Tuesday, November 22, 2016

"Large Marge Sent Me" by Brie Thompson

Image used with the permission of the artist. Brie Thompson's online store is Lake Effect Press. More images of her work in process can be found on her Instagram account. She is involved with the member-run, non-profit print studio Flight 64.

I'm particularly interested in this print for a number of selfish reasons. First, I'm working on a book that features a lot of dinosaur imagery. Second, it is a screenprint that used linocut as part of the process, and for my recent book project I learned to screenprint and have been figuring out how to best incorporate that method with my woodcuts. Third, it is bright and colorful, and I'm trying to get back to some of that in my work.

Of course I enjoy the blunt, kitschiness of this image. The giant "Eat" sign recalls memories of not just actual roadside diner advertisements, but similarly generic, get-right-down-to-the-point ads appearing in media for entertainment - television shows, movies, picturebooks. And then there's the big dinosaur, which appears more akin to plastic children's toys and cartoons than actual prehistoric carnivores.

But there is also something tragic in this fabricated beastie's lonesome stance against the yellow sky streaked with hasty markings. Something hollow in his black eyes and perfect row of tiny teeth. Something achingly compulsive about the giant sign that commands onlookers to do that which requires no encouragement.

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