Robert Del Naja

The Massive Attack member unearths a previously-unseen haunting skeletal artwork

Arts+Culture First Look
Naked Lunch 1994
Robert Del Naja

Taken from the November issue of Dazed & Confused:

For Massive Attack’s Protection (1994), Robert “3D” del Naja created a visceral series of images reflecting a hedonistic period filled with dread and inter-band tension. Here he unveils “Naked Lunch”, which has been hidden in his archive for 20 years.

“We were on the back of an unlikely successful first album, and at the time there was a lot of paranoia about cash and control. I’d be out three or four nights a week with Nellee Hooper but there was bad energy around too. We’d fallen out with everyone – our manager, Shara Nelson, Tricky. I also suffered a series of panic attacks. 

I created a series of paintings referencing identity crisis and consumer culture, with an obligatory twist of paranoia. I was painting in my garden shed at the time on A1 board, photographing the pieces and painting over some of them, only preserving a few I liked. 

I attempted to paint in the negative, so the colours are X-ray with the ribs and teeth exposed. The knife and fork is a universal symbol and an easy badge for consumerism. But looking back at it now I don’t find the image disturbing – it cheers me up, to be honest.” 

3D and The Art of Massive Attack is published by The Vinyl Factory on October 28

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