BOOK REVIEW: Silhouettes from Popular Culture by Olly Moss

Silhouettes from Popular Culture is a lovely hard back, small form factor (just 17.9 x 2 x 17.9 cm) book depicting popular characters from geek / cult films, TV  comics and video games, as Victoria style silhouettes.  Majority of the books 144 pages feature single silhouettes of characters as diverse as Calvin & Hobbes to Chunk from the Goonies. Most of the fun of this book is identifying who each silhouette represents as none of them are titled, but all are surprisingly recognisable from their profile alone.

“Silhouettes From Popular Culture” is Olly Moss’s first book. Moss is a British artist with a love for things that fall squarely into the geek domain. His official website showcases some of his previous works including minimalist film posters for geek classics – Star Wars, The Avengers and Dark Night Rises to name a few – and the re-imagining of iconic video games as Penguin book covers.

In the forward to Moss’s book, Duncan Jones (director of Moon and Source Code) stated:

“Olly is very special. A new Brit great who straddles the cool of Banksy, the humour of Shrigley and a wit all of his own.”

New types of Geek art book are becoming a rare beast because so much Geek related art gets a wider audience online.  Artists websites, and spaces like Deviantart showcase fan-fiction art or derivative mashups, and coffee table sized art books such as the ‘Bond 50 Years of film Posters’ book are expensive and dealing with an established franchise.  This book is not just glossy behind the scenes shots of classic films, nor collected sets of film posters.

At just under seven inches tall, Olly Moss’s cloth covered hardback book is a little slice of delightful whimsy. None of the silhouettes are titled, so you can have great fun trying to identify what/who the featured silhouettes depict. Each graphic is printed on high grade (almost cardstock) paper, making it easy to flick through.  Seeing well known icons from popular culture in silhouette makes you appreciate how truly iconic some of them are. Moss makes the process of condensing complicated iconography down to a 2d portrait image easy, which is a testament to his skills as an artist.

“Silhouettes From Popular Culture” by Olly Moss is s smile inducing and more importantly new and unique take on popular geek icons. The book goes  on sale from October 26th, and would make a unique present for any artistic geeks in your life.

Below are some examples of the silhouettes. In this case are all the Doctor Who incarnations to date, alongside their infamous arch-enemy:

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Rating: 5/5
Reporter: Faintdreams

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