I started doing graffiti in the mid eighties, then changed direction in the early nineties as I explored different artistic avenues. My world opened after being excepted to art school in 1993 which gave me the chance to explore different media. My work represents the process of searching for a result within a structure. For instance I may use a face as a reference point but make it a possible face as well as an impossible face. Through the process of painting I will find a result that is coded like graffiti but recognisable to the viewer as a face. The face becomes a point of contact and hopefully understanding but mainly a point of recognition. I feel as though that is what I want the viewer to see, the human side to graffiti, the point where something fleeting and important is recognised and that is the very temporality of our totality as recognisable beings. The line I have had to cross though is graffiti itself, now the images I produce become something else, they become what the viewer allows them to be.
Had an interesting conversation today that brought up the pleasure psychotics can get out of their psychosis. Strange but true the actual release can be pleasurable but the aftermath usually is directly destructive for all involved. Had written something about some of the characters my partner had worked with and the access to pleasure they had a number of articles ago but I had failed to see the similarites as they were within a spectrum of mental disorders. When I have written my most poisonous difficult remark possible I can also derive a lot of pleasure from it, it makes me laugh from a dark perspective. Truly though it isn’t funny but pleasurable, at least at the time then some form of guilt will set in or regret. Milan Kundera in one of those novels that were popular in the 90s can’t remember which one exactly made a distinction from the (It was ‘the Joke’) laughter of pleasure and the laughter of dark pleasure. Not in my clumsy words mind you, a lot better than that. Totally bending the truth but you get the idea, the real gist in his novel was of anxious laughter so I suppose it is a third type of laughter a destructive kind. Hell I probably should have written this article 20 years ago but was busy at the time doing graffiti. ; )
Well if I was to do lettering, to really push it somewhere, it just wouldn’t happen. As a graffiti artist I couldn’t do it to myself, when I start really drawing what interests me in that regard I have an interest in line and form which is so foreign from anything that I don’t know what this monster is and not in a good way. It is an island with no other sea farers in sight a strange land out there in the midst of loneliness. If I ever decide to go and be as lonely as possible I might start down that path. Believe me it is attractive, I love setting off into oblivion to trial in fruitless labours where there lies no reward but a photo collection of odd visual gymnastics.
It has got me thinking though, by channelling this interest into my faces I have let it have a more universal form. Graffiti has grown into other directions, they are exciting but not where I am heading there are many likenesses, glass, kaleidoscopic forms, tonal transitions, lighting effects but they just don’t have my name on them. It is for the new generation, also I can’t claim to be New York influenced at least not now.
As an aside I can remember the demolition of a car detailer on the corner of Coogee Bay Road a number of years ago. The detailers tested their cans on the walls and the effect was a wall of random marks, yes, I loved it that was it, a sight of unintentional nothingness. Random meaningless marks, that is my current state of lettering, a cocophany of line and unintentional forms topped with a sesame seed bun. Looks better than it tastes and that is why I avoid lettering.
So have been keeping a journal where I was supposed to hone my skills as a blogger but alas it just stayed there unseen. Probably not a bad thing and I just couldn’t get anything out but my own gravel like thoughts. It seems even though the browser is off the cuff the overall writing quality is well, existent if anything as opposed to hidden in a journal. The journal has been added to over the past three months or so and its purpose was to help me excel at the art of blogging. The plan was to write through the week leaving at least one article for the weekend, an interesting well thought piece of excellence. Well as you can see that didn’t happen and I am back to edit less meanderings and general misunderstandings.
Although I managed to write my little book which was my only achievement in this period. To conclude I have fallen in love with iBooks even though it got Apple done for colluding prices which shouldn’t mar a very good platform, the issue is of course is accessibility. What if you don’t have a Mac with iBooks or an iDevice? So of course I have a pdf on this site. But back to iBooks I love it on the Mac even more than the iPad it is really good but I will be forced to make a universal version inevitably.