Friday, July 13, 2007

"Crepe and Black Lamps" (1986) by Don Van Vliet

"Crepe and Black Lamps" (1986) by Don Van Vliet, oil on canvas, 58 1/4 x 48". (source)

Although Don Van Vliet is better known as Captain Beefheart, his first passion was sculpture; it wasn’t until the early ’60s that he devoted himself to the avant-garde blues and rock music associated with his more ludic moniker. In the early ’80s, Van Vliet put music aside and turned to painting. Though a neo-primitivist aesthetic is evident in both the artist’s styling of figures and his recurrent imagery of rites and rejuvenation, the largest influence on Van Vliet’s work is that of the CoBrA painters. He frequently imagines frenetic barnyard scenes involving battling and copulating animals.

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