Birmingham, Alabama based artist Neal Russler deals in pen and ink. With a piece by Russler there is a strange awe — he delivers a focused and perfected form of daft darkness. Within the beauty and technical skill is his quick humor.
Russler’s piece for Mondo‘s Jurassic Park themed gallery exhibit ‘Woman Inherits the Earth‘ contains a trio of velociraptors hidden behind the film’s heroine, Dr. Ellie Sattler. On her shoulder, the dismembered hand of Ray Arnold, the poor computer tech sent off to his death. The humor never outshines the work, but is there in the meat of the piece.
Russler brings a gentleness to the page. Whether drawing the hardened shell of a crab or the bulked muscle of a shark, there’s a tactile sense that each of these surfaces has their natural give. A finger could find the dampness. The scaled outer flesh of a dinosaur. It’s this that makes his beasts frightening and his women gorgeous. His pen work renders the life exact, placing the living thing on a piece of paper.