Saturday, August 21, 2010
Robert Williams' Low Brow Art
Robert Williams is the a key figure in low brow art movement. He probably coined the phrase himself with the title of his first art book, The Lowbrow Art of Robert Williams. Lowbrow art, sometimes called pop surrealism, is the opposite of "high brow" art (fine gallery art of the cultured elite), a kind of unsophisticated popular art that grew out of hot rod culture, underground comix, punk rock, and other subcultures. Williams was one of its earliest artists, first doing art for Ed "Big Daddy" Roth, and a contemporary promoter with his magazine Juxtapoz started in 1994.
Williams love for custom car culture is exhibited throughout his work, as well as an adolescent libido! His paintings use a bright pallette and realistic technique to create bizarre images from the blender of his mind with long obscure titles that reflect the painting's symbolism. I probably appreciated his artwork as a young adolescent in the early 60s through Ed Roth and am still fascinated by his images.