Cleon Peterson's nightmarish tableaux feature scenes of a barbaric holocaust, where might is right and the weak are merely souls with holes for the strong to torment and abuse. A horde of uniform bad guys, at once ethnic, gothic and alien rampage through the works, sacking small the metropolis within and wantonly abusing its law-abiding residents.
But Cleon Peterson's work doesn't simply challenge contemporary notions of beauty and horror. It challenges: period. Viewers are confronted by more than just his vaudeville villains, relishing the finer details of rape and pillage. The work forces us to ask of ourselves some of the most pertinent questions plaguing sensitive Western gallery-goers today. . Is there any genuine good in the world? Would I be much better off as a bastard, if I could get away with it? Am I a racist? Am I a pussy? The mind races.
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