Kerry James Marshall is best known for large-scale paintings, but Rythm Mastr is a project of a different sort. A site-specific installation of comics realized for the 1999 Carnegie International, Rythm Mastr also encompassed an eight-part comic-strip that ran in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and new installments are to be published by the artist in serial form.
The setup: In a gunfight with gangbangers, Stasha and her boyfriend, Farell, are separated. Stasha is shot; plotting revenge, she applies her growing knowledge of computers and robotics to create remote-control cars for use in retaliatory drive-bys. Farell, in the meantime, running to escape the shooting, ducks into a building labeled “Ancient Egyptian Museum,” where he encounters the Rythm Mastr, an old man who uses traditional drumming to bring African statues to life. He teaches Farell his secrets, and when he dies, Farell takes
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