ART: KARL WIRSUM

karl wirsum artist 22

Karl Wirsum—former member of Chicago’s artistic group The Hairy Who and current professor at School of the Art Institute of Chicago—has been creating peculiarly playful art with a dose of humor since the mid 60s. Through the use of acrylic paints, colored pencils and lithographs, he’s brought to life highly imaginative, cartoon-based pieces which have been showcased nationally and abroad throughout the years.

karl wirsum artist 2992

One pair of otherworldly creatures figure in “Taffy Pull Tilt-a-Whirl,” while a redheaded, dress-clad female appears in the brightly-colored “Throw a Wait Line Proof of Purse Chase.” His penchant for witty titles is evident; just one example being his “Alien Dating Service Portraits” collection which depict headshots of unusual entities. He’s also featured square-headed robotic characters in pieces like “Grape Drape” and “Oops Goops.” Nods to pre-Colombian art can be seen in the profiled baseball player in “Looking at a Curve Ball in Cuernavaca,” and through the complex beast of “Wingtips for Tuning Fork,” whose features are semi-reminiscent of Aztec art.

Amusing and fantastical, it’s a view of another world that’s as unique as it is smile-inducing.

karl wirsum artist 323

karl wirsum artist202

karl wirsum taffy pull

 

-Natacha Pavlov

Related Posts with Thumbnails