Upperplayground News

KENNY SCHARF: COSMIC CAVERN

by Ariadna Zierold

kenny scharf, cosmic cavern, portland, installation, upper playground

Kenny Scharf  is an American painter who lives in Brooklyn, New York. He received his B.F.A. in 1980 with a major in painting at the School of Visual Arts located in Manhattan, New York City. Scharf’s works consist of painting pop culture icons in a science fiction setting, such as the Flintstones and the Jetsons. He is most well known for his work in the 1980s interdisciplinary art scene.

kenny scharf, cosmic cavern, portland, installation, upper playground

Kenny Scharf’s “Cosmic Cavern” immerses viewers in a day-glo universe densely packed with graffiti tags, detritus, and everyday objects reimagined as cartoon personalities. This surreal world comes to life under the fluorescent black lighting reminiscent of clubs and discos of the 1980s, a central inspiration for this party environment turned art installation. In 1981 Scharf created the first version in the closet of the small New York apartment he shared with artist Keith Haring. Since then, he has transformed basements, galleries, museums, RVs, and even suitcases into this psychedelic, multi-sensory experience.

kenny scharf, cosmic cavern, portland, installation, upper playground

via Portland Art Museum.