Tim Biskup: new interview and book from the great pop surrealist

We've posted on Boing Boing about Tim Biskup's pop surrealist artwork for decades and he's still busier than ever. Most recently, he's opened a new gallery and studio space in Los Angeles called Face Guts, created album art for Lee "Scratch" Perry, and is finally publishing his first monograph, titled Tree of Life. In the new issue of Juxtapoz, Patricia Arquette talks with Tim about his life and work. From Juxtapoz:

You were a punk rocker, right? Do you think that gave you better tools for survival?

Yes. Being able to say, "Fuck it, I don't care," is a very healthy thing. I've often said that the most valuable art supply that you have is right here.

That's your middle finger.

Yes. There's so much of punk rock that is based on loose energy. It's not necessarily about doing everything right. It's about capturing the energy of that moment. There's so much punk rock music that is perfect and there's so much of it that just sounds like trash. I think punk rock taught me how easy it is to make shitty music and how easy it is to make great music. The element that makes the difference is a willingness to work hard on the things that you need to work on and to ignore the things that don't matter. That lesson has followed me through everything in my life. There are a lot of times where I'm like, "Oh, shoot. I'm not doing this part right," but it doesn't matter.

Read the rest

Mark Ryden's new micro-portfolio for sale

Mark Ryden and Porterhouse Fine Art Editions have published a new micro-portfolio of Ryden's paintings and drawings from his recent exhibitions The Gay 90's Olde Tyme Art Show and The Gay Nineties West. The postcards are 9" x 6" and packaged in a gold foil stamped and embossed card stock box.

Micro Portfolio 7 - The Gay 90’s Exhibition - 1st Printing

Read the rest

Arts commissioner enraged over Mark Ryden's 'anti-Christian' work in Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art

Our pals at the excellent art magazine Hi-Fructose partnered with MOCA, which curated what appears to be an incredible pop surrealism retrospective opening next week at the Virginia Museum of contemporary Art. Last week, one of the commissioners on the Virginia Beach Arts and Humanities Commission saw a painting by renowned artist Mark Ryden and flipped out. From WAVY:

“Look at this, she’s got a saw in her hand cutting off a piece of ham with the words on the ham ‘Corpus Christi.’ That is Latin for body of Christ, and the hand is dropping down and eaten by rats.” Loyola says. He also pointed out that the girl is wearing a first communion dress with a crucifix around her neck, and a figure of Jesus on a bottle of wine. Also there’s a rabbit pouring a teapot with blood is coming out.

“This is very anti-Christian and anti-Catholic. I was shocked to see this,” he says...

“She is holding the severed head, and blood is spraying up and showering her in blood. Is this what we are subsidizing at MOCA?” Loyola asks...

(MOCA executive director Debi Gray responded,) “Art is intended to be controversial. Too some degree it’s intended to spark dialog, and I am delighted it has fulfilled our mission."

Loyola countered, “I’m responding to her false claim. Obviously she feels she can do what she wants with taxpayer money. Not on my watch.”

Loyola is concerned that Ryden, in his work, pokes fun of religion.

“I am really not poking fun at religion.

Read the rest

See Camille Rose Garcia's mind-blowing new paintings, including a Bowie portrait!

Pop surrealist pioneer Camille Rose Garcia returns to Seattle's Roq La Rue Gallery tonight, March 3, with a magnificent new show of phantasmagoric paintings! This remarkable exhibition, titled "Animus Chrysalis Mortis," hangs until April 2. Garcia says:

For this body of work I was inspired by the surrealist and deeply symbolic films of Alejandro Jodorowsky, Jungian archetypes, and Greek mythology. I created a personal language of symbols, then made a card set and selected at random a different set for each new painting. This method taps into the elements of subconscious influence and chance, as well as mirrors the cut-up method of writing created by one of my favorite authors William Burroughs.

From these subconscious suggestions I created a lush and layered symbolic world that explores the realm of childhood, memory and longing. Ghosts and gardens, snakes and skulls frame fever-dream scenes of wounded goddesses slayed open, fecund gardens growing from their wounds. Vibrant strange gardens populated with insects and dream imagery portray a psychedelic dance between life and death.

Read the rest

New Robert Williams art book signing this weekend in Los Angeles

Bob Self says: "Godfather of Lowbrow (although he prefers the term "Feral Art”) and founder of Juxtapoz magazine Robert Williams will be signing a limited number of his forthcoming art book Slang Aesthetics at the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery this Saturday, March 28th at 2:00 PM. The gallery is currently exhibiting his epic new collection of paintings and sculpture. It’s well with a trip to Barnsdall Park to see the remarkable work in all of its eye-popping and thought-provoking glory, and the signing this weekend will be the first time the book is available anywhere. Books were flown from the factory specifically for this signing, and won’t be widely available until the end of next month."

I took a bunch of photos from the exhibition, which features work by Williams and dozens of other low brow/pop surrealists:

Read the rest

Matt Ritchie's sketchbook

Over at Juxtapoz, pop surrealist painter/designer Alex Pardee admires the work of Matt Ritchie, aka Matt136. While Ritchie's art includes everything from large-scale paintings to furniture, I'm most drawn (sorry) to the pen-and-ink pieces from his sketchbook. "The Art of Matt Ritchie" Read the rest