The MasterMinds Finalists: Part Three

Categories: MasterMinds

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Winnowing down Dallas' growing, dynamic community of artists to three MasterMinds involved some tough choices. The process was like lining up at a vast buffet prepared by an outstanding chef: too many wonderful selections and too little room on our plates. On the way to naming the winners, our judges narrowed down the original list of 45 entrants to 10 tasty finalists.

Each day until the three MasterMinds winners are announced via our next issue Thursday, we're featuring those finalists (in no particular order) right here on the Mixmaster. Check out Monday's and yesterday's if you missed them, and you'll find today's after the jump.

Sara Kerens
Lawrence Lee at work in his studio
Lawrence Lee
Sketch artist

Lee grew up watching reruns of classic cartoons that unselfconsciously used racial images and caricatures, denigrating people of color as subhuman, comical savages. Those images simply do not make sense in modern context, but Lee has, over the course of his wildly successful young career, found himself exploring them, empowering those disenfranchised characters -- think "Sambo" images from the 1920s and '30s or anthropomorphic animals -- in a fantasy world of swirling design and cohesive storyline. Lee's "epic" contains more than 100 pieces, using graphite, ink, charcoal and tea stains to reclaim damaging images and to transform them into a cast of heroes on a mission to save the world from evil. Fantastic as Lee's imagined world may seem, however, his work is strikingly apropos of our society, where racism percolates beneath a civilized veneer.

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