Thursday, March 17, 2011

SXSW Big Bag meets Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art

Molly Crabapple, co-founder and current owner of Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School, is the lucky artist who designed the 2011 SXSW tote bag, filled with goodies for all badge/wristband holders. As the SXSW website says: What's a Big Bag, you ask? It's the #1 accessory of the SXSW event! You'll see everyone carrying it around to tote everything from the program book to extra shoes and water. Extra shoes?!?!

Other festivals like CMJ offer a similar bag (last year I scored a messenger bag, as seen here on this guy), but I've never heard of free shoes. I wonder what kind! Anyway, Molly Crabapple's art seems to leap beyond the page, or bag, or canvas, etc. into her overall persona as an artist, and extends even beyond her own work to a wide-ranging alternative community rife with colorful, and sometimes dark, expression.

Dr. Sketchy's Anti-Art School creates events wherein any aspiring creator can sketch glamorous underground performers in an atmosphere of boozy conviviality. So if you love drawing dynamic ladies and gents in corsets, leather, wings, pin-up or circus gear, and if you enjoy doing so with drinks in the company of other eccentric nonconformists, then it seems Dr. Sketchy's is for you. Molly Crabapple sometimes draws as part of a public performance, donning neo-Victorian and Gothic attire while creating new work under the gaze of spectators. While I have not yet attended an event, I know that Molly "performed" her art during a recent Dances of Vice.  
Now what is that? Well, according to their site: Dances of Vice incorporates a myriad of anachronistic and New Romantic influences in Dadaistic celebration of the liberating effects of beauty, fantasy and surrealism. It's a nightlife sensation which attracts a sordidly splendid menagerie of dandies, aesthetes, and dreamers who gather in shared enthusiasm for the music, fashion, culture, and beauty of times forgotten. 

So, if you love red lipstick, bob cuts, bowler hats, and those long cigarette holders (in other words, if you need a reason to wear something other than seven-year-old jeans for one night) you might just fit in with the classy dressers at these events. But I bet those folk won't be toting Molly's SXSW bag. Somebody grab me one, please!

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