Angelina Elise Southern Gonzo Gothic

When you glance at Angelina Elise's work, you'll see lightly painted, folksy cartoons that resemble even-more-whimsical versions of O Brother, Where Art Thou? characters. Yet upon closer inspection, you'll see they're actually cute little men and ladies fucking, sucking, and then chucking one another.

The quirky artist confesses, laughing, “Yeah, I'm definitely inspired by murder ballads and my own crappy relationships of the past.” Elise is an outsider artist who grew up listening to folk and country, but her love of those genres solidified when she began booking bands for a small bar in Silver Lake several years ago. “I only wanted to book acoustic music,” she says, “and through that, I was introduced to all these great, old-timey bands.” As the Santa Ana resident illustrated fliers for the shows, her naughty Americana style blossomed.

Elise produces drawings, paintings, prints and original designs stamped into leatherwork. It's all moonshine, shotguns, dusty barns, twirly mustaches and country lasses that are so adorable you can't really be offended when they're hanging from a tree by their own hair, killing a man with a frying pan, or lying in a field to get down on some corn cob (if you know what I mean). Their exaggerated features and surreal placement make it a fantasy world we'd love to walk around in for a day.

“I think it's about my own search for love,” Elise explains. “I've been very angry and depressed about it in the past, but now it's just funny to me.” Her art reminds us that irrational feelings are pure comedy after some time, an outlook we can all relate to!

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