ANTHONY AUSGANG

Anthony Ausgang was born in Trinidad and Tobago in 1959 to a Dutch mother and Welsh father. The family moved to Houston, Texas in the early 1960’s, a particularly difficult time for an immigrant family to parse American culture. Nevertheless, Ausgang's father made brave attempts to assimilate by attending custom car shows and demolition derbies. Ausgang eventually encountered Ed Roth and before long had a shoebox full of Rat Finks, a small plastic figurine of a noxious rodent that had somehow become the embodiment of Hot Rod and Custom Car Culture. Ausgang's mother continued the European traditions by dragging her son to endless operas, symphonies and art museums.

This combination of High Art and Low Art was to prove fertile cultural mulch for Ausgang's artistic inclinations. After a short stint studying art at The University Of Texas in Austin, Ausgang succumbed to the myth of California and moved to Los Angeles where he began classes at The Otis Art Institute. Disappointed to find out that the curriculum there didn't include target practice, admiring cars or watching surf films, Ausgang dropped out to start showing his artwork to as many galleries as would tolerate his frequent visits.

Finally accepted by the infamous Zero One Gallery, a combination of after hour’s nightclub, gallery and crash pad, he had his first official sale, to a drug dealer. At his solo show that year Ausgang sold to a more diverse and socially acceptable crew as collectors and critics began to take notice. At the Zero One, Ausgang met Robert Williams, who was one of the main forces at Roth Studios in the 1960's and was the most successful practitioner of the type of art that would later be called Low Brow.

As the "official" art world began to accept Ausgang's work so did the commercial art world and he began making record covers and posters and working as a consultant on computer generated animation.

 

GALLERY EXHIBITION

HOLLYWOOD TO REDWOODS
SEPTEMBER 2018