February 21, 2010

Mark Ryden!

You should know Mark Ryden's work even if you don't care at all about modern art. For one, he's the guy responsible for the cover of Michael Jackson's Dangerous, as well as for Stephen King's Desperation and The Regulators. In fact, I'll bet you've seen quite a lot of Ryden's designs over the years within various low-brow publications or re-printed as decorative art anywhere there's need for a bit of a "psychedelic" touch.

With this background, it's rather easy to dismiss Ryden as the populist "hired-hands" type, instead of the serious artist that he's been promoted as, but in this day and age does it matter at all what brand we stick on his ass? The important thing is that his art is, how shall we put it, fucked up all the way through. Intriguing and unsettling, baffling and enchanting, Ryden's world is that of Alice's Wonderland only tons more sinister and explicit in its allusions to politics, pop culture and pedophilia.

Ryden has several exhibitions behind his name including the upcoming The Gay 90's Olde Tyme Art Show, which will see the light of day this April in New York. The best of them, however, would have to be The Meat Show (1998) and Blood (2003), which depict the nameless heroines facing utter corruption with either wonder or pervasive melancholia. The pics presented here are a small selection from the Blood show; if you want to see more of this guy, head straight to his website and never look back.

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