Friday, July 27, 2007

Geek Love & Arturism

My father was a librarian, so naturally i was surrounded by millions of books growing up. Bookshelves upon bookshelves of books that my father swears he had read each one of them, but as a child, there was no way i thought that was humanly possible because there would be no time for Nintendo if that were the case. Duh. Amongst the hojillions of DelRay and Penguin logos on the spines of hundreds of books, i ALWAYS noticed a bright flourescent orange book that simply said "GEEK LOVE" in what looked like a computer-style font. That title contained 2 words that i HATED when i was younger. Why would i even look at it? Horrible title for a child to want to read. So i never even took it out of the shelf. Years later, i DID. accidentally. But i did, nonetheless. And when i read the back, and it said it was about a family of carnies who are trying to breed their own brand of freaks and start a religion where people are encouraged to chop off their own limbs, it was like finding a drop of toilet water amongst the arabian desert after crawling so much my chest had scraped off in the sand. I couldnt believe i skipped over that book for so many years. Perhaps my childhood would have been completely changed if i stumbled upon that book when i was 10. Oh well. So I read the book Geek Love for the first time back in 2002, immediately after discovering it, on a 13 hour train ride to see my girlfriend. It's the only book i have ever read all the way through in one sitting, and so i felt it was worthy of honoring in this art show:

LITERARTISTRY:Works of Art Inspired by the Favorite Books of Contemporary Artists

Corey Helford Gallery is pleased to present Literartistry, a group show featuring works of art inspired by the written word. As
Michelangelo was inspired by Dante’s The Divine Comedy and John Everett Millais by Ophelia in Shakespeare’s Hamlet, each
artist in Literartistry will base their piece on a book that has inspired or affected them in a meaningful way. Upstairs, the Gallery’s
loft space will be transformed into a classic library stocked with titles featured in the show. Guests will have the opportunity
to check out the artists’ favorite books for their reading enjoyment – just as they would at a traditional library. The opening
reception for Literartistry will take place on Saturday, August 11 from 7 to 10pm and is open to the public. The exhibition will
remain on view until September 5, 2007.

Corey Helford Gallery
8522 Washington Boulevard
Culver City, CA 90232
Open Tuesday - Saturday, Noon to 6:00pm


The artists participating are:
Jason Shawn Alexander
Erik Alos
Chris Anthony
Chris Conn Askew
Anthony Ausgang
Lauren Bergman
Andrew Brandou
Dave Burke
Paul Chatem
Greg Clarke
Amy Crehore
Camilla d’Ericco
Jason Dugan
Korin Faught
Sarah Folkman
Melissa Forman
Andrew Foster
Lauren Gardiner
Andrew Hem
Michael Hussar
Stella Im Hultberg
Mari Inukai
Wednesday Kirwan
Joe Ledbetter
Tiffany Liu
Kevin Llewellyn
Jeff McMillan
Lisa Moneypenny Murray
Tom Neely
Joe O’Neill
Alex Pardee
Kevin Peterson
Joshua Petker
Carlos Ramos
Sergio Rebia
Joey Remmers
Lesley Reppeteaux
Isabel Samaras
Mijn Schatje
Nathan Spoor
Bob Staake
Gin Stevens
David Stoupakis
Cassandra Szekely
Heidi Taillefer
The Pizz
Sage Vaughn
Amanda Visell
David VonDerLinn
Jasmine Worth

Check it out if you are in LA!!

Saturday, July 21, 2007


Back in 1987, when Budd Dwyer was placing his gun into an envelope and sneaking it into his press conference, when the Unabomber struck Salt Lake City and pissed off Karl Malone, and Los Lobos pretended to be Lou Diamond Phillips who pretended to be Richie Valens who ruled the airwaves and the silver screen with La Bamba, Kansas City Royals Outfielder Danny Tartabull blazed his way to the top by being a first time DONRUSS DIAMOND KING! How on Earth did a CUBAN not only become one of the ever so coveted DONRUSS KINGS and have his stunning portrait beautifully rendered by a third-rate homeless painter and slapped on a rare card inside a pack of gum-dusted semi-glossy rectangles, but also have a cameo as himself in an episode of SEINFELD, you ask?! I mean, this was BEFORE Sammy Sosa and the rest of the crazily-strong Cubans made it ok for us to accept foreigners in America's Pastime, right? Well, i have no idea. I dont even know who he is. Yet somehow, this bunk Jose Canseco and I have had an ongoing relationship for the past 3 years. And the entire time, i thought he was on MY side....
I was wrong...
Here's the whole story. In mid 2004, I was frantically searching numerous thrift stores in LA for cheap phones to smash and use in an art installation. Amongst the many failed attempts, I stumbled on something that instantly brought me back to my childhood. Under a phone i ended up not buying, i saw him lying there, lonely, yet grinning. A perfect expression painted on his face. It was a Donruss Diamond King Danny Tartabull card from 1987. In perfect condition. Now, i think i only collected baseball cards from 1987 to 1989, in which case, at age 13, i realized that BUYING pictures of DUDES in action poses probably isnt the coolest way to get girls' attention. However, during those 2 years, i think i DID manage to collect every possible card that existed. I had about a thousand Kirby Pucketts, and I loved getting Jim Abbot cards because i loved the fact that he was not only a one-handed freak, but he was BADASS enough to be a one-handed PITCHER in MLB. So of course, i had all of the cherished Donruss King cards. Including, though i don't remember him, DANNY TARTABULL.
At that point of seeing that illustrated Cuban staring back up at me from a thrift store shelf, begging me to relive my junior high days and put him in a hard plastic case so his natural enemy, dust, cant even harm his perfect visage. I obliged, but there was no way i was going to pay for him. The thought alone made me sick to my stomach. Why should i BUY something i already had? and more than that, why were they SELLING him? i cant imagine the scenario where someone would stumble across Danny and freak the fuck out because they now are ONE KING closer to completing their Donruss collection. There was also no way in god damn hell that i was going to ask how much he cost, because whatever it would be too much. So I made a deal with Danny. If i escaped scott-free from that thrift store with him in my pocket, Danny would be my guardian angel from there on out. So, like Pierce Brosnan in the Thomas Crown Affair, I kidnapped him and placed him in a better wallet.
I have kept Danny in my wallet since that day, practically BRAGGING to anyone who notices him that he PROTECTS me, and will until the day i die. I was happy that i had a painted Cuban angel in my pocket. It was my security blanket. I was invincble. I don't know when my invincibility stopped, but i just had some time to reflect on the past today and i realized something. Though i have not died, in the past 3 years since Danny and I reunited, i have been threatened to be sued by a major corporation, i have been rear-ended twice, i rear-ended a pregnant woman, got a handful of speeding tickets whole driving across country twice, had a girfriend cheat on me with a good friend, had a horrible detox from prescription drugs that i had been taking for 15 years, got surgury on my nasal passsages, lost a handful of teeth, gained 30 pounds, and lost a turtle to respiration difficulties, among other things.
These obstacles may be normal hinderances of a regular life, but i can't blame myself for any of my wrongdoings, because clearly none of them are my fault. So now, in retrospect, i blame KC ROYALS OUTFIELDER, CUBAN ASSHOLE, SON OF JOSE TARTABULL, GYPSY CURSE-SPREADING GOAT DANNY TARTABULL.
So, for the first time in 3 and a half years, Danny has been exorsised from my wallet and i am ready to start a new, DANNY-FREE life.
And for the first time in a while, i feel....CLENSED.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Escaped Convict(ion)

We at ZeroFriends have a lot in common with the Doozers from Fraggle Rock. Not only are we all pudgy, green, and ant-like, we are all dedicated to hard work and industry. With that being said, the other guys over at ZeroFriends are pumping out high quality, limited edition prints of some of my recent pieces. There are a good selection to choose from, and they just added a brand new print that is one of my favorites, because it mashes together my older, more visceral and horrific art with some of my newer, bolder and brighter organic stuff.
Each Giclee print is printed with archival ink on velvet fine art paper, and is hand signed and numbered by me. Each print is a limited edition of 200. And as an extra bonus, i have mixed tears into the inks so each one has a bit of my personal sadness.
"When a Doozer stops doing, he becomes a Fraggle..." We will never become Fraggles.




The new issue of JUXTAPOZ comes out on tuesday, July 24th, and amzingly, I got a 16 page layout/cover story!!!
This is a huge deal to me because Juxtapoz has been the National Geographic of low-brow art for years, and I doubt there is anywhere higher I can go in the print world. Until i reinvent Google and get on the cover of WIRED and TIME.
2 different covers are available, one that you can buy on newsstands, and one that is a special "subscriber only" cover.
Thanks to Ben Belsky for putting up with my neuroticness during the interview.



And the portrait for the article by JON DRAGONETTE.

The cutting room floor

Jon Dragonette handled my first official photo shoot a few weeks ago. I say "official" because i dont think spending 20 dollars on every type of fake mustache you can find, and photographing myself at a mustache party, though it takes an extreme amount of set up time and a caring touch, constitutes the word "official". And i've done that a ton of times.
So we went out to Mare island in Vallejo, home of the Hyphyness, equipped with torches, ready to burn and pillage any building we came across in order to make it have "that urban look". We mentally built our hatred up for these buildings beforehand by imagining that they had kidnapped our daughter, and were keeping them captive inside themselves, and were forcing their brick and morter selves on her innocent and frail, cancer-ridden body. That way we wouldnt feel too bad when we burnt them down. And we'd have an excuse if we got arrested.
However, to our dismay, someone had beaten us to it, and the buildings were already destroyed. "NOOOOOO!!" I screamed. "My daughter was in there!" and i commenced to sobbing profusely. Until Jon saved my sanity and replied "Dude, we PRETENDED that you had a daughter. You dont. Fucking weirdo."
and thus, that is the begining of Jon Dragonette and my friendship.
Then we went to Chili's to celebrate something we didnt do, but took credit for it anyway, because we are the only people dumb enough to admit to a crime we didnt commit for hopes of free Ranch BBQ burgers and RESPECT!
Anyway, here are a few photos from that shoot that didnt make it into the Juxtapoz Issue.
Thank you, Jon, my new friend.




HELIO MAGAZINE, should be out in a week or so. I also have an interview in here. Check for it!
I drew and colored the teeth-mouth-eye thing in the background, Nathan did the critters running for their lives!


Looks like the homies over at ZeroFriends are hard at work on a new apparel line. I took these photos the other day when i stopped by to check out what they were up to. I thought they were working, until i realized that there were only passing the time in between letting their stomachs settle from alcohol and plotting the deaths of everyone who drives a Prius. We have a good handful of new designs that I did that are coming out in a couple of weeks. And we've been experimenting like curious alchemists with different inks and printing methods, so expect this new ZeroFriends shit to be GOLD. More on that on News at 11.
Nothins sexier than a drunk man with a pressure washer in the forest.


I did all of the artwork and package design for Seattle-based rock band AIDEN for their new album, CONVICTION, which comes out August 23rd on Victory Records. Here is a look at the cover, and a look at the only piece i have ever done with absolutely no black in it, unless you count the parental advisory sticker. but hey, blame that shit on NWA.

Sorry, no PARK-IG here!

Good thing Anya doesnt have a car because unfortunately there is NO PARKIG please.
Berkeley is pretty much the Twilight Zone, so it wouldnt surprise me if Anya and i simply walked into a portal and emerged in a similar universe, one that looks exactly the same, with the exception of one thing: Every other "N" is taken out of conversation and writing, turning a simple sentence like "Hey, Nancy, go dance somewhere else you elephant, we are trying to sleep in the garbage can!" into something far less appealing to me because i love ALL "n's": "Hey, Nacy, go dance somehwere else you elephat, we are trying to sleep in the garbage ca".

RIDE or die

New "HAVOC x ALEX PARDEE" pro-line snowboards available from RIDE SNOWBOARDS. Should be in high-end shops. dont know where though. Thanks to General Public for helping with the Graphic design of them.

High 5 on I-5

I've driven back and forth to LA so much in the last year that i can do it blindfolded. Unfortunately, it doesnt look like EVERYONE can do it blindfolded, as i saw this happen 3 weeks ago outside of Fresno on the 5. Looks like someone needs more experience with no eyes.

In reality, this guy who was driving this was hurt really badly, and his entire body and clothes were drenched in red as you can kinda see. It was weird. There were too many people trying to help when it happened so we didnt want to complicate things more, but when we stopped, we at least saw him moving. a little. hope he's alright. but i'll never know.

American Walrus

Here is the original artwork that was used in the "AMERICAN WALRUS IN LONDON" campaign for Upper Playgrounds new flagship store in London. And the ad i designed is below. I wish movie posters were still hand drawn.

Bleed It Out, Tinkle Tinkle

I got to go check out my friend Mr. Hahn's new video shoot for Linkin Park last week. He directed a ridiculously crazy fight scene in a bar that is made up of 100 people, or 8 people, or 8 people that are computer-composited to look like 100 different people, or maybe everyone was holograms. I dont know. I was told to wear special glasses to protect my eyes the entire time, but perhaps those special glasses protected me from seeing holographic people doing karate in reverse. Either way, the video is going to look insane, and Hahn used a huge Milo crane (i think they called it that because it was invented for that Milo n Otis movie with the fiesty dog and the stuck up cat). The camera was a gigantic robot that ran by itself along a track, and they also referred to as the Genesis, which i thought was odd for something so state of the art, as it was surely more powerful than 16 bits. Either way, heres a blurry picture of the band in front of a giant green screen so Mr Hahn can composite BADASS MOUNTAINS or something so it looks like the band is FLOATING ABOVE MOUNTAINS!!! ummm....he's not doing that. but he should.

Also, Mr Hahn just got his new toy out, and you need it. Go check out for more info yo.

You lying, handsome liar.

Youre Awkward.
Continuing the crazy Used/Chadam "hard-to-find-every-one" theme of doing different art for all advertising, etc. I did 2 additional covers for 2 additional songs from the USED album, Lies for the Liars.
HANDSOME AWKWARD is gonna be huge. Video out in a couple weeks i think.
These albums are imports. Dont know where or when to get em. I dont have em either.

The WitchKing Of Chicago

I think Chicago is the only place that Kings truly exist. After hearing Ferris Bueller address himself as Abe Frohman, Sausage King of Chicago, the word KING doesnt sound complete unless its followed by "of Chicago". Try it. It feels natural. Your tongue will thank you after spewing any word followed by "King of chicago". Bagel King of Chicago. Progeria King Of Chicago. Unnatural Death-King of Chicago. and so forth.
So the whole meaning behind this was because i took a picture of a small cave on the beach that had "Here lies the Witch King" above it and it was really dumb, but kinda creepy. Like, i'm all for scaring myself, but none of us ended up going in said cave because it was full of water and pitch black. and if by any chance the witch king did indeed have enough self esteem to announce where he lives, i doubt he's a pussy.
But i cant find this picture, so instead, here's a picture i took of a hissing coacroach giving birth. Its so magical!!! Just look at those tasty babies.