Casey Desmond’s fashions and music are unabashedly synthetic. Both radiate pink and purple sparkles, referencing an 80s new wave future that only came true for the happily enlightened. Thankfully, there’s plenty of substance beyond her electro beats and sci-fi ensembles to satisfy a post-Gaga world in need of saving.
Junker Jane’s Monster Dolls could whisper some scary stories in your ear if their mouths weren’t stitched into puckered grimaces. They’re made from scraps of patterned fabric that’s been through the ringer a few too many times.
Some of us can only envision magical realms in our dreams. Miss Pussycat somehow conjures that whimsical world into reality. Her artwork, photography and music document an alternative dimension populated by gleefully odd and sometimes mentally unbalanced puppets. Visit the psychedelic Happy Garden through DVD episodes of her mystery series Trixie and the Tree Trunks.
My toytronica obsession continues with a new album, Itsy Bits & Bubbles. Toy instruments meet hyperactive rhythm machines, broken music boxes, circuit-bent electronic gizmos, kitchen drawer percussion, and the bleeps and blurps of 8-bit videogames. Bite-sized tunes that are like Pop Rocks for your ears.
I can’t help dreaming weird back-stories for the disturbing dioramas and digital collages of CW Wells, aka Snailbooty. Plastic figurines have questionable encounters with monster-headed dolls in a slightly off-focus lilliputian world. The surreal tableaus are like scenes from the Eraserhead baby’s playsets.
Leslie Levings’ hand-sculpted Beastlies are ready for adoption. Wide bug eyes, oversized feet and fangs spilling out of crowded smiles hint that these cute creatures have yet to grow into their full potential for mischief. Their brightly colored spots, roly-poly bellies and playful expressions will win you over now, but will they seem so adorable [...]
Nothing inspires artists like the challenge of limitations. If LEGO is an artform, then Angus MacLane is the Pablo Picasso of block builders. His signature CubeDudes are made on a tiny scale with strict structural parameters and very few colors. Mini abstract versions of iconic characters delight with the details. It’s a refreshingly creative response to the toy company’s overly complex and brand-conscious direction these days.