With the help of oil paints and cheeky ingenuity, Dave Pollot gives thrift store paintings a new lease on life by inserting unexpected pop culture icons into the scene.
The artist calls himself “a software engineer who spends his nights with a beer in one hand and paintbrush in the other.” Looking at his work, that seems like an entirely apt description. Pollot’s paintings are quirky, nerdy and playful. Schmaltzy seaside portraits are transformed with Godzilla. Kitchy cottages are revamped with Optimus Prime. You may spot Super Mario, Darth Vader, Harry Potter, an Alien or even a Sharknado.
“Before I began repurposing discarded thrift art, I painted more ‘serious’ architectural paintings and landscapes,” Pollot says on his website. “While I loved this, I found that I got bored very quickly (which resulted in about three completed paintings a year). Bringing new life to old art, though, brings interesting challenges with each new piece. I try to make my ‘additions’ (which are often references to and parodies of my favorite movies and video games) look as though they were there the entire time.”
Pollot’s pop-culture-meets-mainstream approach is designed to bring joy to both nerds and art lovers alike. “With a world so full of serious questions,” he says, “I’m just trying to let viewers laugh as they construct their own narrative from some new oil paint humorously added to some old, neglected bit of Americana.”