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Artist gives old photographs a superhero makeover

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Someone’s dead relatives just got a makeover. Artist Alex Gross takes discarded vintage photographs, paints on them and turns them into portraits of pop culture icons like Batman, Superman, Electra, Wonder Woman, Super Mario and Marge Simpson. These mixed media paintings raise questions about the relevance of history, family and memory in our neo-liberal consumerist world—where fictional characters have far more currency and longevity than familial ties or dead relatives.

Gross is best known for his beautiful, disturbing and surreal paintings that explore modern life.

The world that I live in is both spiritually profound and culturally vapid. It is extremely violent but can also be extremely beautiful. Globalization and technology are responsible for wonderfully positive changes in the world as well as terrible tragedy and homogeneity. This dichotomy fascinates me, and naturally influences much of my work.

I like Alex Gross’s paintings. I like his ideas. He is painting a narrative to our lives—and like all good art he is questioning our role within this story and the values we consider important in its telling. More of Alex Gross’ work can be seen here.
 
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More photographs reborn after the jump…

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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07.20.2016
09:45 am
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Danna nanna nanna nanna SUN RAAAAAA: The space-jazz guru’s astounding ‘Batman and Robin’ LP
03.31.2015
09:34 am
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In 1966, an unremarkable-seeming children’s album called Batman and Robin was released, by an insignificant label called Tifton Records, to cash in on the very popular Adam West Batman TV series. Apart from the remake of the TV show’s theme, the album was mostly instrumental, and had nothing in particular to do with Batman, but it remains an item of interest because of who played on it. While it was credited to “The Sensational Guitars of DAN & DALE,” the actual studio band was made up of members of Al Kooper’s Blues Project and Sun Ra’s Arkestra! Organs on the Batman and Robin album are played by Ra, saxes are performed by Arkestra stalwarts Marshall Allen and John Gilmore, and guitars are played by the Blues Project’s legendary Steve Katz and Danny Kalb. (Kalb is the only “Dan” present; there is no one named Dale in the credits as far as I can find. It should be mentioned that there are a ton of crappy albums credited to Dan & Dale on the Diplomat label, and I can’t imagine there’s any way that the Arkestra and Blues Project played on them. That’s a junkyard rabbit-hole for another day, though.) The album—and again, this was marketed to children to cash in on a goofy TV show—is accordingly badass, full of satisfying soul riffs and fiery surf-guitar leads. It also nods to classical music and the Beatles. Per Bruce Eder’s deeply-researched Allmusic overview:

No, Batman and Robin doesn’t match the importance of the Blues Project’s own official recordings, or anything that Sun Ra was doing officially, but what a chance to hear these guys kicking back for a half-hour’s anonymous blues jamming. Everything here, apart from the Neal Hefti “Batman Theme” is public domain blues built on some familiar material (including Chopin, Tchaikovsky, and Bach), one cut, appropriately entitled “The Riddler’s Retreat,” quotes riffs and phrases from a half-dozen Beatles songs, and another, “The Bat Cave,” that’s this group’s answer to “Green Onions” (and a good answer, too). Along with Sun Ra, who dominates every passage he plays on, Steve Katz and Danny Kalb are the stars here, romping and stomping over everything as they weave around each other, while Gilmore, Allen, and Owens occasionally stepping to the fore, Blumenfeld makes his percussion sound downright tuneful in a few spots, and some anonymous female singers throw out a lyric or two on a pair of cuts, just as a distraction.

 

 
As Eder pointed out, the female singer on the following two tracks is uncredited. Whoever she is, good GOD, she deserves her accolades, especially for the blowout performance on “Robin’s Theme!”
 

Sun Ra & the Blues Project, “Batman Theme.”
 
More Sun Ra and the Blues Project after the jump…

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Posted by Ron Kretsch
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03.31.2015
09:34 am
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Batgirl demands equal pay from Batman and Robin in 1960S PSA
06.11.2012
11:27 am
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Batgirl is definetly not messin’ around. If she doesn’t get equal pay, she’ll let that cheapskate Caped Crusader and his Boy Wonder sidekick die. What happens next?!

I wonder if “Peggy Olson” was the copywriter for this commercial? Could be!
 

 
Via BuzzFeed

Posted by Tara McGinley
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06.11.2012
11:27 am
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‘60s Batman running away from shit
03.07.2012
01:53 pm
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According to the site Batman Running Away From Shit, “60’s Batman is a coward.”

Well, if I had Darth Vader, Freddy Krueger, Dracula and Leatherface chasing my ass, I’d be scared shitless too!
 

 
More choice selections after the jump…

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Posted by Tara McGinley
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03.07.2012
01:53 pm
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Super Cuts and Trash Compactors at the Everything Is Festival!


 
If you live in Los Angeles and you love weird, insane, hilarious underground shit—like, say, the kind of fare you might find on the popular Everything Is Terrible! blog—then the second annual Everything Is Festival! is going to be better than your Christmas, Halloween and birthday combined. It’s the film, video and music festival that feels like a holiday. But a really fucked up holiday in a really fucked up country. Or a fucked up planet. (I was there last year, trust me on this one).

Co-sponsored by Cinefamily, Indie Printing and Everything Is Terrible! there is five solid days of mayhem, carnage and video mischief scheduled from June 30 to July 4.

Let’s take, for instance, the “Super Cuts and Trash Compactors” show. According to Cinefamily programmer Hadrian Belove, a “trash compactor” is “when you take a film and distill it to its essence”:

Cinefamily’s grabbing the zeitgeist by the nutsack and squeezing the video juice out of the YouTube for all of our viewing pleasure! Tonight we celebrate two of our favorite memes in the viral video world: “supercuts” and “trash compactors.” You know, like when TV Carnage cut together every “Gimmie your badge…and your gun” moment from every shitty cop movie ever made, or when FourFour did a mashup of every time someone said “I’m not here to make friends” on a reality TV show — that’s a “Supercut.”

And when that anonymous editor compressed 120 minutes of Wicker Man Nic Cage insanity into a high-powered two-minute H-bomb of hilarity — that’s a “Trash Compactor.”

This show features our favorite pre-existing classics in these two categories, and a group show bursting full of brand-new premieres by Everything Is Terrible, FourFour, Cinefamily’s own Mondo Squad, and more. I tube, you tube, we all tube for YouTube! Tonight’s show features a live appearance by online video mashup maven FourFour!

Watch the now-classic Trash Compactor featuring every dumb pun delivered by Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “Mr. Freeze” in Batman & Robin:
 

 
More on the Everything Is Festival all this week on DM, but you can go here for more information and ticket purchase. Here’s a two-minute version of horror film, Incubus, in which John Cassavetes seems obsessed with sperm.
 

Posted by Richard Metzger
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06.27.2011
09:39 pm
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Batman and Robin 60s style gym shoe design
08.27.2010
04:37 pm
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These are just prototypes and haven’t been produced yet by Brass Monki, but I think they should be. Very cool design from these folks.

Two new designs, based around the costumes worn by Batman and Robin in the TV series decades ago.

(via Gamefreaks)

Posted by Tara McGinley
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08.27.2010
04:37 pm
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