Monday, April 13, 2009

The Runny Bunny - Rockin' Robin

When I was about 8 years old I had this awesome toy called Fashion Plates. It was basically a bunch of heads, torsos and legs on plastic rectangles that slid into little slots. Then you placed a piece of paper over the plastic pieces, rubbed like mad with your favorite crayon colors, et voila!
Ok, actually it wasn't my toy, it was my older sister's and she had left a pile of meticulously rendered designs in the box after she outgrew it and gave it to me.

After designing a few blase ensembles it occurred to me that I was limiting myself based on my sister's preconceptions, and the Three Headed Leggy Lady was born. then the Leg Headed Torso Girl and of course the Headless Woman, in her many incarnations.

The first time I saw TheRunnyBunny's work on Etsy, it was a charteuse owl. I remember following the link to Robin's shop thinking "This owl is like my eyes' favorite flavor of candy!"

Little did I know what that shop held in store for my eyes! I found Robin's slip cast mutants, and I suddenly wished for my Fashion Plate Freaks once again.

Puppy heads on shepardess bodies, ladies heads on owls bodies, babies heads everywhere, wings and 70's kitsch, weird ephemera seamlessly frankensteined into something new, and thankfully not ALIVE!

I don't think I could handle a world where herds of tiny baby headed owls romped through the brush hunted by poodle headed victorian ladies. Although, what are humans if not the ultimate adaptors, and I would pay a pretty penny to see anyone of Robin's creations do a well choreographed performance of "Puttin' On the Ritz." Wow, Robin could I make a music video with your creatures?!

I digress. That tends to happen a lot when I look at Robin's work, though. Her meldings of mundane mass produced cutesey figurines into her own special brand of art sets the mind reeling with associations, and strange emotional responses.

The incomparable Miss Robin Van Valkenburgh is the woman behind the slip cast madness that is TheRunnyBunny.

Robin is beyond description (although friggin' gnarly almost begins to do the job), so I won't even try.

If you want to meet her, you will just have to hoof it to Howard Street this Saturday. In the meantime, check out her shop on Etsy.

She has owls, she has awesome DIY kits, and of course, freaky fun. For more fun, check out her rockin' blog.

1 comment:

  1. i had the fashion plates too! i was always so unimpressed with fabric pattern rubs...come on now...i know it was the 80s but people wore many more patterns than triangles and squiggles.

    on a different note...i can't explain how excited i am that robin is vending this month. i love strange beauty.