ALEXANDER DE CADENET
Alexander de Cadenet is a visual artist working in London who has been exhibiting his artworks internationally for the past twenty years. His artworks reveal an exploration into philosophical and spiritual questions such as the meaning of life & death and the nature of human consciousness.
Alexander de Cadenet (born 24 May 1974) is a British artist working in various media: predominantly painting, photography and sculpture. He is most known for his skull portraits that are set within the tradition of Vanitas. He defines his art work as “a way to give experience meaning in a tangible form; it is an exploration into the mysteries and sacredness of life and its presentation through art”
Since 1996, de Cadenet has been presenting a successive series of photographic "skull portraits", based on x-rays of his subjects' skulls.
The ongoing series of works explores the themes of human achievement and the sacredness of art in particular within the tradition of Vanitas. The first Celebrities Series was launched in 1999 at 30 Underwood Street Gallery in Shoreditch, London. This launched de Cadenet’s skull portraits concept, which he has described as ‘drawing on an everyday language and experience to communicate a deeper message”
Art historian Edward Lucie-Smith has described Alexander de Cadenet as, “a fascinatingly diverse, restlessly experimental artist. His work ranges across every technique one can think of”.
Alexander de Cadenet's art is drawn from his own life experiences and combines a dark humour with a deeper spiritual message.
Since 1996 he has been producing an ongoing collection of Skull Portrait photographic works based on x-rays of his subject’s skulls. They are a comment about the permanence of art and offer insights into the themes of mortality, identity and the human desire for status and achievement.
Evolving from the ‘vanitas’ themed skull portraits are the Life Burger sculptures, begun in 2015 and described by L.A. Weekly art critic Shana Nys Drambot as “an esoteric and archetypal series”. These works explore themes of consumerism and questions what lies behind the desire for material wealth and success.
The Meteorite Sculptures continues the ancient practice of casting sacred objects in extra-terrestrial meteorite metal, (some of which have been found in Pharoah Tutankhamun’s tomb) and reference stories from the Old Testament and various religious and spiritual traditions. They explore the mystery of creativity and the origins of inspiration.
The Life-Line paintings present the painted line as metaphor and overview for a complete life-cycle for a creation - both the painting itself or of a life-form while the Interconnections Paintings explore the mystery of how patterns form in nature and our own place in relation to this phenomenon. Inversion Photographs seek to capture and share moments of everyday connection to nature and an ever-present deeper dimension.
Following a meeting with spiritual teacher Eckhart Tolle in 2016, he was inspired to found the Awakened Artists group, a community of artists whose artwork encourages viewers to encounter a deeper connection to nature and themselves.