Grimes Debuts Global and Claustrophobic Drawings -- Photos

It’s an early Friday evening on the Lower East Side of Manhattan and Claire Boucher, a.k.a. Grimes, is tottering around a small gallery space in massive high-heels, her bob of neon green hair towering over everyone inside the white-walled space. There's a distinct sense in the room that Grimes is either the Next Big Thing or the Flavor of the Week (that is, if there's still a meaningful distinction between the two) and a small group of journalists and photographers wait patiently for their pre-arranged five-minute audience with Ms. Boucher. For her part, says she's both stressed and exhausted, from her recent marathon of shows down at South by Southwest and the flu she managed to bring back with her from Austin. You'd never know it by looking at her, though. She's all smiles as she glides through Audio Visual Gallery, greeting journalists and friends, giggling as she explains the inspirations behind her work (horror movies and Beyoncé both come up often). On this occasion, however, the work in question is not the kinetic electro-pop of Visions but rather, a series of india ink drawings that sit silently in their frames. As it turns out, the drawings do seem to share an aesthetic kinship with the songs on Visions: they're a bit claustrophobic, borrow liberally from global pop culture (Japanese manga in particular) and are rendered with a deft hand and an impressive attention to detail. When asking what medium she'd like to tackle next, a journalist offers Boucher a camera so that she can document her life on the road for his publication. She seems excited at the prospect, though she readily admits it's because she's never owned a camera before. By this point, the room is starting to get uncomfortably crowded and Boucher makes a beeline for the door. A fan stops her midway and asks if she'll sign his copy of Visions. Gracious as always, she stops to scrawl "GRIMES" in all caps on the cover in blue Sharpie before making her exit. From her drawings of grinning, bow-adorned skulls to her exuberantly bubbly songs to her consistently animated demeanor, it's clear that Claire Boucher's is a personality that's not easily suppressed.