In each of my books there’s an About the Author page. The current version says this:
Nassau Hedron is a writer, editor, and artist.
He is partial to malls, hotels, airports, and other man-made environments.
He loves exotic food, disposable goods, and shiny objects.
He prefers bright colors to subdued ones, passion to equanimity, and directness to subtlety.
He reveres, in no particular order: Vincent Price (actor, icon, gourmand), Salvador Dali (painter, human exhibit), Andy Warhol (painter, partyologist), Franco Mondini-Ruiz (installationist, magician), Kenzaburō Ōe and Kōbō Abe (novelists and madmen – the first won the Nobel Prize and the second ought to have), Ray Kurzweil (scientist, prophet), Tadanori Yokoo (poster artist, alien), and Jack Johnson (heavyweight boxing champion and maximum disturber of the peace).
In the ebooks there isn’t really room to expand on this capsule description, so I’ve created a new page on this blog called Revered, In No Particular Order, that gets into the detail. You can find it here, but the first installment is contained right in this post.
Franco Mondini-Ruiz (installationist, magician)
I first encountered the art of Franco Mondini-Ruiz in 2002 in a show called Ultrabaroque: Aspects of Post-Latin American Art at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto.
I loved the exhibition and bought a copy of the program, which has survived periodic culls of my bookshelves and which I’ve lugged with me from one country to another to this day. My copy cost me about $40.00 at the time of the show, but you can now get it on Amazon, new, for about $5.00 (and even cheaper for a used copy).
I was taken with Mondini-Ruiz’s art from the moment I saw it and it stood out even in a show that included a lot of standout artists.
His work was lighthearted, even cartoonish, without being vapid. It was bright and colorful — I’m a chromophile — without sacrificing depth. It played with everyday objects and images, but it imbued them with a unique spirit (and, on the scale of the gallery, even with grandeur) without ever making them remote or untouchable in the way that snobbish art can do to an otherwise charming object.
Franco Mondini-Ruiz Interview I
Franco Mondini-Ruiz Interview II
Franco Mondini-Ruiz — His Garden