Category: Disturbing

Nightmares and Deep Emotions in Stunning Images by Diana Dihaze

Diana Dihaze is a Ukraine-based photographer and digital artist who manipulates her photos to reveal disturbing yet beautiful inner truths. Her images derive from the corners of her subconscious, arriving to her through dreams and nightmares. There is a surreal element of horror as nature and grotesque wounds cover the bodies of her subjects, all […]

Hidden Hearts: Creepy Hollowed-Out Dolls by Mari Shimizu

Mari Shimizu is an artist from Amakusa in Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan, who creates hollowed-out ball-joint dolls. Each doll is unique in that the contents of their eviscerated torsos reveal different elements of horror and fantasy. In a statement provided to Illusion, Shimizu explains how “We hide our hearts from our families and friends in order […]

Exploring the Unconscious: Dark Photos by Peter Zelei

For Hungarian photographer Peter Zelei, there is no “black and white” when it comes to humanity; “I believe . . . we are a very complicated mix of good, bad, darkness and light,” he explained in an interview with Citizen Brooklyn. His photographs are filled with beauty and cruelty, with scenes and scenarios that simultaneously […]

Tenderness for the Dead: Sculptures by Berlinde de Bruyckere

The wax sculptures of the Ghent-born artist Berlinde de Bruyckere ask the viewer a question rooted in ethics: What does a subject need to lack in order to be considered a soulless object? They resemble the byproducts of a morgue, a slaughterhouse, or a taxidermist’s table, all of which are thematically linked as platforms of […]

Hideous, Terrible, Magical Body: An Interview with Olivier de Sagazan

In the middle of the movie “Samsara” (2011), a nicely dressed man appears behind a desk. He quickly begins plastering his face with clay and paint, building thick layers with feverish intensity. Within two minutes, his head is transformed into a grotesque death mask, which he impales and tears open, only to rebuild and destroy […]

Death and Morality in Macabre Paintings by Kikyz1313

Kikyz1313 is a Mexican artist who confronts the viewer with discomforting representations of “the abject.” As developed by Julia Kristeva, the abject is a term that refers to the more unpleasant details of our earthly existences, such as excrement, disease, death, and decay—all of the natural processes that erode our sense of human superiority and […]

The Nature of Fear: Paintings by Nicola Samori

Nicola Samori is an Italian artist whose dark, dreary paintings explore the nature of fear. Working in a style influenced by Baroque portraiture—for example, the rich colors and heavy shadows—Samori intensifies the emotion and drama by mutilating his subjects. Faces are painted over or ripped apart, exposing an abstraction of bloody insides; torsos hover omniously […]

Rituals of the Sleepless Dead: Dark Art by Dehn Sora

Dehn Sora (aka, Vincent Petitjean), is a French graphic designer, art director, and composer who builds sonic, hallucinatory worlds driven by ancient rituals and living death. On the Bandcamp page for his dark ambient project Treha Sektori, Dehn Sora simply states, “We’re born with the knowledge of death.” The presence of death—bold, fearless, unfeeling—permeates all […]

Exploring the Posthuman Body in Sculptures by Bogdan Rata

The surreal sculptures of Romanian artist Bogdan Rata explore the transformation of the body on a hyper-modern social scale. Drawing upon posthumanism—that is, the philosophies that delve into what it means to be “human” in the age of nanotechnology and bio-engineering—Rata makes his bodies out of processed materials such as polyester, synthetic resin, and industrial […]

Fleshlettes: Cutely Grotesque Sculptures by Jonathan Payne

We’ve featured the work of Jonathan Payne before in a list of 10 freaky anatomical sculptures, but his endearingly gross “Fleshlettes” deserve a spotlight of their own. Based in LA, Payne is a creature and character designer who sculpts everything from whimsical wizards to nightmarish monsters. In more recent years, he began to create Fleshlettes, […]