List Grid

Blogs Untitled (Blog)

Universes Collide: Frank Big Bear on The Walker Collage, Multiverse #10

In Frank Big Bear’s newest collage—on view now in the Walker’s new Target Project Space—universes are created and collided. Sourced from magazines and books and referencing topics from space and time to history, art, science, and people, hundreds of images are juxtaposed and superimposed. Photos of the Vietnam War mix with pictures of Patti Smith, hairless cats, and Chicago’s “bean” sculpture. […]

va2016art_BigBear_Install Visual Arts; Artist. Installation of the Walker-commissioned work by Minnesota-based artist Frank Big Bear. The artist’s large-scale piece—The Walker Collage, Multiverse #10 (2016)—is the first artwork to be installed in the new Target Project Space. Siri Engberg, Olga Viso, Muffy MacMillan, WAC Staff Scott Lewis, November 10, 2016.

Frank Big Bear with The Walker Collage, Multiverse #10 (2016). Photo: Gene Pittman

In Frank Big Bear’s newest collage—on view now in the Walker’s new Target Project Space—universes are created and collided. Sourced from magazines and books and referencing topics from space and time to history, art, science, and people, hundreds of images are juxtaposed and superimposed. Photos of the Vietnam War mix with pictures of Patti Smith, hairless cats, and Chicago’s “bean” sculpture. Figureheads of the American Indian Movement share space with fashion nudes, famous artworks, and Minnesota landmarks. Dubbed Walker Collage, Multiverse #10, the work—the artist’s largest to date—consists of 432 panels, each composed on an invitation card for an exhibition by his son, Star Wallowing Bull. It is at once a microcosmic view of life on Earth and a personal endeavor—throughout the piece, the artist interspersed family photos and plastic photo corners, which might evoke a family album. The work is also dedicated to the artist’s late brother, the poet Joseph E. Big Bear.

The work occupies a prominent location, spanning the entire wall of the Walker’s new restaurant, Esker Grove, and is visible from Vineland Place. Created especially for this space, The Walker Collage, Multiverse #10 will be on view for a full year—and, given its depth and rich details, it invites multiple and extended visits.

Based in Minnesota, Big Bear is known for his elaborately detailed drawings, paintings, and collages that portray a world overflowing with vitality, activity, people, and creatures, like this 1989–1990 drawing in the Walker’s permanent collection. Big Bear’s drawings mesh and meld imagery in a frenetic assemblage manner, which perhaps enabled him to easily transition into collage making—a recent shift for the artist.

Fitting with the collage’s focus on intersecting worlds, the artist has agreed to share with us his Facebook updates, posted throughout the development of Multiverse #10. Collectively, they unearth some of the personal, cultural, and artistic influences behind the work while sharing aspects of his life and artistic process, from his time driving taxi to his love for Spoonbridge and Cherry to his endless appetite for reading. Here we are given a rare glimpse into the parallel existence of Big Bear and his collage.

fbb-2-19

 

fbb_mural-segment_021

 

fbb-2-27

walker-bb-2_edited-1

fbb-3-1

 

fbb_mural-seg_023

 

fbb-3-18

 

walker-bb-10

fbb-3-19

 

fbb_mural-seg_018

 

fbb-3-31

 

walker-bb-5_edited-1

fbb-4-2

 

walker-bb-9

fbb-4-18

 

walker-bb-4_edited-2

fbb-4-25

 

walker-bb-1

fbb-5-22

 

walker-bb-7

fbb-june-4

 

walker-bb-12

fbb-6-13

 

bg2016tps1115 Building & Grounds, interiors, Target Project Space, November 15, 2016. Frank Big Bear installation featured.

Visitors with Frank Big Bear’s The Walker Collage, Multiverse #10 (2016). Photo: Gene Pittman

No posts