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Art show and film series dedicated to enigmatic film director

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Phone Booth Gallery and Long Beach Cinematheque will present Oh, You Are Sick!, a juried group exhibition of visual work loosely informed by the films of David Lynch, the enigmatic director who turns the mundane into grisly, surreal adventures. The exhibition will open with a reception on Saturday, March 12 from 7pm to10pm at Phone Booth Gallery’s exhibition space, 2533 E. Broadway. The work will remain on view through Saturday, April 9 at both the exhibition space and at
Each week throughout the show, die-hard Lynch fans and curious newcomers alike can view one of Lynch’s seminal films presented by the Long Beach Cinematheque. Each screening will be accompanied by the release of a limited edition, signed 18″ x 24″ print. Films will be screened at the Art Theatre of Long Beach, 2025 East 4th St., on Saturday nights at midnight (Eraserhead on March 12; Lost Highway on March 18; and Wild at Heart on March 25).
David Lynch’s filmic oeuvre manages to pull noir, camp and sometimes even brutal realism together into ominous narratives, and this uniquely intermeshed sensibility has been inspiring artists of all mediums for decades now. Those included in this show work primarily in two dimensions, a format well-suited to probing Lynch’s eccentric visual world. Some explicitly respond to or appropriate the director’s imagery, like UK artist Famous When Dead, whose “Rabbit” is a refined portrait of the quietly patriarchal animal that appeared first in an online sitcom and later in Inland Empire, or Aurora Armijo’s distraught portrait of Lynch’s repeat leading lady, Laura Dern.
But others take a looser approach. Handiedan’s “Lost Highway” is, like all of her work, fragmented and darkly nostalgic— in other words, wholly resonate with a Lynchian aesthetic— and Bryan Schnelle’s slick explorations of the visually absurd have an unsettling glamour that would be at home in Mulholland Drive, or even parts of Blue Velvet. David Atkinson’s bloody “What About Bob?” makes implicit, eerie Lynchian violence aggressively explicit, and John Ottinger’s “Dark Father” speculates on what would have happened if Lynch had directed Return of the Jedi.
It’s been 40 years since Lynch moved to Los Angeles, and 35 since Eraserhead debuted. In that time, he’s become embedded in the collective psyches of aesthetes and film buffs. This exhibition explores what his legacy might mean, though it makes no definitive interpretation, generously leaving the interpreting to its viewers.

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Art show and film series dedicated to enigmatic film director