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Leopardskin Nuclear Bomber No.2 combines the imagery of predatory beasts and nuclear weaponry. This association between nuclear and animal aggression focuses on the self-destructive forces that Self believes govern human behaviour. Nails protruding from the nose section emphasise the hostile, sinister nature of the work. The elongated pink fuselage of the plane is overtly phallic, carrying connotations of sexual aggression. This work exemplifies the mood of anxiety and menace that informs Self’s work of the early 1960s.

February 2016