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Work / Illustration

Félix Decombat’s illustrations revisit old characters in new, absurd situations

Inspired by the “weird and subversive” Félix Decombat’s illustrations have always been a refreshing interpretation of the world. For over a year, Félix has been working on and off on a series of illustrations called Bizarre, which sees him bring together elements and characters he found in magazines. “I revisit them and create new absurd, surrealist situations,” he explains. In other parts of his portfolio there’s an array of editorial commissions for Kiblind Magazine, the now-closed Lucky Peach, and Papier Magazine, as well as snippets of other illustrations that Félix sees as research “leading to something in the near future”.

His illustrations have a saturated quality to them with heavy black linework contrasted with strong shades of red, blue, green and yellow, taking the landscapes he depicts into more bizarre, futuristic territory. “I’m really interested in new technology and social innovation as they are a limitless source of creativity,” says Félix of his references. “Still, I’m not depicting a future, but I try to play with daily life and get something else from it. In that way I feel close to the work of Takashi Miike, Roland Topor, David Cronenberg, Toshiya Fujita and more.”

When we last featured Félix’s work, he’d just released his Riso-printed graphic novel Occulus and this recent batch of illustrations show progression in the methods and tools he’s now experimenting with. “I’ve recently started thinking about adding programming to my work, to create games or graphic applications – something you can interact with,” says the illustrator. In the mean time, Felix is mainly working with markers, air-brush and more recently coloured pencils. “I’ve got no ritual to start a drawing – it’s rare I get a specific idea of what I’m going to do, I’m used to changing direction when I’m working,” he says.

This spontaneous approach to his work leads to unexpected and humorous outcomes. “I’ve had feedback from people who see a political or social message in my drawings,” Félix says. “I’m totally out of this – I just portray comic and absurd situations, at the end people make their own story from it and that’s what I’m looking for.”

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Félix Decombat

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