December 14, 2011

Mikalojus Vilutis

In two posts at Animalarium, Laura turned me on to Illustrarium, a website for Lithuanian children's book illustrators (Lithuania was the 2011 Guest of Honour at the Bologna Children's Book Fair).

Rooting around on Illustrarium, I found the page for Mikalojus Vilutis (born 1944) and asked him if I could feature his work.

The illustrations in this post come from Fables by Vytautas Landsbergis (Kronta, Vilnius 2011) and A Cake. For many years before illustrating books and working digitally, Vilutis worked in silkscreen/serigraphy and he's known as a master of the method (he's taught at Vilnius Academy of Arts since 1989). I will soon feature some of those earlier works.

(This post went live well before it was supposed too...some of you may have seen it in embryonic form  —oh blogger, how I (didn't f*cking) miss thee. Part 2 coming soon.)

(A search reveals that Monster Brains linked to a Russian page on Vilutis way back in 2007.)

December 13, 2011

Tumbling Old Women

In September 2010 I featured illustrator Joanna Neborsky's adaptation of Fénéon's Novels In Three Lines. Joanna has since worked her magic for deadpan Russian absurdist Daniil Kharms:
"Daniil Kharms (1905–1942) wore a hat to protect his ideas from being seen. He smoked a pipe to appear English (he was Russian). He wrote twenty children's books. This is not one of them.

"This short story from 1936 is illustrated in twenty collaged pages. Available in English and Italian editions. English translation courtesy Matvei Yankelevich and The Overlook Press."

via Joanna Neborsky

via Joanna Neborsky

via Joanna Neborsky

via Joanna Neborsky

via Joanna Neborsky

via Joanna Neborsky

December 12, 2011

Good morning, sunshine!

Portrait of Michel Leiris by Francis Bacon, 1985 via Asymptote

"The immense force, it seems, that will have to be deployed to move us from the first rough attempt to recover ourselves to a complete mustering, when -- after the three blows struck in some unknown place by the mysterious stage manager who oversees the daily recommencement of the action -- the footlights of what we persisted in concealing of life are no less mysteriously turned on; the anguish, as soon as we are drawn from the dark by this signal, of feeling petrified, restored almost to consciousness but without any control over these inanimate limbs, these scattered bones awaiting some last judgment; the despair, without the attenuation of any outcry, of ever emerging from the mattress of sleep that has become confused with the physical mattress -- itself thick and fleecy -- on which the night has lain down with us; the brutal event, finally, wresting us from these pangs when (without our knowing how such a vapor, with its stifling billows, could have dissipated all at once) we find ourselves with our eyes unsealed."

--Michel Leiris, from Scraps (Rules of the Game vol. 2), 1955 (trans. Lydia Davis, 1997). Buy your very own copy for $.62 on Amazon.

Fragile Demon: Juan Soriano in Mexico

Juan Soriano, The Beach, 1943

Juan Soriano, Portrait of Lola Alvarez-Bravo with Juan Soriano as a Child, 1944

Juan Soriano, Still Life with Self-Portrait, 1949

Juan Soriano, The Dead Girl, The Wake, 1946

Juan Soriano, Girl with a Mask, 1945

Juan Soriano, Saint Jerome Mourned by Angels, 1949

Juan Soriano, The Burial, 1942

From a random library find: Fragile Demon: Juan Soriano in Mexico, 1935 to 1950

Wikipedia says:

Juan Soriano (1920-2006) was a Mexican painter and sculptor.[...]

He became a member of the Mexican School cultural movement also featuring Frida Kahlo and poet Octavio Paz. He also joined the Liga de Escritores y Artistas Revolucionarios.

December 11, 2011

Franz Sedlacek on Monster Brains

Franz Sedlacek, The Unicorn, 1925 via Monster Brains.

I love it when I couldn't possibly correctly guess the date of an image.