Derek Eller Gallery is pleased to present two major works in our main gallery: Horror Hospital Unplugged by Keith Mayerson and Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Dominic McGill. From Mayerson’s evocation of youth, desire, and agency lost in the world of corporate commodity culture to McGill’s manic mapping of the continuing global financial crisis, these masterfully drawn works combine image and text in contrasting narrative strategies with subversive and revelatory results.
For the first time ever on view, Keith Mayerson will present 225+ original drawings and the two cover paintings that compose Horror Hospital Unplugged, a pioneering graphic novel by Keith Mayerson and the writer Dennis Cooper about rock ‘n roll, queer love, and a quest for identity. The ink drawings on paper (and some mixed media works) demonstrate a multitude of styles, a sensitivity to Cooper’s ideas, and an obsessive inventiveness. Originally published in 1996, Horror Hospital Unplugged was selected as one of Publisher’s Weekly’s “best fiction books of the year.” Recently republished for a new generation by HarperPerennial, Horror Hospital Unplugged is a singular work inspired by the Symbolists, 90’s indie rock, Japanese prints, Manga, comic and art history that has been described as “if Antonin Artaud and Keith Haring took the wrong drugs and collaborated on a kids cartoon show.” The sprawling installation of drawings will exhibit Mayerson’s formal range and expansive vision. The republished book will be for sale at the gallery, and there will be a book signing and live comics reading on Wednesday, October 26th, from 6:30 to 7:30pm.
Keith Mayerson lives and works in New York City. Since 1993, his paintings and drawings have been shown internationally. His work resides in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Cleveland Museum of Art, and the Corcoran Gallery, Washington, D.C.
Dominic McGill’s Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds is a large-scale mixed media work on paper that depicts the current global financial crisis through quotations from ideologues that helped forge neoliberal economic policies, notably Ayn Rand, Margaret Thatcher, Alan Greenspan, Larry Summers, and Henry Paulson. The work takes its title from a book by Charles Mackay from 1841, which describes various economic scams and bubbles in the past that preempt the present western economic system. The composition is dominated by a homunculus-like collaged-figure rendered in the palette of Hieronymous Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights and conjures the blind and harum-scarum march of history and power. Also on view will be Whatever is conscious wears out, a sculpture based on the 16th/17th century tradition of Vanitas, in which an object or image provokes one to ruminate on the inevitability of death, the resulting inconsequence of earthly possessions, and thus encourages the contemplation of God. McGill adds, “I have extended this to consider the exchange of God for Spectacle and thus our own unsatisfactory end.”
Dominic McGill lives and works in Brighton, England. His work has appeared in numerous gallery and museum exhibitions in the United States and Europe. His work resides in the permanent collections of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Rose Art Museum, and the Davis Museum and Cultural Center.
North Room: Brian Fahlstrom
Brian Fahlstrom presents new oil paintings that wrestle with figuration and abstraction, the past and present, the seen and unseen. His intensive process, delicately layered paint, and keen instinct for color, generates absorbing and enlivening paintings. Inspired by Giovanni di Paolo’s (1400 – 1482) panel painting John the Baptist Entering the Wilderness and his manuscript paintings illustrating Dante’s Paradiso, along with Cimabue’s (1240 – 1302) Basilica of San Francesco d’Assisi fresco which depicts St. John of the Apocalypse after retreating to the Isle of Patmos where he receives divine visions from an angel, Fahlstrom views his own work as depictions of journeys both supernatural and physical, and he sees paint as a conduit for mystical experience.
Brian Fahlstrom lives and works in Los Angeles. His work has recently been shown at Meulensteen, New York and Marc Foxx, Los Angeles. His work resides in the permanent collections of the Oakland Museum of Art and the Orange County Museum of Art.