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1000 WORDS: RUSSELL CROTTY

FIRST THE OUTLINE OF PINES . . . oak and sumac darkened . . . backlit by the full moon rising in capricornus . . . talk radio company.. . coffee on the tailgate. . . the gloaming twilight to the west.” —Atlas of Lunar Drawings, 1996

A lot of the pleasure in Russell Crotty's pencil-drawn vision of outer space is the commonplace grandeur of It. He draws and captions in “bad poetry”— sky we know, a contemporary LA sky with the problems of light pollution and the toll of encroaching development and the weirdness of nature itself jutting into the horizon: radio towers, ponderosas and palm trees. Crotty's vision moves through large-scale drawings of individual “items”: nebulae or comets that somehow look like a dumbbell or a creepy pumpkin (Crotty admits to giving resemblances a push); alternatively he glues his skies on Lucite spheres that hang like planets from the ceiling of a

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