Drawings of self – insides out”
A Solo Exhibition Featuring Venus DeMars
February 15th – March 15th, 2014
Venus de Mars presents drawings on archival sketchbook paper, created during 20 years of rock tours, and a trans-journey of body construct, and mind deconstruct.
Darkness and moonlight. Tits and dick. Stars and thorn.
These are fragile bits of paper memory twisted rich and tangled from a black ink ballpoint medium tip.
More about Venus:
Venus de Mars is best known as the iconic leader of the long standing Minneapolis dark-glam/trans band: “Venus de Mars & All The Pretty Horses.” A band which Venus formed in the early 90′s, and has continued with since.
But s/he is also known in the arts community as a performance artist. S/he is both a former McKnight Multidisciplinary Artist Support, and Bush Artist Support fellowship recipient, as well as one of the core artist from the now defunct 1980′s era “Rifle Sport Alternative Art Gallery,” which was formerly located on Minneapolis’ infamous “E-Block.”
Throughout he/r musical career and touring schedule, Venus has kept up with all he/r other art disciplines, including these many ball-point pen notebook drawings which have become a kind of life journal for he/r.
“They’re kind of a collection of emotional self portraitures,” s/he says of them. “The central subject is most often a trans-person. non-gender or racial specific, with imagery taken from actual life events which happened to me during the time of the drawings and I usually include dream imagery which also occurred during the same time periods.”
The formality of these drawings were modeled after trips overseas when Venus came across old religious icon art in various European art museums and Church tours.
“I love the symbolism of that old art form, and thought I could bring the style into my own work. Since then, it’s become a kind of style-template for me. Something to build my 2-dimensional imagery with.”
These intricate and fragile ball point pen drawings have occasionally become the inspiration for Venus’ large 8-foot by 10-foot oil or acrylic paintings.