Austin, Texas’ collectible boutique Mondo has made itself the destination for a rarefied kind of geeky art and accessories, like Gremlins-themed knit sweaters and the Cannibal Holocaust soundtrack on vinyl. While Mondo is most famous for the limited edition posters that sell out in seconds after their availability is announced on Twitter, the gallery has since expanded into fine art and has been home to solo showcases from illustrators and designers, as well as themed group shows inspired by Batman and Disney.
But Mondo’s upcoming “Eyes Without A Face” show, featuring the work of artist Jason Edmiston, doesn’t have a theme so much as a set of parameters. It’ll consist of around 150 paintings of distinctive eyes, belonging to famous pop culture figures. “I’d say 75% are movies — that’s the most visually interesting — but I’ve got television, video games, people in the news, cartoons, comic books, and toys,” Edmiston told BuzzFeed News in a phone interview. The paintings all have the same 3:1 aspect ratio — inspired by a glimpse of Edmiston’s own eyes in a rear-view mirror– and they’re also all to scale. “I’ve got tiny characters that are a half-inch wide all the way up to a seven-and-a-half foot wide painting. It’s quite a range,” he said.
“Eyes Without A Face,” which will run at Mondo from Mar. 13 through Apr. 4, was born in part out of Edmiston’s desire to create a show of original artwork that would be more accessible to people who don’t have several thousand dollars to drop on one painting. But he’s also created a test of people’s pop culture knowledge: None of the works in Edmiston’s “portrait experiment” will be identified by the character or by the property they’re from. And while most should be familiar, there are a few that might prove tricky. “I think that’s a big part of the fun of the show,” the artist said.
The images below are of paintings that will appear in “Eyes Without A Face,” the first 11 of which are exclusive to BuzzFeed News.