At 26 years old, Gabriel Massan is already one of the most enthralling digital artists in the world. They have exhibited at “NFT Art Berlin” and the X Museum in Beijing, in addition to having their work commissioned by Red Bull, Budweiser and Motorola. Massan hails from Rio de Janeiro, where they taught themselves 3D worldbuilding after completing an unfulfilling degree in video art. Disheartened by what they saw as the classist and conservative nature of Brazilian art institutions, Massan relocated to Berlin in 2020, where there seemed to be a growing appetite for 3D techniques.
Using digital sculpture and animation, as well as video art and AR, Massan creates vast, multichromatic universes inhabited by abstract entities. The artist’s visual language is informed by the decentralisation of the human figure, and therefore influenced by things like Japanese manga and insects. This allows them to explore notions of otherness in a way that subverts the colonial systems entrenched in Brazil’s history.
In February 2023, Massan will launch an online game titled Third World, in collaboration with Serpentine Arts Technologies, and curated by fellow Dazed100er Tamar Clarke-Brown. Incorporating elements of Black-Indigenous Brazilian folklore into its design, the game will question whether play and practice has the power to influence the perceptions of our own existence.
Text Morna Fraser