Joe Hengst, KiSung Koh, and More Reinterpret Classic Novels in Arch Enemy Art’s “Summer Reading List”

by CaroPosted on


KiSung Koh (“Animal Farm”)

The bell rings, school is out for summer, but you’re heading straight to the library to pick up your summer reading list. Sound familiar? The famous list was designed by American schools to keep children engaged in reading throughout the summer, including classics like “The Secret Garden”, “Of Mice and Men”, and “A Wrinkle in Time”. Some titles have even raised concerns among parents and others that students are being exposed to material that is overly grim. For the 20 participating artists in “Summer Reading List,” now on view at Arch Enemy Arts in Philadelphia, these books are not only a part of their childhood, but continue to provide their artwork with inspiration. Artists like Björn Griesbach, who recently presented a new series of paintings inspired by Brothers Grimm, highlights the darker twists in his art. His illustration here is inspired by “Of Mice and Men,” a colorful yet morbid portrayal of a man holding up the remains of a mouse. KiSung Koh (featured here) contributes a new painting based on “Animal Farm”, where the pig, like his subject, was designed as an allegory for Soviet Union leader Stalin. Other pieces, like those by 64 Colors (“The Secret Garden”) and Valency Genis (“Moby Dick”), are more light hearted, and reinterpret their main subjects as whimsical characters. Take a look at these and other works in the show, on view through August 2nd, below.


Björn Griesbach (“Of Mice and Men”)


Joe Hengst (“A Wrinkle in Time”)


Mimi Yoon (“Beowulf”)


Jeremy Burks (“The Odyssey”)


Hanna Jaeun (“Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde”)


Oliver Flores (“The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe”)


David Seidman (“One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest”)


Valency Genis (“Moby Dick”)


64 Colors (“The Secret Garden”)

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