Apr 132012

R. Crumb: ArtReview interview »

I have always loved Crumb’s work. In this interview he explains that his comix rendition of Genesis was not a reaction to his own religious upbringing, rather it “started with a scholarly interest in ancient Mesopotamian culture and myths”. He’s become widely accepted as a serious artist since the release of 1994 film Crumb, particularly amongst those in the art world, which is ironic for a community renowned for its disdain of popular media. Now living in France, he has an exhibit opening this month at the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris.

The only thing I am remote from is the day-to-day life of the United States, and when I lived in America, a lot of my work was a reaction to that. So that’s not there any more, and I don’t know what effect that has. When I go back there once or twice a year, the old contempt and disgust with America comes back over me, probably even stronger than when I lived there. I can have contempt and disgust here in France, too! It’s a general disgust with humanity. I’m in Paris now and came back from the Metro, and you look at humanity and it’s just appalling out there. I’m no better, I don’t think I’m superior or anything. I have the same reaction if I look in the mirror.

Originally published in ArtReview issue 58, April 2012. See the entire magazine online here
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