Saturday, February 25, 2006

CRG Travels East

Camille Rose Garcia, Mary Read and her Mermaid Army,
(n.d.; from her web site.)

I can't tell you how pleased I am to have learned last night that Camille Rose Garcia will be showing new artwork at the Jonathan Levine Gallery in New York City in April.

CRG is a member of a vibrant group of artists comprising the West Coast lowbrow movement. And even though her paintings are shown together in groups that are linked by complex structural narratives, her work has only recently been published in book form. The Saddest Place on Earth, (Last Gasp) is available now; The Magic Bottle: A BLAB Storybook, (Fantagraphics) will be available in the summer.

CRG's work is best described in her own words; here's how she provides a broad description of what links her prints, drawings, and paintings:
"There's usually a villain and some kind of revolutionary force, which tends to be female. When I start to paint, other things will sneak into the story, and I let that stuff happen. I like it to be an organic process." (Quoted in Marisa Solis, "Army of Darkness: Camille Rose Garcia Fights the Forces of Evil," Juxtapoz #62, March 2006.)

The paintings that will be shown in New York are part of a group that CRG calls "Subterranean Death Clash." Here's how she describes them (again, from the piece in Juxtapoz):
The story is that the world gets so overpopulated that everyone has to start digging underground. Finally they meet up with the dead, and so they have to battle with the dead for space and energy. Essentially, they're literally digging their own graves, digging their way down to death. But they think they're surviving.

I would be remiss if I failed to report on the über-cool CRG figurines that have been sculpted by Dave Pressler and marketed by the Necessaries Toy Foundation. I came upon them in a store here in Philadelphia the other week, and the force of my double-take almost damaged my neck.

Finally, even more good news: in the article I've already cited above, CRG says that she's "actually starting [her] own toy company in California that will be environmentally sustainable ... and some [toys] should be available before Christmas."

Nirvana: one-stop shopping for my nieces and nephews!

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