November 11, 2014
After World War II, RICHARD LINDNER (1901–78), who’d fled Germany and fought in the French Army, moved to the US, where he made a remarkable impression on the art scene of his time. His paintings use the precisely shaped, flat, rendered, colorful elements of late (1914–21) Cubism — the hard geometry of the so-called Orphists, the mechanically shaded truncated additive columns of Léger’s figures, the flags and emblems of Synthetic Cubism — to depict a world of seedy, jazzy, criminal, sexed-up human monsters. Though he was also a manic satiric cartoonist like George Grosz and Saul Steinberg, Lindberg’s paintings presaged Pop, not to mention Heinz Edelmann’s big-footed Victorian dayglo work for The Beatles’ Yellow Submarine. He posed unshaven guys in slouch hats, flashing sexbombs in bondage-wear, and car grilles in the outer darkness of unspecified big cities; his work — particularly the helmeted girls licking ice cream cones and polychrome Indian chiefs — resemble a catalog for bikers’ embroidered jacket patches. (My own introduction to Lindner was his 1966 painting Rock-Rock, which I visited at the Dallas Museum of Art whenever my school’s marching band was performing at the Cotton Bowl.) Ahead of his time, Lindner is now mostly forgotten — but his saucy influence endures.
HILO HERO ITEMS by GARY PANTER: Tadanori Yokoo | Peter Saul | Yasuji Tanioka | H.C. Westermann | Öyvind Fahlström | Cal Schenkel | Eduardo Paolozzi | Tod Dockstader | Yayoi Kusama | Walter Lantz | Richard Lindner | Shigeru Sugiura | Todd Rundgren | Yoshikazu Ebisu | Jim Nutt | Judy Henske | Tod Dockstader | Jesse Marsh | Tetsumi Kudo | Larry Poons | Ed Sanders | Dick Briefer | Dick Briefer
On his or her birthday, HiLobrow irregularly pays tribute to one of our high-, low-, no-, or hilobrow heroes. Also born this date: Hans Magnus Enzensberger, Carlos Fuentes, U-God, Kurt Vonnegut, Milicent Patrick.
READ MORE about members of the Hardboiled Generation (1894-1903).