A Facebook friend of mine recently ran up a sort of challenge where she assigned her commentors each a particular living artist to research. I got this guy; Henk Pander.
His stuff is a strange and arresting mashup of organic and mechanical imagery with an emphasis on wreckage. His human and demihuman figures seem to float - or struggle - through a landscape of broken machinery and shattered buildings.
What intrigues me, other than the purely visual enjoyment, is that Pander's bio puts him in Holland during WW2; he was between 7 and 8 when the German army was chased out of the Netherlands. Clearly some of his work is directly influenced by his childhood, but I wonder; how much of the rest, those visions of life amid the ruins, can also be traced back to his young life under Nazi occupation?
Pander is an Oregonian today, and I like to think that he was also influenced by one of our most delightful public memories: the exploding whale.