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The Summoners

Dreamed by Jim Shaw between 1987 & Jan. 1995.

I was reading this comic book that started out with Batman talking to a real woman, touching her, then it became a story about two naked women doing a nature ritual in a forest of skinny trees, cross lit Wally Wood-style, with Virgil Finlay-like stars in their shadows, conveniently covering up their nipples. They conjure up men and play with them.
Two women dance in a wood, summon a weird lamprey-worm-snake. Dream sketch by Jim Shaw. Click to enlarge.
They conjure up a swirling form which is a worm-like dragon floating in a bamboo stockade. By this time it's a Robert Williams movie (but I remember the artwork going for $20 a page) and he sits around with his surfer buddies.

--Jim Shaw


Jim Shaw is best known as the guy who assembled a show of thrift store paintings--a gallery of found art. This piece is proof, if needed, that he CAN draw on his own. Even if, even here, he's taking on someone else's style--this really does look like Wally Wood's 1960s cartooning. The content, too, seems very Sixties: the sexiness within careful censorship-limits, the fusion of nature, women and magic, and how these, freed to do their thing, promptly summon a monster. Anima Rising (in Joni Mitchell's phrasing) turns round to bite you. Is it a giant fanged dick or a vast vagina dentata? Oh well, either way, it's a monstrous world--the world of Robert Williams the Lowbrow Artist...

At least that's how I'd read this one.

--Chris Wayan

SOURCE: Jim Shaw's Dreams, Jan. 1995, Smart Art Press. Dreamed 1987-95; drawn 1993-95.

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