Dotan Bahat creates modern-day hybrids in a series he calls Alpha Men. The alpha male is the dominant one in a group of males. Dotan explains, "Alpha Men is a tongue-in-cheek comment on masculinity; each character represents a symbolic male role - men in various roles of power - and its animal head either compliments or contradicts its bearer’s designated role."
Dotan's artistic study of masculinity is inspired by his time in the Israeli infantry. There he witnessed and experienced the jarring halt of adolescence and rapid maturation Israel's compulsory army service requires.
Original Giclee art prints on top quality 410gr Epson paper. Size: 30cm x 40cm (approx 12”x15.7”). Signed by the artist, LIMITED EDITION of 25. Unframed.
Prints are $335 each plus $50 shipping.
1. Rabbit Boxer
2. Chameleon Man
3. The Parrot
4. Gorilla Wrestler
5. Wolf Hunter
6. General Crow
Click "more" to read descriptions of each piece.
Ships in 1-2 days.
In the artist's own words:
The Crow General:
Crows (or ravens) are so often associated with death and disaster (war anyone…?): Their nasty carrion eating habit, their dark plumage and eerie calls made them quite a notorious name in common beliefs. I can’t think of a better animal to portray an army general.
"People once believed that when someone dies, a Crow carries their soul to the land of the dead, but sometimes something so bad happens that a terrible sadness is carried with it and the soul can't rest. Then sometimes, just sometimes, the Crow can bring the soul back and put the wrong things right” (from the graphic novel The Crow/James O’Barr, 1999); a crow can cross the ultimate metaphysical barrier – death itself. The crow is the conveyor to the land of the dead but he can also come back.
The Chameleon Politician:
The chameleon-politician is the ultimate absolute power alpha male of the modern age. He is not a sentimental symbol, nor is he brute alpha male like the boxer or the hunter for instance. He is pure elegance, a man in control of destiny, not just his but the nation’s as well. His body language, typical politician posture, meant to reassure, suggests, as I see it, some secrets bound. The chameleon, best known for its ability to change its skin colour to blend with its background. Like our politician, shifting back and forth to fit the ‘correct’ mood.
The Rabbit Boxer:
The idea of the rabbit/hare head could be interpreted in many ways: coward/ cute/ fertile (in that case manly)/swift and much more; The rabbit in Alice in Wonderland, an important piece of fantasy work, plays a key-role in the story; Alice follows the white rabbit and falls down the rabbit-hole. The rabbit is the link between the real and the surreal, the usher to the beyond.
Man with rabbit heads also appear in movies like Donnie Darko and Sexy Beast as messengers of grief and a clear sign that something has gone a little awry.
The Wolf Hunter:
A hunter is probably the most primeval male symbol of them all:
From the dawn of mankind men have been hunters. Men are predators and as such, need to hunt their food. Prehistoric cave-men risked their lives hunting gigantic Mammoths and Sabre tooth tigers; hunting to survive, to stay alive. Hunters nowadays have nothing to do with their primeval peers; hunting is now a sport, practiced by men with guns and traps. There is no longer a natural balance between predators and prey; men broke the cycle, bent the scale. Wolves suffer a bad reputation in myths and fairy tales and popular beliefs. Werewolves’ stories have made the wolf a symbol of evil a subject for fear and terror. Wolves are sometime portrayed as evil beasts with an appetite for human flesh. The famous Brothers Grimm’s tale Little Red Riding Hood tells a story of a young girl's encounter with a wolf. The story serves as a morality tale, teaching children not to "wander off the path” and depicting the wolf as a cunning, treacherous and vicious animal. Ironically, the hero of this story is the hunter, coming to the rescue, killing the killer wolf and saving the heroine and her grandmother.
The Parrot Model:
The proud parrot in my work is a symbol of vanity, beauty cult and worship of the human body. Beauty rituals have not skipped modern men; men pamper, clean, cut, shave, wax and groom: long gone is the old notion of coarse manhood. My parrot also suggests another relevant manifestation of manhood – homosexuality. Gay culture is as manly as manly can get, sometime even to a degree of excessiveness; to be more men then men. A parrot, an overtly loud, colourful and handsome bird is the perfect match for my dandy model.
The Gorilla Wrestler:
My gorilla wrestler is the modest of the bunch. I consider him to be almost in the bottom of the "food-chain", he is simple brute yet a gentle one. His role is basic, in his mind he is truly an alpha male; a powerful fighter in the ring, a modern day gladiator.
To us he seems a little coarse and clumsy, not a benchmark of fitness, beauty and wit. A gorilla is the most formidable primate of them all, its massive body size and legendary strength have been subject to celebrated tales of horror; the most renowned example in popular culture is the story of King Kong the gigantic emotional ape wrecking havoc in New York City, protecting his beloved frightened fragile love interest. Like the mighty Kong, my wrestler struggles in conflict between his maleness might and his more sensitive undeveloped emotional side.