May 2, 2014

Fine Art Friday: Yung Lenox - "Rap Covers" Paint Series

Despite a name that sounds like a Trap rapper and despite the fact that all of the artwork is created by a seven year old white kid from Seattle, the painted illustrations by the artist known as Yung Lenox are pretty interesting if for no other reason than a trip down rap memory lane that he recreates out of pure intrigue for the original source material. The bulk of his work are homages to original rap album covers and famed portraits of rappers from the 90s (and some from the 2000s and beyond). The scribbled lines and bleeding colors are pretty typical of "little kid" drawings, but the more controversial part of the drawings is just the subject matter and the "why" behind his interest in this set of images.

The process behind them is described by Lenox's father as this: "Some are freehand, and with the others he traces an outline using a light board. As he draws we go over shapes and color choices, usually listening to the rapper or artist he's drawing. The irony of it all is that there is no irony. He doesn't have an opinion on the subjects. He doesn't care about Guccci mane or Juvenile. My dude doesn't have an opinion about pre-Rollins Black Flag versus post-Rollins Black Flag. It's just a puzzle to him. He draws to solve."

Though there seems to be a forced effort to create an intriguing back story from the father for marketing purposes, the resulting images are fun to look at, simply as a reminder of the evolution of fashion styles in recent rap history to portray a certain "image" and how the often-wild colors and dated props translate when created from a kids markers. Pick one up for $25 and support the talents of a young art sensation.


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