SWF ISO Weird Long-Lost Mystery Painting.
July 5, 2011 10:06 AM Subscribe
Several years ago, my boyfriend and I saw a really weird painting/print/poster in a thrift store. We didn't buy it (nooo!), it disappeared shortly thereafter (NOOO!) and it's haunted us ever since. What WAS it?
posted by julthumbscrew to Media & Arts (15 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
(Shameless plea for help: our anniversary is coming up shortly - several days after he undergoes surgery - and I'd LOVE to delight the poor guy by getting him a copy of Mystery Painting.) Here's what I remember:
- The "artwork", as such, consisted of a series of crude, stick figure-like groups of men, women and children. The style was reminiscent of aboriginal/primitive paintings, or of African tribal artwork.
- The pictures were supposed to represent a series of... something. The phases of man? Family arrangements? Milestones? It wasn't entirely clear.
- Each picture had a text caption that explained what it depicted... I forget the exact verbiage, but the captions were stuff like "man with wife and child", "man in old age", "man after losing father", etc. (note: those may or may NOT have been items in the series; like I said, I can't remember the exact ones used).
- It might have been monochrome, it certainly wasn't more than a few colors.
- While the captions were in English, it didn't feel like a product of mainstream America.
- I'm pretty sure there were other words/symbols on the poster. They were neither in English nor in any alphabet I recognized.
- The poster was about three times taller than it was wide, and I believe there was only one stick figure picture per row.
- It definitely didn't seem like a unique, one-off thing, weird and inscrutable though it was. The vibe was way more informational/historical than artistic... the thing did not have a ton of aesthetic value. It's very slightly possible that it may have been religious in nature (the thrift store itself was owned by a Christian organization).
Please help, endless trove of wonderfully obscure information that is AskMe!