Thursday, November 11, 2010

Surrealism is back!

     For several days now, I've been reading, observing, looking at, eating with eyes ("serving it with greens"), the beautiful edition of The Hunting Of The Snark illustrated and designed by Mahendra Singh. I traveled with the crew of Snark-hunters, I backtracked to particular pages and pictures, and I'm progressively enjoying this mind-twisting and absolutely mysterious book.
     A lot of artists who defined themselves as surrealists, in fact, just substitute the concept of surrealism with dexterous juggling of random combination of descriptive images with the motto "The stranger, the better". This flat-thinking method produces tons of surreal-like "art" and misleads public from the proper understanding (feeling) of surrealism as a way of discovering the great mystery of the universe.
     Unlike many of modern artists, who confuse surreal vision and way of thinking, with the collage method of composing of visual material, Mahendra Singh is definitely one of the rare genuine surrealists. There is no wonder that he found a perfect match to apply his creativity in the Lewis Carroll's poem The Hunting Of The Snark.
     Graphic novel structure of the book; masterly pen-ink technique developed from vintage technique of engraved plates for illustrations of 19 century magazines; endless culture references and reflections; puzzling associations. All this creates a very special world, an athmosphere of "intellectual holidays" essential to Lewis Carroll's masterpiece.
     I congratulate all the admirers of Lewis Carroll creations with the new, such a "Carrollian" art project and I highly recommend it to all collectors as a "must have".

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

LCSNA meeting in New York Institute of Technology

It was a shiny and beautiful Autumn Saturday in New York City. Members of the Lewis Carroll Society of North America had gathered for the Fall 2010 meeting in the New York Institute of Technology. Among the speakers were the host (founding member and former LCSNA president) Edward Guiliano, writers Adam Gopnik, Carroll biographer Jenny Woolf,  author (and Alice Liddell relative) C.M. Rubin, LCSNA President Andrew Sellon, and artist Oleg Lipchenko.
Edward Guiliano and Adam Gopnik dedicated their speeches to the memory of the great Martin Gardner.
There were several book titles available for sale from authors Adam Gopnik, Jenny Woolf, C.M. Rubin, and illustrators Mahendra Singh and Oleg Lipchenko. All the authors and illustrators were there to sign their books. This time there were elections for the new officers of LCSNA, as well as the honoring of Andrew Sellon, whose work as the president and whose dedication to the Society is hard to overestimate. Our congratulations to new officers and thanks to Andrew Sellon.
Then there was a wonderful dinner at Josephina’s following the meeting, and then the most inexhaustible members, who had survived the day's packed agenda, gathered for a party at the friendly home of Janet Jurist.