British artist Eelus brings his latest edition Hold On To What You Got a new series of screen prints and hand-painted multiples created just for his debut RUN. This playful edition pulls it’s message in directly as Eelus tells us below, fitting seamlessly into his expansive catalog of simplicity and bold colors. Alongside a series of extremely limited uniquely hand-painted editions, the standard edition will be available for only 48 hours, so be sure to grab yours before they are gone. Read on as Eelus gives us the lowdown on his debut RUN, his earliest influences and much more . . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about these print editions, there anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this imagery? Eelus: It’s a very simple image that needs little explanation really. It depicts a young boy tethered to an oversized balloon, but he stands firm and his feet are rooted to the ground. I guess its message is to keep your dreams big, play big, love big, but stay grounded.
1x: Was this imagery part of a recent theme, series or show that you had? When were these pieces created and what materials did you use? How long did this piece take from start to finish? Eelus: No. The artwork for the print is a mixture of digital art and scanned spray painted layers. This piece was created about 3 weeks ago over the course of around a week alongside other projects.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image? Eelus: I have a huge collection of reference photos, mainly vintage family photos that I find fascinating. Very often I find an image that instantly just sparks an idea, it’s very similar to collage, I see one thing, take it, and add to it, creating something new.
1x: What is unique about these pieces compared with your other work? Eelus: I think this piece fits comfortably among a lot of my previous works in its simplicity, bold colours and playfulness. It’s part of a larger body of work that I’ve dipped in and out of for years.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints? Eelus: Because I have a family, a dog and two cats and they all need to eat. Plus the print is a smile for the mind, it’s a simple image with a simple positive message. Sometimes that’s all you need to bring a bit of happiness into your day.
1x: Describe this series in one gut reaction word. Eelus: Playful.
ONLY AVAILABLE FOR 48 HOURS Starting Feb. 7th @12pm EST
1x: When did you first start making art? Eelus: I’ve enjoyed art and drawing since I was very young. Making art and telling stories are the only things I’ve ever been good at, or interested in. But I started stencilling after moving to London around 2001.
1x: What was your first piece? Eelus: I started stenciling weird little characters from my sketchbook to start with, then I created an image of a girl taking a Star Wars At-At for a walk and started to paint that everywhere. It went on to become my first screen print released through Pictures On Walls, and that was the start of my art career. I’ve now been making art full time for around 10 years.
1x: What artists inspired you early on? Eelus: H.R.Giger, Boris Vallejo, Frank Frazetta when I was growing up, they got me hooked. Then after moving to London and discovering the street art scene I was inspired by people like Banksy, D*Face, Mysterious Al, Logan Hicks, Shepard Fairey, Jamie Hewlett and Paul Insect.
1x: What artists inspire you now? Eelus: Mainly older artists outside of the street art scene. Matisse, Aubrey Beardsley, Arnold Böcklin, David Hockney, Peter Doig, Utagawa Hiroshige. Too many to list really, but artists like Banksy and Logan and the others who sparked the fire for me will always be a source of inspiration in many ways.
1x: Do you listen to music while you work? If so what? Eelus: It depends what stage of the process I’m at. If I’m generating ideas, sketching, dreaming, then I listen to mainly film scores, ambient music, anything atmospheric with no lyrics. When I’m cutting stencils or doing something that doesn’t need the same level of focus then I’ll listen to audiobooks and podcasts. When I’m actually painting, again, I enjoy audiobooks or any kind of music, from metal to electronica to jazz.
1x: If you could collaborate with any living artist who would it be and why? Any deceased artist? Eelus: Something completely different would be exciting, like a music video for someone like Bjork or Aphex Twin. [For the latter] Picasso. To soak up and steal as much from him as possible. Or David Bowie, on absolutely anything, I’d be happy to just do to his laundry.
1x: What was the first piece of art that you bought? Do you still have it? Eelus: I don’t actually own that much original art, but I do have a few prints that I bought back in the P.O.W days, Banksy’s, Anthony Micallef, Jamie Helwett, Eine etc. I think the first piece of original art I bought was a Mike Egan painting, I’m looking at it right now, it’s of a green devil like character surrounded by crucifixes. I still love it.
1x: What was the last piece of art that you bought? Eelus: It’s a tiny painting by my artist and illustrator friend Will McLean from Australia. I bought it a couple of weeks ago and it was actually the first painting he’s ever sold, which I didn’t know at the time. It’s an expressionist painting of some trees.
1x: Any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share? Eelus: I’m exhibiting a new painting at the Affordable Art Fair New York with Olivia Connelly in March and I’m in a small stencil group show at Hashimoto Contemporary in New York that opens April 4th.
Featuring what may be the most iconic photo of Bob Marley, we welcome back Dennis Morris his latest editions Burnin’ I + II + III. Captured during Bob Marley’s first tour of the United Kingdom promoting the historic Catch A Fire album, this is a rare chance to own one of music history’s most famous photographs. Read on Dennis Morris gives us the story behind this landmark photo and pick up each edition individually or in a 3-Print set before they are gone. . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this series, anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this imagery? Morris: These three photographs were taken in 1974 on the infamous “Catch A Fire” tour, which was the United Kingdom tour to promote the 1st album on Island Records. One evening on the tour, Bob and I were sitting and talking and Bob suddenly said to me: “Let me show you how to smoke a spliff, Dennis!” There are only 3 shots, for obvious reasons!
1x: Was this imagery part of a recent theme, series or show that you had? If so how did it fit into that given grouping? Morris: This series has become as iconic as the Che Guevara photo; when you go to uni on your dorm room wall, you either have a Che or a Bob poster. Bob, like Peter Tosh, was an advocate for the legalization of Marijuana.
1x: When was this photo taken? Morris: It was taken in the UK in 1974 in the evening.
1x: What film and developing techniques were used to create these original photos? Morris: The film was Kodak Ektachrome; the atmosphere was created naturally by the amount of smoke coming from the spliff which the camera picked up on. It was taken on my trusted Leica M3 with 35 mm lens – no flash, just available light!
1x: What is unique about this piece compared with your other work? Morris: It has become one of Bob’s most iconic, known and loved shots.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints? Morris: It is one of the most iconic shots of Bob! It is in Rolling Stone greatest images of rock ’n’ roll. In the Bob Marley Museum in Jamaica it is recognized as one of rock ’n’ roll greatest photos.
1x: Describe this series in one gut reaction word. Morris: Catch A Fire.
1x: What have you been up to over the last 6 months as we get into 2019? Any news or events you’d want to highlight ? Morris: Working on many projects all over the world!
1x: What ways have you been trying to push yourself as of late with your work? Morris: I still get a thrill from photography.
1x: Any new artists that have been inspiring you as of late? Morris: Ghost Poet.
1x: Any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share? Morris: Working on many shows; when they are close to happening I will share!!!
1xRUN: Where else can people find out more about you? Dennis Morris: Website – Instagram @dennismcvoymorris
Looking for more from Dennis Morris? Read on below for a look at quick look at our earlier interviews with Dennis Morris as he discusses another iconic shot of Bob Marley, released for his second edition, Bob Marley: One Love featuring a more reserved and calming look at the worldwide icon. An extremely limited edition of only 36 (Bob Marley’s age at the time of his untimely death) there are limited quantities remaining. Read on below as Dennis Morris gives us the story behind this historic image, how it changed his photography career and much more . . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this photo, anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this image? Dennis Morris: This is one of the shots that I’ve always liked, but it’s been published very rarely. I think it captures another time with Bob.
1x: When was this image taken? Where was it? Morris: It would have been in 1977. It was taken in London. He always seemed at that point to be staying in Chelsea.
1x: Do you remember what your camera set up was at the time? What type of developing you were doing? Morris: Yea, I was shooting an old Leica M3. The film I was using was the Kodak Trix 400ASF. At that point I did all my developing. I was using Paterson developers and developing products.
1x: Who were you shooting for at the time? Morris: We were just hanging out. That’s the beauty of pictures like this. They were never arranged or taken in a photo studio. They were all taken as they were, backstage, off stage, wherever. For me it’s about capturing him, wherever he may be. It’s always about him, never the location.
1x: So you were just shooting freelance at the time, you weren’t on specific assignment or anything? Was it used anywhere immediately? Morris: Yea, it was just freelance. No, this is just one of many shots that I’ve had in my archives. Some of these have never been printed before, and this is one of those rare ones, it’s not often it’s printed.
1x: When you started shooting photos were you still in school during this time? (Ed. Note: May, 1973.) Morris: It was during my last year of school. I had read that he was coming over to do his tour. I basically didn’t go to school that day, and I went to the venue that they were supposed to be playing. A venue called The Speakeasy Club. It was the kind of a club where all the rock fraternity would hang out. Anybody from Rod Stewart to Mick Jagger to whatever to whoever, that was the place that they would go. Basically what was happening was, the record company Island Records, was trying to break into the rock circle. So that’s why they put him in to play that club, to highlight him to the rock hierarchy as such.
Article by Richard Williams titled “Bob Marley: The First Genius of Reggae?”, published in Melody Maker on 24 February 1973.
1x: What was the incarnation of the band that was with Bob for these shows? Morris: At the time he was still with Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer, and the backing band was Family Man (Aston Barrett) on bass, Carlton (Barrett) drums and Earl “Wire” Lindo on keyboards. At that point the “I Threes” (Judy Mowatt, Marcia Griffiths, and Marley’s wife, Rita) were not with them yet. Basically the “I Threes” replaced the harmonies of Peter and Bunny when they left.
1x: What is unique about your photos of Bob Marley? Morris: All my shots of Marley are very unique, because I had a very special relationship with him. That’s why my shots are so much in demand. They’re the shots that are in museums and private collections. This particular picture was the beginning of my working relationship with him, that’s when it all started for me.
1x: So prior to this were you just a fan of his? Were you taking any live shots? Morris: Prior to that I wasn’t working in the music industry. Prior to that my ambition was not to be a rock photographer, my ambition was to be a war photographer. Basically my influence and my technique in photography is reportage. My biggest influences are people like Gordon Parks, Don McCullin the very famous war photographer, Robert Capa and Tim Page, other war photographers. Gordon Parks was the big influence for me, because was the most celebrated black photographer. He was the first black photographer to work for Time Magazine. He then went on to direct Superfly and Shaft.
It was after meeting Bob, and taking pictures of him and everything else, that I got sucked into the music business. At the time I was very much into music. Very much into rock, into reggae. That’s why working with the Sex Pistols wasn’t as much a problem for me. I was very much into rock music and reggae music. I was a rare breed as such as a black guy.
Slave Driver by Dennis Morris – the first live photo of Bob Marley by Dennis Morris at The Speakeasy Club, May 15th, 1973.
1x: So you mentioned that you weren’t very much into rock photography at the time, were you doing other things and just going to these shows on the side? How did it all come together? Morris: The tour was in the winter, and they had never experienced winter before. So what happened was that after about 6 days or so basically Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer didn’t want to continue the tour because it was too cold for them. They didn’t like the food. So that was tough for them. Everything had to be Ital food, and Ital is basically like vegan. Obviously in those days nothing like that really existed. So basically Peter Tosh and Bunny Wailer said “well we don’t want to this anymore” and went back to Jamaica. After that the tour collapsed.
1x: How many shows did they play on that tour before it ended early? Morris: Six or seven. They had been together for a long time before that, but that was basically their first tour of England. So they came over, and it was a very hard winter. Peter and Bunnie didn’t really like touring at that point, so they had a big argument and they decided to go back to Jamaica. So they went back. That was the end of that. They didn’t really want to continue touring like that anymore.
Dennis Morris captures Bob Marley backstage (L) in Bournemouth, May 1973 / Marley onstage in 1975 at the Lyceum Theatre.
But, two years later, Bob came back to play the very famous Lyceum (Theatre) show, without Peter and Bunny. But Bob came back and played the Lyceum with at the time it was “The I-Twos” which at the time was just Rita (Marley) and Judy Mowatt, replacing Peter and Bunny on the harmonies.
How I got into the music industry was that I was the only photographer who had pictures of them prior to the Lyceum. So Bob came back with a vengeance, and knew that this was an important show to him, and he played literally one of the shows of his life. After that everybody wanted pictures of him. NME. Melody Maker. So I ended up getting the cover of Melody Maker and Time Out Magazine. That’s how I got into rock photography.
1x: So were you reading all these magazines at the time as a fan? Morris: Yea, I was obsessive about photography and music. I was always buying those magazines.
1x: What was the thing that really spurred you to go see Marley initially? Was there a moment where you heard about it and said I have to go check this guy out? Morris: Bob Marley was really big among the West Indian community. He was known within the West Indian community. He was the new voice of reggae music coming out of Jamaica at the time. He wasn’t known within the rock fraternity as such. Only young white kids, who were maybe into ska music would have known about him. But when you would go to blues parties, dance parties in the West Indian community there would always be music playing, and everyone would always talk about Bob Marley. It was like if you go to any bar or club, or whatever it may be and there’s a new band around, and people say “have you heard this band? They’re really great.” It was that sort of thing. There was a buzz going around in the West Indian community, but he was not known much outside of the West Indian community. So the record company, Island Records, really wanted to sell him on a cross over basis. That is why they booked him into all these rock venues.
1x: Yea, I’ve definitely heard of that venue and that specific Lyceum show fairly historic. Morris: I’ve also got the cover photo for the live album that put out later.
1x: Do you want to talk about any difference in how you approach some of these live shots vs. your more “candid” shots? Morris: Not really. No. To me photography is a bit like art. Like being a painter. You either have it or you don’t have it.
1x: Right, but you’re not staging any of these photos. It’s all natural shots. Morris: Right, if you understand the approach of reportage, everything that I’ve ever taken of Bob Marley or the Sex Pistols, they were all taken by available light, as they were, where we were. None of it was taken inside of a photo studio. They look like they were, but they weren’t. That’s how reportage works. It’s like a study of your subject. The technique is to take away the mask and go beyond what this projected self is. Get their inner self.
Bob Marley photographed in 1977 by Dennis Morris.
1x: Yea, you seem to have both, a nice collection of live shots, as well as these more candid moments, did you have a preference of one over the other? Morris: Live photography for me…I like it. Well, I don’t like it anymore unless I’ve got a close personal relationship with the band. Now they only let you do I think three songs. There’s no way to do anything with that. Back in the day once you had your photo pass you were the from the beginning to the end. Realistically what you were trying to do, if you were doing a live thing, was to capture that defining moment of he/she/their live performance.
1x: So you were given fairly free range to shoot anywhere? Was there an instant comfort with you being there? Morris: Yea, I had full access. From the very beginning when we met we just clicked. It was one of those things.
1x: Anything else about that photo that you’d like to add? Morris: This is a very special photograph. It’s a very important photograph for me. It’s one of the first images I took of him.
1x: What is unique about this photo compared with some other shots of Bob Marley? Morris: With somebody like Bob people get into different phases. Sometimes people get really into the live side of it. There are times when people get really into the political side of it. There are times when people get into the music side of it. There are times when people like the live shots. There are times now where people want the softer, more delicate side, and that’s where this one falls into.
1xRUN is excited to welcome back California artist Glenn Arthur as he returns with his latest edition Always Remember. Revisiting his very first painting created a decade ago, Arthur has reworked and refined this acrylic painting to include 10 years of progression, showing his signature looks at hummingbirds, flora and skulls with attention to detail that his fans have come to expect. Available in Standard and Hand-Embellished editions, these prints also coincide with Glenn Arthur’s birthday! Read on as Glenn Arthur gives us the lowdown on this painting 10 years in the making, a look at his process, and much more. . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this piece, anything immediate you’d like to highlight? Glenn Arthur: This piece is an updated painting of a 10 year old concept. The original design was done in late 2008 and it was one of the first times I had ever attempted to paint. I had only ever worked in graphite and ink before that. The plants that are surrounding the girl in the painting are actually succulents called aeoniums. I have a pretty big garden full of succulents and these are some of my favorite.
1x: Was this piece part of a recent theme, series or show that you had? Arthur: It wasn’t for anything specific. I just realized it had been 10 years since I started painting, and I thought it would be fun to show a side by side progress of my style and skill using the same concept.
1x: When was this piece created and what materials were used ? Arthur: The painting is acrylic on wood. I started working on it towards the end of 2018 and completed it at the beginning of 2019. From start to finish it took about 2 months.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about? Arthur: The original piece from 2008 was painted around, and inspired by, the holiday Dia De Los Muertos. My family on my mother’s side are from Mexico, and I’ve always enjoyed the rich and colorful culture.
1x: What is unique about this piece? Arthur: It really shows that although my style and skill have progressed, I still pretty much continue to work in the same themes of love, death, nature, and beauty.
1x: It’s been a while since our last release, bring everybody up to speed on what you’ve been up to over the last two years… Arthur: I think it’s been longer than two years. I’ve missed you guys! Since the last time I’ve moved from Southern California to the San Francisco Bay Area. I love it up here so much! When I’m not painting, I’m either working in my garden or wrangling my small herd of cats.
1x: We’ve seen a few recurring themes in your work including skulls, flora and hummingbirds pictured in this recent edition, where did the fascination with each come from and is it a conscious effort including them in your work? Arthur: I think it’s a matter of things that tend to defy my level of reasoning. Hummingbirds are so fast and small that they seem to almost break the laws of physics. Plants are extremely resilient and adapt to the craziest conditions to thrive and bloom. And death is the greatest mystery of all.
1x: What are some of the most challenging subjects to draw/paint for you? What are some of the more fluid ones? Arthur: The most challenging subject for me to paint is anything mechanical. Organic subjects are much more second nature and way more fluid and for me.
1x: What are some of the ways you’ve been trying to push yourself with your work as of late? Arthur: Lately I’ve really been working on painting in different mediums. I’ll always love acrylic, but I’ve recently been loving watercolor and ink. Eventually I want to try gouache and oil paints.
1x: What strides do you feel you’ve made as of late with your work? Arthur: I feel like I’ve perfected the art of painting with a cat on my lap. Haha.
1x: Any new artists that you have been turned onto lately? Arthur: Kate Zambrano, Kurtis Rykovich, Kelogsloops, Margaret Morales, and Ahmed Aldoori to name a handful.
Kate Zambrano / Leilani Bustamante
1x: What was the last piece of art that you bought? Arthur: It was a print of a beautiful Nightmare Before Christmas inspired painting called “Til Death Do Us Part” by Leilani Bustamante.
1x: What else do you have coming up in the next 2-3 months here as the year gets going? Arthur: I’m working on a new series of paintings that are inspired by my favorite desserts. I have a huge sweet tooth and I like sugar way too much so I thought it might be more beneficial for my health to paint desserts rather than eat them. Haha.
1xRUN welcomes back Los Angeles based artist Aaron Nagel as he returns with his latest edition Reclining With Teraoka. Pulling inspiration from Japanese artist Masami Teraoka, this edition is available in Standard and an extremely limited Hand-Embellished edition. One of two tattoo themed paintings created for his recent exhibition at Abend Gallery, this image finds Nagel returning to one of his earliest loves, paying homage to the Ukiyo-e paintings that played an influential role in his art career. Read on as Aaron Nagel gives us the story behind Reclining With Teraoka, what he’s been up to and more below. . .
1xRUN: Was this image part of a recent theme, series or show that you had? If so how did it fit into that given grouping? Aaron Nagel: This piece is one of a pair I painted for a group show at Abend Gallery (Denver, CO) in 2016. They both feature a figure with “tattoos” of work by artist Masami Teraoka, who has always been one of my favorites. I’ve always thought Teraoka’s work would make great tattoos, but often 2d artwork doesn’t translate very well on a body unless it’s created specifically for it. But here I can flatten out the work, and set things up as if it only needs to look good at one angle…which it does, because it’s a painting.
I’ve always stayed away from painting tattoos, even if the models had them – mostly because it really tilts things toward the modern. And I was always weary of straying into the territory of Shawn Barber and other artists that frequently use tattoos as part of their work.
1x: When was this piece originally drawn and created and what materials were used? Nagel: Oil on ACM (acrylic composite material, AKA Dibond) panel in 2016.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image? Nagel: The process was similar to most of my paintings except that once the figure was complete, I added the tattoo in a few semi-transparent passes. I was concerned that if it was too opaque and saturated it wouldn’t sit on the body right – but it was also a little nerve racking each layer had to dry and I was scared I was going to ruin it.
1x: What is unique about this piece compared with your other work? Nagel: The tattoos on the two pieces in the series mark the only time I’ve tried my hand at anything remotely in the style of ukiyo-e, even if they are essentially reproductions. This is significant to me because Ukiyo-e paintings and prints played a good part in what got me into art in the first place. I love the style but have always felt it off limits to a white guy from California. There are non-Japanese artists that can certainly pull it off (more on that later), but I always felt like I wouldn’t do it justice…and shouldn’t really. So these pieces were kind of a way to get it out of my system a bit, while keeping it in a realm I was more comfortable with.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints? Nagel: Personally, I always feel great buying art – – I never regret it and feel somehow like I’m contributing to and supporting that which is rad and true. Eloquent I know.
1x: Describe this image in one gut reaction word. Nagel: Ouch.
Reclining Terakoka –
1x: What have you been up to over the last year? Bring us up to speed on how things have been going recently for you since our last release… Nagel: I had two larger shows last year, in New York and Denver. For weird scheduling reasons I couldn’t help they were a little too close together and preparing for both was super super tough. I seem to be progressively working slower and slower, so painting enough for both shows, working my other two jobs, and trying not to be a total mess really took a lot out of me. So for the last 6 months I’ve been working slower and taking my time. I don’t have any larger shows on the horizon for the moment which has allowed me to take a few commissions and just generally focus on getting better. I’m also enjoying the process a lot more.
1x: What are some of the ways you have been trying to push yourself with your work over the last year? Nagel: Mostly I’ve been trying to work outside of my comfort zone and spend a lot more time thinking about paintings, instead of just painting them. I’d like to work on some new stuff conceptually so I’m spending a lot of time invested in what that’s going to look like.
1x: What was the last piece of art that you bought? Nagel: I bought a painting from Mike Dorsey who is both fine artist and tattoo artist in Ohio. He does modern ukiyo-e style paintings – actually kind of in the same vain as the era of Masami Teraoka’s work I referenced for this series. Lots humor and tons of skill in his work and I love it. I have two of his larger pieces and have to actively prevent myself from buying more.
Kicking off 2019 with his first release, Dutch artist Joram Roukes returns with Renaissance Party. Pulled from Rouke’s most recent solo exhibition, Renaissance Party is available in Standard + Hand-Embellished editions. Playing on classical marble and bronze busts, Roukes simultaneously pays homage to the work being constructed by the current generation of painters and artists. Read on as Joram Roukes takes us through Renaissance Party, shows off his recent murals and more. . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this piece, anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this image? Joram Roukes: This painting is among my favorite pieces where I explored classical references as collages.
1x: Was this image part of a recent theme, series or show that you had? If so how did it fit into that given grouping? Roukes: The piece was part of my recent ‘Troublemakers’ solo show and residency with Hellion Gallery in Portland. The works in this show were all built around and on references of classical marble and bronze busts. It’s a nod to how a new art historical frame of reference is being constructed by a current generation of painters and artists.
1x: When was this piece originally drawn and created? What materials were used? Roukes: It was done in oil paint with a dash of spray paint, probably around March or April of 2018.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image? Roukes: The general idea on art history as described above, I’ve had for some time. The specific execution is a result of endlessly collaging and arranging reference imagery to find the right composition and substance.
1x: How long did each of this image take to create from start to finish? Roukes: This painting took me about a week. Maybe two if you include initial collages and preparation. It’s always a bit hard to tell as there’s many facets to the process.
1x: What is unique about this piece compared with your other work? Roukes: It’s centered around classicism and has a recognizable anatomical element to it, as opposed to many other works that have a more animalistic and lucid nature. This painting is therefore much more formal. Yet it still likes to party. That was a Talladega Nights reference.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints? Roukes: Because this is a very strong image. Because the original sold very fast. Because the execution of the print is incredible. The paper is lush and rugged. I think this one just makes total sense.
1x: Describe this image in one gut reaction word. Roukes: Classic!
1x: Bring us up to speed on how things have been going recently for you since our last release… Roukes: I think our last release must have been during Pow!Wow! In 2016. So a bunch has happened!
Work-wise I have done a few really great shows. A solo show with a residency in Paris and Portland. I have stepped up my mural game since. Did projects in Atlanta, Denmark, Vegas, Florida. I recently got a new studio in an old funeral home next to a cemetery. So I’m definitely interested to see how the ghouls will affect my process. I moved in with my talented girlfriend. So overall things are just pretty great!
1x: What are some of the ways you have been trying to push yourself with your work over the last year? Roukes: Definitely by trying to do more large murals. It was a total challenge the first time I tried to magnify my work on that scale, and it still is every time. But it’s a rewarding process.
1x: What are some strides you feel you’ve made in your work recently? Roukes: I think I have advanced technically recently. I feel more patient when I paint and it pays off.
1x: What was the last piece of art that you bought? Roukes: I commissioned my good friend Roelant to make a large version of a small Lebron James drawing he did. I built a custom frame for it and it looks incredible.
1x: Do you have any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share? Roukes: Yes! A big show is coming with KIRK Gallery in Denmark in April, together with TelmoMiel.
Also planning to curate a show in Paris for Galerie 42b. So that will be exciting. A couple more tentative things that will pan out in the next weeks so just stay tuned!
We are excited to welcome in photographer Janet Macoska with her debut RUN featuring none other than Queen’s charismatic Freddy Mercury, captured in the band’s 1977 tour. Available in two hand-pulled screen prints Bohemian Rhapsody captures Mercury at his best, live and on stage in front of a crowd. The Bohemian Rhapsody – Mono Edition showcases Mercury’s energy through stark silver and black, while the Bohemian Rhapsody – Stereo Edition bursts with color, inspired by Queen’s landmark Live Killers tour. Read on as we caught up with Janet Mascoska to discuss this classic Freddy Mercury image, her beginnings as a photographer and much more . . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this photo, anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this image? Janet Macoska: This photo of Freddie Mercury was shot at the Richfield Coliseum, outside of Cleveland, Ohio, on November 27, 1977. This was Queen’s tour in support of their album News Of The World. This was the album that introduced iconic Queen songs “We Will Rock You” and “We Are The Champions.”
1x: Was this image part of a theme, series or show that you had at the time? If so how did it fit into that given grouping? Macoska: Well…the look of the photo is totally up to the personality and style of Freddie Mercury! He chose the harlequin outfit, which he wore a lot on this tour, and the body posture, boldly arching his back and letting go with those immediately identifiable vocals…IT’S ALL FREDDIE!!! I must say, as the photographer of this shot, and 45 years worth of rock and roll photography, that it is my job to know the music, know my subject, and understand and anticipate those moves. Freddie was a blast to photograph because he didn’t hold back and had such an incredible physical presence onstage.
1x: What camera/ film/development were used when you shot this original photo? Macoska: When I shot film, I used a Nikon FM, which was a manual camera. The light meter inside was the only help I got, and many times I just used the meter as a reference point. Concert photography, with spotlights and back lights, cannot be shot using light meter. Light is coming from all directions, your subject is constantly moving, so you need to know proper settings from experience. Generally, I knew I needed to shoot wide open (largest f stop) and try to keep the speed above 1/60th of a second. Better yet…faster. To stop frenetic rock and roll movement, you PUSH your film. So, my Kodak Tri-X film with a speed of 400 ASA, would most likely get pushed to 1600 ASA. That meant more development time and more grain; but you got the shot you wanted.
1x: When was it originally shot and created? Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image? Macoska: This image was shot on November 27, 1978. There is no such thing as having an idea and executing it at a rock and roll show. I’ve only done that, maybe 2-3 times. The rock and roll Gods LAUGH at photographers who think they are in control! You need to be receptive to what is given to you, whatever happens onstage. Knowledgeable…and anticipate. I get very quiet internally at all shows. I don’t hear the music. All my senses are tuned to the musician and the moment in order for me to capture that 60th of a second moment. You are actually clicking the shutter before the moment happens (figure that one out!). So I feel I’m somehow channeling everything the musicians are giving me into this visual documentation. It’s very, very real. Many of them have used my photos for their projects because they KNOW I totally get them.
1x: How many other shots were taken during that show and was this image ultimately chosen for a publication/assignment? Macoska: Because film photography was actually SLOWER…..you waited for the image you wanted and your subject needed to be properly lit as well. Since that is how we shot, I believe I only shot two rolls B&W film (72 photos; 36 per roll) and probably shot a partial roll of color slide film. I edited my own film, so any photos that went out to publications were shots I felt strongly about. At that time, I was working for a weekly entertainment newspaper called FOCUS, out of Columbus, Ohio and also freelancing to CREEM Magazine, a national rock publication out of Detroit.
1x: What is unique about this image compared with your other work? Macoska: That’s like asking which baby is your favorite. It is unique because it is Freddie Mercury. Queen were always one of my favorite bands. I loved their music. Their music was BIG and their stage presentation was BIG. They were absolutely the best.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints? Macoska: Because it makes you smile! Freddie Mercury is inspiring. He is like the superhero of rock and roll. I dare you, and Freddie dare’s you, to look away….you can’t.
1x: Describe this image in one gut reaction word. Macoska: Magic.
1x: When did you first start taking photos? What was your first photo where you realized you had created something special? Macoska: I started taking photos when I was 10 years old. I started taking rock and roll photos when I was 12. I started taking photos professionally…on my life path and career…in 1974, when I was 20 years old. When I was 12 years old, I hung out at Cleveland’s Top 40 radio station, WKYC. I ran a fan club for one of the disc jockeys, and helped the disc jockeys answer their fan mail. They gave me records as payment (best deal ever!) and I got to take photos. Rock stars would stop in to promote their record or their show when they were in town. I shot some photos of Sonny and Cher, and submitted them to a national teen magazine. It ran in the magazine, and I got paid $2.00! Yes, you read that correctly. I wasn’t gonna be rich, but I would always be doing what I love.
Sonny & Cher – 1966 by Janet Macoska
1x: What artists/photographers inspired you early on? How about currently? Macoska: The Beatles coming to America when I was 10 years old is the reason I do what I do. I had no musical ability, but I knew I wanted to tell the stories of those that do make the music. My Mom subscribed to LIFE Magazine, and the photojournalists who worked for LIFE spent time with their subjects, showing who they are behind the scenes as well as who they are onstage. I wanted to do that.
My favorite early photographer was Margaret Bourke White, who had the guts to do jobs that even men wouldn’t take on. Early rock and roll photographers that I liked were Henry Diltz and Baron Wolman. I like Shepard Fairey’s work, especially his ability to be a force for change. Photography, I feel, is in a critical point in its history. I believe you don’t need a camera to take great photos, but my concern is that it’s LAZY photography to believe that selfies are the ultimate reason to snap a photo. AND, do those photos ever jump out of a cellphone onto a print to be framed and adored. Hardly.
David Bowie – 1974 by Janet Macoska
1x: Do you listen to music while you work? If so what? If not then what is your environment like when you work? Macoska: As a photographer who works in the music and performance business, I’m always listening to music, and THAT inspires me and gives me pleasure every single day of my life. When I’m getting ready to photograph someone, I listen to their music. When I’m editing my images, I listen to their music. When I’m scanning older negatives, I’m listening to that artists’ music.
1x: If you could collaborate with any living artist who would it be and why? Any deceased artists? Macoska: I would like to see what Shepard Fairey would do with some of my iconic photos. He shares a love of bands like The Clash and Joan Jett and Blondie…as I do. In terms of musicians, I would just like to work with someone who gave me free reign to let me be my creative self. Right now, photographers are limited to shooting the first three songs of a show…and there are even more severe restrictions. I’ve learned to get great shots in that amount of time; but its ridiculous to work that way. What if the band only got to play three songs for their audience. You’d have a revolution! [For the later] it would be a toss up between David Bowie and John Lennon. I love them both so much. I believe that both worked with photographers as a collaborative effort. That is real creativity. Not a controlled studio setting for example.
Blondie – 1978 by Janet Macoska
1x: What was the first piece of art that you bought? Do you still have it? The last ? Macoska: I bought one of John and Yoko’s Erotic Lithographs when I was 21…though I bought the least erotic one because I still lived at home with my Mom and Dad. I sold it eventually because the life of a freelance photographer is precarious; and we do what we have to do to pay the bills. It went to a friend who as much a Beatlemaniac as I, and he takes care of it. The last was a relatively inexpensive Shepard Fairey signed print, “Make Art, Not War.”
1x: Any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share? Macoska: I’m working on a second book, which will generate some big shows and events.
Devo At The Chili Dog Mac, 1978 by Janet Macoska
1xRUN: Where else can people find you? Janet Macoska:Website – Facebook @janet.macoska
Over the last 30 years Hael has been nothing short of prolific. With 4 new Tokyo Subway Maps the legendary graffiti writer pulls inspiration from his recent trip to Tokyo, merging two of Hael’s favorite pastimes. Meguro, Roppongi, Shibuya and Shinjuku editions are all available now, both individually and in a 4-print set in extremely limited quantities. Read on for a look at Hael’s work on the streets, early influences and more. . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this series, anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this imagery? Hael: These are screen prints off an original 4 of 4 series I put out in 2018. I began using maps I have collected in my travels as a medium.
1x: Was this imagery part of a recent theme, series or show that you had? If so how did it fit into that given grouping? Hael: I started working on subway maps of cities I have visited on my travels in the last 15 years. I initially put out New York City subway maps with black and silver/white throw ups, the series also included a tribute to WuTang.
1x: When were these pieces originally drawn/created? What materials were used? Hael: It was originally drawn in October of 2018. After this print the series will continue with hand drawn Japanese box trucks and new artwork on Tokyo map. These were originally created using black and silver Japanese paint markers.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image? How long did these images take to create from start to finish? Hael: I love Tokyo and I love throw ups. A merge of my two favorite pastimes. 5-10 minutes per image. If you take longer than that to do a throw up you’re a toy.
1x: What is unique about this piece compared with your other work? Hael: My work has always been on display in the streets. All the content I am currently putting out is unique because for the first time people have the opportunity to display my work in their homes.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints? Hael: I have been doing graffiti for damn near 3 decades now, it’s my love and passion. Support artists still who are still willing to get their hands dirty.
1x: Describe this series in one gut reaction word. Hael: Sushi.
1x: When did you first start making art? What was your first piece? Hael: Depends on your definition of art. I started to emulate the gang graffiti and styles I saw in my neighborhood, Boyle Heights, Los Angeles at 10 years old. My first piece was a gang block and roll call of my little homies from the neighborhood in 1985.
1x: What artists inspired you early on? What artists inspire you now? Hael: [Early on] Gin One, Key One, Dcreas, Skill, Miner, Ser, Wisk, Cash, Comic, Defer, Skept, Triax, Price, Mr.151, Tempt, Angst and Make and early Boyle Heights, Rockwood St, Burlington locos gang graffiti. [Now] Nekst, MQ, Adek, Gkae, Revok, Zes, Saber, Retna, Rime, Oiler, Chaka, Cab, Sleez, Colt45, Wyse, Malvo, Pear, Resq, Begr, Chub, Ques, Want, Ruets, Katsu, Lewy, Yume, Runts, Vizie, Pose, Steel, Mr. Bonks, Eklips, Trav, Daks, Estevan Oriol, Mr. Cartoon, Bert Krak, Roger Gastman, plus all my squads AL, OTR, MSK, BTM, D30, WGE, 246, TNT, LOD, IFK, FTL and DMS.
1x: Do you listen to music while you work? If so what? Hael: Yes. It depends on my mood but hip-hop, trap, classic rock, hard core punk, metal, oldies and dubstep. There is generally a lot of coffee involved.
1x: If you could collaborate with any living artist who would it be and why? Any deceased artists? Hael: My brother Mister Sesto is one of the most talented artist I know. My son, it’s in his genes and he has so much potential I look forward to collaborating and mentoring him. Tinker Hatfield at Nike and Supreme. When it comes to graffiti I already paint with the best. [For the latter] Nekst because I miss the fuck outta him.
1x: What was the first piece of art that you bought? Do you still have it? The last? Hael: Probably train art at a random flea market. Yes I still have it and all the art work I have collected or been gifted by my talented friends over the years. The last was a Kuma drawing for NODAPL fundraiser.
1x: Any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share? Hael: My first solo show coming this summer details TBA.
1xRUN: Where else can people find you. Hael: On the streets.
Los Angeles based artist Luke Pelletier joins us for the aptly titled, “Monster Truck” his debut RUN as part of 1xRUN’s 12 Days Of Printsmas. Inspired by Pelletier’s childhood trips to monster truck rallies these punchy 5-color screen prints were lovingly hand-pulled here in Detroit by our friends over at ESP for Luke’s very first RUN with us. Read on for more and grab yours before they are gone. . .
1x: What materials were used to create this original piece? When was it originally drawn/created? Pelletier: Pen and paper. I drew the original a few weeks back.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image? Pelletier: I grew up going to monster truck rallies when I was a kid. It was always a good time.
1x: When did you first start making art? Pelletier: I didn’t really take it to seriously until I got to college. So I’ve been working really hard at it for like 7 years.
1x: What artists inspired you early on? Pelletier: I didn’t really know many artists when I was starting, but I’d always get inspiration from skate graphics. I’d also always get inspired by what my friends were making.
1x: What artists inspire you now? Pelletier: H.C. Westermann, Jim Nutt, and Roger Brown
1x: Do you listen to music while you work? Pelletier: I listen to music and watch TV sometimes. I’ve been listening to The Hold Steady, Bruce Springsteen, and Kevin Devine.
1x: If you could collaborate with any living artist who would it be and why? Any deceased artists? Pelletier: Willie Nelson. It’d be cool to do a stage design for him. [For the latter] H.C. Westermann. I just really love his sculptures.
1xRUN: Where else can people find you? Luke Pelletier: Website – Instagram @lukepelletier
1xRUN is excited to welcome in artist Carly Chaikin, as the star of Mr. Robot releases her very first limited edition print Playground Love. Painted over the course of a year, this piece was part of Chaikin’s first art show back in 2014, and found the artist challenging herself to capture the essence of an otherwise mundane situation, working to effortlessly pull the viewer into this intimate scene. Read on below to find out more about Carly Chaikin’s earliest influences, her debut limited edition print release and more. . .
1xRUN: Tell us a little bit about this painting, anything immediate you would like us to highlight about this imagery? Carly Chaikin: This is one of my favorite paintings as well as one of the hardest ones I’ve done. It was hard and a little tedious trying to make sure I captured their essence and body movement to where it felt like you could walk into the room and hang out with them if you wanted to… and if they’d let you. Funny enough, even with all of the detail in the girls and tub my favorite part of the painting has always been the back wall.
1x: When was this piece originally drawn and created? What materials did you use? Chaikin: I started this one in June of 2013 and finished it right before my first art show in April 2014. Oil on canvas.
1x: Tell us how the idea and execution came about for this image? Chaikin: I loved the image of this. Two girls in a bathtub, but it wasn’t sexual, it was mundane.
1x: How long did this image take to create from start to finish? Chaikin: From start to finish it took a little under a year. I always work on a few paintings at once since oil takes so long to dry, but I also tend to get really frustrated with pieces, so a lot of the times I’ll take breaks from it and try to come back with a fresh pair of eyes… this was probably one of the paintings I got the most frustrated with.
1x: What is unique about this piece compared with your other work? Chaikin: This has always been one of my favorite paintings because I feel like just by looking at it you can understand them. Their essence, their attitude, their boredom; their satisfaction.
1x: Why should people buy this one of these prints? Chaikin: Because it’s cool.
1x: Describe this image in one gut reaction word. Chaikin: Present.
1x: When did you first start making art? Chaikin: My mom had always put me in art classes since I was little. In middle school, the art teacher put me in the high school painting class and that was my first introduction to oil painting. I’d say I started really painting though when I was 17. I started taking a workshop style class at Brentwood Art Center which is where I learned to paint. A lot of it was trial and error. I turned the 3rd floor loft at my dads house into my own art studio and ruined all of the carpets and walls, so he eventually just ripped them out for me, put in cheap vinyl floors and let it actually become my studio. Everywhere I’ve lived since then, have an art studio in my house has been a requirement.
1x: What artists inspired you early on? What artists inspire you now? Chaikin: Dali was and has always been my favorite artist. Now, there’s so many. I wish I was more educated when it came to different artists and painters. I’ve always been amazed by Chuck Close, and recently Hockney’s pool painting that just sold has been at the forefront of my mind, because the piece I’m working on now in a way feels similar… maybe it’s because they both just have pools though.
1x: Do you listen to music while you work? If so what? If not then what is your environment like when you work? Chaikin: It’s impossible for me to paint without listening to music. I have such a wide variety of music that I like so most of the time my phones just on shuffle, but it’s mainly Bob Dylan, Tom Petty, Neil Young, Alanis Morissette, Pink Floyd, Drake, Jay Z, Kanye Lil Wayne… my list goes on and on.
1x: If you could collaborate with any deceased artists who would it be and why? Chaikin: Definitely Dali because he’s an absolute genius and nutcase. I think the collaboration would be more of me just standing back in awe and maybe throwing a brush stroke in here and there.
1x: What was the first piece of art that you bought? Do you still have it? Chaikin: I actually have never bought a piece of art. Being a painter has saved me a lot of money because I’ve been able to decorate my house with different paintings of mine. I definitely do want to start collecting art though. There’s a piece by this artist Andrew Myers that I’m dying to buy.
1x: Any big shows or events coming up that you’d like to share? Chaikin: I just had an amazing art show called NOUN earlier this year, so it’ll probably be a few years until my next art show. However, I do have a project “New Year, New You” on Hulu that’s coming out in a month that’s part of the series “Into The Dark.”
The Heliotrope Foundation supports communities through creative responses to adversity. Founded by artist Caledonia Curry, also known as Swoon, Heliotrope facilitates projects that help communities respond and heal after natural disasters, economic devastation, and urgent social crisis. We believe that the creative process can be a uniquely transformative part of how we rebuild our communities and move society forward. Heliotrope is currently back in Haiti, in the midst of their current sustainable building project. Read on to see the latest on Swoon’s projects in Haiti, shop The Heliotrope Holiday Flash Sale right here, and find out more about The Heliotrope Foundation below in our interview with Swoon. . .
Swoon’s latest efforts in Haiti include this six-week project which is in the second and final phase of restorations to Cormiers Community Center, the first sustainable building they realized after the
2010 earthquake. With architect Joana Torres at the lead, the goal in this 6-week construction project is to complete specific structural enhancements to the windows, and door frames and refinish the interior of the superadobe domes. The construction methods used are designed to be impactful beyond simply completing the tasks at hand.
Local workers hired and trained in natural, sustainable building techniques that use locally available materials from their area. The interest from the community in the work is great, and to maximize the number of people involved, crews are hired on a rotating, weekly basis so that all can take part and earn much- needed income. Techniques are shared with the team, and then encouraged to lead the training with their peers, establishing a sense of responsibility and great pride in the work. It is a truly inspiring process to be a part of.
To help Swoon’s latest project this holiday you can shop all of your Heliotrope Foundation favorites including Swoon, Cash For Your Warhol, Dan Witz, Jean Julien, Kenny Scharf, Logan Hicks, Momo, Ricky Powell, Ron English, Saber, Tara McPherson, Ouizi, Mary Iverson, Jose Mertz, Jillian Evelyn and more!
Looking for more from Swoon? Read on below for a look at our interview with Swoon discussing The Heliotrope Print Suite, the beginnings of the project and more…
1x: Let’s start with talking about the Heliotrope Foundation, when did you begin the foundation and what are some of the projects that you work with through the foundation? Swoon: The foundation started about two years ago, but the work we’re doing started much earlier. We have three core projects : a post earthquake rebuilding project in Haiti, a ceramics and job training program in Braddock Pa, and musical architecture in New Orleans.
1x: Tell us a bit more about the Braddock Tiles project, how did that come about and how have you seen the project evolve over the years? Swoon: Braddock Tiles started when I was asked to consider taking over a church that was slated for demolition in North Braddock. It was a beautiful old building, and the town, which had suffered so much loss, was in the process of losing much of its monumental architecture as well. With a group of friends, we decided to take on this building, but to do it in such a way that each step of the building’s rehab would be creative, and would tangibly benefit the community in some way. Braddock Tiles began out of a desire to fix the roof with beautifully colored ceramic tiles, and to do so while providing job training and opportunities for residents. It’s been a long slow process, but we had a successful Kickstarter about a year ago and have since been working on developing Braddock Tiles as a social business that makes beautifully crafted and often artist designed Tiles, while working with the Braddock Youth program to train apprentices who have aged out of the program. Eventually we hope to make it a self sustaining business, and maybe even make the 20,000 tiles it will take to fix the roof!
1x: Why Braddock, Pennsylvania? How did the connection there come about? Swoon: One of my collaborators from an old collective called Toyshop was looking for a good place to focus on urban farming. She wanted to see what was happening in Braddock where it seemed farmers were being invited to take on some of the city’s vacant lots. When we got there, folks showed us the church, and it went from there.
1x: You’ve also got two other major projects that the Heliotrope Foundation focuses on, can you tell us a bit more about each of those projects? Swoon: The project in Haiti, known as Konbit Shelter, started as an immediate response to the earthquake of 2010. It’s an artist run rebuilding project, and we’ve also spent some time focusing on education programs and sustainability initiatives with the people of Cormiers, who are our partners. We super excited to begin work on our final structure, a bamboo home this spring.
The Music Box is a project of New Orleans Airlift, and we are a little more like their cheerleaders. I founded the project along side Delaney Martin, Taylor Shepard, and Jay Pennington of New Orleans airlift back in 2010. It’s slowly becoming a very unusual sort of venue for New Orleans. It’s central tenet is the combination of music with architecture, and the wonder that this strange hybrid produces. It’s all about celebrating and strengthening New Orleans and it’s incredibly unique culture.
1x: In this print suite we’ve got some of contemporary arts biggest names from all over the world and it’s a continual thing correct? You’re always adding new artists and curators? Swoon: Yes! That’s one of the most exciting parts. It started with me just reaching out to my friends, and people volunteering, but now it’s grown to become an incredible representation of contemporary art making in its own right.
1x: I know we can’t play favorites too much, but who are some of your favorites from the print suite so far and why? Swoon: It’s unfair! I literally cannot begin to answer this. All I will say is that when we started to get curators on board like Molly Kraus and Evan Pricco, some fun and surprising things started to happen — seeing the new prints became like Christmas morning.
1x: Why should people buy one of these prints from the Heliotrope Print Suite? Swoon: This scenario is unique in the sense that most of the artists who participate do not have works available in this price range, but they took this challenge on as a way to give a gift to Heliotrope, while also making a little gift for collectors who might otherwise not be able to afford their work. It’s all about accessibility, and knowing you’re contributing to work that tries to make the world better a little piece at a time.
1x: Describe each of this print suite in one gut reaction word. Swoon: Awake, generative, healing, intertwined, and delicate.
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