Heroic Trash

Mike Kelley's Creative Erasure

The Daily Pic: The late L.A. artist got rid of everything except garbage.

04.16.13 8:02 PM ET

The late Mike Kelley made this drawing, and it’s now in the fascinating New Museum show of art from New York in 1993. The image is from a series based on the “Sad Sack” comic strip, except that Kelley has erased everything except the trash that is everpresent around the strip’s eponymous hero, a private in the U.S. army who gets everything wrong.  I love the way erasure becomes a tool for depiction and emphasis, and failure becomes a heroic condition.

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