Feature

Where to buy...David Jien

Jien's art is on display at the Richard Heller Gallery in Santa Monica.

Artists have long been interested in creating private mythologies. David Jien’s “The Plight of the Who” series invents a world in which lizard men, ninjas, and bubble-headed creatures battle over the fate of a newborn baby who’s a stand-in for the artist. Born in Los Angeles to Taiwanese parents, Jien spent his real-life childhood drawing scenes inspired by Roald Dahl and his teen years daring arrest with a graffiti crew called D2R. Jien’s gallery art, primarily rendered in gouache, colored pencil, graphite, and gold leaf, is equal parts Dahl, Henry Darger, and Lego, and is girded by an architecture that calls to mind Chinese scrolls. At Richard Heller Gallery, 2525 Michigan Ave., Santa Monica, Calif., (310) 453-9191. Prices range from $3,500 to $25,000

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