Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Movie Review "Hairy Who and the Chicago Imagists" Milwaukee Film Festival 2014

Day 2 of the Milwaukee Film festival saw me going with my artist friend to see the movie about the Hairy Who.  Not really being into the art scene I had no idea who they were and what they did so I was going into the movie blind.  Which is one of the reasons why I love film festivals to see movies I normally wouldn't see and step out of my comfort zone.

So who are the The Hairy Who and the Chicago Imagists? Well they are a collection of artists with various styles who got together in Chicago in the 60's.  With influenced that range from abstract and surrealism, to comic books and advertisements.  Their artwork was like something people had never seen before and even though there were some graphic pictures they became popular with local collectors.  The incubator for the Imagist was the New Hyde Park Gallery which celebrated local and upcoming artists.  The Hairy Who was just the start and a few other collectives followed.  Their work separated them from other contemporaries in New York and San Francisco and came to represent the Midwest.

The movie is a very informative art history lesson and the artists themselves are very interesting.  But not having an interest in art I felt a little bored.  There were a lot of things that influenced these artists but not having that background  knowledge of who they were talking about it didn't mean much to me. While I can't appreciate the technical aspect of the craft I can appreciate the aesthetics. While some were bizarre there were some that looked really cool. So I do admire them for doing what they wanted to do and not compromising.

Overall: 3/5. An art history buff would love this movie but just wasn't for me. My artist friend who saw it with me loved it. So if art is your thing then this is worth checking out. But if art isn't your thing you might want to skip it.   

Jim Wirsum-Screamin' Jay Hawkins-1968

Ed Paschke-Minnie-1974
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