Growing up in a Christian household in Texas, Trenton Doyle Hancock was immersed in myths and narratives that he found while reading The Bible. Couple these narratives with his love of comic books, toys and the Masters of the Universe series and one is able to see the pool of imagery and ideologies that helped shape Hancock's world.
"If you look at the grouping of the stories and belief systems that I learned from growing up, I wanted to take them, breakaway from them and apply them to my own art project based around a series of myths and symbols."
Through his prints, drawings, painting, collages and even ballet, Hancock has created an ongoing narrative involving a group of mythical creatures that live and die in a Tolkienesque underworld. There are Vegans - small ant-like creatures that live in his underworld and militantly hate meat. There's Mounds - hairy mountainous creatures that are rooted in Earth and a handful of supporting character's like Torpedo Boy, Painter and
Lloyd. There are good guys, bad guys, murders, plots, subplots, ideologies, and just about everything that goes with a continuing series of fantastical sagas.
"I feel it's important to have this narrative coupled with paintings because it's something I haven't really seen before in fine art world. I mean painters throughout history used narratives, even the abstract expressionists did, but I wanted to take it to a different place. I want to tell explicit stories and have them be major components of the work to create a new hybrid conversation."
Trenton was recently commissioned to be one of the artists to do mural work at the new Dallas Cowboys stadium. His work is part of the collection at many museums, including The Brooklyn Museum, MoMA, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and The Whitney. He was part of the PBS Series Art 21 and is represented by James Cohan Gallery here in New York.
Meddler, 2008. Mixed media on paper. 23 X 19 1/2 inches
Vegan Arm, 2006. Urethane, steel, string 84 X 108 X 9 inches. Edition of 3