Eric Yahnker (Juxtapoz cover artist, May 2011), has long been one of the most biting, humorous and politically aware fine artists working today, and his recent exhibition of drawings of former President Barack Obama's iconic mic drop at his final Correspondents' Dinner.
When we initially saw Yahnker's work for this show, it was in the form of a video loop, each panel done in his signature pastel realism. What we didn't get to see was how CAM Raleigh and Yahnker would present the work, and now seeing the installation shots of The Long Goodbye, on display through September 10, 2017, the idea is even more brillaint. Each pastell frame is presented, surrounding the final animation presented on a video screen. There is so much to consider; is this Yahnker holding onto the last moments of Obama's presidency, was it the sheer hilarity of a president performing a mic drop, or is it just an immersive work that extends itself as an ode to the man in one final stretch of a signature moment? All these things make the work that much better, that much more satisfying as an installation, and continue to show Yahnker as both a humorist but also an artist of poignant social commentary.
Here is the animation at CAM Raleigh:
Here is the actual mic-dop:
Flip book video courtesy of the artist. Images courtesy of Phil America and Chris Ciccone