Book examines Lowbrow or Pop Surreal art movement

Lowbrow or Pop Surreal art

‘The Lives of Lowbrow Artists’ is an eBook available on Amazon / Kindle for $9.99. The print edition will be available in December. Image courtesy of Amazon.

LOS ANGELES (PRNewswire) – Most Americans have seen Lowbrow Art without having even heard of it. Sometimes called the “Pop Surreal” art movement, the images and influence of Lowbrow art are widespread, appearing on album covers, in comics and galleries across the U.S. and around the world. But not much is known about the origin of the movement, or the stories behind the artist themselves. Lives of the Lowbrow Artists seeks to shed some light on the origin story of Lowbrow Art, starting with the artists who created the work. This first volume profiles: Shag, Tim Biskup, Miles Thompson, Derek Yaniger, and Brandi Milne.

 The term “Lowbrow Art” was coined in 1981 by underground comic book artist Robert Williams with the purpose of elevating the cartoon imagery. He eventually co-founded Juxtapoz magazine in 1994 to highlight artists that paint in this vein. Juxtapoz eventually surpassed the circulation of Art Forum, thus making it mainstream art.

Robert Williams has had several museum retrospectives and is part of the 2010 Whitney Biennial and is part of their permanent collection. Even Juxtapoz alumni such as Shepard Fairy have become household names, yet little is known about the history of these artists and the inspiration behind their works.

Lives of Lowbrow Artists documents the second and third wave of the movement and elucidates how hot rods and pin-up girls once dominated the scene has now evolved to tikis, mid-century modern imagery and beyond. The book goes beyond what is covered in magazine interviews by the artists and is written in an ethnographic style to fully immerse the reader in the conversation. Learn how traumatic events each artist’s struggles through and how that shaped their work.

Author Fritz Costa was a former anatomy college professor who now works for a pharmaceutical company managing “First in Man” clinical trials. He just happens to be passionate about art. This book was a result of the Great Recession of 2008, while he was unemployed trying to transition into the pharmaceutical industry. More information can be found on the author’s website at

Purchase the book on Amazon.