Don’t miss the Tim Burton Exhibit at the MoMA
This is Tim Burton’s “Boy Robot,” one of the many creepy, childlike figurines on display at the Tim Burton exhibit going on at the Modern Museum of Art in New York City. After walking down a hallway of his short films featuring “Stain Boy,” a character he developed as a child growing up in Burbank, California, you enter Burton’s brain, a world of eerie drawings that are undoubtedly Burtonesque– neon exploding guts, constipated shot up poodles, fat, grotesque ladies of the night, checkered, spiraled monsters adjacent to demonic children, and of course, a slew of his iconic storyboards.
It’s incredible to trace his progress from a student at CalArts in the 70s with work that looks similar to that of the older Ralph Steadman, throughout the 80s (like his early days at Disney to his later days post-Pee-wee’s Big Adventure) when he found his unique and unmistakable style and then to watch him develop his art into the masterful Midas of nightmare that he is today. n.b.- Burton spent several 2-3 year blocks of his life working on unfinished and unrealized projects, which hit me as a relief… sometimes spinning one’s wheels is necessary if you’re planning on going anywhere.
One of the most beautiful and romantic findings I learned today was this: in Burton’s earlier drawings, you can see images of beautiful, dark eyed women that resemble Helena Bonham Carter, whom he would fall in love with years later.
The museum’s theater will also play many of his feature films in their theaters between now and the close including Edward Scissorhands, Frankenweenie, Sleepy Hollow, Planet of the Apes, Ed Wood, Mars Attacks, Pee-Wee, Batman, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Batman Returns, Beetlejuice, Nightmare Before Christmas, Big Fish, Corpse Bride and Sweeney Todd.
I suggest going after the holiday season, since even midday on a Wednesday was annoyingly crowded. After all this is a show that draws in huge crowds of people who don’t normally visit museums (and there are over 700 images to take in). But don’t stress, you have plenty of time to check it out. The exhibit shows at the MoMa until April 26, 2010. (311 W 53rd St) If you do go now- be sure to check out the Bauhaus exhibit and the Monet Waterlillies room.