Nukke‘s pop art began with pencil and pastel. Her early drawings, predominantly figural compositions, were luxuriously abundant in color with a glittering, incandescent, poisonously glistening color scale and had strong contours. Everything was decadently extravagant. Gold and lemon yellow, copper red, diamond green, purple, salmon pink, flesh pink – all these eye – catching color concoctions abundant in adrenaline werw already a part of Nukke‘s primary arsenal in her early work. Erotic figures already familiar to us from her earlier graphic prints took their place on this flowing fabric of color, although now tattooed in multiple colors and in revelous, languorous poses. Cutouts from glamour publications nevertheless began all at once to pile up, stick and append to her pencil drawings. Her personal style of drawing later adapted on its own to the color scheme of glossy pictures and finally, it disappeared from her pictures altogether. Collage became her primary method of work. Cutouts from picture magazines now combine with computer-altered images, are printed onto transparent sheets of plastic and edged with soft, sparkling velvet or black brocade hem. Black silk backdrops are not uncommon. The result is sweet, attractively sweet. New, borrowed main characters also appear – sex pot Ilona Staller, fashion model Naom Campell, comic Rowan Atkinson, rock legend Mick Jagger, Kurt Cobain, Madonna and others – super beings that appear to be everywhere and who form the pantheistic tip of contemporary pop culture. Gods, stars, sprites media moguls, models and film heros.
A sarcastic undertone is uncovered in Nukke‘s work regardless of the fact that it all began in such beautiful colors. Some characters, however, are outright grotesque and striped with stitching threads, after all, the elevation of the mortal to immortality is transparently hypocritical. We can surmise that her collage fosters the formation of a nihilistic view of the world; the notion that every thing can mean whatever. Moving on from here we arrive at Nukke‘s subjective truth that this omnidenotative something need not necessarily be a picture. It can be anything at all. The size and shape of Nukke‘s pictures begin to vary widely , shrinking on occasion into a chest emblem, then adapting into a sleeve emblem, suddenly growing into an altar-like triptych and from there on into incomprehensible objects and transparent assemblages which resemble attractive contraptions in the display windows of fashion boutiques. The same lead characters also symbolize different things in different pictures, just as gods incarnate themselves when necessary into whomever they choose. Sometimes even the poses are the same. Everything means everything. Madonna with her breasts spread apart symbolizes three Greek goddesses at once in the work named “Paris‘s Decision”. Sometimes pop art uses such a simple approach that this fact alone already makes it significant. Nukke know how to draw attention to this – her art is to a great extent also an analysis of pop art. We see that her lust for glamour is not as innocent as it first appeared to be. While creating pop art, she simultaneously studies its anatomy. A sober thinker is concealed behind the colorful pictures.
Johannes Saar “Artists of Estonia 2” (Center for Contemporary Arts, Estonia 2000)