Lynch’s art as challenging as his films

2 03 2007

What is it like to glimpse into the mind of moviemaker David Lynch? A new exhibition in Paris shows that it is every bit as twisted as a true fan could imagine.
The exhibition, The Air Is on Fire, is the most comprehensive showing of Lynch’s visual art to date, and it includes paintings, photographs and countless doodles on Post-it notes, hotel stationery and napkins from Bob’s Big Boy diner.
Some sketches date back to 61-year-old Lynch’s high school days when, oddly enough, the Blue Velvet and Mulholland Drive director worked his way toward the rank of Eagle Scout.
Though many works have touches of Lynch’s quirky humor, the recurring themes are disconcerting, from leering women in red lipstick to decomposing corpses. Lynch even manages to make photos of snowmen look creepy.
At a news conference Thursday, a reporter gently inquired if Lynch was a happy man.
“Very happy,” Lynch replied. Then he faced a battery of scholarly questions.
What attracts you to the theme of metamorphosis?
“I don’t know,” Lynch deadpanned.
Another reporter asked Lynch what blue symbolized in his work. “It’s a beautiful color,” he said.
“So much of this is ideas that have nothing to do with an intellectual thing,” he said. “It’s an intuitive journey.”
The news conference took a bizarre turn. An aspiring actress grabbed the microphone, begged Lynch to remake Blue Velvet in France, sang the movie’s title song in off-key French, then threw her arms up in a flourish.
Lynch politely thanked her. “You did a very beautiful job singing,” he said, adding that although he loves France and is a regular visitor, he isn’t sure he will shoot a movie here. Lynch won the Cannes Film Festival’s top prize in 1990 for Wild at Heart, and he headed the Cannes jury in 2002.
The Air Is on Fire, which opens to the public Saturday, will run at the Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art through May 27.




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