As a smart man once said, David Lynch is not James Franco.
The filmmaker, the internet is quickly learning, has multiple talents that are real. Before he ever touched a video camera, Lynch studied visual art at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, a dark building set in the soot of Philadelphia, both locales of which he credits for inspiring his later work. In a week, he'll return to PAFA for an epic museum retrospective, created over decades. It all promises to be super Lynchian, down to the Twin Peaks-era "backwards language" he speaks in the trailer:
The show will include Lynch's first attempt to create what he calls a "moving painting," a lifelong obsession that led him to the world of film. Titled "Six Men Getting Sick," the multimedia installation won first prize at PAFA's experimental painting competition the year Lynch made it. The New York Times has an image of the work, which involves a resin screen molded with three protruding casts of Lynch's own head. Onto these, he projected a hand-painted animated loop of heads in "various stages of distress," as the Times puts it.
Lynch has never hidden his love of the brush. In a 2012 essay for HuffPost, he described being a child and meeting a friend's father, who was a painter.
"Hearing this news that an adult could be a painter -- an explosion went off in my head and from that moment on all I wanted to do was paint. And for me, the world of a painter held much coffee."
David Lynch is also obsessed with coffee. It all comes full circle.