Freudian Hip by Nicholas Gerbis

20110127-Phoenix-New-TimesNicolas Gerbis Corinne Geertsen
Ceci n’est pas un cigar.

Surrealism was always a muddled movement. Nevertheless, it succeeded in imprinting its aesthetic and stylistic qualities in the collective unconscious. Witness that museum of co-opted rebellions, the dorm room, where Dalis and Magrittes nestle between posters of Che Guevara and decades-defunct punk bands.

That’s more an indictment of poseurs than of Surrealism, which thrives conspicuously in underground comix, the lowbrow movement, and exhibitions like “Psychological Sightseeing,” by Arizona’s Corinne Geertsen.

Picture Terry Gilliam’s Monty Python bumpers mixed with “Wondermark”-a woefully reductionist description, but one that conjures Geertsen’s wry, dark, and outlandish image juxtapositions. Art ought to fascinate, and Geertsen has evidently found her muse in the uniquely creepy, inhuman gravitas of old portraits in which no one smiles and even infants appear to glower. The effect is both playful and haunting.

Set the alarm on your melting watch for Thursday, January 27, at Mesa Contemporary Arts, 1 East Main Street. Today’s viewing hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Admission is free Thursays and first Sundays, $3.50 all other days. The exhibit continues through February 20. (from Phoenix New Times Jan 27, 2011)