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Copy Cat

Eric Lunde was a bad boy from Rhinelander, born in 1960. He admits his youth was wasted abusing diverse drugs, trying to kick diverse drugs, and working diverse menial jobs. One could say he was “saved by art” when he moved here to study it at UW-Milwaukee, which isn’t to say that he mellowed out to a nerdy state of mind and ran around in tweed jackets with leather elbow patches. No indeed, Lunde co-founded and performed in the industrial/art band Boy Dirt Car, touring around to various venues and wrapping up that stage of his life in 1987 when he roamed the U.S. as the opening act for Die Kruezen. He recorded, recorded, recorded, and if you care to check him out, he’s chronicled in a recent publication “Convergence,” an overview of Milwaukee’s performing arts scene by Pegi Taylor, published via Walker’s Point Center for the Arts. It’s hard to believe (as his bio states) that he’s returned to the “traditional” arts. Well, okay, if you consider the construction of mechanical assemblages, and his exploration of philosophical, aesthetic, scientific, and linguistic principles as “traditional,” he may have a point. Somehow though, his work sounds decidedly untraditional. Lunde (can you really take the dirt out of the boy?) also states in his bio, “I’ve begun investigations in the graphic effects of multiple reduplications of cultural and personal iconography.” Additionally, his Red Car (through October 10) gig promises to address degeneration, erasure, censure, subtraction, and multiplication. No need to grind your gears over this — it’s much the same thing as what Andy Warhol did years ago, i.e. take an object, any object, and skew it to death. Over and over and over until the objects, (in Lunde’s case) boxes of Brillo, Frosted Cheerios, and Lucky Charms, morph to something other. Or do they? Lunde suggests the transformations beg the question “Is it the same?” You decide. Actually Lunde invented a machine to carry out his madness. He calls it his “Mimetic Machine” and it lives and labors for him in Bloomington, Minnesota. Sounds like something from “Forbidden Planet,” doesn’t it? If you prefer, think of the device as a whacko mimeograph, Xerox, or, hey, just a plain old digital duplicator. Check out cool copy cat Eric Lunde when he rolls into town. Red Car Gallery touts itself as housing outsider art, though their shows have been known to slip into the traditional. This one should put them back on track.
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Dragsters & Lucky Charms: New Work on Paper. Eric Lunde. Red Car Gallery: 907 S. 1st St.