If you’ve never heard of Gallery 1988 or Crazy 4 Cult, odds are you’ve still seen some of their work around the Internet. Gallery 1988 is the name of an art gallery (well, two art galleries, as they’ve now expanded to a second location) in California that seeks to do away with the idea that all art galleries are owned by stuffy old white people who will crinkle their pretentious noses at you if you look at a painting the wrong way. Crazy 4 Cult is the name of a recurring art show they’ve hosted over the past seven years they’ve been in operation, the focus of the show being movie-inspired art made for a generation that never thinks to step into an art gallery.
"Crazy 4 Cult: Cult Movie Art" is a new art book (created by Titan Books) that collects hundreds of the best pieces the gallery has premiered over the years.
Who Wrote It: The only written word you’ll actually find in C4C is Kevin Smith’s introduction. Beyond that, this is purely an art gallery for your coffee table, with each piece having been hand selected by Gallery 1988 founders Katie Cromwell and Jensen Karp.
Who’s In It: Some big name artists stand out, but what makes this book so unique (aside from its niche subject) is the fact that there are just too many artists here to list and you probably have no idea who they are, anyway.
What’s It About: Gallery 1988 is about proving that there’s a demographic out there that the rest of the art world is either pretending doesn’t exist or doesn’t think deserves its own style and showcase. Now, I don’t want to make this book out to be some kind of raging act of rebellion, because that’s not what it is. It is about, however, taping into that same feeling you had when you were a kid in the ‘80s or early ‘90s and discovered MTV for the first time.
Why You Should Own It: First off, it’s common scientific knowledge that coffee table’s will become sentient, rise up and destroy you in your sleep unless you keep them oppressed by weighing them down with big hardback books. So for your future dead/alive state alone, you need this mammajamma keeping your coffee table in check. Secondly, it’s just a damned gorgeous book filled with stunning, movie-related artwork. That makes this week’s For Your Consideration a little bit different than one’s past. I don’t need to sell you on the voice talents in a video game or if a book is well written. I just need to remind you that you have eyeballs and a fascination with movies (if not, why are you here? And I mean that existentially, not just here as in Hollywood.com). This book contains things that interest you, period.
Yes, I fully realize that most coffee table books, especially ones that focus solely on art, will only ever be looked at from cover to cover once or twice in their life. Crazy 4 Cult is no different. But in a way I’m actually more enthralled by what it represents than what it functions as. This is a reminder that, despite how often and how loud people declare that the generation that followed them is filled with cultureless dullards, not only is art not dead, but that an interest in art isn’t dead. There are still hundreds of people out there making and creating it every day and, believe it or not, but even if you don’t fancy yourself an art appreciator, I guarantee that there are works in here you will appreciate. You’re bound to be halted by one image or another as you periodically flip through the pages, and in that moment, no matter how brief it is, you’ll share a connection with art and its artist. Yes, I fully realize I sound like a big dope right now, but in a day and age ruled by ADD media like reality TV and fleeting Internet memes, I think that’s just awesome.
Plus, you’ve just got to have an art coffee table book, for both your mental and physical health, but more importantly, to impress your dates. And nothing impresses like a book filled with art like that which adorns the top of this page...