‘The Misguided Guide to the Origin of Everything’

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What is Dust? from The Misguided Guide to the Origin of Everything, n.d. Animation. 1 minute, 20 seconds. CREDITS: voiceovers by Peter Van Hyning and Matt Fitzpatrick; drawings by Taylor Dell and Dan Baxter; Story by Taylor Dell; animation by Daniel Baxter, Taylor Dell, Thu Tran, and Peter Van Hyning; editing by Thu Tran; music by Matt Fitzpatrick; sound design (mix) by Jonathan Schenke. 


What is Dust? is part of a series, entitled The Misguided Guide to the Origin of Everything, created collaboratively by a group of artists including Thu Tran, who will be a resident at The Drawing Center’s upcoming FUNHOUSE book fair. The animation series focuses on questions raised in the course of everyday life; as Thu Tran has said, “Unburdened by reality and facts, everyone has an absurd answer to life’s mysteries, leaving their black and white reality, and entering a full-color world of imagination.” Other questions explored in the series include What is time?, Why do we smile when we are happy?, and Why do owls say who?.


Thu Tran is a multimedia artist and producer known for her cooking show on IFC, “Food Party” and MTV web series, “Late Night Munchies.” Her comic book Dust Pam is a playful romp about a cat with a dust pan for a mouth who wants her house to be clean, but just can’t get rid of the bugs. The comic is illustrated in a neon palette in Tran’s signature kooky style. Tran has a BFA in Glass from the Cleveland Institute of Art, has supplied props and visuals to the mashup artist Girl Talk, and has been named one of “New York’s Most Beautiful People” by Paper Magazine. She is a mentor at the visual narrative program at SVA in NYC.


Thu Tran’s What is Dust? is featured in anticipation of The Drawing Center’s FUNHOUSE Book Fair, March 24–25, 2018.