Jim Shaw

Jim Shaw, The Jefferson Memorial, 2013, acrylic on muslin, 12 x 22'.

IN ART SCHOOL, we are handed a sort of “carney” attitude toward the world—us against the rubes. We’re told that, in our exalted place as outsider observers, we have a unique take on reality that those caught up in its daily routines can’t see. But every time I try to comment on the world using some “new” aesthetic arena, like hairdos, clothes, film, etc., I find there’s someone in that domain who has already done more interesting things with it than I could ever come up with. Every time I work in the realm of comics, for instance, I discover a whole raft of artists who have done it better—and for miserable pay, with no respect outside the field. Ramona Fradon, Bill Everett, Dick Sprang, Wayne Boring, and Bob Powell are some of the geniuses who have recently come to my attention as I attempt to use and understand all the conventions and nuances of graphic, inked marks

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