Here’s an art project that celebrates the 80th anniversary of James Whale and Boris Karloff’s Frankenstein, and it also celebrates a good cause.
Eighty artists have been invited to paint, transform, re-configure and re-imagine a bust of Karloff as The Monster. That’s eighty wildly creative, new takes on an iconic image, all available for sale, with all proceeds going to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, an organization devoted to cures, treatment, means of prevention and outstanding patient care for children suffering from pediatric catastrophic diseases. Founded by entertainer Danny Thomas in 1962, the Memphis-based St. Jude’s is a world leader its field. It is a non-profit corporation and not affiliated with any religious organization.
The It’s Alive collection is currently on display at Orlando’s City Arts Factory until November 15, and all the Frankenstein busts are viewable on the It’s Alive Project website. You’ll see The Monster as Frankenberry and painted as a Dia de los Muertos figure, or Kiss-style. There’s a Justin Bieber hoodie-Franky, and Franky transformed into a biker with a handlebar mustache, Batman’s Joker and Mr. Spock. The Monster also moonlights as King Kong — with a tiny Bride standing in for Fay Wray, a Tiki Franky, a ninja and a pirate.
One bust has its flat top taken off, transforming Karloff’s Monster into a bucket of popcorn, and another bust is opened up and showing a tiny mad lab inside its skull, as if The Monster remembered its electrical origins. And it goes on and on, eighty variations on a very rich theme, and all for a spectacularly worthwhile cause. Bravo!
With Thanks to E. Francis Kohler.