Using science fiction action figures, David Eger restages famous moments from history and popular culture. He is a master of playful surprises and storytelling, reinventing classic images with imperial, intergalactic troopers. Eger also skillfully takes inspiration from Warhol, Hopper, and other great artists, and then turns it into moments of joyful wonderment. The meaning and aesthetics are changed, yet the result is cosmically entertaining. Eger is a passionate science fiction fan and an experienced photo artist who is no stranger to experimentation.
About the Work
For decades, science fiction films have kept moviegoers rapt, developing into a cultural phenomenon. Everyone knows the interstellar heroes and the evil villains with whom they are locked in a bitter battle. In science fiction films, the fate of the galaxy is often at stake, and we are enormously entertained. David Eger infuses elements of the genre into contexts where we are not used to seeing them.
In “Troopers Atop A Skyscraper” Eger recreates Charles Ebbets’ 1932 classic “Lunchtime Atop A Skyscraper”. Instead of construction workers, however, imperial troopers are taking a lunch break at dizzying heights, a moment of respite from the day’s endeavors. Trading stories, no doubt, of the emperor and rebellion.
“V-J Day in Times Square” by Alfred Eisenstaedt is an iconic photograph: a sailor kissing a nurse at Times Square to celebrate the end of the war. Eger gives this scene a playful and surprising lightness by setting two interstellar troopers in the starring roles. Is there finally peace in a galaxy far, far away?
The intergalactic jazz cantina, a meeting place for all manner of dubious characters from across the universe, is considered by science fiction aficionados to be a particular highlight in the history of film. Eger merges this beloved scene with Edward Hopper’s famous painting "Nighthawks" to recreate the cantina as a New York diner. The artist combines two genre classics into a new composition that everyone can enjoy – a masterful fusion of instantly recognizable imagery.
Eger takes on an infinitely diverse range of images. In addition to classic art, he also tackles major moments in history for his action figure reimaginings. These include the moon landing, the legendary boxing match between Muhammad Ali and Sonny Liston, and the Black Power salute at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico.
In addition to his long-established work as a photo artist, David Eger teaches art and photography in Ontario, Canada. His work with science fiction action figures earned him international acclaim. On January 1, 2011, he started a project, in which he created one photograph with his action figures each day for a year. He oriented himself on the work of renowned photographers, but also used historical events as a springboard for his work.
The impetus for his project was an assignment he had given to his students coupled with his own interest in science fiction films. He refers to himself as a very passionate science fiction fan. Eger's work was discovered and honored through a photography contest at the Visual Arts Mississauga gallery in Ontario, where the jury awarded his “Trooper vs Trooper” second place. The jurors were impressed by his attention to detail in recreating the boxing match between Ali and Liston, as well as Eger’s technically perfect execution.
In his models, Eger shows an incredible eye for detail. In his staging, he places enormous worth on authenticity, making an enormous effort to capture the atmosphere of the original while presenting it in a new light. He demonstrates great craftsmanship, using various materials to recreate entire film sets and historic scenes.