LOL you guys, former child star Macaulay Culkin is making art now! And guess what? It’s some of the best art I’ve seen in a while.
Mac currently has a bunch of paintings on display at Le Poisson Rouge in Manhattan, a show he created in collaboration with his pals Adam Green (of The Moldy Peaches) and artist/musician Toby Goodshank. They contain a whole lot of imagery from their nineties childhoods, but it’s warped through an outsider artist lens that is equal parts dark and playful. Take, for instance, this amazing painting of Jerry Seinfeld and Cosmo Kramer posing nude for He-Man on the set of “Wheel Of Fortune” as cartoon dinosaurs look on:
How excellent is that?
There is also this amazing painting of E.T., Waldo, the devil, and various other characters attending a Korn concert:
There’s also one depicting Kurt Cobain as a hacker, but Mac didn’t actually paint that.
You can accuse these paintings of “hipster irony” or whatever, but I think there’s a difference between approaching something with humor and approaching it with some sort of detached, sneering, “whatever” shrug, and I think these paintings fall into the former category. And this goes without saying, but it’s also very fitting that Macaulay Culkin, a nineties cultural icon himself, would be so fixated on childhood, pop culture, and what it all means. He’s clearly a sensitive guy who has been through some weird shit, but that hasn’t ruined his ability to have fun even as he works out his issues, which I admire. I also just really love the style in which these are painted. Plus, they’re impressively consistent for paintings worked on by three different people.
The show is up in NYC until December 15, and I’m planning to go see the stuff in person, even though I’ve already seen it on the Internet. That’s how much I like it!
And here’s a bonus video about how the paintings got made. You can ignore the parts about “true synergy” and “postmodernism.”
Paintings: 3MB Collective