Rudy Panucci On Pop Culture

Art Walk In Photos, Popeye and Dan Dare In Hardcover

The PopCulteer
May 22, 2009

Walking The Art Walk

Last night saw one of the most fun Art Walks that Charleston has seen. The incredible weather made for a great turnout, and the galleries were well-stocked with cool objets de art. We even had musicians playing in the streets, as you can see in our headline image.

I took the PopCult camera around, and snapped pictures of the evening’s artsy goodness. Starting at The Convenience Store, I trekked over to Taylor Books, The Good News Mountaineer Garage, The Purple Moon and Visions Day Spa before heading home for the night. After the jump, you can check out some montage photos of the exhibits I took in. Click ’em to enlarge.

The Convenience Store, on Summers Street, is one of the city’s new cool places. It is a convenience store, but instead of having gas pumps, they have an art gallery. For the next month they’re featuring a high-contrast exhibit called “Duality.” A reception with the artists on hand will take place June 12.

Taylor Books features some great work by Dane Klingaman.

Last week’s “Head First” show at the Hansford Street Art House migrated to The Good News Mountaineer Garage for one night only. The young artists showed off quite a few pieces that were new since last week.

The Purple Moon celebrated one year in their new location on Quarrier Street. A large crowd came out to check out the art and atomic age antiques.

People were enjoying the summer-like weather outside The Good News Gallery.

Vision’s Day Spa featured great work by Bob Rosier, Joe Bolyard and others.

I hope we’re this lucky with the weather for next month’s Art Walk, which falls during FestivAll. This was just a beautiful evening. It makes a person feel really good about the culture and diversity we have here in Charleston.

Stuff To Do

Friday night, Unknown Hinson is at The Sound Factory, with The Scrap Iron Pickers. The show kicks off at 10 PM. The RFC cameras will be on hand to record The Pickers, then we’re going to bask in the mighty wonderment of The King Of Country Western Troubadours. Tickets are $15.

Saturday night, The Velvet Brothers and Electro Biscuit host a BYOB lounge party at LiveMix Studio. It kicks off around 8 PM. All the cool kids will be there.

Both nights this weekend and next, CYAC presents “Cupid Rising,” an original play by Dan Kehde. This farce on teen love, morality and misinformation features stage veterans Lauren Miller, Samatha Oxley, Erin Martin, Nik Tidquist and Kirill Gura in leading roles. Mel and I have been lucky enough to see all these kids, and we’re really looking forward to seeing the show–probably next Friday. Tickets are $5.50 for students and seniors and $9.50 for adults at the door.

Cool Comics

As promised, we have two cool comics this week, and they’re both actually fancy book-type compilations, not regular comic books.

First up we have Dan Dare. Garth Ennis and Gary Erskine revived this British version of Buck Rogers last year for Virgin Comics. With Virgin currently publishing the comic book line invisibule, Dynamite Entertainment has acquired the rights to collect this new series into hardback and softcover collections. A second series written by Ennis is coming soon.

You can read the first issue of the Virgin series at Newsarama for free. It’s a great updating of the original series, which was called “Biggles In Space” by some, but it stays true to the spirit of the classic Dan Dare strips. Check PopCult for news on the continuation of this great series from Dynamite.

Fantagraphics is collecting the classic E.C. Segar Popeye comics in a series of beautifully-designed hardcovers.

From the Fantagraphics catalog: “Most folks are familiar with Popeye through a variety of incarnations that have ensconced the character in the public consciousness for almost 80 years—the animated Popeye cartoons, the feature film Popeye, etc.—but far fewer have been exposed to the original brilliance of Popeye’s creator, E.C. Segar. Now, comic strip fans can experience Segar’s original comic strips through this new six-volume series. In 1929, Segar took his eccentric Thimble Theatre comic strip (which began in 1919) and introduced Popeye, transforming the strip almost overnight into one of the most popular works of art in American history. Segar’s entire cast of characters, such as Olive Oyl, Wimpy, Eugene the Jeep, the Sea Hag, and Alice the Goon became a part of American culture. This outwardly farcical gaggle of vaudevillian-esque antiheroes, bumbling about on picaresque chases was one of the most sophisticated—and hilarious—comic strips in history. Fantagraphics’ Popeye will collect the complete run of Segar’s Thimble Theatre comic strip (dailies and color Sundays) featuring Popeye, re-establishing Segar as one of the first rank of cartoonists who have elevated the comic strip to art.”

Three volumes have been published so far, and they can be ordered from any bookstore. They run about thirty bucks each, and are well worth it.

That’s All Folks!

Next week in PopCult look for our usual features, production notes for RFC 71, with WATT 4 and Hitchcock Circus, and a look at a very cool weekend.

1 Comment

  1. Tony

    Day2Day Trading are proud to annouce that they are taking on the classic British character of Dan Dare and producing him in a 12″ inch action figure with full accessories. If you would like to kept imformed of the progress of the production please mail Welcome back Dan Dare.

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