Monday, June 15, 2009

Kaws Captivates

Artists, including the great Masters, have been using icons for centuries to visually bridge the gap of language and create instant mental shortcuts. Religious symbols, fruit and the naked female body, to name a few, have long been used by artists to convey meaning. Now we have Kaws, aka Brian Donnelly, a young and very successful Brooklyn artist who has the attention of the up and coming generation in a way that predecessors such as Peter Max and Andy Warhol did with visually stimulating pop icons. His work--punctuated with familiar territory such as Mickey Mouse, the Smurfs, the Michelin Man and The Simpsons, who of us after all hasn't been captivated by puffy characters sometime in our lives--is very popular with the Japanese, and at one glance you can understand why, though it might be somewhat more difficult to articulate.

Add to that his notorious start as a graffiti artist, and his involvement with mass produced vinyl figures and you have a recipe for a massive following of young at heart, and heavy of pocket book. He is also adept at self promotion, a recent public exhibit included rows of sculptures of his own head bearing his own iconic ball cap in bright colors. Have you felt the Kaws yet? See more of his work here. Enjoy--Ruth Mitchell

Early Rise 2008 Acrylic on canvas 40 x 40 available at Gering & López Gallery 730 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY

(c) 2009 - Ruth Mitchell - all rights reserved

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