Aug 10, 2011

Monsters, Tough Guys & Guts in SF

4:32 PM

085 by Joshua Lim Photography
Photo courtesy of Joshua Lim Photography

Art exhibit at a high-fashion women's clothing store? I thought it was going to be a nightmare. I would have put money down that the gallery would be either a bunch of abstract nonsense or a collection of yawn-inducing still life.

Wrong and wrong again! The collection at RGB shop+gallery was nothing short of awesome. And that comes from someone fresh outta Comic-Con.

The show is called Monsters, Tough Guys & Guts, and that's about the best four-word description you could possibly give this display of multi-surface massacre. Monsters laying waste to cities. Tough guys decapitating monsters and… other tough guys. Guts everywhere. And there's even some good ol' anti-establishment works that late '80s-era Cube, Dre, Eazy, Ren and Yella would surely outbid everyone for.

My favorite part is a three-piece sequence of tough guy dominance by Zejian Shen. On top, an armored cyclops warrior on a horse slices all three heads of a bat-wielding troll as blood sprays out to the edge of the paper. On bottom, a scuba diver stabs a killer octopus. In the middle, the two victors from the top and bottom meet and high-five while the warrior lugs around one of the decapitated heads. All three images are set on a white background, and the only color is a sunset red that marks the warrior's armor, the scuba diver's accessories, the octopus and the three-headed troll's blood.

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Those pieces are a little outside of my financial range, but I did buy another really cool one from Amanda Carmel: A large horizontal water color of a city being destroyed by a huge purple octopus firing lasers from its eyes. It's going to look great over my dinner table.

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Bay Area dwellers can see Monsters, Tough Guys & Guts at RGB shop+gallery in San Francisco until September 1. There might be a closing party, too – check out rgbsf.com for details.

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