Skip to content

Artwork by Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia

Mark Mothersbaugh – Monument to the conquerors of space
Mark Mothersbaugh. 1964 – Monument to the conquerors of space, 2012.
Ink jet  on paper, 43 x 65 in. Courtesy the artist.

Musician, composer Mark Mothersbaugh, founding member of the band DEVO, has been a prolific visual artist since before the band’s inception. And, he continues to create art today. Mothersbaugh says that his love of art started early in his childhood, just after it was discovered that he was extremely nearsighted and legally blind. He says that his first correctional glasses offered him a new view of the world, inspiring his obsession with imagery and illustrations. His first works, which he began creating in the late 60’s and into the 70’s, consisted of many different mediums, including rubber stamp designs, ink illustrations, screen printing, decals, and mail art. The name of Mark Mothersbaugh’s career retrospective is titled Myopia, in reference to his eyesight.

Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia, currently showing at The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver (MCA Denver) is described by the museum as “the first retrospective of the work of Mark Mothersbaugh from the beginning of his career in the early 1970s through the present.  The exhibition includes documentation and music from his DEVO days; prints, drawings, paintings, sculptures, rugs and video animations; performances; newly produced musical and sculptural installations; and a life-long series of postcard-sized works, which is being exhibited in its entirety for the first time at MCA Denver”. The exhibition is accompanied by the publication of Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia. Mothersbaugh has also recently published Mark Mothersbaugh: Collected Facts & Lies, which is a collection of fifty of his postcard artworks.

Mark Mothersbaugh. My Little Pony
Mark Mothersbaugh. My Little Pony, 2013. Ceramics, 53 x 59 x 33 in. Courtesy the artist.

Originated in Denver and curated by Adam Lerner, Director & Chief Animator at MCA Denver, Mark Mothersbaugh: Myopia will complete a six-city tour ending in 2017. The tour dates and venues are listed below:

The Museum of Contemporary Art Denver: October 31, 2014 – February 15 2015

Minneapolis Institute of Arts: June 21 – September 6, 2015

Contemporary Arts Center/Cincinnati Art Museum: October 7, 2015 – January 9, 2016

The Austin Contemporary: February 13 – April 17, 2016

Santa Monica Museum of Art: August – December 2016

Grey Art Gallery at New York University/Drawing Center: January – April 2017

Mothersbaugh tells Colorado Public Radio (CPR) that he views his musical and visual art as one seamless whole, and that he doesn’t differentiate between his visual art and his music. The audio CPR interview includes a walkthrough of the exhibition and a discussion of his works. He describes his “Beautiful Mutants” images, sound art installations, and rugs. The exhibition includes 30,000 of Mothersbaugh’s postcard artworks assembled in books that visitors can flip through.

For more information about Mark Mothersbaugh and his artwork visit http://www.mutato.com/.

Related blog posts:

Mark Mothersbaugh: Beautiful Mutants and Scion Art Cars at LA Art Show (January 20, 2012)

Mark Mothersbaugh: Rugs! Rugs! Rugs! (December 11, 2011)

Visit the Pop Life Art home page for many more links to the musicians that are visual artists.