Cole Kush takes animation into the uncanny valley

Cole Kush takes animation into the uncanny valley

There’s no denying that the work of Canada-based Cole Kush feels like a fever dream. Uncanny anthropomorphic figures and distorted pop culture iconography fill up the animator and computer artist’s portfolio – and the work is all the more alluring for it. There’s a ‘pull’, so to speak, in each photo that keeps us entranced by Cole’s work. They’re hilarious, intricate, and creative. “I’d like to think the visuals I make are funny, but I also enjoy adding elements of confusion, health, mundane surrealism, and overt positivity,” Cole tells It’s Nice That on what typically constitutes a Cole Kush piece of art. Whilst certainly apt in his summary of the visual aesthetic, it’s also worth noting that Cole is undeniably innovative: his work is at the forefront of 3D animation and surrealist humour.

“I think my style is a lack of any actual training in visual art and just figuring out weird shortcuts,” explains Cole on what gave him such a distinct unique point of view. “My background is in biology and clinical science, which I think had a big influence on my work.” It’s true that his work feels somewhat scientific in nature. The limit of human possibility is often stretched and distorted in his characters, or they’re otherwise placed in clinical environments where something’s gone askew. When pressed on what else orbits his stratosphere of influences, Cole comes up with an impressively diverse list: “I’d say some other important influences include small towns, big clunky technology, chatrooms, complex health issues, slow pace, laughter, and the absurdity of being alive.”

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