Rex Ray: A Portrait


A snapshot of San Francisco based queer artist Rex Ray, told through the objects he collected during his life.


Rex Ray was best known for his innovative pop aesthetic in fine and commercial art—on canvases, wood panels, album covers, paper, book jackets, murals, and rock and roll posters. His early designs include the first graphics for the San Francisco chapter of Act Up; many guerilla marketing flyers and posters for queer nightclubs; book covers for City Lights Books and HIGH RISK/Serpent’s Tail, and he later designed work for David Bowie, The Residents, Bill Graham Presents, DreamWorks, Levis, Frameline Festival, and Apple.


Upon Rex Ray’s passing, Marling photographed many of the objects left behind in his home and studio, cataloging the curiosities and artwork that Ray had surrounded himself with. Marling was compelled to work with the photographs in the collage style signature to many of Rex’s work, creating this short animated film as a celebration of the whimsy and brightness of Ray’s life.