Thursday, January 31, 2013

Chipping in a little

Hey pal, great to see you. What've you been up to? Chipping away at things?

Here's a painting I did a little while back, it's acrylic on 225gsm paper, 15 x 22cm.

It's called Salt and Vinegar.

I think that's all for now, I'm not really in the mood to blog today, I've got a chip on my shoulder about it.

Monday, January 21, 2013

MARCO...

Hey pal, good to see you.

So ok, I talked about the exhibition I was in at Alaska Projects two blog posts ago, but I guess what I didn't mention about that show is the top I wore to the opening.

In honour of the brilliant Sydney artist Tom Polo, who curated the show, I dug up one of my year eleven high school shirts and with a few hours to go before the opening I rummaged around Kings Cross until I found a tube of paint and a brush.

And so here's the result; Tom Polo and me in my Tom polo.


I wore the shirt until the very end of the opening, (despite it being really cold), and at the end of the night I gave the shirt to Tom.
I'm really proud to have been a part of such a great show. Here's a photo with some of the amazing people I was lucky enough to set it up with.
On the right of that photo is Western Australian artist George Egerton Warburton.


I didn't know George before the trip but we were sharing a small two bed hotel room for half a week, and became best buds very quickly.

George and I would come home from a night of wandering about Kings Cross, get into our beds, turn on the TV and fall asleep watching Survivor.

Speaking of Survivor, did you hear Destiny's Child have gotten back together?

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Where's your Ed at?

Hey pal, what's news? Been out painting the town Ed?

So one thing I heard a bit of when I'd describe my petrol station project to people was "Oh petrol station photos? Like Ed Ruscha yeah?"

This is of course referring to the great work TWENTY-SIX GASOLINE STATIONS, made by the great Californian artist Ed Ruscha, in 1962. 

As the title suggests, Ed's work consisted of 26 photographs of gasoline stations, turned into a book.
Being compared with Ed Ruscha is never a bad thing, I love Ed Ruscha so much, but our works are completely different. 

I guess the main differences are that his photos are all of different petrol stations, they could have all been taken on the same day and they have no real narrative. 

I think the big similarity between our works though, aside from them both obviously being made up of photographs of petrol stations, is that the anecdote, or idea of the work, is a lot more interesting than the actual photos.

If you wanna learn more about Ed you can find pretty comprehensive coverage of his work over at Artsy if you click here. Or of course you can go to the library, there's some good books on him too.

One interesting thing that I read in an Ed Ruscha book, (well, I mean, I think it's interesting, ha, there's a good chance you're not interested at all), is that when Ed gave a copy of TWENTY-SIX GASOLINE STATIONS to Andy Warhol, apparently Warhol told him the first thing he noticed is that none of Ed's 26 photos have people in them.

In contrast to this I think that the people in my petrol station photos are probably my favourite part.

Anyway, as a jokey little reference to all of thisI decided to make this painting.
It's acrylic on board. 


I made the painting in the style of Ed's text paintings, in particular ANOTHER HOLLYWOOD DREAM BUBBLE POPPED and I DON'T WANT NO RETROSPECTIVE.



My painting is 37cm x 29cm, which is exactly half the dimensions of Ed's text paintings. 

I made my painting exactly half the dimensions of Ed Ruscha's paintings because I figure I'm exactly half the painter, and at least half the man, that Ed Ruscha is.
Anyway thanks heaps for reading, try to keep your Ed held high, at the same time try to keep your Ed out of the clouds, and if possible try not to run around like an Ed-less chicken.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

PETROL STATION EVERYDAY OF 2011


Hey, so I figured it's about time I wrote on here about my piece, Petrol Station everyday of 2011.

So ok, basically I took a photo of the Ferntree Gully petrol station every day of 2011. 

That's pretty much it.

Here's an example of some of the photos.
 
So there's 365 of these photographs, one from each day of 2011, from January 1st to December 31st.

I exhibited the work in July 2012 in a show called ANYTHING, EVERYTHING AND ONE OTHER THING, curated by Tom Polo at Sydney gallery Alaska Projects. 

For the show I presented the photographs in a traditional slideshow format, with the images playing through on a loop in chronological order, and projected on an intimate scale and very low to the ground.
Alaska Projects was a particularly ideal space to show the work as Alaska's situated deep in an underground public car park.

The 365 image slideshow makes up half of the work, the other half is a text piece. 

The text piece is an explanation and anecdote of the reality of going through with this idea. 

The text piece consists of exactly 365 words.

Here's the text.





Petrol station in 365 words.


In 2011 I photographed my petrol station every day, from January 1st to December 31st. Every photo was taken with a Nikon d90 DSLR using an 18-55ml lens, standing in the same spot.

The petrol station is a 5 minute drive from my house, and an hour away from Melbourne city and the university I attend full time.

When approached I would say I was a commerce student documenting the petrol prices for uni.


I had to stop buying my petrol there.

My friends became mad with me for missing so many parties.



I had to cut short hot dates and once devastatingly turned down a free holiday with my girlfriend. It was funny for a while but eventually gave the impression I’d never prioritize her over my art, which is a truly difficult problem to overcome.

In July I went to Tasmania. The flight was at 7am so I took the photo at 5am. Taking that photo meant that the night before I couldn’t sleep closer to the airport with the people I was going with. It also meant I could only stay in Tasmania for one night.

For about two months I was sick. Once I didn’t get out of bed until 9pm, the only thing I did that day was take the photo.

In November I thought I had appendicitis, I spent the night in the Emergency Room and all I could think was that if I needed surgery I’d miss my photo.

In June my camera needed repairing so I had to keep re-borrowing the schools every day, anxiously hoping no-one else wanted it. This was the time of Japan’s radiation problem and that’s where the parts come from so the repairing took weeks. The exact thing happened again with my lens.

As the year went on I gained more confidence at pointing a camera at people. Some ducked, some waved, some stuck their thumb up, some stuck their finger up. One man desperately wanted to fight me.

Taking these photos was a stressful and punishing burden on my life. I once saw a Dilbert calendar that said, “Goals are a form of self inflicted slavery”.

I’m proud I did it. 



For ANYTHING, EVERY THING AND ONE OTHER THING, I printed off exactly 365 copies of the text piece, and stacked them in a pile next to the projector.
Petrol station everyday of 2011 was also included in the latest issue of Un Magazine

For Un I presented the text alongside only twelve of the photographs, one from each month of the year.
There's a lot more I could say about this, but that's probably enough for now. 
Oh, I also made a calendar out of the photos and gave it to my brother for Christmas.

If you'd like your own petrol station 2013 calendar, or maybe you'd like to get in really early for 2014, (or even really, really early for 2015), then send me an email because I'd be happy to make you one.

Thanks for reading. See you soon.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

The wrong op shops

Hi. Here's a sad drawing I did last year about opportunities. 

And as we all learnt from Eminem's Lose Yourself, they come once in a lifetime yo.

It's marker on paper, 21 x 29.5cm.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Don't just stand there, Crust a move!

Hey, great to see you, here's one, it's not art related though, it's pizza related, but I'm sure we can both agree that pizza is much better than art.

I went to the shopping centre the other day, just to sort of run in and donate a large sum of money to charity, like I do most mornings before I head over to volunteer down at the soup kitchen.

As I was leaving the shopping centre and got back to my car I saw that there was a menu for Crust Pizza underneath my windscreen wiper.
At first I felt pretty special, like maybe Mr. Crust had spotted me as I was leaving my car, heard my grumbling tummy and knew that only his pizza would satisfy my hunger. I figured he was too shy to talk to me so he must've just left me the menu.

That would've been fine.

But then I saw that all the other cars in the car park also had menus.
A lot of people didn't even bother removing the menus before getting in their cars and driving away.
Easily persuaded by a great marketing strategy, I walked across the highway to Crust Pizza and ordered a large Aussie. 

I collected my pizza and took it back to the car park to eat it there.
Leaving their menus underneath windscreen wipers was pretty effective, it worked on me, but at the same time it was also a little too obvious. It's been done.

I decided what might be a better calling card for Crust Pizza would be to just leave actual pizza crusts under peoples wipers. 
So here's two cars with the original boring old Crust Pizza menus.
And here they are again, revamped, after I've replaced the menus with delicious Crust Pizza pizza crusts. 
That oughta get those drivers hungry for Crust Pizza.

At the last minute though I decided that maybe Crust Pizza wasn't ready for my bold marketing ideas, and more importantly, Crust Pizza probably wouldn't even be able to handle all the business they'd receive if I'd left those crusts there.

So before I left, I replaced the pizza crusts with my own sticker, the one I talked about in the last post.
And then I fed the pizza crusts to this reindeer.
Anyway, the pizza was great, and after I'd eaten it my friend and I finally drove off to volunteer down at the soup kitchen.

Driving home later that night I convinced myself that if Crust Pizza is allowed to put their marketing onto my car when I'm not around, then surely I'm allowed to put my marketing onto their shop when they're not around.

So to get myself in on a slice of the action, I pulled up at the shop and sticky taped a bunch of my stickers to their window. 
Just a friendly hi.
And that's the story of how I wasted an afternoon.

I'm sure as soon as the Crust Pizza staff found my stickers the next morning they excitedly logged on to this blog, and it won't be long now before Crust Pizza are buying my work and hanging it on the walls of their pizza store.

Friday, January 04, 2013

The sticky truth about Anthony Listers success

Hey so finally I've figured it out, the reason as to why I'm not a big art star like the great Brisbane artist Anthony Lister.

I've always loved Anthony Listers work, so I'm surprised I didn't figure this out sooner.

You wanna know the reason why I'm not a big art star like the great Brisbane artist Anthony Lister? 

Gather round and I'll tell you. 

The reason that I'm not a big art star like the great Brisbane artist Anthony Lister is... drumroll........... because Anthony Lister has his own sticker. 

Of course!

Maybe you've seen it around, the LISTER sticker. The secret to all of Anthony's success. 

Here's a detail of a work I did around the middle of 2012 where I got my hands on one of the stickers and used it in a painting I did of a bottle of Listerine. 

And here's an image I found on Google, (attributed to drivenbyboredom.com), of one of the stickers stuck on to the front of Listers shades.

Sure some critics might try and tell you that the reason the great Brisbane artist Anthony Lister is a big art star is because he's extremely talented, works extremely hard and is making work that's extremely interesting and exciting, and oh, silly me, up until now that's what I thought as well, but no, I was wrong, Anthony's secret is actually all in his sticker.

The only thing I know for certain in this crazy world is that if you want to stick out then you need to get yourself a sticker.

Gee, it's too bad I don't have a sticker.


Waaaait a minute, what's this...
(As convincing as it looks, my photo wasn't also taken at drivenbyboredom dot com, it was taken in Spotlight).
But so keep an eye out for the sticker. Here's a few sightings I've come across in some of the hippest spots around town.

Already the sticker is working. A lot of people are saying that I'm basically the new Banksy. I haven't heard anybody actually say it out loud, but it's pretty easy to tell that that's what they're thinking.On a side note though, I was jamming with my pal Cherie earlier in the week, ("jamming" is cool music lingo, what it really means is we were learning the chords to Coldplay's Yellow on piano and guitar), when I noticed this sticker on Cherie's sisters guitar case.Maybe I'm being paranoid but I can't help noticing a few similarities between my sticker and the MAKE POVERTY HISTORY sticker. I think they might've ripped me off.Don't worry though, it's ok, MAKE POVERTY HISTORY and MAKE NOVELTY HISTORY are both great causes.In fact, to show there's no hard feelings, here's a link to MAKE POVERTY HISTORY's website, click on this sentence to see how you can help out their cause.(and if MAKE POVERTY HISTORY are as big a person as I am then I'm sure they'll return the favour and put up a link to this blog on their website).Anyway, it's pretty great having my own sticker, all that's left for me to do now is to sit back with my feet up and wait for the fame and the fortunes.
To speed the process up just a little I went to the gift shop at the Fed Square National Gallery and slipped a sticker into each of the Anthony Lister books. 
 I think it's pretty safe to say that anybody interested in reading a book on the great Brisbane artist Anthony Lister will be equally as interested in reading this blog. Well, they will now, now that I've got a sticker.
I could probably end this blog post here but I'll stick it out just a little bit longer.So I took the stickers to the cinema the other night and as well as self promotion, I discovered another use for them.Before the film started I put about 20 of the stickers on the seats directly surrounding my friend Amy and I.Rather than have 20 people read the sticker, it turned out that those 20 seats were pretty much the only seats in the cinema that didn't get sat on, I guess people must've assumed the sticker said reserved or wet seatI didn't mind that nobody read the stickers like I'd planned, I much preferred to not have to share my arm rests.I bet Anthony Lister uses the same trick with his stickers when he goes to the movies.But so yeah, if you'd like to get your hands on a sticker or two, (my one that is, not Anthony Listers or the one about poverty), then just send me an email. Alternatively, if you don't know how to send emails, the other way to get a sticker is to go to the Woolworths in Ferntree Gully because as a little tribute to a great Lister painting I once saw and loved that had the Fruit Loops toucan in it, I put one of my stickers inside every box of Fruit Loops on their shelves.
But so ok, that's enough for now about art stars and the great Brisbane artist Anthony Lister and poverty and cinema seating and Fruit Loops. It's forty degrees and I'm going to the lake. 

This has been a pretty long post, thanks heaps for sticking around. Hope to see you soon.