Join 3,415 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Wesley Willis Art
April 26, 2004 7:00 AM   Subscribe

Singer Wesley Willis was an artist as well. I'm not generally a big fan of "outsider art," as this might be called, but as raw as these pictures may be, they have a quality to them I don't think I've seen before. Enjoy. Via Monkeyfilter
posted by deadcowdan (16 comments total)

 
Actually it is a quality you've seen before, that of the really good fourth-graders in every art class in every middle school in the country.

I'm not trying to knock it, because I can't do perspectives that well myself and it's legitimately a sign of artistic talent, but part of me really feel like the only reason these are even being looked at is because it's Wesley Willis drawing them. (The other part of me wishes I could do vanishing points better)
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:15 AM on April 26, 2004


Actually, a lot of schizophrenics' drawings have this same kind of surreal, yet very detailed quality about them.
posted by Vidiot at 8:00 AM on April 26, 2004


I agree with XQUZYPHYR, to a point. If it weren't Wesley Willis, I probably would dismiss them after a quick glimpse.

But the fact that it is made me look closer, at which point I realized there is some true talent and style being shown here. Poster called it 'raw,' and it is, but it is pretty good, i think.


Rock over London, Rock On Chicago.
New Jersey Transit: The bus, the train, the way to go.
posted by John Kenneth Fisher at 8:03 AM on April 26, 2004


There's nothing wrong with being fond of Wesley. Nothing at all. RIP.

Also of note to people interested in outsider art (not including deadcowdan, I guess) is the infamous and fascinating Henry Darger.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 8:28 AM on April 26, 2004


no. these are really good. look at those clouds!!
posted by c at 8:59 AM on April 26, 2004


Rock over London, Rock On Chicago.
MetaFilter: Weblog as Conversation.
posted by smcbride at 9:08 AM on April 26, 2004


Actually, a lot of schizophrenics' drawings have this same kind of surreal, yet very detailed quality about them.

Oliver Sacks and Wesley Willis would have had a fascinating relationship. I'd love to direct that documentary.
posted by PrinceValium at 9:21 AM on April 26, 2004


Previous Mefi discussions on Willis here and here.
posted by wsg at 9:30 AM on April 26, 2004


Actually it is a quality you've seen before, that of the really good fourth-graders in every art class in every middle school in the country.

Actually, actually, it has the quality of an architectural illustration. You know, the kind where some luminous watercolor shows a prospective building project in idealized glory. Along with the perspective thing, he achieves some interesting shading -- given that his medium seems to be felt-tip marker.

It's true, outsider art has a lot to do with "personality." But old Wesley could probably have made a career as an illustrator had he been able to suppress the mean schizophrenia demon in his head.
posted by eatitlive at 9:36 AM on April 26, 2004


...and then we'd really have nothing to talk about here.
posted by eatitlive at 9:37 AM on April 26, 2004


part of me really feel like the only reason these are even being looked at is because it's Wesley Willis drawing them.

And this is different from how much of the rest of the art world operates?
posted by namespan at 9:40 AM on April 26, 2004


theres no such thing as outsider art. whoever came up with that term should be shot. dont spread the disease.
posted by Satapher at 1:28 PM on April 26, 2004


i'm falling hard for satapher.
posted by glenwood at 2:03 PM on April 26, 2004


I'm falling hard for glenwood.
posted by Ethereal Bligh at 2:53 PM on April 26, 2004


Personally, I'm wondering if the notebooks and papers Wesley used to write down his songs and lyrics hold any artistic merit. Anyone know?
posted by Parannoyed at 5:34 PM on April 26, 2004


youll make a million dollars, Parannoyed.

your kind are all the same
posted by Satapher at 2:42 PM on April 29, 2004


« Older Militants in Europe Openly Call for Jihad and the ...  |  Historical Anatomies on the We... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments