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ARCHIVE: WILD THINGS

Matt Furie’s art is inhabited by monsters, aliens, and dogs with goofy eyes and big tongues.

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ARCHIVE: WILD THINGS

Matt Furie’s fantasy world is inhabited by chain-smoking aliens, BMX-riding monsters, and what could very well be Falkor’s—the lovable luck dragon from The NeverEnding Story—evil twin. “I call it ‘children’s book illustration for adults’,” he says of his cartoonish art. “I want to keep that degree of childlike wonder, but fuse it with creepy shit.  A lot of kids’ rides at Disneyland have dark, disturbing themes. Like Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride: I could be a little off but he’s this toad that drinks and drives, gets killed in a car accident, and goes to hell. It’s awesome.”

The Ohio-born artist—whose inspirations run the gamut from David Lynch to David Attenborough, Sally Cruikshank’s surrealistic animations to Gary Larson’s comic gags—moved to San Francisco in the early ’00s and worked in the children’s department of a Mission District thrift store. By day, he sorted stuffed toys and action figures; by night, incorporated the likes of the Terminator, He-Man, and Big Bird into his work. “Then I went through a dragon phase that I haven’t been able to shake,” says Furie, who uses coloured pencils and watercolour paints to render creatures with engorged features and sharp fangs, dripping dubious fluids from open wounds. “There’s a degree of chaos in watercolour. I’m working on a new series of bigger works—meditative faces that swirl into a big spiral—the first of which will be anthropomorphic chicken nuggets called ‘scumnuggets’.”

Furie now lives in Los Angeles with his long-time girlfriend and three “mini-dogs”—rats Rainbowbaby, Tina, and Pepe—but admits, “I love a dog with goofy eyes and a big tongue.”


mattfurie.com

Featured in Four&Sons, Issue Two.
To buy a copy, click here

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