Va Va Vroom Meets the Crocker

Mel Ramos’ Phantom Lady

By Ashley Bradley

Even though I’ve lived in Sacramento for nearly four years, I had yet to visit the Crocker Art Museum, that is until the Va Va Vroom Art Mix event.

I’ll admit, I don’t know much about art, and a lot of it is over my head, but I do know a little something about pop culture.

The event featured a few classic cars, a themed dinner menu at the Crocker Cafe by Supper Club (complete with options such as corn dogs, pork sliders and hamburgers), a fashion show, and even a photo booth utilizing comic book props. I arrived a bit later than I anticipated and was too busy gabbing with my friends to catch the fashion show, but I did get to admire the classic cars and take some outlandish pictures in the photo booth.

While the Va Va Vroom event was spirited, the real highlight of the night was the featured temporary exhibit of Mel Ramos: 50 Years of Superheroes, Nudes, and Other Pop Delights. You’d recognize his popular work anywhere; one of his more popular works is Martini Miss, the nude blonde posed in a martini glass. Or you might recognize his depiction of superheroes.

His work is not for the shy, as the collection title states, nudity makes an appearance in most of his pieces. He’s known for his commercially inspired nude images of women draped in candy wrappers, sitting on hamburgers and drinking from Coca Cola bottles.

Ramos is an internationally acclaimed artist and a Sacramento native, which I was unaware of until my visit to the Crocker. His work is really quite impressive.

Though you may have missed the Va Va Vroom Art Mix event, there’s still time to see the Mel Ramos exhibit, it will be on display at the Crocker until October 21. And even if you don’t make it for the Mel Ramos exhibit, you should still take a day to visit the Crocker. This was my first visit and I didn’t get to see even a quarter of the collection. I see another visit to the Crocker in my very near future…


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