Camouflage patterns are paradoxical. On one hand they are associated with the
oppressive force of the military, while on the other they are a representation of the
shapes and colours of nature. As traditional military camouflage uniforms become
increasingly redundant in evading detection on today’s high tech battlefields and the
popularity of camouflage in areas of civilian culture such as art, fashion, and music
continues to rise, is it losing its significance as a military symbol?
Now, after seven years of research, DPM (Disruptive Pattern Material) will be the
most comprehensive book ever released on the subject of camouflage. Compiled and
published by Maharishi’s Hardy Blechman, DPM is a 944-page encyclopaedic art book
that charts the history of camouflage that is illustrated with over 5,000 images (many
previously unpublished) and split into three very different sections.
The story begins in the natural world with the colours, markings, and deceptive
techniques that have evolved in plants and animals over millennia. This initial ‘Nature’
section describes the many ways in which organisms hide from and deceive one
another with phenomena such as disruptive patterns, mimicry, and countershading.
Stunning imagery for this section has been acquired from a number of renowned
sources such as National Geographic, Oxford Scientific Films, and the award-winning
underwater photographer Dr Alexander Mustard.
A refreshingly original take on the development of military camouflage is presented
in the second section of DPM with an emphasis on the crucial role that artists played
in translating protective colouration and disruptive patterns from the natural world
to the uniforms and machineries of war. From the drab uniforms of the late 19th
century, to the ‘disruptive pattern revolution’ during WWI, to the introduction of printed
camouflage uniforms prior to WWII, and right up to the techniques of hiding from
today’s electromagnetic sensors – the history of the armed forces’ use of camouflage
and deceptive techniques is described in detail. The supplementary book DPM: Military
Camouflage Patterns of the World is the most extensive guide to official military
camouflage patterns ever published with details of the past and present camouflage
uniforms of 107 nations around the world.
The contemporary spread of camouflage patterns beyond their military context is
undeniable. The final ‘Culture’ section of DPM documents this expansion of camouflage
into the work of painters, sculptors, graphic designers, graffiti artists, architects, fashion
designers, musicians, film stars, toy designers, and a myriad of other groups. This section
includes, among other things: a study of how artists such as Andy Warhol came to use
camouflage; a guide to the innovative camouflage patterns devised by clothing labels;
photographs of famous camo-clad cultural icons such as Robert De Niro, David Beckham,
and the Notorious BIG; and pictures of a mind-boggling array of camouflage artefacts.
Throughout this unique book a strong anti-war sentiment is expressed as DPM
challenges perceptions about the militaristic, aggressive associations of camouflage
and seeks to remind people of its natural origins and aesthetic beauty. DPM is the most
authoritative book of camouflage ever published and an indispensable modern reference
guide for both the novice and seasoned camoufleur.
“a monumental achievement” Stephen Bayley in The Times.
“an amazing work of love” Veronica Horwell in The Guardian.
“Best Books of 2004” in Wallpaper’s Design Awards.
“Pick of the Picture Books” in The Independent.
DPM: Disruptive Pattern Material
Compiled & Edited by Hardy Blechman & Alex Newman
Researched by Hardy Blechman, Alex Newman, Tom Trinkle, Ben Velez, Neil Davenport, Hiywet Abate, Simonez Wolf, Dr J F Borsarello
Graphics by Michael Hernan, Russell Maurice, Lee Glasspool, Tom Messenger, Stuart Daly.
Military Consultants Gary Paine , JP Soulier, Eric Larson & members of the International Camouflage Uniform Society