The following thoughts could also carry the title “cannibalistic years in the artist’s life”; these years characterising the artists’ wanderings into the wild. What is more interesting though is the reoccurring nature of those periods. Those are times of adolescent feel for the work and for themselves; it can be manifested as self-destruction or as violent approach to whatever consists the arts, from the social extent of it to its very core, the artwork itself. In those times, materials are stretched to bring out something that they can not, codes of social behaviour and community tolerance are disturbed, the instinct of self-preservation of the artist is sunk; just envision it and then think what it can produce, good or evil.
It is more common to go through this in younger age, when the flame in the guts is burning full blast, leaving no space for reasonable doubts. The options, this open terrain of youth, are the pegs keeping the eyes and the guts on red alert. However, artists may also start as good-will soldiers fighting for the cause in terms of fair game, if there is such thing. Inevitably, sooner or later a rage occurs eating its own goodies first and before anything. Maybe the most common though is the model of reoccurring cannibalism as result to attempts of aligning to something that is crooked to begin with.
Let’s not call it the “urge to break boundaries”, an expression (and notion) so overused that I see it already floating in the pond of clichés. Let’s avoid explanations on temperaments and social positioning too. Cannibalism, eating one’s own, is a primal scream; maybe to such call we’ll one day awake from our numbed walk.