The art movement known as “Pop Surrealism” or “Lowbrow” has excited the public with its mixture of nostalgia, decadence, and delicious weirdness.
Originating as a hybridization “bastard” art movement, it is now taken seriously by museums and galleries and has an increasingly mainstream fan base. This exhibition is grounded in the work of artist Robert Williams and extends the movement out to encompass many contemporary artists working in the style pioneered by Williams.
Associated with Hyper Realism and Pop Surrealist movements, as well as the wellknown alternative art chronicle JUXTAPOZ magazine, Robert Williams has been one of the forerunners of the self-proclaimed "Lowbrow" art movement's rise to prominence in the U.S. since the late 20th century.
Williams' paintings draw from comic books, hot rod illustrations, crude cartoons, and visually jarring psychedelic colors, all executed in hyper-realist detail. His work is instantly recognizable and his influence can be seen in the works of the other contemporary Lowbrow artists featured in this exhibit.
California Kustom - Presented by Baby Tattooville, explores the dynamic artistic expressions that have developed around the themes of nostalgia, outrageous humor, and a hint of sarcasm that are ever-present in the Lowbrow movement. Although some artists do not even consider their work to be “Lowbrow” or “Pop Surrealist”, they credit many of their influences to have come from the movement.
In this exhibit, viewers will be able to observe how, along with Robert Williams, artists Anthony Ausgang, Van Arno, Coop, Ron English, Michael Hussar, Johnny Ryan, Suzanne Williams, and William Stout have expanded the movement into different areas of expression that further broadens the already loose term that is “Lowbrow.”