_originally published on Uptown Magazine’s Uptown Social, 6.14.11
The best storytellers know how to paint a picture with words.
Beautifully strung together similes and metaphors, a well-placed verb or adjective, can help create such visually descriptive tales that the listener can almost see them.
That craft is even more evident in hip hop. So, it’s no wonder that San Francisco-based artist Jeremy Fish called upon one of the best lyricists around, Snoop Dogg, to help him with his latest exhibition, “Listen and Learn.”
The exhibition aims to showcase the timeless beauty of storytelling in popular culture. “In this era of email, texting, and blogging, we are losing a grasp on the concept of sitting around the campfire and exchanging life experiences through the telling of tall tales,” Fish explains. “I want to remind people of the importance of storytelling.”
Fish culled personal stories from a wildly diverse group of hip-hop artists, historians, skateboarders, athletes, a police officer, a stripper, and visual artists. He then created art inspired by each anecdote using vibrantly colored paints, dark bold lines, and zany looking characters. The result is an exhibition that ranges from introspective to downright hilarious—the piece that captures Snoop’s tale humorously recounts his being reprimanded by the school principle after “pulling out his worm” to a girl.
Each story was recorded and can be listened to via headphones mounted next to its coordinating work of art for an integrated audio-visual experience.
"Listen and Learn" is at the Joshua Liner Gallery in NYC from June 21 to July 16, 2011.
Address: 548 West 28th St.; 3rd Fl.; New York, NY, 10001. 212.244.7415