empathy

Poor Ernie is Now an Alcoholic!

Minnie Mouse has been raped, the Sandman overdosed on sleeping pills and Ernie lost Bert and turned to drink. See what happens when evil triumphs over good.

At first, the exhibition of Patricia Waller’s “Broken Heroes” at Galerie Deschler seems fun and comic. Big woollen toys of your favourite childhood cartoon characters or heroes, such as Spiderman, Sponge Bob and Superman, draw you into the gallery space only for you to realise that they are depressed, suicidal and far from the happy memories you associate them! If you want to see your world turned upside down, this exhibit will do that for you!

The Real World

Minnie Mouse lies face down and knickers round her ankles, alone in a darkened room. “I wanted to pick up Minnie Mouse and hug her” said one visitor, Emily Cragg. “Because they are quite familiar images you feel like there is a connection”, she goes on to explain. These celebrities of the cartoon world have entered our real world and show us the realities that the pressure of it puts on us!

An Ironic End

What a depressing thought. However, although it is sad to see them in this situation – far from the perfect happy world of comics or cartoons, where good always triumphs evil – it also retains a childish fun and curiosity. The big woollen toys are fun – despite their broken spirits, and I found myself weirdly curious to see how the next character had met its end! Particularly interesting was the ironic death of the Sandmännchen, the character who is in charge of putting everyone to sleep, but never rests himself. His overdose on sleeping pills has put him into an eternal sleep whilst Ernie from the Sesame Street gang has lost his best friendBert, along with his dignity as he slouches drunk in the streets which made him famous! It seems to be the pressures of the characters own lives and responsibilities that have ruined them.

If you want some entertainment that is familiar and brings back childhood memories, but yet is more than a bit twisted, then we recommend checking out Waller’s “Broken Heroes” exhibit while it is still on!

  • Galerie Deschler Patricia Waller “Broken Heroes” April 20th – June 30th 2012, Tue – Sat: 12 – 6pm