Though you may not know his name there is a fighting chance that you have seen the work of artist Wayne White. In fact, if you've ever seen Pee-Wee's Playhouse that's a certainty. A multi-talented artist White is the subject of upcoming documentary Beauty Is Embarrassing. Announced as a world premiere in the first block of titles at SXSW the already released trailer makes it very clear that a whole lot more people will know who White is by the time the festival is done as this looks very likely to be one of the 2012 edition's breakout hits.
Beauty Is Embarrassing is a funny, irreverent, joyful and inspiring documentary featuring the life and current times of one of America's most important artists, Wayne White.
Raised in the mountains of Tennessee, Wayne White started his career as a cartoonist in New York City. He quickly found success as one of the creators of the TV show, Pee-wee's Playhouse, which led to more work designing some of the most arresting and iconic images in pop culture. Most recently, his word paintings, which feature pithy and often sarcastic text statements crafted onto vintage landscape paintings, have made him a darling of the fine art world.
Beauty Is Embarrassing chronicles the vaulted highs and the crushing lows of a commercial artist struggling to find peace and balance between his work and his art. Acting as his own narrator, Wayne guides us through his life using moments from his latest creation: a hilarious, biographical one-man show. The pieces are drawn from performances at venues in Tennessee, New York and Los Angeles including the famous Roseland Ballroom and the Largo Theater.
Whether he's parading a twenty foot tall puppet through the Tennessee hillside, romping around the Hollywood Hills dressed in his LBJ puppet suit, relaxing in his studio pickin' his banjo, or watching his children grow up much too soon, Wayne White always seems to have a youthful grin and a desperate drive to create art and objects. It is an infectious quality that will inspire everyone to find their pleasure in life and pursue it at all costs.
At its core, Beauty Is Embarrassing is a reminder that we should all follow our passion. It is those creative impulses that will lead us to where we need to go.