Artists Show off Handmade Action Figures at Con Artist Collective Exhibit
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Dean Millien’s foil figurines
For us, action figures played a major role during those so-called formative years. The collection – thanks to older brothers – included everything from Rowdy Roddy Piper and R2D2 to Cobra Commander and He-Man (no Kiss dolls, though). So, our excitement registered fairly high upon learning that Con Artist Collective would host an exhibition of handmade figurines by some of the most prolific artists in the niche genre. Any product of the eighties with a penchant for pop-culture will fall head-over-heels for “Action Figures: Objectified.”
For the time being, the front space of 119 Ludlow Street is like a micro toy store. There are roughly two-dozen shelves housing a slew of intricately molded and etched figurines, tapping that inner well of youth. Inspiration behind these creations ranges from 1980s cartoon superheroes to low-budget anime and Happy Meal freebies.
Some of the more interesting pieces were crafted by Con Artist Collective member Dean Millien, the foil artist we profiled a couple years ago. These sculptures, like his other work, were crafted from household items including aluminum foil and duct tape. Gallery owner Brian Shevlin tells us that these pieces were all handmade more than two decades ago. And the influences are apparent – very much inspired by Street Fighter and Nightmare on Elm Street.
Then there is The Sucklord who, through his corporation SUCKADELIC, fashions a plethora of “bootleg toys.” The Village Voice referred to the 45-year-old West Village native as “a lifelong Star Wars fan and unrepentant toy geek who lived with his mother until he was 36.” The sci-fi angles certainly show in his work.
Other participants include Wizard Skull, Tone Tank, Sean Gallagher, HEALEYMADE, and Weird Luke.
“Action Figures: Objectified” runs through Saturday (December 6), so definitely stop by to check it out. You might even walk away with some product for holiday gifts; most of the sculptures are priced modestly.