Drawing in a Time of Fear & LiesWeekend

Politicians and Other Monsters

The Phantom of the Opera meets Donald, Jared, and Vlad.

Tawan Wattuya, clockwise from top left: “UNTITLED (TRUMP ERASED),” “FAMOUS MONSTER 4,” “JARED KUSHNER,” “PUTIN” (all 2017, watercolor on paper, 15 x 11 inches, courtesy of the artist)

My country is Thailand.  I have long been drawn to themes of politics and violence in my works. While having some discussions with friends and curators Keith Schweitzer and Paul D’Agostino before my first solo show in the United States, my works became different. I was making many watercolor paintings of old movie monsters for fun while also making strange watercolors of politicians. We were discussing these pieces and came up with an idea to include bad politicians from around the world. Then we had the idea to combine some monsters with some politicians. The monsters and the politicians are all monsters.

So I painted many more movie monsters and many more bad politicians. I also painted some that are mixed. Then we realized that the politicians are scarier than the monsters. Maybe the monsters seem nice when you compare them.

“UNTITLED (TRUMP ERASED),” “FAMOUS MONSTER 4,” “JARED KUSHNER,” and “PUTIN” (all 2017) by Tawan Wattuya are included in his solo exhibition, Rogues Gallery: Monsters, Villains & Hellbent Politicians, which continues at the Lodge Gallery (131 Christie Street, Lower East Side, Manhattan) through tomorrow.

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