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Henry Darger worked all his life in menial jobs in Chicago. Living alone and in poverty, he had no friends or close family. Spending all his off hours alone, he whiled away the hours working on a 15,000 page illustrated novel called The Realms of the Unreal. A stunning amalgam of religious imagery, fantasy, and heroic drama, the work was only discovered after Darger was moved to a hospital during the last days of his life. Darger also wrote journals and an autobiography. The documentary uses interviews with Darger's neighbors and narration of passages from his works, along with his illustrations, to explore the mind and work of Henry Darger.Written by
Ken Miller <email@example.com>
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After Darger's death in 1973, the Lerners decided to share their discovery of his work, preserving his room and its contents.
Since then, Henry Darger's work has been exhibited and collected worldwide. His art has inspired the creation of paintings, poetry, music, and works in theatre, dance, and opera.
The room was dismantled in 2000.
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Flash Pan Hunter (Intro)
Written by Tom Waits
Used by permission of Jalma Music (ASCAP) See more »
I remember hearing about Henry Darger several years ago, but the article I read back then was brief and I was disturbed by images of little girls being strangled in his art. I was eager to see a documentary that would more fully explain his art. I thought the film did a very good job of providing insight to his work - how his traumatic early life led to the themes of his obsessive artwork, how the torture of the little girls probably references his own feelings of feeling tortured in his own life, clues to why he drew penises on all his little blonde girls --"the Vivians," his basic sense of himself as an "innocent," his attempt to adopt children, how he created a secret world for himself, complete with talking to himself in different voices, etc. A much more interesting look into mental illness in some ways than the movie A Beautiful Mind.
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