Alongside Curator José Da Silva and Graphic Designer Sarah Ballard, working on the publication accompanying the exhibition ‘Between Two Worlds’ brought me a little closer to one of my all-time favourites from the film world, the inimitable David Lynch.
Blue Velvet and Wild at Heart are cinematic experiences I recall clearly, some 25 years after the fact. Even today, thinking about Sailor’s devotion to Lula (‘Peanut’) gives me goose bumps, while Frank’s psychosis and Dorothy’s anguish are still incredibly disturbing and affecting in equal measure. Similarly, when Twin Peaks originally screened — with sweet Donna Hayward, sultry Audrey Horne, long-suffering Shelly Johnson (I adored that Rolling Stone cover), and oddly dashing Special Agent Dale Cooper — it represented a weekly dose of ‘event’ television in the days before digital downloads and ‘binge viewing’ (not that I haven’t indulged since).
David Lynch: Between Two Worlds took six months to produce — to edit, design, crosscheck, proof, colour-check, approve, print, bind and ship — and much longer, of course, if you take into account the research and writing phases. The book represents hours of work by staff at QAGOMA and the artist’s Los Angeles studio, as well as external suppliers here in Brisbane and overseas. The end result presents over five decades of Lynch’s prodigious art practice in a beautifully-designed hardcover book, which features over 200 images of paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculptures and moving-image works, all characterised by Lynch’s idiosyncratic and intriguing vision.
As we do with any publishing project, we hope the book will be both an insightful exploration of the artist’s work, and a treasured memento for those who visit the exhibition, as well as for those who can’t. Personally, art publishing doesn’t get much more satisfying than this, and I trust ‘David Lynch: Between Two Worlds’ will be just as fulfilling for those who view the exhibition at GOMA in the coming months.
Special Agent Dale Cooper touchingly described Twin Peaks as ‘a town where a yellow light still means slow down, not speed up’. When the books are delivered from the printery and the exhibition opens, I hope I get a yellow light to slow down and enjoy it all, hopefully with a ‘damn fine cup of coffee’.
David Lynch: Between Two Worlds explores the studio practice of renowned American filmmaker and visual artist David Lynch. For nearly 50 years, Lynch’s innovative, influential and distinctive artistic output has been integral to his overall creative vision. Including over 200 images illustrating Lynch’s wide-ranging oeuvre — drawing, painting, printmaking, photography, mixed media, film and video — Between Two Worlds also features an engaging interview with the artist, conducted by exhibition curator José Da Silva, as well as new photography of Lynch by Just Loomis. Available in-store and online
‘David Lynch: Between Two Worlds’ opens at the Gallery of Modern Art on Saturday 14 March and is a rare opportunity to consider Lynch’s entire creative vision and the relationships between his practice as an artist, filmmaker and musician.