Artist Scott Listfield just had his latest exhibition at Gallery 1988, where he brought his Astronaut to explore the present time of brands that have either already died or that will one day be but a memory. When I was a kid, it was hard to imagine a world where Toys R’ Us or Kaybee Toys didn’t exist. It was also hard to imagine a world in which I didn’t want to see every single Papa Ginos burn to the ground in a series of fiery explosions (I tossed pizzas there for my first job).
Scott explains the inspiration for his art on his website, along with why he chooses to use the astronaut:
Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey was released in 1968, well before I was born, so I have no firsthand knowledge of how it was received. I don’t know if people really believed we’d be living in space in 2001, if we’d have robot butlers and flying cars, geodesic lunar homes, and genetically reconstituted dinosaurs helping or eating us. But from Lost in Space to the Jetsons to Jurassic Park, it seems that popular culture has fostered this space-age perception of the future. Generations raised on these TV shows, movies, comic books, and novels are now grown and living in a future filled with mini vans, Starbucks, iPads, and Hip Hop videos. In many ways, the year 2001 failed to live up to expectations. And yet the world today is peculiar in ways unimagined in 1957, when Sputnik was launched, or in 1968, when 2001 was released, or even in 1994, at the dawn of the internet. The present is in fact a very unusual place, and it’s strangest in the ubiquity of things we take for granted.
The astronaut in my paintings is simply here to explore the present.
You can check out if your favorite print is still available HERE.