This past Friday, the Art of Ken Taylor showcase opened at the Mondo Gallery in Austin, TX. Featuring ten new screenprints and an impressive number of original (OG) pieces, the show presented attendees with a series of Sophie's Choices: pick up the No Country For Old Men and the Predator, or the Nosferatu and the Fight Club OG? This Island Earth, or the Frankenstein variant? For folks like me (art nerds operating on a budget), The Art of Ken Taylor was basically Making Hard Decisions: The Show.
The biggest hit from the show was undoubtedly the No Country For Old Men below: after being revealed last year in one of the "Mondo Book" collections (from time to time, Mondo will release yearbook-style collections of its prints, with the pages made from actual posters that - for one reason or another - didn't make the cut to be sold), fans have been asking when the print might actually get a release. When it was unveiled as the centerpiece of Friday's showcase, collectors...well, I think the technical term is "went apeshit."
The No Country For Old Men was accompanied by the OG below, featuring Javier Bardem's Anton Chigurh character (I came to the show with a couple of friends, one of 'em picked this piece up about 5 minutes after walking through the door).
There was a striking set of prints based on Wolfgang Peterson's Das Boot...
...the Catwoman set we revealed here last week...
...and a Fight Club set (with "Jack/The Narrator" in front of the Paper Street house in the reg, and Tyler Durden on the front steps in the variant).
Like many of the other prints, Fight Club was accompanied by a trio of excellent OG's: one for Marla, one for Jack/"The Narrator", and one for Tyler (another friend I attended with picked up the Tyler Durden; I invite you to feel as jealous and resentful of his purchase as I do).
My personal favorite piece from the show had to be the Nosferatu set below (and the accompanying OG). Just last week we took a look at a different Nosferatu; this version's for the F.W. Murnau original. For those wondering: yes, this piece was designed to hang with the Metropolis piece Taylor did for Mondo last year (my wife and I are hanging ours on either side of the bed).
Just for comparison's sake, here's what the Metropolis set looked like at last year's Stout/Taylor showcase (and by the way, collectors: Taylor mentioned that he'd like to do a new print in this unofficial series - each based on a vintage title - every year):
The already-revealed Little Shop of Horrors turned out to be even more impressive in person than in jpeg format; the colors on this one really do pop right off the page. When you're standing in front of it, it's crazy impressive. It was accompanied by a number of smaller OGs, the best of which had to be the Steve Martin as Orin Scrivello, DDS ("You'll be a deeentist...").
Children of Men offered up more action for fans of the landscape approach...
...and then there was this Predator series. The purple and red editions of the print worked really well, but for my money the silver/metallic version was the best of the three, and had the lowest edition size of any print at the show (naturally, this version also turned out to be the first to sell out).
The previously-revealed Frankenstein set (the detail on this one, particularly in the lower left-hand corner, was incredible):
And, finally, there was this This Island Earth print. Another standout, and a title that wasn't revealed prior to the show. This one gave Little Shop of Horrors a run for its money in the "Holy Shit Those Colors Are Going to Melt My Eyeballs" department. I thought Francesco Francavilla's This Island Earth print pretty much nailed the film last year, but...I dunno, I think Taylor's knocks that one off its throne.
All in all, another successful batch of prints from Ken Taylor and the folks at Mondo (special thanks to Team Mondo, Fons PR and Ken Taylor for inviting us). We'll have more Mondo-related news in the very near future. Until then, I'm curious to hear what you guys thought: which piece was the best in show? Sound off below, and stay tuned to BAD for Mondo-related updates, possibly later today.