Artillery and The Standard, Hollywood are pleased to announce a reading and book signing with artist Christopher Russell. Russell’s new book, Sniper, using illustration as much as text, takes a very loose and imaginary look at The Baltimore Snipers, examining the relationships of paired serial killers as an ultimate expression of repressed desire.
In Sniper, Christopher Russell writes a perverse version of the classic American love story, told through the narrative chaos of nameless characters, past-life flashbacks, false recollection, parental and bureaucratic influence that define the psychological space of the outsider. The text’s 200 full-color pages are profusely illustrated, reproducing Russell’s first set of drawings scratched into photographic emulsion, which has now become his signature style. The release of Sniper revives the Bedwetter brand, which achieved notoriety during its 12 issue existence with a destroy-to-enjoy design strategy and an embrace of difficult literary and visual material. With Sniper, Russell has created a design and layout that makes the process of reading its own adventure.
ABOUT THE ARTIST: Christopher Russell employs photography, bookmaking, writing, drawing, and digital printmaking to illustrate his explorations of the darker side of the human psyche. Investigating, and sometimes fabricating, the reasons people live or behave outside of socially acceptable margins, his work offers visions of what many would deem dirty, broken, useless, or criminal. Through the lens of a present day flaneur, viewers are made privy to Russell’s observant, analytical wanderings along the physical and emotional outskirts of society. Steeped in historical references, Russell seamlessly fuses photography, writing and object making to create all-encompassing environments that challenge the traditional divide between these practices and expands the very idea of what a book is.
Christopher Russell received his BFA from California College of the Arts and Crafts in San Francisco in 1998 and his MFA from Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, California, in 2004. From 2001 to 2005 Russell edited, designed, produced, and distributed the literary art zine Bedwetter. He was the subject of a 2009 Hammer Museum Projects solo exhibition and is represented by Luis De Jesus Los Angeles. Landscape, a monograph on his work, was published in 2007 by Kolapsomal Press. Russell edited and wrote an essay for the catalog that accompanied his curatorial debut, Against the Grain at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions in 2008. Additionally, he has written more than two dozen articles and reviews about art in Los Angeles. Russell’s work is in various public collections, including the Hammer Museum/Grunwald Center for the Graphic Arts, J.P. Getty Museum Research Institute; New York University; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.