After Illustration, my class took a trip across town to a local comic book shop; Mekanik Strip. Mekanik Strip is one of the largest comic book shops in all of Europe, priding itself on carry every American and European comic book and graphic novel in print since 1981. When walking into the store, one is totally consumed in the vibrant colors of book bindings, filling shelves floor to ceiling with every artist book, comic and graphic novel; enough to make Stan Lee or Paul Pope blush. And though this shop is truly a candy store of any up and coming illustration student out there; this is not what brought us there that day.
On the second floor of the shop, there is a large gallery space.
The show is called "Paris Calling", organized by Antwerp native and Sint Lucas alumni, Eva Cardon. The show was comprised of artists form the Parisian art collective, Arts Factory (a list of all artist in the show is at the bottom of this post).
The show was really amazing, Eva was there to give us a small walk-about and explain some of the work. The overall style is very much within in the underground art scene; works and artists that could easily be found in Juxtapoz and other so-called underground art publications.
I was able to take some photos of the show, and a few "close up" of the pieces.
In terms of its influences, I think that most of the work is a rather blatant rejection of "classical" or rather traditional thought and illustration. I find some of it to be rather compelling, cutting edge, and helping to shape the way we read our images; however it can come off as kitschy and fad-ish. Nevertheless, a fantastic show, and a great visual experience!
(side note: I find it extremely irritating that well-known artists like the following do not have websites. This is truly a detriment to their careers. Whether they are actively seeking commission work or not, a website is essential in order to capture viewers and continually expand your audience. I tried to include as many as possible).
(sorry for the lack of posts; it has been a bit of a hard time lately; trying to juggle several commissions with school work and still adjusting to European life. But this is not a valid excuse. This week coming up I will be taking a trip to Amsterdam to see the Van Gogh Museum as well as the Anne Frank House, so a very intensive set of posts to come)
Until next time...