Synopses & Reviews
Since his death in 1973, Henry Darger, janitor, orphan, writer and artist, has found increasing posthumous fame as an artist of influence, particularly for a generation of North American artists born in the late 60s and early 70s, such as Marcel Dzama, Justine Kurland, Justin Lieberman and Amy Cutler, who have drawn on his colossal oeuvre of drawings and writings, and his bizarre world of transgendered and often partially clothed girls warring against evil adults and monsters, in order to evolve their own worlds of similarly fantastical imagery. Several landmark Darger exhibitions and a hit documentary film (In the Realms of the Unreal) have continued to disseminate his work to wider audiences, rendering the persistent epithet of outsider artist almost meaningless. All Darger monographs become rarities with incredible rapidity, and this new hardcover edition of the Andrew Edlin Gallery's excellent introduction to Darger will prove no exception. It contains new and improved images, an updated introduction and updated sections on Darger's exhibition history and public collections. In an accompanying essay Edward Madrid Gomez writes: knowing what we know about this loner's life, it seems that no one else but Darger could have produced it, in the same way that we cannot imagine the ground-breaking works of such artists as Beethoven, Picasso, Wolfli or Joyce emerging from the minds or spirits of anyone else except these geniuses, whose talents have helped define just how far-reaching and accomplished artistic creativity can be.
Henry Darger was the author of drawings, watercolor scrolls and a 15,000 page novel called The Story of the Vivian Girls, in What Is Known as the Realms of the Unreal, of the Glandeco-Angelinnian War Storm, Caused by the Child Slave Rebellion.