A Sneak peak at my custom for the Alien Argus show.
More pics here
Toy Art Gallery is proud to present Mark Nagata’s Alien Argus Custom Group Show! TAG, Mark Nagata and Fig-lab have gathered together over 70 of the best Kaiju and toy artists in the world to customize Toy Art Gallery and Maxtoy Company’s first collaborative figure project
Participating artists include:
Abe Lincoln Jr.
Carlos Enriquez Gonzalez
Cliff Kirschner / MONSTREHERO
Dr. Strange Toys
Fig-lab / datadub
Hints And Spices/Shane Haddy
Jesse Moore/Rawshark studios
Matt Doughty / Onell Designs
Mikie of Blamo Toys
Sean Blay / MONSTREHERO
Thiyea Project/ Takeshi Togo
Thiyea Project/ Mai Nagamoto
Opening reception is February 26th 2011 from 7-11 PM. Show runs Feb. 26 – March 26.
Taking its cues from the spate of high-end superhero flicks pouring out of Hollywood, The Ultraman franchise has been upping its game with the last couple of Ultraman Movies. Since the beginning, most Ultraman series have been presented as a standalone takes on the overall series template – then they are slowly crossed over, sliced and diced and mix and munging with the series and characters that came before re-inventing the overall universe over and over.
But since the 40th anniversary Ultra Series – Ultraman Mebius – broadcast in 2006 – and the ensuing theatrical release – Ultraman Mebius & Ultraman Brothers, Tsuburaya has been slowly but surely tightening up the continuity. The original Showa Ultramen (1966 – 1980) are now part of the “Canon” as Continuity Geeks like to say. I should note that the 2008 movie – Superior Ultraman 8 Brothers – unfortunately was a bit of a misstep – using a clunky alternate universe plot device to mix and match Heisei Utramen Dyna, Tiga and Gaia with the old school Man, Ultra7, Jack and Ace with Mebius somehow in the middle – Inferior is more like it.
However I thought 2009’s Mega Monster Battle: Ultra Galaxy was everything one should expect from a 21st century modern ultra-flick. A lot of it takes place on the Ultra homeworld. The villain was pretty bad-ass, the evil Ultraman Belial (he kind of looks like a McFarlane reject – but I still like the idea of an evil Ultraman). The new main Ultrahero – Ultraman Zero – is a bit of an rebel outcast which is a cool touch (as well as the son of Ultra Seven). And all the Showa Ultra-dudes have cool roles in the story.
I like the fact that they really just went for it and went over the top, instead of pussy-footing around. Considering that first and foremost these movies are for kids and are in someways just toy commercials on steroids – I am always pleased when the movies give copious nods to the old school. Hopefully the producers are realizing that there is a discerning secondary market in older guys who grew up with the stuff (or at least wish they had) and are open to take a chance to be entertained by this kind of fare.
The newest movie, called Ultraman Zero, the Movie was released theatrically this past December looks like it is following on in this gonzo vein. One thing that has piqued my interest are 3 new characters which are homages to 70’s tokusatsu heros that were outside of the Ultra Pantheon.
They all show up in these teaser – see if you can figure out who is who!
|Fireman from Inspire japan|
|Silver Kamen Giant|
Another design festa has come on and gone. This was my 4th design festa from “the other side side of the table” as it were and as is the tradition now – I shared the experience and the booth with my good friends at Art Denka & Goccodo. New insights were gained (mini-booths rule- full booths are a waste), others were re-inforced (Saturday is far and away the day for figure sales. My sales were easily triple saturday what they were Sunday.) However it did seem like there were more actual people in the venue on Sunday. Small cheap stuff rules – while this seems to be the order of the day in the figure world in these Economically- challenged times this has always been the rule of thumb at Festa known as Design. Postcards, badges and stickers rule the day – I noticed alot of vinyl under the 1000 yen price point. It was still an amazing yet tiring weekend – I always see new friends, unexpected folks (Joe from squibbles ink!!) and discover something new.
Hope to see you there one day.
Kaiju Korner has some great pics from day 1!
– Posted from my iPhone somewhere in iJapan
Like Twangy Guitar? Like Fat Beats?
Like Noise, Mecha and pretty Girls?
This new video by Chuck Elketrik of the classic Amon Tobin track “Esther” has it ALL!