September 27, 2002 4:57 AM   Subscribe

Rubberboy demonstrates that alphabet art can be used as more than just a creative teaching tool for kids. Artists have a long tradition of using the ABCs as a canvas for the macabre, the sacred, the erotic and the just plain kinky. warning! links contain flash and some NSFW material.
posted by madamjujujive (10 comments total)
Let us not forget The Gashleycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey.

Side Note: My Dad knew Mr. Gorey! He worked at a publishing company in NYC in the mid 1950s after he graduated college. Ed, as my Dad knew him, was a very quiet, very nice man. He was a bit odd, but everyone liked him very much. Dad has a few books that have Gorey covers on them. Gorey could make the even the most placid, banal scene seem disturbing...
posted by tommyspoon at 5:26 AM on September 27, 2002

That's a great collection of links - especially "teaching tool" "kids" and "just plain kinky." I played "teaching tool" through to the end - they have a small selection of 26+ letters, including Å, Æ, and Ø following Z. (hope the odd characters post okay...)
posted by whatzit at 6:06 AM on September 27, 2002

Wow. The kids' alphabet presentations from Orgdot and Bembo were gorgeous. Another lovely (though very different) alphabet series for kids was created by photographer Wendy Ewald, who collaborated with Spanish-speaking children from a US school, grades two through five, for whom English was a second language.

I asked the students to think of words in their own language beginning with each letter of the alphabet, and to assign them visual representations from their culture. I photographed each concept or object they selected. When the negatives were ready, the children scratched them or wrote on them with Magic Markers, adding the letter and word they were illustrating on the white or black background.
posted by taz at 6:17 AM on September 27, 2002

Nice links, madame!
posted by MrBaliHai at 6:41 AM on September 27, 2002

hehe, his 'z' is backwards. Poor kids growing up with their letters clad in camouflage pants :p
posted by sonicgeeza at 6:50 AM on September 27, 2002

For goodness sake, won't someone think of the butterflies!
posted by tippiedog at 8:11 AM on September 27, 2002

Great post!
posted by rushmc at 8:46 AM on September 27, 2002

Those aren't camouflage, they're paisley. You'd think he could have worn a solid color that day.

Neat-o post, madame!
posted by me3dia at 9:51 AM on September 27, 2002

I'm glad someone else mentioned the paisley pants. They detract from the shape of the letters he has so carefully contorted. Why not a dark shirt as well? Or, hey, ANY shirt, come to think of it...
posted by boomchicka at 2:11 PM on September 27, 2002

*immediately thinks of half-a-dozen goth friends to send the Hans Holbein Alphabet of Death to*

madamjujujive, you're about to indirectly make some very unhappy people very happy in the nicest possible way.
posted by redshoes3 at 10:36 PM on September 27, 2002

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