Monstrous Optimism: Local Artists Organize Benefit For Family Of Deceased RVA Artist Kerry Talbott

by | Aug 18, 2014 | ART

The Richmond art world lost an important leading light when illustrator and teacher Kerry Talbott passed away from brain cancer last October. To celebrate his life and to help Talbott’s family take care of the significant remaining medical expenses related to Talbott’s treatment, a group of local artists are putting together a benefit show entitled Monstrous Optimism to take place this Friday at Artspace Gallery in Manchester.


The Richmond art world lost an important leading light when illustrator and teacher Kerry Talbott passed away from brain cancer last October. To celebrate his life and to help Talbott’s family take care of the significant remaining medical expenses related to Talbott’s treatment, a group of local artists are putting together a benefit show entitled Monstrous Optimism to take place this Friday at Artspace Gallery in Manchester.

For quite a few years, Kerry Talbott was employed as a staff illustrator at the Richmond Times Dispatch. He also worked as a freelance illustrator and comic book artist, with work published by DC Comics, Penguin Books, and many more. Talbott also illustrated Fingerprints On The Table, an award-winning children’s book published by the White House Historical Association, and taught as an adjunct instructor for VCU’s Department of Communication Arts department for over a decade.

Organized by Velocity Comics owner Patrick Godfrey and VCU Department of Communication Arts adjunct instructor Kelly Alder, Monstrous Optimism will bring together work by over 60 local artists, which will be sold as high-quality 11″x17″ prints. The show will feature work by such noted RVA artists as Robert Meganck, Sterling Hundley, Stephen Bissette, Chris Visions, Josh George, Sally Vitsky, Bizhan Kohdabandeh, Richie Pope, Jim Callahan, and many more. The prints will be sold for $20 each, with all proceeds going to Talbott’s family.

Artists were asked to create work involving subject matter close to Kerry Talbott’s heart, specifically monsters, aliens, robots, and other weird/sci-fi-related topics. Most importantly, the organizers wanted the images to be fun, a challenge which the local artistic community was happy to take. This is obvious from the images that have been released as a preview of the show, several of which can be seen below:


Oura Sananikone


Robert Meganck


Sally Vitsky


Noah Scalin


Jim Callahan

Prints of all of these illustrations and many more will be available for sale at Monstrous Optimism. This event will take place at Artspace, located at Zero East 4th St in Manchester, on Friday, August 22 from 7-10 PM. For more info, click here.

Marilyn Drew Necci

Marilyn Drew Necci

Former GayRVA editor-in-chief, RVA Magazine editor for print and web. Anxiety expert, proud trans woman, happily married.




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