Article: “Growling Nostalgia”
Images of cartoons and toys form a fundamental role in making up the visual landscape of childhood memory.
By appropriating from mass-media and popular culture Ferdinand Dick bronze sculpture reminisces without directly copying. He creates a new nostalgic iconography by using banal references from popular visual motifs found in childhood cartoons. He however deviates from the original reference by adding an element of nostalgic reflection and humour.
The plastic pop-iconography gets repackaged as “high-art” in the guise of polished bronze. Moving away from the mass-produced merchandise of popular culture these new figures are meticulously crafted and hand casted from highly valued materials.
“Growling Nostalgia” was partially inspired by the early beginnings of television in South Africa. It is particularly the character of a dog named Brakanjan of a 1981 television series by the same name that evoked memories of childhood security, familial togetherness and the family as a tightly-knit pack in the artist.
Rather than a celebration of mass-culture, these figures become wistful musing on childhood, innocence, and memories of bygone days.