Friday, July 17, 2009

Max Ernst

This past Wednesday the Graphic Novels Book Club met to discuss Epileptic by David B., a memoir about B.’s childhood and growing up with an epileptic brother. What struck me about the book were the intricately drawn panels that depicted serpents, demons, and elaborate battle scenes. A New York Magazine review of the book stated that Epileptic does “things that only comics can do”, and I’m in complete agreement. The emotion he is able to capture just couldn’t be done using any other format.

David B. had many influences over his work, but one of the influences he mentioned in Epileptic was Max Ernst. I will admit that I know very little about art and had never heard of Ernst before, so I decided to check out a book or two at the library on him. Some of you may recognize Ernst’s name due to his influence on the members and the music of The Mars Volta. Ernst began Surrealist Automatism and was a leading member of the Dada movement. His images are bizarre, beautiful, and dreamlike, reflecting his focus on producing artwork that originated from the subconscious. While it is quite different from David B.’s work, the influence is definitely there. Of course, we have Epileptic and a number of books about Max Ernst at the library for your viewing and reading pleasure.

Epileptic by David B.

Max Ernst: A Retrospective

Max Ernst: Dada and the Dawn of Surrealism

Eight Painters: The Surrealist Context


Kathryn said...

Be sure and check out painter and writer Leonora Carrington. When she was very young, she was the lover and muse of Ernst, and subject of some of his paintings.

Ragged Robin said...

I definitely will! Thanks for the recommendation!

RegDad said...

Sounds Great