Monday, September 12, 2011

Kingdom of Nonsense's "The Machines Are Winning" Show

You may have heard about the "The Machines Are Winning: A Tribute To Sidney Lumet" show curated by John Vogl and Jay Shaw and thought it was just another movie-themed art show, but after checking out the work below, I think you'll agree the quality here rivals and in many cases exceeds what we see coming from Mondo and Gallery 1988. I was thinking about covering all of the art currently available, but that sounded like a lot of writing, so I'm just going to stick to the four pieces I purchased (and are somehow still available through the Kingdom of Nonsense store).

12 Angry Men Movie Poster
Kevin Ang
18" x 24"
$30 - Limited to 35

I love this film. 12 Angry Men is a movie I've probably seen about ten times in my life, and about eight of those times were in school (for some reason public schools seem to love 12 Angry Men, Roots, and ironically Ferris Bueller's Day Off). Kevin Ang, an artist I'm not really familiar with, has done a great job capturing the eclectic (and by "eclectic" I mean white male) group of angry jurors, complete with the circumstantial evidence in the forefront. His use of black and white is certainly a nice touch and his depiction of the righteous and reasonable juror number 8 (Henry Fonda) is appropriately inspired. Kevin Ang's 12 Angry Men poster is available through the Kingdom of Nonsense store for $30. The poster measures 18" x 24" and is limited to an edition of 35. If you're a fan of the movie, this is a must own, and if you haven't seen the movie, then you should know that Criterion is coming out with a newly remastered version of the film on DVD and Blu-ray in November and plan accordingly.

Fail-Safe Movie Poster
Lloyd Stas
18" x 24"
$30 - Limited to 35

I stand by the statement that Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb is my favorite film of all time - it's the most perfect piece of cinema in existence in my opinion (alright, "perfect" might be a tad extreme). But if I was to list a few more of my favorite nuclear doomsday films, you can bet that Fail-Safe would be near the top of that list. If the name Lloyd Stas is familiar to you, it might be because of his outstanding concept posters celebrating Edgar Wright's filmography that took the Internet by storm. Well, Stas has once again proven he's an incredible artist with a great eye for some of the deeper and less surface elements in the films he chooses to cover. In this fantastic Fail-Safe print, Lloyd focuses on General Black's nightmarish visions of the matador, and has taken some artistic license and made the bull-bomb metaphor a bit more explicit and a lot more beautiful. Lloyd Stas' Fail-Safe poster measures 18" x 24", costs $30, is limited to an edition of 35 and is available through the Kingdom of Nonsense store. To learn more about Lloyd I recommend checking out, his Tumblr and following him @lloydstas.

Network Movie Poster
Mayra Fersner
18" x 24"
$35 - Limited to 35

Network is by far my favorite Lumet movie. I heard about the film when I was in high school, when I thought Requiem for a Dream (which by the way is an awesome film) followed by a viewing of Donnie Darko was the zenith of cinematic appreciation - in other words: I had a lot to learn. Films like Network were gateway drugs of a sort and introduced me to the likes of Putney Swope and Dr. Strangelove. Given the special place in my heart that Network holds and Mayra's beautiful design work, this poster has to be my favorite of the bunch. Her interpretation of the television anchor-cum-prophet is pitch perfect and practically exudes the piety that Howard Beale preached to the television-watching masses. Mayra Fersner's Network poster is available for purchase through the Kingdom of Nonsense Big Cartel store. The poster costs $30, measures 18" x 24" and is limited to an edition of 35. Like the vast majority of the artists mentioned in this blog, I'd never heard of Mayra before, but will definitely be waiting to see what she does next. Be sure to check out Mayra's blog at, her Tumblr and follow her @HagCult.

Deathtrap Movie Poster
Jacob Van Loon
18" x 24"
$35 - Limited to 35

I'll be honest. I've never seen Deathtrap, but I bought this print on the quality of the art alone. It's absolutely gorgeous! It's like M.C. Escher, Inception, and In the Mouth of Madness had a mutant baby that mind-bendingly bended my mind. Is it a bad idea to purchase artwork for a film you've never seen? Not when the it looks this good! In full disclosure: after purchasing this print I immediately added Deathtrap to my Netflix Instant Queue. Jacob Van Loon, the creator of this work of art, is another artist I had no familiarity with, but will devoutly follow from this point on. Jacob's Deathtrap print is available through the Kingdom of Nonsense storefront for $30. The print measures 18" x 24" and is limited to an edition of 35. To learn more about Jacob be sure to visit his blog at, his Tumblr and follow him @tvparty. I'm totally tempted to get another one of these just to give away in a contest - brilliant stuff!

...And that's what I bought from the show. There's still fifteen posters available through the Kingdom of Nonsense store, so my brief reviews for the four prints above are only a fraction of the awesome on display. To read about the future comings and goings of show organizers, Bill Vogl and Jay Shaw, be sure to visit and

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