of our own desire and consumption and colours which evoke familiar emotions undermine themselves as they become excessive or lysergic. It is in this way that the poet Da Corte brings ineffable feelings concerning death, or in other cases sex or romance, into contemporary visual imagery.