by Robert Sievert


Hip Hop

For the last month or so the most used book in my classroom has been Pictoplasma, a taxonomy of Internet characters and cartoons that range from the whimsical to the down and dirty, with every stop in between.

I run an art room in a suburban, yet very urban (read Black) high school. It is very hard to take these teenagers' minds off of hip hop and thug life. This book has been the perfect set of images to inspire drawings and prints from these highly distracted young people.

The collection was only started in 2000 yet fills over 200 pages in a beautiful leather bound volume. There seems to be pages and pages of thumb sized icongraphic characters as well as full page images. There is an attractive modernism to this volume. It is totally twenty first century in its cooled down cartoon imagery and presentation.

The figure to the left of this review was made by Chana Hayes. She carefully perused the book for many days and then selected this character to use. She added the words HIP HOP. Truth be known, the figure looks remarkably like Chana, tall, dark and pretty.

the book was published by Die Gestalten Verlag, Berlin

(Consortium is their US distributor)

The best place to buy books or link to Amazon is at their web site, http://www.die-gestalten.de/verlag/index1.php3


    Copyright © 2002 Robert Sievert