PEN TO PAPER
Pictoplasma Publishing, Berlin
Edited by Peter Thaler and Lars Denicke
with prefaces by Michael Bonesteel and Alex Michon
Pages: 240 pages, fully coloured
Format: 18,4 x 22,3 cm / 7.24 x 8.78 in
Published: April 2010
The recent revival of dilettante and outsiders art has brought an immense visual wealth to the world of illustration, fine art and character design. Artists release their creativity through spontaneous freehand drawing and create untamed, edgy and unparalleled beings. Their fast, eruptive and rough drawing techniques can be seen as a therapy to the sterility of the flood of digital images. Common sympathy seekers, consumer mascots and pop icon characters are re-traced and translated into an emotional, personal, diary-like language.
Pictoplasma presents a fine selection of the most adventurous images from a global scene of artists, working mainly with a pen or analogue techniques such as water colour, ink or collage. Pen to Paper showcases the key players of what is being labelled “DIY art” “fractured figuration” or “new psychedelic folk”, with works by Mehdi Hercberg alias Shoboshobo, Allyson Mellberg Taylor, Andrew James Jones, John Casey, Luke Ramsey, Eric Shaw, Thomas Bernard, Lane Hagood, Stéphane Prigent alias Kerozen and many more.
“These Pen to Paper artists are going about the thing in the right way. They are making work that comes from highly personal, idiosyncratic places deep within themselves, and not merely attempting to affect the style or appearance of being strange and bizarre. Rather than try to artistically look like outsiders, they are trying to artistically act like outsiders.”
“What is evident in the work is an edgy spagettification of the figure. The figures on show here are diss-Disneyfied with all the cuteness squeezed out, like dolls whose faces and bodies have been defaced with biro. Old school pen and paper seem to be an alluring antidote.”