|Underground Artists Take on the Sith in The Vader Project|
Pop surrealist, graffiti, tattoo, lowbrow, comic and underground artists Shag, Paul Frank, Tim Biskup, Frank Kozik, Marc Ecko, Amanda Visell, Tim Biskup, J. Otto Seibold, Gary Baseman, Joe Ledbetter, Urban Medium and Jeff Soto, among others, show their allegiance to the dark side by customizing Darth Vader helmets in landmark gallery exhibition called The Vader Project, to debut at Star Wars Celebration IV on May 24 to 28 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
The Vader Project is presented by Master Replicas, and curated by Dov Kelemer of DKE Toys, one of the largest designer vinyl and art-toy distributors in the world, exclusively representing over 50 companies, artists, and designers. Kelemer gathered the hottest underground and pop surrealist painters, artists and designers and gave each artist a Master Replicas 1:1 scale prop replica of the Darth Vader helmet used in the Star Wars films. Each helmet served as a blank canvas for each artist to paint, design, mash up and customize in their own unique style.
'Most of these artists are involved in the designer vinyl and art toy community so they understand customizing a 3D object even if they are 2D artists, painters and designers,' Kelmer explains. 'I tried to have all the different communities represented. The designer toy scene is really an eclectic group of artists. They come from all different backgrounds. On one hand you have this urban graffiti street art culture, the lowbrow pop surrealist group, then there is the whole culture of Asian inspired 'cute' art, rock poster art, and Japanese Kaiju, of course. Most have nothing to do with one another but it's all the same culture in the toy world.'