Because the essay blurs the lines between fact and fiction, I wanted to create an illustration that would take the reader further into Chris' world and invite them to participate in his flesh's commodification.
So I created a mixed media collage that combined scenes from his pornos and personal life, extracted his blood, and used silkscreening to create a mass market commodity.
But any good advertiser knows that a successful commodity needs a brilliant ad campaign and a healthy amount of ritualized abuse.
So I co-wrote a commercial with director Matthew Kaundart in which I ritually tortured Christopher and then engaged in aggressive product placement. Legendary performance artist Sheree Rose served as a technical advisor and Greg Keuhn (TSOL, Bob Dylan) provided the score. You can purchase one here.
Christopher and I are now creating an immersive photographic novel and a hot sauce.
The Cardboard Artist
The Cardboard Artist is a short film about LA based street artist Calder Greenwood who creates location specific works out of cardboard. The film was directed by Matthew Kaundart and produced by myself in association with 72U. The "Cardboard Artist" is a prototype film for "The Rolodex", a documentary film series that Matthew and I are developing with veteran producer Tiffany Naiman.
As part of this screening Calder created a special installation for the theater's marquee. There we also screened a work in progress version of our second film "Randy Land".
The Cardboard Artist premiered on Vice Magazine's Creators Project and was later picked up by LAIST and other sites. The film went on to screen at the American Documentary Film Festival and was an official selection at the Toronto Arthouse Film Festival.
Matthew and I are now in production on several short docs that explore performance art and food respectively.
"The Cardboard Artist"
ВЕТЕР (The Wind) is an ongoing arts and letters zine that I curate and art direct. I created the zine because I wanted to create a transgressive forum for artists, musicians, translators and other creatives that might not ordinarily interact with each other. BETEP is also a forum for myself and other creatives to explore the possibilities of print media.
The first issue was limited to 138 copies with an additional 25 printers proofs. Each cover was hand illustrated by one of sixteen different artists culled from all walks of life from feminist activists to art directors and other fine artists.
BETEP's next project was The HOLY AUTOMATIC; a collection of automatic writing, cutups and reduction poems all culled from scripture. To promote its release I wrote and co-directed a vintage infomercial with Anne Petrokubi. RAZORCAKE described it as "...legitimately sincere and reminiscent of the psalms. It's well written and at times beautiful, but there is a part of me that wonders how this all came together and if it is entirely serious". SLUG Magazine said that the zine presented "a brilliant concept on the complicated relationship between poetry, words and their relationship to the truth".
Issue no. 2 was limited to 250 copies and features a mix CD.
SLUG Magazine characterized issue no. 2 as an intensely emotional journey that "...questions the hate in death, suffering and personal tribulations and turns them into acceptance and love of life, struggle and personal narrative."
BETEP's next release was The Golden Fool; a collection of poetry culled from a cross section of contemporary and iconic performance artists, poets and musicians that was curated by Tristene Roman and myself. The zine was limited to 200 copies and 25 deluxe copies which feature an unique collaborative painting by Daniel Crook and myself, a handwritten unpublished poem by Tristene Roman, and a polaroid related to her performance with Sheree Rose. It's cover was designed by Magus Hannah Haddix (Coyotel Church).
We launched the zine on 6/6/16 at a warehouse in DTLA. The party received coverage from Eris Magazine and Amadeus Magazine and was adapted into a commercial.
Director Sean East and I used documentation of the night's festivities to create a commercial to promote the zine's release. The commercial featured original music by Hour Of The Time Majesty Twelve.
I believe that producing can be a creative act and thatproducers should use their skills as cultural activists to create cultural moments.
Terminal A is a two piece punk rock group that oozes the kind of sincerity and raw emotion that made me want to be an artist and which keeps me inspired.
Despite their incredible performances and heartfelt interviews, they were not getting the kind of attention that they deserved. This had to change.
I got them a record deal with Records Ad Nauseam; a label known for putting out punk rock legends like Paul Roessler, and Gitane Demone and then helped to secure financing and assemble a production team that could get them the kind of recorded sound that would match their energy.
However, my efforts did not stop with the release of their first EP.
Since then I have designed fine art objects, handled publicity, created logos, printed t-shirts, produced buttons, and arranged for unique collaborations with fine artist David Tamargo, legendary performance artist Sheree Rose, and cameos in short films.
Since the EPs release they have played multiple shows with Part Time Punks at the Echo and on KXLU and were described by Part-Time Punks Founder Michael Stock as one of his favorite new bands.
LA Weekly listed them as one of the 15 bands to watch in 2015. Stereo Embers Magazine listed them as one of the 20 post-punk bands you should know about while SLUG Magazine called them "deliciously primal". Art Tavana (Paste/ Vice) listed them as one of the 20 best punk bands currently operating in Los Angeles in a piece that he did for LA Weekly.
Headmaster Magazine: The Biannual Art Magazine for Man Lovers reached out to me to be their first ever visual artist to tackle the "Headmaster Saga"; a reoccurring chapter in each issue that documents the epic and insane life of the magazine's hero.
My chapter begins shortly after Headmaster has been kidnapped in Africa by Bad Boy Jensen and forced onto an airplane headed for parts unknown.
In crafting the visuals I tried to both draw on the rich and playful legacy of 20th contrary erotica while also crafting a visual love letter to my favorite artists from George Platt Lynes and Andy Warhol to Robert Mapplethorpe and Clive Barker.
Headmaster is carried at Marc by Marc Jacobs and the New Museum. The magazine has been showcased at MOCA, MOMA PSI, RISD and elsewhere.
The novel received advance press from renowned artist Zak Smith and graphic novelist Ales Kot. You can purchase the book here
The Wolves That Live in Skin and Space - Book Trailer
Unhinged: A Curious Happening
I was the Producer for this immersive art happening concepted by 72U. The experience was designed to encourage curiosity and challenge perceptions.
Upon arriving at the party our guests were told to enter the party through one of three doors; each with its own elaborate facade.
One room was filled entirely with mirrors and other reflective surfaces and felt like a disco infinity room. Another was a storage space filled with an admixture of curious objects and 3 feet of packing peanuts. The final room was pitch black labyrinth that required visitors to crawl their way into the event.
The main room optical illusions projected onto the walls and a special performance by the experimental hip-hop group BLOK.
It was definitely one of our most talked about and provocative events that our 72U group produced at 72 and Sunny.
Unhinged - A Curious Happening
Superhuman Happiness asked 72U to create a music video that had not been done before. Because the song deals with the ups and downs of life we tried to create an experience that captured that. Craigslist and other message boards capture such ups and downs because they are full of genuine opportunity, scams, and absurdism. As such, we created an interactive craigslist page on a budget of $1000 that has over 150 pieces of content. The project was covered by ADWEEK, FAST CO, and PSFK
My favorite moments came from working with Anne Petrokubi to craft some of the darker and more bizarre content throughout the site. Including several legal postings which Ad Week singled as:
Perhaps [the] best (that is to say, most true to Craigslist form) is the legal category—one post, titled "Free Divorce Advice," wonders "Where are all the almost single ladies at?" Another, titled "You pay I counsel," reads, sic, "I just got paralegal very professional master certificate from university. I sue to make you feel so good. Forget about about wife, husband, car, work. Why worry? Relax time. It’s gonna be good. You pay in form of gold watch, expensive jewelry, deli meats, credit card, or traveler check. No American Express. NO AMERICAN EXPRESS."
You can check out the experience for yourself here:
'Catch A Break' Superhuman Happiness (Interactive Music Video)
Explorers Cocktail Club
The Explorers Cocktail Club is a shadowy sect committed to spirited adventures. As part of 72U I designed the organizations logo and helped craft its copy.
I had a lot of fun exploring the rich history of 19th and 20th century occult movements and drawing on it in my design and in the copy we crafted.
Feral Kizzy is a post-punk group based out of the Los Angeles area. Over the past two years I have collaborated with them extensively. They staged my first public art exhibition as part of their first music video. Later I designed the artwork for their first EP with Tate Hemlock, directed a music video for them with Autumn Steam, created t-shirt designs, photographed them for OC Weekly and acted in their other videos.
"Bee Charmer/Pathway To Extinction"
Stitched was the debut film by award winning graphic novelist Garth Ennis. The film was produced by my long-time mentor Brian Pulido. I began working on this film as a location-scout and during pre-production helped hire the local crew. While on set I served as the Key Set PA and assistant to the director. Some of the challenges that I faced including finding a Pashto translator and handling runs to and from a remote set.
The film made its debut at Comic Con International and was covered by MTV and Bleeding Cool.