THIS IS NUMBER TEN. CONTENT:
No. 010 April - October 2012
Cover by DXTR (The Weird)
FOR YOU AND ME
DXTR (COVER ARTIST) LIL’ ILLU BATTLE
20 28 32 38 44 50 54
BENI BISCHOFF SMASH137 CRAIG & KARL TOAST TOM FELLNER KAM SERGEJ VUTUC
60 66 68 76 84 88 92 98 100 101 102 106 108 110 112 114
NANJING INTERNATIONAL ARTIST VILLAGE SDZN - WETPLATE COLLODION PHOTOGRAPHY SPOTLIGHT ON BUDAPEST BLACKCROSS BOWL WEMOTO KIKOBORO - by STEFAN JERMANN EURO ONER - FEEL LIKE HOME - by NUMBER ONE MAGAZINE BBB ART ON SNOW RIOT SNEAKERS - by SNEAKERNESS WELL DONE - by SACHENMACHEN C.R.E.A.M. SCREAM - by EVE WITHOUT ADAM SHIRTY SAUCY BITS - DROP 2 READERS DIG IT
DISTRIBUTION, THANK YOU, SUBSCRIBE, IMPRINT
Craig & Karl
2012 © Amateur Magazine. SWITZERLAND. All rights reser-
ved. Reproduction without written permission is strictly prohibited. Any views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the publisher. No guarantee for accuracy of statement.
WELCOME TO ISSUE 10. STILL WILD AND FREE.
DXTR (The Weird)
COVER ARTIST DXTR is a D端sseldorf based artist and proud member of The Weird. The Weird is a crew of artists spread all over Germany and Austria, founded in 2011. The ten members come from a graffiti background and focus on high quality character design in unique recognizable styles. They work as artists, graphic designers, illustrators and lecturers. Each one a serious heavyweight styler, they prefer a maverick illustrative way of designing. More about The Weirdos in our next issue! More from DXTR on the next pages.
Swiss Distribution : Dac Sport Import SA /www.dacsport.com / firstname.lastname@example.org www.flickr.com/photos/dxtrs/
THE ROCK BREAD & BUTTER AIRPORT BERLIN–TEMPELHOF
photo by ingo robin
04 – 06 July 2012
2012 ADVOCATES | DIMITRI COSTE | ERIC ELMS | CHRIS KONG | LUPE FIASCO PHOTOS |13TH WITNESS | PETER SUTHERLAND | SCOTT POMMIER
In each issue 2 chosen artists draw against one another. Each artist gets his page (left or right) with an object placed in
the middle (the cake, done by our man Ti, for this issue). Amateur then just puts the two pages together as they come in.
How would you describe your art?
« My art is very personal. I work very intuitively. I like doing things affect based. I like using different styles and medias, like drawings, photos, magazines, books, paintings, sculptures, and special editions for example. I love painting and drawing. It all began with painting and drawing and it will all end with painting and drawing. But of course the whole output is important. I do give a shit about trends, but sometimes it is hard to give a shit about trends... »
Hello Beni, please introduce yourself. I am an artist living and working in St.Gallen near Zurich, Switzerland. Working all day long - till my girlfriend gets angry. What question would you like to be asked in an interview? Question: What question would you like to be asked in an interview? Answer: What question would you like to be asked in an interview? What do you love about being an artist? Getting up early in the morning and think about what crazy things I can do today. What do you hate about it? Getting up early in the morning and think about what crazy things I can do today. You're a very versatile working artist - from sculptures, drawings or collages to paintings and installations. But I can still see parallels, like the fuck you / do-it-yourself attitude. What would you say is your common thread? As I said, my art is very personal, and is done very intuitively. Because it's very personal, and is done very intuitively - there must be a common thread. You know, the viewer has to look at the works and find its own common thread… What comes first, the idea and then the medium of expression or vice versa? It's both. But lots of ideas/works begin with an error. With something I didn't want to do. Often it's like this: error > work or work > error, better is error > work. And it's just chaotic how a work is born. If I work for a show, I have a feeling - then I begin to work.
« A special feeling. » ._.
What do you hope people take away from your work? A special feeling.
You often (ab)use glossy fashion magazines as a base for your work. What's the idea behind that? It just looks great. It communicates. There is something behind it. It's uploaded. I like these magazines. I was raised on them, I have two sisters, you know. The covers are beautiful, it had to become my own - so I scratched it. Think about it! Who are your artistic idols? Not idols but inspiration: Kippenberger, Paul Auster (writer), Tristan Egolf (writer), Charles Bukowski (writer), Stephen Hawking, (astrophysicist), Rupert Sheldrake (biologist), Dieter Roth, Raymond Pettibon, Dash Snow, Norbert Möslang, David Lynch and of course Gary Larson. Tell us an important lesson you have learned in life so far? If you are honest like bread, you get butter. What are your three favorite words? At the moment I only like ghettofaust.
If you could be a thing, what would you be and why? I would like to be a ghettofaust. Because it's hard to stop. Any exhibitions planned? Yes, in the next few months. In Lucerne, Amsterdam, St.Gallen, Basel, Aarau and Berlin. What do you love? I love having a fresh white canvas in front of me! Anything else you want to say? Thank God that I still have money for new oil paints. ._.
ÂŤ I would like to be a ghettofaust. Because it's hard to stop. Âť ._.
Beni Bischof Photos: Beni Bischof Interview: Lain
You have quite a big output and work quickly. Blessing or curse?
You know, on the one hand collectors would like to see new and better things than the previous shows and on the other hand it shouldn't be too fast, or they won't keep up, and quickly lose interest. For many, the Paris exhibition was already a big step ahead from what they were used to seeing from me.
Last year, you decided to go public. I'm sure the decision was not easy. What made you do it? Yes you’re right it was not easy to go public. It was nice to be mysterious. I never had to explain myself or my work. Today, whenever I have to give somebody an idea about my current paintings I avoid the word “Graffiti”. Even though it is the origin of my work. I want people to understand that not every “tag” on the streets is art but some of us coming from this culture have something true and contemporary to offer to our society. Is this a step away from the graffiti scene? No, I think it is a natural progression to start working with galleries. I have been painting for over 20 years and I almost love it more now than I did at the beginning of my career. Stepping into the gallery world means I have more time and my own space to deepen my work and create new things, that I would not be able to do outdoors in public places.
Do you always know when the harmony is here? In other words, do you always know when to stop? Not always. It can take me hours to figure out how to make it complete and I get stuck with the image I already created. That’s why I sometimes prefer to work on 2-3 painting simultaneously so I can break away and focus on a different image. Usually, when I return to that painting I see things differently and the solution of how to complete it is easier and different to how I originally thought. Sometimes I even discover new beauty and functionality that I hadn’t seen before. Do formats play a role in your work? Do certain formats help you with your work? Yes, formats play a big role in my work but I can also get stuck on a wall and not know how to finish it. I like to change between a series of small-scale to a series of large-scale paintings because it helps me to break away and see the colors and forms that I painted differently. The big difference between the formats is that for the small ones I use only my shoulder or hand whereas for the big ones I need my entire body, which, of course, creates a very different dynamic and power. My favorite part is to come up with lines and shapes, which seem impossible to do but when I get them right I am the happiest person.
So, will you soon be working under your real name? I don't think that will happen anytime soon. Even though my studio work is different from what I do on walls they both come from me. And through Graffiti I discovered the art scene that’s why I will stay true to my origins and keep my pseudonym for now. But on the canvases the writing is illegible; are you trying to hide your pseudonym?” No, letters are just the object of my creation. I would rather that people think for themselves and base their interpretation upon the way I am painting and not on the word I use as an object. Since early childhood I have always loved letters. While kids in my neighborhood were drawing smileys and stuff I wrote with chalk on walls and floors. I tried to copy letters from my surroundings like the “coca cola” sign or the logo from my bike. I believe you can transport more meaning through the art of writing than merely by the word itself. I can build an idea about a writer’s personality by looking at his or her work without knowing the person and when we meet it usually turns out I was right on track. What are your works about, what is important to you? My work is about harmony, a place to rest but still have excitement. I like my life to be full of variety: contrasting things which I can combine and enjoy equally. The only important thing is to keep my balance when these worlds clash and stay on top of it. I see my paintings as self portraits, but they don’t reflect my looks; it is more about my inner self, my heart and soul, what moves me, what scares me, basically different events that take place on this journey called life.
Want to see SMASH137's studio in a 360° view? Scan this QR-code with your phone or visit amateur-magazine.com/smash137
GETTING IT DONE!
ÂŤ Stepping into the gallery world means I have more time and my own space to deepen my work and create new things, that I would not be able to do outdoors in public places. Âť ._.
OK, I see. You mentioned colors and forms. Let's talk about colors then. I think, on the streets you use a different color palette to the one you use on your canvas. What can you tell us about colors? I would not say that I use a different color palette for walls vs canvases. However, I have become increasingly colorful and playful in recent years, because I don't have the urge anymore to fit in with the others or to seem grown up. Color was actually never that important to me even though it is the first thing that people notice in my work. I mainly think about form and lines and decide about the color later and intuitively. I believe that there is no inappropriate color combination, rather a bad color arrangement. Let's talk about your show "grow up" in Paris. It was a huge success - for you and the gallery. Have you grown up now? Yes, Paris was great but I haven’t grown an inch. I almost worked a whole year for it. In the end I had 25 canvases of medium to large format and 20 works on paper. The pressure was high and I cancelled all the other shows to be 100% focused and I am very happy about the outcome. The show took place at the “Galerie Celal” which is at Châtelet in the first arrondissement in Paris. The most important day for me was the pre-event where all the important collectors were invited. I was afraid that no one would show up because the FIAC was taking place at the same time, an art fair comparable to “Art Basel” That evening we sold almost all of the paintings to collectors of all ages and backgrounds, who were very impressed with my work. For the official opening we rearranged the paintings and I had prepared exclusive silkscreen prints that I gave away free to the first 100 visitors. Hours before the opening a huge line formed outside the gallery. The idea was to give
Stretch Your Wings Lil Cardinal 2011/ 90x180cm_GrowUp, Paris (FR)
something back to my younger audience who frequently visits my shows but can’t afford my paintings. But I was very surprised to see the variety of people standing in line and it was the best moment for me to see how happy it made them to receive a print. Two weeks later I went back to Paris to sign the catalogs for the show. At that time we were completely sold out so we decided to take down some of the paintings and I sprayed directly on the wall. People who attended all three events were thankful for the ever-changing program. Why Paris? It is the most important market for the so called "Urban Contemporary Art" scene. Especially for artists coming from graffiti backgrounds like Seen or Jonone from New York who started their careers with painting subways in the 80’s. Today, their work is sold for up to a 100,000 euros at auctions in Paris. Isn't it strange that your shows abroad attract more people than in your hometown? Why do you think that is? I think it's taking off now when I look at the last ArtYou group show in Basel I can clearly tell that there is a huge interest, and the sales were good as well. A few years ago people were curious but I guess because it was pretty new and the Swiss are more careful by nature, they hesitated to buy. Although I already sold very well in 2009 in Geneva at the Speerstra Gallery and in Basel at the Roland Aphold Gallery I can see today that people are more comfortable with this new art form. Some of the Swiss collectors even followed me to my show in Paris, which was a great honor for me.
Yeah, being careful and hesitant surely is a typical Swiss thing - and it is good to see, that there is someone who doesn't care about it. What's your dream - from the artistic point of view? Not to sound cheesy, but I'm pretty much living my dream. The icing on the cake would be if sometime in the future when nothing is left of me but my paintings that people would still wanna see my work and appreciate it. Where are your next shows? My next show "Beautiful Struggle" is at Gallery Speerstra (www.speerstra.net) on May, 5th 2012 in Geneva. It is already my third solo exhibition there and I will show some new works on canvas and paper in all price ranges. It will be the first time that people can see my work in the gallery and online at the same time in a fully 360째 perspective, which will be available to watch on Saturday, 5 May 2012 at exactly 2 pm on www.amateur-magazine.com. ._. Photos: Markus Fischer (page 28-29 & 360째) and Ruediger Glatz (pages 30-31) Interview: Lain
Guide Lights 2011/ 140x120cm_GrowUp, Paris (FR)
SheLovesMe_2011/ 200x200cm_CityLeaks, Cologne (DE)
SheLovesMeNot_2011/ 200x200cm_CityLeaks, Cologne (DE)
Where did you guys meet?
« Karl and I met on the first day of college and we’ve pretty much been working together ever since, whether it was part of our old collective Rinzen, or in our new guise as Craig & Karl. Having someone on the other side of the earth is actually very handy, while one is sleeping the other is working, it’s like a 24hr sweatshop! »
Craig, how did it come about that you moved to New York? Fate or accident? Craig: I won a green card on the internet. True story. What made you stay in Australia Karl? Karl: I did not win a green card on the internet. Though, to be fair, I didn't enter either. When did you start working as Craig & Karl? Karl: Craig & Karl began in May of 2011, though we've been working together in one way or another since we were 17 years old. When one is working the other one is asleep. How do you guys collaborate? Do you each have your own his projects or do you do them all together? Karl: It tends to vary. It's always important for us to collaborate during the initial conceptual stage of a project in order to figure out what we'd like to do and how we'd like to do it. This tends to take the form of a series of rambling conversations. From there we consider how to approach it in more practical terms, which is informed by any number of factors; the nature of the project, which aspects might play to our individual strengths, how much time we have to play with and so on. Sometimes it makes sense for both of us to work on one project and on other occasions to divide the labour. Whenever possible we like to work collaboratively towards a single outcome because it tends to result in new or unexpected outcomes.
Is there a difference between American and Australian clients? Karl: Generally we enjoy a good relationship with our clients and we are fortunate in that people will quite often seek us out specifically. Occasionally it transpires that what we see in something of ours and what they see turn out to be reasonably different things, which can make matters a little difficult for everyone, but usually it's a healthy, happy relationship all round. Before working as Craig & Karl you were part of the infamous RINZEN art group. What did you take away from this time? Karl: Rinzen was a great experience for us, defining the way we wanted to work and going about it at quite a young age. In the end we just had different directions that we wanted to pursue. Since leaving we have been able to take a step back from the past ten years, reassess and really focus our energies more succinctly. Does it still exist? Craig: It does, the three remaining members still work as Rinzen. You are working on the edge of graphic design and art. What do you think is the difference between these two? Is it only the client aspect? Craig: I guess we’re still in the process of figuring it out. We were trained as designers so it comes naturally to us to do commercial work, we enjoy it and get a kick out of seeing our work on products etc., even though that doesn’t sit well in the art world. We love exhibiting too, so for now it’s a matter of balance between the two. What makes a good illustration? Karl: It's a little bit hard to say. In a commercial context, where it's about solving a problem and communicating an idea, an illustration that can do that elegantly is always going to be good. But that's quite an academic way of looking at it and in actuality I suspect that what makes
something good or not avoids such simple classification. Like any good art, or music, or food even, it's often something one just feels or knows inherently without the need to really overthink it. How did the contact to Colette come about? Craig: Sarah from Colette discovered Darcel early on in the life of the blog, since then we’ve been collaborating on lots of products, exhibitions and pop-ups etc. Sarah has helped enormously, I've been incredibly lucky. Tell us something about working with Colette. What do you think makes them so
successful worldwide? Craig: Sarah is extremely good at knowing what’s right, for right now. She’s not afraid to unearth someone or something that’s brand new, someone that hasn’t been “approved” by the fashion scene. I guess she is excellent at trusting her instinct and her own taste, as she should, since both are excellent! Craig, you are also the creator of the semi-autobiographical character Darcel and the amazing blog Darcel Disappoints. What was the original idea behind the creation of Darcel? And what do you think it is about him that has won so many fans? Craig: I think Darcel is very relatable, that’s why people get into him. He’s not a fantasy character who lives in rainbows and makes friends with daises and butterflies, he’s very grounded in reality. He lives in a shitty apartment, he
Woody Allen for GUISE exhibition at Slam Jam.
72DP. An immersive mural. Sydney, Australia.
Terry Richardson for GUISE exhibition at Slam Jam.
queues for coffee every day, he gets lonely etc. I think everyone can find something in Darcelâ€™s life thatâ€™s also in their own. Is there a project you are especially proud of? Craig: Probably the project I did for Nowness last year. I got to attend all four fashion weeks (New York, London, Milan and Paris) and illustrate my observations and experiences - every day for 28 days. It was both heaven and hell. Karl: I'd say 72DP, a large scale mural installation in an undercover car park completed late last year. The commission was to transform the dark concrete environment into one that was bright and colourful; a perfect job in many ways. It was a lot of fun to do and exciting to transform an entire space so completely. Who are your artistic idols? Craig: Urs Fischer, Yayoi Kusama, Andy Rementer, Peter Max, Hapshash and the Coloured Coat, television, Wes Wilson, David Hockney, My Bloody Valentine, The Renaissance, Takashi Murakami, Kaws, NeNe Leakes, Jeff Koons, Memphis Design, Roy Lichtenstein, John Baldessari.
What would be your dream project? Karl: Some kind of largescale outdoor sculpture, nestled by some amazing architecture, somewhere in the vicinity of Tokyo would be pretty dreamy. What are your three favorite words? Karl: Beer O Clock. What's coming next from Karl&Craig? Karl: Lunch! ._. Photos: Craig & Karl Interview: Lain
Valentino for GUISE exhibition at Slam Jam.
Sculpture of film director Michelangelo Antonioni, installed in the Castle Estense Ferrara, the city of Antonioni's birth.
GUISE exhibition at Slam Jam, Italy.
What does a typical Toast day look like?
ÂŤ I mostly lag behind Joe Shmoe for about 5 hours, which makes it hard to get in touch with me. My day starts around noon and ends in the early hours of the morning. The night has always been my friend. One meal a day is nearly enough for me. Quietness is very important since I am an unbalanced person. I purposely don't have a mobile phone. Sport, playing instruments and vacuuming are my alarm clock and means of creating balance at the same time. Âť
Hello Ata, please introduce yourself. My name is Ata Bozaci. Better known under the pseudonym Toastone. What is your background? I grew up in a village near Berne. I have been drawing ever since I can remember. In the early 90s, I attended the School of Graphic Design in Berne and graduated in graphic design. At about the same time, I came in touch with the writing-movement, which remains my main area of activity until today. How would you describe your style? To understand my works, you first have to know my aim and my motivations. One of my leading motives is to make the invisible visible. My attitude towards everyday things is reflected in my style. I define my style as a conglomeration of preferences and interests. Style comes into being through an attitude that finds itself in the formal and not the other way round. What made you cross over to fine arts? Is it a normal way of growing up? Every solved problem automatically leads me to the next task. Whether my works are to be categorized under fine arts I cannot say. My work grows with my experience. Every day brings new challenges that I try to master. That forces me to grow up whether I want it or not. In a world that is becoming more complex and complicated I try to find easy solutions that are to the point. I am going the way most people go - as I grow older I am looking for my light-hearted childhood. That reflects in the playfulness of my art. The next one is a tough one: What is art? I claim that everyone who pretends to know what art is is speculating. All too often, art is defined by opinion leaders who have power and control.
But they, too, are just speculating. I am convinced that art is something that has to prove itself; it needs time for that, a lot of time. Art is as subordinate to time as the artist is to his art. Time makes art. What do you love about being an artist? My activity and I are inseparable like love. As in every partnership there is a lot to love and even more to accept. In that I try to separate the changeable and unchangeable things. In my work I appreciate the liberty to make my own decisions. You have been fascinated by typography for some time. Why is that? Letters are mystical. Letters hide everything and nothing. Letters are neutral if you don’t pay any attention to them. Letters are words and words move, if you let them. Letters are everywhere. What are you working on at the moment? Often on myself, I mean, on my letters. My thoughts get more complex and my works more minimal. Through abstinence I see the shapes in a clearer way which allows me to connect the common denominators of my components. The forms gained out of that are a kind of building block, which offers me new possibilities of application. What would be your dream project? To create the biggest and most interesting graffiti sculpture in the world. I’m thinking of Burning Man. What is important to you these days? Generally the simple things in life are important to me, an orchid for example. Regarding my work, I am learning to say “no” more and more. You work as an illustrator and you have an education in graphic design. Is that right? That is right. My business partner Remy Burger and I founded a company named “Atalier Visual Entertainment” in the late 90s which focused on illustrative online games. Atalier dissolved about 5 years ago because I did not want to be part of the advertisement system. If you could make a cover for any musician alive or dead, who would it be and why? Designing a cover for me is one of the most difficult tasks. Because in this case the band and their music is in the spotlight. I can capture the character of the band and their music and transfer that into forms only in a confined way. DISIDENTE, a Mexican band from Guadalajara was my last cover, which came out a couple of months ago. These guys completely convinced me musically and personally. If you could be a thing, what would you be and why? That is a nice question. Air – invisible and indispensable.
So, what's next on the horizon? Soon, probably a short time in jail because of an unpaid parking ticket. At the moment, several group exhibitions are in the pipeline for 2012. Two book projects are in development. One is a children’s book about a polar bear and a penguin who have an unusual friendship. I am also working on a book about letters in space. After my debut “Black Ink,” it is going to be my second book that I am collaborating on with Amanzilla. What do you love? I love sincerity. That’s why I love my little friend, my pug dog ROCCO. It's incredible that somebody like me who used to avoid dogs can find so much light-heartedness and love in such a creature. Anything else you want to say? Thank you for the interview. ._. Photos: Coni von Grebel Interview: Lain
Please introduce yourself.
« I'm a 55-year-old American/Swiss painter who lives in Zürich and has a studio in the Red Factory. After graduating from Columbia University I showed for several years in New York. In 1998 I moved back to Switzerland. I had a long dry spell in terms of my artistic career, but am now labeled as “re-emerging“ and things are looking up. As Joseph Heller put it: Go figure. »
You grew up in New York. What made you move to Switzerland? No - only the first part of my childhood was spent in the U.S. I was born in N.Y. but my parents soon moved to Madison, Wisconsin. After their divorce, my mother, brother and I returned to her Swiss hometown. I have few memories of my early childhood in the States. It was strange to arrive in this small, very “bünzli” (petty bourgeois) town in Switzerland and, at the age of seven, be called the small “Ami” in school. My grandfather (Otto Wyler) was a locally known Swiss painter. Unfortunately he died a year after our arrival. My mother is a painter, as well as my oldest daughter, now studying at the Art Academy in Leipzig, Germany - so that will make us four generations! My Dad was a psychiatrist, my mother has had life long problems with schizophrenia. When I was 19 I couldn’t get away soon enough. I left Switzerland, traveled around Greece and Israel and, on an offer from my father, went to school first in Seattle and then later in Paris and New York. As an adult I spent twenty years in the U.S. In your current series "Monster Paintings" you paint trivial plastic toy monsters that live in landscapes referring to artworks from art history. A bizarre mix. What's your intention? Actually, I would never call them trivial. There is a whole subculture of kaiju (“strange beast”) or monster toys, mostly from Japan and the West Coast, particularly L.A. They are made of vinyl and sprayed with automotive dye paints. They are highly artistic - and not cheap either. Usually they start at $100 or so. It’s a whole subculture and in L.A. relates to skaters, graffiti artists and the tattoo scene. It’s popular art and very creative, often whimsical, sometimes bizarre. I actually don’t know much about the scene. I don’t have any of the figures, nor am I very interested in collecting them. I originally became aware of kaiju when I was researching Godzilla. Both Godzilla and Hedorah (one of his enemies) are based upon nuclear and environmental (toxic) catastrophes. Because Godzilla was too iconic I looked at other kaiju. I use exclusively photographs from the internet. Also, I like the challenge of translating the automotive paints and high gloss plastic texture into a traditional painting technique. They are contemporary cultural artifacts of a sort of subculture.
Der Holzfäller (self portrait), 2011, 152 x 111 cm, watercolor, gouache on paper
Dead Disney, 2011, 111 x 222 cm, watercolor, gouache on paper
« Young and sexy sucks over the long haul. Hasn’t anybody noticed that yet? » ._.
I think a monster is some form of hidden self. It’s part human and part animal or machine. In public culture we both fear and love to hear about vampires (sex), zombies (death), and serial murderers (violence). Children have an instinctive understanding of this. Everybody has an experience of at least once behaving like a monster. We don’t like it, but we have all done it. We are very good at hiding from ourselves what we do not want to know. To take a classical European portrait painting and replace the wealthy aristocrat by a plastic monster poses the question of how we see ourselves and others. It also subverts the visual depiction of power, of image as propaganda. What do you hope people take away from your work? Well, I hope it makes them think. They are drawn in by color and perhaps a sense of fun, sensuality and humor and maybe, at second glance, they also see something else that’s going on. Some darker part? Perhaps they reflect upon what the work could mean or what they see in it. Look a little deeper. Do you have a special affinity to the toys you paint - I mean, do you especially love or hate them? How do you choose them? Similar to a child playing with toys, I make up little stories in my head. I sort of identify or sympathize with parts of them. Or I want them to act out something. I choose them for reasons of projection and their mix of ugliness/beauty, violence/empathy etc. The background often contradicts the toy, adding another layer of meaning. Mostly it is pure projection on my part. Also the color combinations are important.
Monster Painting 7, 2010, tempera & oil on canvas, 130 x 100 cm
I think your work combines "low" and "high" aesthetics. How important is this theme in what you do? That is a good question. My work is a mixture of American and European sensibilities. The high/low art issue has not been debated in American Art for several decades now - cartoons are art as well as film etc. There is no clear boundary. I think this is more of a European thing and it’s completely foreign to me. I am more at home with so-called “Bad Painting” (started, I think, by Rene Magritte shortly after the war when he was desperate and making fun of the paintings that sold well in the galleries at the time - while he was having a hard time selling his work). The subject matter is “bad”, but these artists can paint the pants off anybody around. I know you like to compare painting with music. If your art was music, what would it sound like? Over the years, I have acquired quite a collection of Chicago and Delta Blues. (By the way, I also love their double-edged lyrics, i.e. there is another mule kicking in my stall). I often listen to blues when I paint, but I guess if the art work was music, it would probably sound more like Spike Jones and His City Slickers, i.e. his William Tell Overture (Switzerland should have some place in here too, no?) Your work has an ironic value. Are you an ironic person? Decidedly no. My humor is more of the Marx Brothers type - a sense of the anarchic, the zany, the subversive. According to Slavoj Zizek, Harpo is pure id, Chico the ego and Groucho the super ego. I’d love to put Harpo in one of those big Rubens paintings, i.e. The Rape of the Sabine Women or The Foxhunt and see what would happen. By the way, the Chapman Brothers already put him in several Goyas. Humor is a direct line to the subconscious. What is important to you as an artist? Color, color, color. I love color. To make this world of my own. To have learned to paint well (technically). What do you love about being an artist? The freedom - and challenge - to say and do what I want. In the studio at least. To explore the subconscious. To try not censor myself. Monster Drawings 8, 2010, 36 x 23 cm, pencil, watercolor and gouache on Japanese print (Kabuki)
Monster Painting 5 (Vater Morgana), 2010, tempera & oil on canvas, 162 x 130 cm
Monster Drawings 41 (Val Roseg), 2011, 30 x 21 cm, pencil, watercolor, gouache, ink on reproduction
Pornohäschen, 2011, 111 x 152 cm, watercolor, gouache on paper
What do you hate about it? Having too many ideas. I will never be able to realize all of them! Problems with money. The art world. Where success is defined by how much money you throw at something. The youth cult. Young and sexy sucks over the long haul. Hasn’t anybody noticed that yet? If you could be a thing, what would you be and why? A small axe. “If you are a big tree we are the small axe sharpened to chop you down”. (Bob Marley) What's next on the horizon for Tom Fellner? Lots of ideas: Yoga for Dead People. Some more Disney backgrounds with death & sex. Swiss mountain paintings with monsters (a new form of tourism?). A children’s book? More collaborations with other artists such as “Future Drop” which I did with Cody Hudson from Chicago. What do you love? Being able to laugh. If you can laugh I think you are in a good place, even if it’s just maybe inside yourself. ._. Photos: Tom Fellner Interview: Lain
Why do you do graffiti?
« I do it for myself and that’s it. For me it has always been a hobby, a passion. Nothing that I would have to do professionally. Sprayers didn't used to have creative jobs in the past. Most of the sprayers that I know didn’t work in a creative profession. Most of them worked like me - as construction workers - or did some other shit. That changed - especially with the new generation of sprayers. They are way more ambitious than we used to be. I don’t give a shit about fame; I don't even have an online presence. »
Did you never want to do a creative job? Oh yes, if I wasn’t so lazy. I am a really lazy person. I like how it is right now: I can work on a construction site to earn my money, which I can spend on spray cans. So, somehow you are a true amateur - someone doing something for passion and not for the money? Exactly. What is graffiti for you? Formally I do not distinguish between street art and graffiti. It isn’t the same, but for me it is all art - no matter how you express it. You know, I don’t see it that narrowly. I myself didn’t get into spraying in the traditional way - by watching the movie Style Wars and hip hop. I was a Heavy. In 1987, I first saw works by TRAP. I was fascinated by his first pictures. It is because of him that I started with graffiti. I kind of went from graffiti to hip-hop and not the other way round. That was circa 1988. The difference between the graffiti of now and then is that there used to be a lot more freedom. It was about the fun in doing it. Today the pressure has increased - also because of the flood of good pictures on the internet. Young people want to have good skills from the start. Fame and celebrity become more important than painting. Getting better was a process of several years and an important part of painting. Getting better was fun. I think, today’s kids start spraying and think they have to be good at all costs – even before they start. Back in the day, we used to learn from each other. There was no internet and only a few graffiti magazines. 14K was the only one, really. Graffiti was less professional and wasn’t overdone by the media. I drew sketches for almost a year and when I went out for the first time I already had to run from the cops. I had no idea where I was and ran into the woods. That’s what I loved about graffiti – until today. Speaking of graff magazines: what were the first graffiti mags you got to know back in the day? As I said, 14K from Switzerland. And Bomber from Holland. I’m not sure which came first. I think it was Bomber. They were all Xeroxed in black and white. Before that, I didn’t know there were mags about graffiti. I remember how I went to Jamarico in Zurich and was astonished to see the first 14K behind the counter. I couldn’t believe it! I’ve kept that issue until this day. A couple of years later, some of my stuff was in 14K too. Why don’t you have a website? As I said, fame is not that important to me. You are known to be spirited and rowdy. Nobody would think that you are interested in art and own a huge collection of art books. What are your personal favorites? Toulouse-Lautrec, as one of the first artists of printmaking; but also Cubism, which has a lot to do with styles. Pop Art and comics also blow my mind. In those, I see a lot of parallels with graffiti. You know, I see a lot of things with graffiti glasses - either in architecture, where I see letters in shapes of buildings, or in art history. Look at the Sistine Chapel, for example. The frescos there consist of a main motif and have clouds in the background. They are nothing more than bubbles. Graffiti awakened my interest in art - before that, I thought art was shit. You get more open-minded as you get older. I think it's important to broaden your horizon. Look how it is with break dancing: the dancers look at movements of mimes or take elements from Kung Fu or ballet. What do you think? Will graffiti make it into the history books? Of course. It is already there.
ÂŤ Graffiti awakened my interest in art - before that, I thought art was shit. Âť ._.
You are known to enjoy trying new stuff when painting. What is important for you in doing that? Of course I have to struggle with the fact that because of this, my works aren't instantly recognizable, but it would seem boring to me to always paint the same things. You know, it’s “write my name” and not “write my style,” that’s my opinion. I kind of like my bad paintings, too, the one’s that I messed up. I learn from them.
Which of today’s artists will remain unforgettable? Phew. That’s hard, what should I say? Banksy, of course, although I’m not his fan. Now he can get everything fixed with money, which puts many of his performances in a different perspective. He should create a foundation that supports sprayers who are in jail, in my opinion. But that’s another story. Loomit, as well and Dare. I’ve had the honor of painting with both. You know, I think only a few individuals will make history. Today there are more artists than ever. Maybe too many and there are always more good artists – not only on the graffiti scene. To set yourself apart from the masses is harder than ever. This is why I can imagine that graffiti and street art will make history as a huge, global movement and not so much the artists themselves. Okay, I see. That's a good point. But if there were any artists in tomorrow's art history books, who should it be? In other words: who are your favorite writers? Dare, Loomit, Bates, Seen. For me Bates is one of the best graffiti artists there is. He, too, always tries new things and never stands still. Let's talk about the color quality. Cans then and now? I never want to miss the feeling I had when I painted with Sparvar for the first time. Before that there was only Dupli Color. It was so rad. The difference was massive! Sparvar was really Krylon from the States. That was in Munich in 1991. I bothered the paint shop in Aarau so much, they imported them for us. Somehow the law against poisonous substances was a lot stricter back then, so that they had to be sold illegally in the basement. My favorite colors were Sparvar Mint, Erika and Doveblue. Sparvar was the shit! Today I mostly use Montana. The quality of the colors and the variety doesn’t compare to the past. How many times did you get laid thanks to graffiti? It used to be a lot! Today not anymore. Of course the question is if it’s the graffiti or my age. Who do you enjoy drawing with the most these days? With Derek my brother and the rest of the 626 Crew. Is there anything else you want to say? Peace to Jones, Malik, Schwarzmaler, Kesy, 626, Trap, Derek and everyone I have ever painted with. Is that all? No. Another beer, please. ._. Photos: Markus Fischer (www.meq.ch) Interview: Ti & Lain
« I kind of like my bad paintings, too, the one’s that I messed up. I learn from them. » ._.
What are you?
« It is hard to describe what I am. I would describe myself as a dreamoholic - working on my dream, which is bringing me into different projects running parallel all over Europe. Music, sound, skateboarding and my passion for photography merged into one. For me it is often hard to say I am a photographer, or to describe which way of expression I am currently working on and what I will give my attention to in the future. Maybe the title of my last book describes it best: “Something in Between”. »
Hello Sergej.Please introduce yourself. Hi, my name is Sergej Vutuc or at least that's the name I use at the moment - I was born under Jovanovic. In music or performance I use Helmut Vutuc Lampshade. So many names, maybe the same person. Born in the time of Yugoslavia in Doboj, Bosnia and later grew up in Croatia. Then moved to Heilbronn, Germany, where I am living at the moment. So for now... Art school or self-taught? (Laughing) No art school. I'd say it's more something like life school, street input and music / hc-punk education. So, how did you get into photography? I think it was through music and skateboarding. Also a little bit from my father even if he wasn't around when I was growing up. I remember some good moments in the darkroom with him. But the main reason I got into photography is definitey through skateboarding and hc/punk music. Friends and everything that is going within those communities. As a photographer, what do you think makes a good picture? Heart. Please tell us about the pictures shown here. Where were they taken? What are they about? Most of them were taken on my road trip through the USA. One is from Berlin and one from Serbia. But it's not about places, it's about harmony. As it says on the McShite board, hehehe. But all in all, I'd say it is about skateboarding and how I see it. What do you like about them? I need them to say something, to either find or reflect on something in my life. With "say something" I mean that there is a story behind the photos for me. Photography is kind of a reflection of our life, those moments are real and they influence our past, present and future - how we see things or why we look at something. So I think everyone does take his own story out of it, and that is how it should be. By the way, they will also be part of my coming zine at innen zines. If your photography was music, what would it sound like? Maybe like Helmut Vutuc Lampshade!
Obviously you have a strong connection to skateboarding. When and where did you start skateboarding? Pretty early, in 1987 or something like that. In Doboj, my hometown, I saw the film “trashin´” at the cinema, which had a big influence on my life. What do you like about this culture? I think there are two things. One is that active thing, where you forget many things and just push into new dimensions and leaves daily business behind you for a moment. And then, there is also that whole moment of sound and of space around you - and your physical possibility and imagination… That's another reason how skateboarding changed me: By giving "imagination" and "trying" a new meaning. Do you still skate? Yes. I need it and I love it! Besides skateboarding and photography, there is another chapter in your life, which we haven't spoken about yet. Please give our readers a brief introduction of what Basementizid is meant to be. The real meaning is "base for brainwashing". More or less I try to work on that kind of base which started in a cellar in Heilbronn town, which I like to call Graubronn, because it's so gray and so zero. There is no negative or positive, the town just started to use gray as their town color. Still I feel something inside me that makes me stay here and work on this art project. You can call it also gallery. We invite artists from the whole world to come to this gray industrial town and share something with the people and through that change something - maybe even on a global scale. At the moment Viagrafik are working on an exhibition, Esh had a mural show and kai epli / wärwolf are working on a photo exhibition about the river surf scene close to Heilbronn.
With time things start to grow and become more institutional, so I have to put them on hold and put my energy into other projects behind Basementizid such as Plemplem and Jet, which are new turns. We started making an outdoor mural gallery at Plemplem a coffee place with gallery. Down in the basement we set up a silkscreen area up and a darkroom. You see, there is a lot of home production going on. What's your next personal project? Mmm, first it would be cool to finish the ones that I am already working on (Laughing). Thank you for your time Sergej. Last one is an Amateur standard: What do you love? Feeling, friendship, ... I donâ€™t know. Many things. Good food and Turkish coffee. And not forgetting someone very important: my mum. ._. Photos: Sergej Vutuc Interview: Lain
China is in the process of change. It appears that the people of China have not been able to resist the plague of western consumerism and a status-driven lifestyle. Young Chinese women sometimes spend half a yearâ€™s income on a handbag. The quality and originality of the product is not important - the high price is justified solely by its brand name.
This uncontrollable hunger for status may be explained by the fact that a critical stance towards the prevailing conditions has no place in Chinese culture or politics. Just as the neo-communist single-party system must not be questioned, the price of a Louis Vuitton bag must be accepted as well. This mindset is also reflected in the art business: national artist rankings set the benchmark for pricing, and buyers are convinced that when a work is expensive, it must be worth the money. The ranking of the artist as number one, two, or three is therefore more important to the purchaser than the actual quality of the work. Political leaders in China are now eager to advance culture, if for no other reason than to enhance their image abroad. The example of Ai Weiwei has shown party leaders that lack of control in this area may seriously damage their image, and could influence the masses to their disadvantage. It is better to start taking the helm rather than simply waiting for the big uncontrollable wave.
The self-perception of Chinese art, however, is rapidly changing. Until 1949, art under Mao was exclusively propaganda, much like in Europe when the church appropriated art for its own purposes. It is a long way from the idea of art as a form of worship of God, to the artist as a â€œgodâ€? who puts forth the creation of an individual work. While it took several centuries for Europe to take this step, this process is occurring at a much higher speed in China. The Nanjing International Artist Village is a government-supported program for the advancement of art and culture. The two individuals in this interview could not be more different. One is an influential businessman with excellent connections to politics, the other a radical, intellectual rebel respected in the Artist Village, but an outsider nonetheless. The spotlight is intentionally not on the work of the artists inhabiting the village, but rather on the tensions between politics and art in China.
The Nanjing International Artist Village
Director of the Nanjing International Artist Village.
Please introduce yourself. My name is Bai Ming. I’m from Tianjing and work for a real estate company. The Nanjing Artist Village is a major venture of our company in collaboration with the Chinese government. What’s your role in the Nanjing International Artist Village? It was my idea to establish a village for culture and artists. On the one hand, the Village’s aim is to bring together artists and gallery owners, and on the other, to support the artists’ work with free apartments and studios. The next step for our company will be to enter into art trade with our own galleries.
Bai Ming in his administration building.
Are you yourself in contact with the artists? Yes, very much so. Do you see the Artist Village as promotion of the arts or as a business venture? It is both. The promotion of the arts follows from successful business. If we are successful in attracting attention to art, the Village will gain more attention as well, and that in turn will increase real estate prices. We see ourselves as the “missing link” between art and business. Where do you see the Village in 10 years? Is there any danger that if the business takes off and real estate prices rise there will no longer be any space for the artists in the Village? No. You see, the Chinese government is aware that the development of the arts lags behind general economic development. The government decided that the promotion of this sector has a high priority to make up for the backlog. Thus support of the arts will still have its place even in forty years. The name of the village is Nanjing International Artist Village. Why is there “International” in the name? We are at the beginning of this project. With it, we intend to support international exchange in the arts, as well. What does the support look like? Do you offer living space for foreign artists, too? Of course, foreign artists are very welcome here. We offer them a free apartment and all possible support, including financial, if the applicant is a real artist and really wants to work. To make this possible, we need people like you who make the project known abroad. The entrance to Nanjing International Artist Village.
Facades with its copies from classic Western artworks.
Who decides what constitutes a real artist? We don’t have a jury that rates the artistic quality of works. The decision is made with regard to verifiable facts, like an artistic training at a technical college or exhibitions in his home country. The artist does not necessarily have to already have a name in his home country. Art tends to have an exceptional position in society. How do you see that and the responsibility art has towards society? Art in China is in a difficult phase. The change from a state-directed economy to free economy was so fast that regard for the role of art and its responsibility towards society was neglected. Art in China has become cynical and serves a monetary purpose, which for me is an intolerable situation. Young Chinese people are increasingly driven by status and materialism. Do you think art could counteract that? Not right now, unfortunately. Famous Chinese artists behave like stars and are not good role models for society with their materialistic, moneycentered demeanor. Art in China itself is responsible for that and has thus deprived itself of its authority.
Bai Ming doing important work.
Do you think art’s function in society includes criticizing existing grievances? That is very important. Especially in the specific situation our society is in. The rapid changes need artists who reflect the incidents from their individual point of view and thus can suggest improvements. A question that is often asked in Europe, too: How far can this critique go? Is an artist allowed to do everything without any taboos? Boundaries should be established by the artist’s personal responsibility towards society. But it is also the case that a piece which appears in Europe might come about in China at the wrong time, since the development of each culture is at a different point. But shouldn’t an artist be free in his creation, like God himself? For me, God can be three things: politics, religion, and art. Which of those areas gets more attention depends on your religion. Where China is right now, art cannot exist without any form of control, because it could get out of hand and lead to aggression among the population. However, the aim of the general development is absolute liberty – even in art. One more question. The first thing I noticed on my tour of the Village were the oversized works by old masters of international art history on the walls. This seems to suit the western stereotype of China: the ability to produce exact copies of things – sometimes even bigger, faster, and cheaper than the original, but without any creative effort. How do you see that? In the past, China used to lag behind the cultural development of the West. This was the case for art as well, because the colonial powers stole works of Chinese art during their occupation. There is a reason the greatest works of Chinese traditional art are exhibited in Paris and London. It becomes clear why China follows Europe’s example in a lot of areas if you consider the head start the West has. This is also one of the reasons why the economic rise and development can happen so fast here in China. If we would be inspired solely by the materialistic principles of Europe, we would lack something: a cultural common knowledge of the population. China has to improve that, if for no other purpose than to foster communication between cultures. I think that, in the past, our country has lacked the respect of intellectual property. This respect can only be conveyed through cultural education. In this case [the Village], I see the work as part of a cultural good that encompasses all of humanity. Displaying these on the walls of the Artist Village shows our respect for the artistic achievements of humanity as a whole.
« For me, God can be three things: politics, religion, and art. Which of those areas gets more attention depends on your religion. » ._.
Artist in the Nanjing International Artist Village.
Please introduce yourself. I am Shi Fang and I have been working as a painter since 1991. First I lived in Beijing for 10 years, then for 10 years in Shanghai. My approach is a mix between traditional Chinese art and the European body of thought. I am a very straightforward person. As a teenager I was a thug on the streets, so I used to have trouble with the law - even before I started being an artist. I discovered painting by myself. When I paint, I am quieter, can control myself better, and am less impulsive.
Shi Fang doing important work.
What is your role in the Nanjing Artist Village? I don’t have a role here. I didn’t come here to be the Village’s sheep. The Village is my workplace just for now. I enjoy the quiet and want to produce my work, not be active in an artistic movement of some sort.
« These paintings are an illusion, which is not supposed to dazzle you, but the next high state visitors. This is how they justify the money they are getting - an illusion by liars for liars. » ._.
Shi Fang artworks in his studio/appartment.
Why not? During my time in Beijing and Shanghai I had enough experience with such movements. None of them changed anything - the great Yuanmingyuan commune1, for example - which was founded by culturally active people as a reaction to 19892. It had artists, musicians, theater people, and numerous sympathizers. The Chinese government systematically isolated this movement. Journalists wishing to write about it were not allowed to join the commune, and the artists were interrogated and threatened covertly. In the course of this movement the members changed a lot, which was a sobering experience for me. Some stayed artists and made good money, some changed their profession or married foreigners and left China; others started collaborating as spies with the government to denounce artists who used to be their companions. Do you think such movements are doomed to fail in China? China cannot keep the door shut. Also from an economic point of view, in the information age, the population cannot be isolated completely from the flow of information. Art is a mirror, and since the cultural revolution in 1949, it is constantly changing. In my opinion, if art doesn’t constantly change, it loses its right to exist. There are a lot of underground movements, which start with the attitude of wanting to change something. But as long as they operate within the established system they can’t do that. It is not enough to open the door a little; the whole door-frame has to be busted out. As long as corruption and the one-party system rule, every movement is going to be corrupted sooner or later - especially now when a new net of control is being established due to the omnipresent “threat of terror.” Now, even when purchasing an express train ticket or buying a big kitchen knife, you need to show an ID. As opposed to Europe, political leaders are demanding the surveillance and the majority of the population just accepts it without critique. Unfortunately, it is no different in Europe. Oh, but it is. You at least have the division of power and thus some sort of balance. There is no independent justice here. If you bother a politician in Beijing, he informs the local police and they obey his every command. What really happens in China is a lot more perfidious than what is shown in the news reports that make it to Europe. Maybe you see the pictures of forceful relocations in the newspapers but the intricate system behind that however, in which politicians and the mafia play their role, cannot be seen in the pictures. This system has tradition and is being passed on, since the new political forces are still being created without any democratic components, by the existing ones. Our fundamental problem is the oneparty system that does not allow an opposition. Is art able to assist in a redirection of politics? Yes, I think art can help with that development. Marcel Duchamp said: “Art has no role in society.” This may have been true for his art at that moment. But for this attitude, a fundamental freedom is needed, which an artist in China simply doesn’t have. Art reacts to society - but Chinese
Shi Fang during the interview.
art does not have a sanctuary. We have reached a point where art has no choice. Therefore it has to get involved - no matter if it’s useful or not. Your works are abstract paintings and can’t be recognized as critique at first view. How do you see that? In Europe, abstraction provoked just by existing. In China, abstract painting has no history of provocation, which is also why most of the works are pretty shallow. I try to follow Expressionism according to the definition of Willem de Kooning3. The first thing I noticed on my tour of the Village were the oversized works of old masters of international art history on the walls. This seems to suit the western stereotype of China: the ability to produce exact copies of things – sometimes even bigger, faster and cheaper than the original but without an own creative effort. How do you see that? (Laughs) These paintings are an illusion, which is not supposed to dazzle you, but the next high state visitors. This is how they justify the money they are getting - an illusion by liars for liars. In Europe the development of art and of society went hand in hand, was able to grow naturally. Over here, the influence of money put art in a cynical role. Young Chinese people are increasingly driven by status and materialism. Do you think art could counteract that? Why counteract? I see this development over here not only negatively. Maybe young people think a brand name bag is the most important thing in life, but at least the supposed “best political system in the world” is not seen like that anymore. There is hope in the development of materialism. A status-driven lifestyle is at least more individualistic than what they teach here in school as the only truth. ._. Photos: Camil Hämmerli Text & interview: Sébastien JW, Camil Hämmerli
The “Yuanmingyuan commune”was a well-known regime-critical artist movement whose core members lived in a commune. A lot of Chinese artists like Ai Weiwei were
part of this movement. 2
“1989” refers to the bloody suppression of the student protests (Tiananmen Massacre).
“The attitude that nature is chaotic and that the artist puts order into it is a very absurd point of view, I think. All that we can hope for is to put some order into ourselves.”
Willem de Kooning.
WETPLATE COLLODION PHOTOGRAPHY
How does wetplate collodion photography work?
Wetplate collodion is a very old process that was used around 1870. To create a wet plate picture, you first pour collodion (liquid cellulose) onto a black glass or plexiglass plate and then you immerse it in a silver nitrate solution for a few minutes in the dark. It then becomes photo-sensitive and ready to be used. Afterwards the wet plate is fixed into the camera and then you only have a few minutes to take the picture. The exposure time is around 3 to 5 seconds. Then you return to the darkroom where you develop the plate - and the image appears! I also work with many other techniques but it's my favorite. Everytime an image appears on a wetplate I’m blown away! It’s magic! The long exposure time necessary for this technique makes me feel like catching something of the model’s soul. Les vanités. Wetplate collodion humide. Ambrotype 13x18cm. Pentac Lens 200mm 2.9f
I first became interested in photography at the age of eleven during a class. Since then I've never stopped taking pictures. Inspired by artists such as Sarah Moon, Daido Moriyama and Sally Mann, I decided to work essentially with analog techniques and old processes. I find most of my equipment online and sometimes in second hand shops or little markets but I also build and modify many cameras myself - often in collaboration with my friend and partner Sebastian Kohler (www.sebkohler. com) allowing us to have more photographic material. Last year we also managed to find an old warehouse in the center of Lausanne where we now have our photo-studio. With a few of my friends we created a collective called 10-10. We randomly choose a theme amongst us and during the next three months we have to create a series of 10 pictures around the theme, using only analog techniques. ._. Photos & text: SDZN
New toy. Chambre japonaise 13x18cm
Couloir. Wetplate collodion humide 13x18cm. Pentac Lens 200mm 2.9f
Fou. Wetplate collodion humide. 13x18cm. Pentac Lens 200mm 2.9f
/////////. Wetplate collodion humide. Ambrotype 13x18cm. Pentac Lens 200mm 2.9f
Photo by Katia D.S. (www.10-10.ch): SDZN & SEB.K. Wetplate collodion humide 13x18cm. Pentac Lens 200mm 2.9f
Skull. Wetplate collodion humide 13x18cm. Pentac Lens 200mm 2.9f
Basile. Wetplate collodion humide. Ambrotype 13x18cm. Pentac Lens 200mm 2.9f
“Everything is a bottle opener,” goes a Hungarian saying, very often used in everyday life - a multi-layered statement. On the one hand it stands for openness, for rethinking preconceived patterns and functions. It is all about daring and sometimes trying out surreal combinations to reach out for new ideas. On the other hand, the saying reflects the willingness to act, the attitude to come up with real solutions - and to never give up.
No doubt we live in tough times; locally as well as globally, we are facing serious questions about how we want to live, what we believe in and what we stand for. In such times no mantra would help us better than: “Everything is a bottle opener” - it has a playful yet serious intent demanding a transformation that is constructive and active at the same time. The following article focuses on Budapest’s creative players - people who help construct their own city. Whoever has had the opportunity to delve into
the Hungarian capital’s cultural scene, has surely also often been drawn in by this fresh, lively feeling of discovery: to make a lucky strike on a bar, gallery or concept store in the backyard of an abandoned house (or even all three at the same time), to step into some play in an old factory, to socialize and greet every day in another newly opened temporary garden bar or workshop. Unexpected but at the same time self-evident and concrete places that are like open showcases of the constant flow of ideas. The protagonists we choose are not simply high achieving, successful young entrepreneurs from the Budapest creative industries. We believe that their work and way of creation goes beyond professionalism and creativity; it is the attitude of the bottle openers’ positive and powerful activity that really makes a difference. ._. Photos: Géza Talabér Text: Patrick Urwyler
Chimera Project - exploring art and the creative industries «Spotlight on Budapest» is a collaboration between Amateur Magazine and the Budapest based Chimera Project. For this article Bogi Mittich (HU / middle) and Patrick Urwyler (CH / right) - the founders of Chimera Project- teamed up with the Hungarian photographer Géza Talabér (left) to capture Budapest’s creative potential. Together with Chimera people you can discover the work by young Hungarian artists and designers, a generation which is on the move. Our drive to spread the word throughout this article, is rooted in our approach, attitude and spirit, which stands behind the Chimera Project: To support artists and creative professionals visibility and to network on an international level - in- and outside the narrow art context. Chimera, the mythological three-headed, creature represents the variety and complexity of our effort and goals: operating at the same time as a gallery, agency and platform, we provide multiple opportunities and space for encounters, to create, collaborate and exhibit. Therefore the article in the like-minded Amateur Magazine was a perfect match for us and just one of more upcoming milestones in Chimera’s ambitious program in Hungary and abroad. Many thanks to our collaborators for their time and spirit, to our photographer for the first-class work, to our friends at Telep for their never-ending positive vibe and to Amateur Magazine for the opportunity!
www.chimera-project.com Géza Talabér: www.wix.com/talabergeza/gez01
The Budapest-based Chimera Project met up with some of the city’s most promising designers from various fields and asked them a bunch of questions. The following nine short portraits provide kaleidoscopic insights into the protagonists’ passionate lives, their creative roots and their daily business, all together in a city which is on the move. Chimera Project put the pieces together and created a snapshot of the creative life in Budapest.
Levente Trellay, Gábor Somosköi and Zsófi Fenyvesi aka Miss Margrin How the graphic designer Zsófi, aka Miss Margrin, met the Heroin Design Studio, namely design-all-rounder Levente Trellay and photographer Gábor Somosköi was something akin to a fatal subcultural crash. Soon after Zsófi teamed up with Heroine, together they started the design award-winning Faun Project, a small workshop (together with carpenter Zoltán Gelencsér) designing and producing handmade longboards. All of them are passionate longboard riders with strong subcultural ties, who see the longboard as the perfect vehicle to conquer Budapest be it in the green hills of Buda or on the gray streets of Pest. For the three allies the Hungarian capital is more than just social scenery; they share their passion for this wild and dense city characterized as a “stormy ocean,” which makes for really good sailors. And these guys are really up to riding the waves! Still in an emerging phase, Faun has already proven that even in hard times, passion, hard work and team spirit lead to success and release fresh energy. “With Faun we try to avoid being just an operator,” says Levente. In this sense the Heroine Guys and Zsófi see a Faun Board also as a creative and sometimes artistic tool for spreading the word for an active and passionate life: “The whole project, the skateboard, is just a canvas - with this I want to connect artists and people who are skateboarding.” Of course the Faun Family wants to grow! Stay tuned!
Dániel Jani Muroe Hoaf
“The song «Hard Times» by Baby Huey is Dániel Jani’s first thought when thinking about Budapest. But the passionate graphic designer quickly adds: “Hard times...but a huge potential at the same time... it’s weird.” But Dániel loves ups and downs: “I need both. There's always a balance”, he says. At the moment Dani is balancing between his full-time job for a creative agency, where he must fully meet the clients' wishes and his own studio called Muroe Hoaf, a place for experiments and to create without compromises. “We only use this name for projects we love”, says Dániel. “We” means Dani together with other designers, because Muroe Hoaf is about collaborations: “More people equals more ways of thinking...the identity of the studio was made together with a Budapest artist Erika Szurcsik”, explains Dániel. Partly he takes his inspiration from everday life - this experience lays the groundwork for his practical approach towards work. “I don’t think you can do anything without influence from your environment. It's a nice and necessary thing to reflect - it makes you locally recognizable.” And Budapest is definitely Danis natural environment: “I can feel myself happy wherever I’m abroad or in the countryside, but after a while I miss the capital with its shabby clubs in Pest and the green hills on the Buda side...”.
Lehel Kovács "My style is not something that I developed, it developed itself." Lehel Kovács is a thoroughbred illustrator with great ambitions and a unique style. Starting with a degree in window dressing and five years of work experience as a graphic designer, since 2007 he has worked as a professional illustrator for clients including Rolling Stone Magazine, The New York Times, Nuvo Magazine, and The Guardian. Seeing this impressive portfolio, it is kind of surprising to hear that Lehel's aim for the future is "to establish myself as an illustrator - first of all in front of myself…" This is not false modesty but rather a serious statement showing that illustration is more than a job for him: "It is self-expression, it is something that helps me and if I was not paid for this I would still be doing it." Lehel not only completes assignments for clients but also exhibits his works in an art context: "Illustration is in-between art and design… it is a tool than can be used for both - what makes the difference is the question of freedom!”
Budapest is Lehel's main source of inspiration. "I’ve just realized that many of my illustrations are inspired by buildings and their colors… this vintage color world of Budapest has a great influence.” Regarding his profession, sometimes he faces misunderstanding as clients think everything can be called graphic design: "Illustrators are not (yet) common in Hungary… compared to England and other countries, the profession doesn't have a real past here.” To change this, Lehel's second wish for the future is to set up a round table and "establish illustration for the public with the great young illustrators that Budapest has to offer."
Katalin Imre, Nóra Rácz and Kati Stampf "Think more and make less mistakes" - a short quote that suggests experience. The Artista Studio was founded in 1993 by six Hungarian designers - true pioneers on the Budapest fashion scene. Today the core team comprises three women: Katalin Imre, Kati Stampf and Nóra Rácz. Ever since the beginning they have worked in a small but elegant workshop along with their employees. Here, at their Budapest base is where all the ideas for their fashion collections and accessories are born. The studio in Hungary and a gallery-like store in the heart of the Museum quarter (MQ) in Vienna, are the starting points of Artista's international presence, which will soon reach to Asia - Tokyo is calling! It was in Vienna Artista began to operate internationally and this was also the place where they started to do collaborations with Austrian and other international creative professionals. One of the most successful results are the Artista Bags: "We always design together with an artist from the fine art world - these bags are very famous in Vienna." Looking back on more than 21 different fashion collections, Artista have plenty of experience they would like to share. Their experience and national reputation attracts interns from all over the world. For Artista a collaboration with young and emerging designers is always exciting and fruitful: "Young designers are more daring, they try out things, make mistakes and find new ways… younger people just have a different approach - we think more and make less mistakes". Artista’s aim for the future is to combine their experience with the daring of emerging talent - a winwin situation for both generations.
Áron Jancsó Sometimes being on the outside of the professional circles can be more inspiring: Áron Jancsó, an already celebrated typographer, has so far stayed out of the institutional frames of graphic design: ”I like the situation of not belonging to anyone. I do not have to act as people want me to.” He has collected a patchwork of competencies: studied product design, graphic design, together with some years of intensive practice in 3D modelling. Normally he works at home, where he has developed in years of practice an inspiring working concept: “My friends come to my place, everybody is working on their own, but we are still together, so we can discuss things, I’m really happy with this…I want to maintain this kind of working style, I can act much more freely and choose the work I want to do.” In his family - wall to wall with artists and designers - there was always appreciation for creative work. As romantic as it should be, the «type addicted» started with creating single characters before he even learned to draw or read. Through years of graffiti writing and working occasionally for friends' brands „my hobby slowly developed into professional freelancing…” For the future Áron says that we can expect a crossover of typo and object design. By looking at his recent typefaces like «Ogaki» or «Sensaway», that are featured by «Gestalten Fonts» and other big players in the typo world, this crossover sounds more than promising.
Bence Simonfalvi and Attila Kertész "Try to work in a team, not alone. The more of you there are, the more successful you can get!" points out the architect and graphic designer Bence. He is member of the Pos1t1on design collective, who kicked off their business in Budapest just over a year ago. Pos1t1on’s infamous furniture designs show the peak of their multifunctional approach towards their work - if you hire Pos1t1on you get the complete package, from branding over interior design to fully customized events - everything invented at their studio at Gozsdu Udvar in the 7th district of Budapest. "In Budapest there are a lot of things that still have not happened, so we can pursue new opportunities" explains furniture designer and design manager Attila Kertész. But Pos1t1on's “pursuit” is not limited to Hungary anymore, they work internationally and usually they hunt in teams… Offering a wide range of design services it is no wonder that Pos1t1ion are team players. They are always on the search for new collaborators with specific knowledge to share. For their latest furniture collection they teamed up with the Hungarian fashion label «Used Unused». The new furniture collection delivers the best proof that collaborations lead to new, unexpected and potent results. For Pos1t1ion teamwork not only enhances their designs - it is their working philosophy and the key to success! "Our generation itself could be the kind of people we are aiming at. These days we are opening so many doors, working together, not separately… but like neighbours or brothers." This positive attitude is fertile ground for the future not only of Pos1t1ion, but for a whole generation of young designers in Budapest.
What started around 1997 at a school party with 8mm analogue projectors has today turned into serious show business with state-of-the-art technology. Back in the day, Kiégö Izzók (Glowing Bulbs) were pioneers in making visuals in Hungary: “I was always part of the underground movement. First as part of the party crowd and only a couple of years later on stage,” says Tamás, who studied inter-media art. Now the core of the group already consists of five to seven people with different backgrounds: fine arts, architecture and industrial design. “This heterogeneity is the secret ingredient of our group this and the fact that we are all friends - a family.”
Winning first place in an international online T-shirt design contest was his kickstart experience. Four years later, the now twenty-year-old Dávid Szebenyi aka Aman invests his wide range of skills in various creative fields. His playful, detailed and fantastic drawings, applied on different products and available online, is one way, working as a freelance Illustrator another. DJing is the latest of Dávid's approaches to achieving his goal: "I want to reach people - I like to see my work distributed through all kinds of media!" Packed with all these skills and activities, one may ask where this young fellow gets his energy and inspiration from? The answer is: "Daydreaming on the peaceful Buda side or getting visual input at the seventh district in Pest." These days the Jewish district is the place to be. This is where the party crowd hits the clubs and the famous pubs, here are the creative hubs where artists meet and exhibit - the young creative scene of Budapest gathers in a very small area.
And like family they work all together in a big flat in the heart of Budapest at the border of what what Tamás calls “the golden triangle,” the area around the seventh district: “Every month they open up a bar or club in an abandoned building - it seems it will never stop.” Tamás explains that these places have a great importance for young creative people: “...because here in Budapest it is not like in London, Berlin or Paris, where art and design are part of the everyday life even of average people. Here it is harder to bring everyday people into galleries and design spaces. The new clubs and bars are therefore good playgrounds for artists and designers to show their work to a wide range of people.” Kiégö Izzók themselves are heading for new challenges on a bigger scale. Their flat cannot even handle their power supply anymore - the same somehow goes for Hungary: After 15 years of professional work Tamás and his friends have reached a level and potential that can only be really satisfied abroad, where bigger jobs are waiting: “The scale of what we are interested in won’t ever pay off in Hungary - so we'll be heading for new countries in the near future.”
In this creative center of Budapest at one corner of the famous Király Street, Dávid often stumbles upon old pieces by 1000%, the oldest street art crew in Budapest, that he likes a lot - 1000% are a well-known group of artists that formed the first wave of street art in Budapest from 2002. Dávid aka Aman, together with his friends, also use the street as a medium of their expression. This contribution is more than important, especially in Budapest, where street art almost completely disappeared after its most intense phase around 2005. Like Dávid, some young artists and designers started to revitalize the movement and one can just hope that they reclaim the streets again. Anyway, one thing is for sure: people like Dávid, from the youngest and upcoming generation, are making sure that Budapest keeps its multi-layered, creative spirit.
Project «Nanushka - Beta Store»
Zsófi Dobos, Noémi Varga, Dóra Medveczky and Dániel Baló Success can't come soon enough! The five contemporary architecture companions, standing behind the much honored interior design of the “Nanushka Beta Store” - a Hungarian up and coming fashion label - were called together to fulfil the needs of an exceptional client. Zsófi Dobos, Judit Konopás, Noémi Varga, Dóra Medveczky and Dániel Baló, most of them still architecture students, have accomplished a nearly impossible mission: they had to deal with a very strict timeline, budget and they had never met each other before. "Such constraints inspire you - the strict framework became an advantage for our work," says Dániel. The positive attitude behind this particular project points to a more general situation that the group of young and upcoming architects are facing in Budapest together with other creative professionals. First of all, the Nanuska success story shows that Budapest is a place with lots of opportunities: “Budapest is not finished, it has no fixed character” says Noémi and underlines the bare potential that waits to be discovered and formed by a younger generation. Compared to other cities, in the Hungarian capital one can still be a pioneer and try out new things! On the other hand the younger generation is constantly confronted with obsolete laws, old-fashioned attitudes and a lack of professionalism that puts the brakes on this positive “gold rush mood”. These very situations demand an extra dose of creativity, that render and make potent a project and lead to fresh ideas and stunning results. The design of the “Nanushka Beta Store” is proof that Budapest must follow the demands of young creative generation, here represented by Zsófi, Judit, Noémi, Dóra and Dániel: “Trust us!”
Project: www.nanushkabetastore.blogspot.com Zsófi Dobos: www.behance.net/zsofidobos Noémi Varga: numbernowdesign.tumblr.com Dóra Medveczky: www.behance.net/mdvczk Dániel Baló: www.behance.net/danielbalo Photo (store picture inside the main picture): Tamás Bujnovszky
Stephan Schenke Fs Smith Grind while Stan Nay is sleeping
In the middle of the industrial zone of the NT area the black cross arises like a monument. For six years it has been a symbol of skating and the do-it-yourself-spirit, it stands for friendship and lust for life. In a few months the picture of the bowl will change forever.
Ana Vujic spoke to Oli Buergin, European Champion, co-founder of the Blackcrossbowl and organizer of the annual European Skateboard Championship in Basel. Oli Buergin, your home ist the Blackcrossbowl. What does skateboarding mean to you? Ough, it's very difficult to say. I've been fascinated by skateboarding since I was a child and I finally got my first skateboard when I was twelve. My parents were against it, but it was a gift from my grandmother so since then a board has always been under my feet. I never liked playing in a football team or anything like that, I prefer the liberty that you can have with such a board. There are no rules, you can imagine your own tricks and try to realize them, that's what really fascinates me. And later I took the chance of traveling around and skating at different places. In the meantime skating is a whole package for me, which has a significant value in my life and which I can even combine with my work. I also like everything else, the videos, the photography that is a part to this scene and of course all the creative people who are attracted to skateboarding.
ÂŤ FRIENDS! Escaping from the conventional everyday life! A skateboarder's DREAM! Âť ._.
Igor Ruza about the Blackcrossbowl
You were skateboarding from the very first. Do you think your generation of skaters has different values to the younger skaters of today? Like another spirit? For us it was very important to achieve things with our own effort, doit-yourself, that was our motivation. Not that we had much choice in
the matter, seeing as there was virtually nothing when we were starting out. We soon realized that you can build a quarterpipe or jump ramp out of wood by yourself so we did just that. In the meantime the younger skaters are used to having a variety of skate spots to choose from. I don't want to say that they're lazy, but they just grew up under different circumstances followed by another mentality. So the Blackcrossbowl is the perfect example for your generation's do-it-yourself spirit. How did it come into being? It was actually a sideproject of the European Skateboard Championships in 2006. That year we decided to have an art show with works by skateboarders to highlight the creativity coming from this subculture. One artist we really wanted to invite was Pontus Alv, who is known as the pioneer of the do-it-yourself skate spots We quickly got into generating something that would outlast the weekend of the event. That's how we developed the idea of the bowl. Finding a place for such a project turned out to be quite simple. We allocated a little place in the NT area, which was already turning into a temporary place for parties and subculture. And than we built the bowl together with Pontus Alv in ten days. First we made the frame out of wood and then we filled the bowl with sand, stones and cement. Finally Pontus decided to choose the big black cross as a symbol. That's how the Blackcrossbowl was born. The black cross is quite big and is enthroned over the bowl. Does it have a special meaning? Pontus Alv was eleven when his father died. And a short time before we built the bowl, I don't know exactly when, his grandfather also died. Since this time the cross was very present in his artwork like drawings and photo prints. So it became a symbol of the bowl.
And how did the skater scene from Basel react? Wasn't it something completely new? Absolutely. It was the first time that something like a bowl had existed, there was nothing like this before. The older skaters were involved in building the bowl from the beginning. Some of them, who had only been skating once a month, became motivated. They even took time off from work to finish it! And those who preferred to skate in the city, started discovering this new way. Skating in the bowl is more about driving with a fluent motion, finding the lines, than showing the best tricks. Especially in the summer we were there nearly every single weekend, so it became our living room. We had everything that we needed, the light for a ride in the night, good music and we even integrated a BBQ directly in the bowl. And what was your reaction when you found out that the whole NT area was going to be rebuilt and that the bowl has to disappear this summer? I wasn't shocked, because it was obvious that we would have to get rid of it in the next three or four years. It will definitely have gone by this June, but hey, nevertheless we managed to have our own skate spot for six years. The Blackross Bowl was never built for eternity. Whenever I was in Basel, I spent time there, trying out new moves. After such a long time, it's good to follow some new goals. That's why the end of the bowl is not such a bitter pill for me. I see it as a motivation for a new project, that's actually what I'm hoping and working for, to create something new. And what is the new project and where will the spirit of the Blackcross Bowl live on? There are new possibilities for a temporary construction in the industrial zone of the harbor in Basel and we also want to bring our project in. Our idea is to create a more open bowl, with paths that lead in and out. The whole idea is still in progress, it depends how much space we get, how much cement we can afford. It shouldn't actually be that expensive, as we're making everything ourselves. I really have a good feeling about Basel and I think the interimusing is not just an alibi but a real opportunity to improve the qualitiy of life in our city. ._. Photos: Andreas Brunner (www.braunsk.ch) and Christoph Merkt (www.merktgestaltung.ch) Text & Interview: Ana Vujic
Oli Buergin & Pontus Alv
Oli Buergin Fs Ollie
ÂŤ The bowl was an island where you could relax and hang out with friends. A place of extreme happiness connected with the peace of past times. A little bit of freedom amidst the urban constrictions. The creativity that was palpable at all times was a result of the huge amount of energy and dedication invested into the project. Âť ._.
THIRTEEN about the Blackcrossbowl
Oli, Merkt, Pipoz & Dan
Merkt & Leandro
Oli Buergin Bs Smithstall
Stan Nay, Fs Boneless
Christoph Merkt Bs Crailslide
Photos by Andreas Brunner
Michi Birchmeier Bs Lipslide
ÂŤ The BCB is my timemachine - it gives me the same feelings I had when I started skateboarding more than 20 years ago. I can travel back in everyday life whenever I want to. Âť ._.
Christoph Merkt about the Blackcrossbowl
Photos by Christoph Merkt
Mike Malinowski Tailblock
From left to right: Stefan Golz, Gregor Garkisch, Patrick Lotz
Many guys dream of owning their label, even more manage to achieve the dream, but only a few really get the knack of it. Wemoto surely belongs into the third category. Since 2003, the German label has been providing their fans with consistently great collections twice a year that impress with understated tailoring, subtle colors, new fabrics and jazzy prints - or in Wemoto's words: â€œMake the party on the T-shirt, and chill with the rest.â€?
Photo: Jason Sellers
Based on mutual respect and common values, Amateur Magazine and Wemoto have built up a partnership over the last few years. To celebrate this friendship Wemoto's summer collection includes three collabo Tshirts with Amateur. So it was definitely high time for a jaw with the guys from Wemoto about clothes, idols and the pitfalls of the streetwear business.
Who are the people behind Wemoto? Gregor: Wemoto was founded in 2003 by Patrick Lotz, Stefan Golz and me, Gregor Garkisch. Patrick takes care of the organizational stuff, additionally working on our tradeshow rooms and installations. Stefan is responsible for creative direction and design, and I take care of marketing and sales. Although we work on different things, we have the same taste, and want to give Wemoto the same direction. So I think we complement each other really well. Where did you meet? Gregor: Patrick and I grew up in the same city and we 've been skating together since we were 8 years old. I met Stefan thru his girlfriend who I had already known for some time. Stefan and I just clicked right from the start. So I introduced him to Patrick and since he is a great guy and an awesome designer, our inner circle of the Wemoto squad was formed. Was it like , 'Okay, let's start a brand and break up everything' or was it a growing process? Patrick: Nah, it was definitely more like a growing process. Our goal was always to build up a full line clothing brand but we needed years to finally achieve it. The first four years everybody had a regular job or was studying. There was no salary involved or anything like that. Any money we made, went straight back into the company. We just believed in our vision, worked hard but most importantly we stayed with it. How would you describe the Wemoto style? Stefan: Briefly put - Wemoto takes the playfulness and roughness of streetwear and mixes it with traditional menswear elements. We don’t want to create “fashion”, we focus on products that will stand the test of time and we try to find the balance between style, quality and affordability. Patrick, when was the last time you thought: 'Okay, let's just stop it and do an easy 9 to 5 job'? Patrick: Not for one day! Man, you need to check out the company I used to work for. Then you would understand, haha ... Gregor, from a marketing point of view, what brands do you admire? Why? Gregor: Of course there are some brands we kind of identify with and we are look up to. But at the end of the day we are Wemoto and we won’t compare ourselves to other companies. We don't have the budget of other brands who can afford to do great work marketing wise.
We always try to make our marketing affordable and to ensure that creativity plays the main role. Like building up an awesome tradeshow space or doing an installation at one of our accounts. So people do recognize that this is basically about a great idea and not who has the biggest budget. Usually that leaves a positive impression with the viewer. What is your all-time favorite Wemoto graphic? Why? All: This is a hard one, because there are so many. But if we have to go for only one graphic I think we have to go for the “Good Times” Tee. It is hand drawn by Stefan, showing George W. Bush in a Borat swimsuit, Osama Bin Laden in a Yankees baseball uniform and Kim Jong il dressed as Ronald McDonald. The headline is “Good Times” using the Times Magazine typo. This one is perfect. It’s like perfect humour, controversial and sarcastic. Conceptually speaking, we'd say the “Financial Advisor” rap series. Those shirts were a massive success and we try to extend this line from season to season.
Stefan, you've been churning out fresh graphics for years. Still, I'm sure you know what it's like to feel as though you've run out of ideas. What do you do then? What's your secret? Stefan: To stay cool. When there’s really no way forward, I do something else and try not to think about “the” artwork or design for a while. Go outside with my bike, roam around or hike in the woods for a couple of hours. Luckily it doesn’t happen that often because I really love developing a new graphic series or cut&sew line. During this process I’m totally into it and think about it most of the time anyway. In the design process, when do you know a graphic is right for Wemoto? Stefan: Regarding the graphics there’s no particular moment. I just know it, especially for the drawings. As far as designing clothes is concerned, it’s more complicated because at first sight everything seems to be easy. But all details have to go well together - buttons, zipper, creatively positioned pockets, unexpected fabrics in unique, harmonious tones. The garment is right when everything matches in every sense. But it’s never perfect - we grow smarter every day. You guys have a skateboard background. Have you learnt anything from the skate scene that helps you running a clothing brand? Gregor: Yes, we are really skateboard-related. All of us are active members in the O.M.S.A,...nah, not really, I'm just kidding! But it is true we do have a lot of years behind us. I think people who skate seriously have a particular view on things. It supports their creativity massively because there are no rules how to do things. Especially when we started skateboarding and everything was so undeveloped and raw. This experience has shaped our whole life and it helps a lot running a brand - that’s for sure. I think it’s no coincidence that so many artists, clothing brand owners or designers do have a skateboard-related background these days. Why do you think it is important to support local brands and not big companies? Patrick: Big brands do it for the money, small brands do it for the passion. It’s just the flavour of the small brands, like a statement. It is more for individuals. People who know the brand stick together, they feel like a group. It's like back in the days when someone was wearing a Vision Street Wear T-shirt. You instantly knew they were a skater and you would want to say hi, despite having never seen them before.
Where do you see the advantages of small brands? Patrick: Basically we are free. We are able to do whatever we want and we are fast in decision processes. We don't need to have twenty meetings to finally achieve a result. Also I would say that +/- 60% of our graphic T-shirts would never has seen thelight of day if it was for a big company. They are too controversial sometimes and big companies don't want to polarize.
Photos: Jason Sellers
What can we except from Wemoto in the future? Stefan: In recent years we've been seeing a lot of potential in Wemoto and working on getting even better in what weâ€™re doing. On the one hand, it means developing things further and supply people with better and smarter products. On the other hand, we have plans to create more scene related / cultural contents as well as involving more people / brands we can cooperate with. If you could be a thing, what would you be and why? Patrick: Bender of Futurama. Stefan: At this moment - outside minus 11 degrees - a down jacket. Gregor: A vibrator. (baby donâ€™t be mad, it's just a joke!) What do you love? All: Family, life, skateboarding, design, music. Anything else you want to say? All: LOVE LIFE! ._. Photos: Jason Sellers Illustrations: Stefan Golz Words & interview: Lain
Photography: Stefan Jermann
Styling: Natalie Antoniadis
Sunglasses: Diesel, Dolce & Gabbana
A calendar from the nineties - in the director's office a dartboard behind the door - chairs and tables timeless industrial design - a place of work for several decades - then the gates closed - monuments of industrialization - to defy the virtual world - blackberries invade the area - fascinated by the forgetfulness - a simple silver piece - the patina and the architecture is my background - untouchable the atmosphere - be part of the transience.
BREAD & BUTTER BERLIN
TRADESHOW FOR SELECTED BRANDS
Click, click. Photo: Amateur
A regular conversation at Bread & Butter: "Heya, Long time no see! How are you?" "Fine. Hey, what party will you be at tonight? " Er, not sure yet. We've got tickets for the Vans thing". "Who's playing?" "Mos Def, I think. You?" We're probably heading to Torstrasse after dinner. There is this All Gone book release. Later we will be at the Patta." "Whoooa! Look at that chick over there. She is wearing nice kicks." "Yeah. Really like the colorway." "Cool." "Cool." "Have you seen the Amateur exhibition yet?" "Yes. It's really dope." "Right. Ok, gotta run, see you around!" "Right. Okay, me too. Catch you later!" ._. Exhibition entrance. Photo: Amateur
SPORT & STREET hall. Photo: Franziska Taffelt
Amateur exhibition. Photo: Vedran Zgela
K1X booth. Photo: Klaus Flesch
FAFA & Onur at work. Photo: Amateur
SNOW sculpture by Schneewild. Photo: eignerphoto January 2012
ART ON SNOW ARt on Snow is an art festival related to winter sports in Gastein, Austria featuring more than 30 artists and tons of additional events. Including Swiss NIGS534 and Alex Schauwecker. Check out their website. Art Off Live painting. Photo: eignerphoto
Grand Hotel Europe. Photo: eignerphoto
Works by NIGS534. Photo: Steffen Kornfeld
Orlando, Florida / Foamposites
Charlotte, North Carolina / Jordan Concord
Somewheretown / Jordan Concord
Brooklyn / Jordan Concord
Orlando, Florida / Foamposites
When passion goes overboard
TOP TEN RIOT SNEAKERS
Air Jordan Concord Air Yeezy Air Jordan 3 Air Jordan Space Jams Foamposites Louis Vuitton Yeezys LeBron Watch the Throne Air Jordan Banned Nike Air Mag Nike Dunk Tiffany
« So far so good, we still living today. But we don't know what tomorrow brings. In this crazy world. »
New York / Jordan Concord
Franklin, Massachusetts / Foamposites
Lucky Dube in "Crazy World"
Los Angeles / Sneaker Store The Holy Grail
San Francisco / Jordan Cool Grey
More and more furniture companies are complementing their product ranges with adorable accessories while young labels are coming up with lovingly crafted but affordable products. The Swiss design blog Sachenmachen.ch has chosen a few contemporary must-haves for you and your home. www.sachenmachen.ch
‚E27‘ pendant lamp
design by Mathias Ståhlbom available from www.muuto.com
This very basic pendant lamp by Scandinavian design company muuto has already become a classic because it perfectly fits just anywhere! We especially like the red one, but the lamp is available in 8 different colors. _ 2/
design by Maria Jeglinska available from www.ligne-roset.ch
The coveted ‚Circles‘ tables are now being produced by French manufacturer Ligne Roset, a company that collaborates with many talented young designers such as Maria Jeglinska. _ 3/
design by Claudia Caviezel available from www.atelierpfister.ch
Textile designer Claudia Caviezel experimented with colors and the result was this playful bedlinen for atelier pfister - a design collection by Swiss furniture company pfister. _
‚Teller Set Grau‘ plates design by Nicole Lehner
available from www.goldenbiscotti.bigcartel.com
Golden Biscotti is a collaboration between fashion designer Cornelia Peter and product designer Nicole Lehner. They create a range of carefully crafted products for children and the home. _ 5/
‚Plus‘ salt and pepper mill design by Norway Says
available from www.muuto.com
A playful and rather graphic reinterpration of the classic pepper mill, available in beech wood, black or white from Norwegian design team Norway Says. _ 6/
‚Lup‘ candle holder and ‚Wire hanger‘ design by Shane Schneck and Hay available from www.hay.dk
This great arrangement consists of beautifully simple clothes hangers for children and grown-ups, as well as four candle holders all made of wire.
design by Alexander Seifried available from www.richard-lampert.de
This folding table is a redesign of the archetypal coffee table and now available in a new range of colours from German manufacturer Richard Lampert. With its very slim format, it will look the part in any space. _ 8/
‚Volet‘ anodized aluminium hooks design by Dimitri Bähler
available from www.la-vague.ch 9/
design by Anurag Etchepareborda available from www.la-vague.ch
La Vague is a platform for design editions by Anne Julmy, Linn Kandel, Charlotte Talbot, Dimitri Bähler and Anurag Etchepareborda. By taking care of all ends of the business, from production until sending out the parcel, La Vague aims to offer affordable design products. _
design by Sibylle Stoeckli available from www.louiseblanche.ch
This silk scarf with confetti-print is both elegant and playful at the same time. louise blanche ensures you look good on every occasion! _
‚Monkey & Owl gift tag‘
design by le pigeon voyageur available from www.pigeon-voyageur.ch
“Le pigeon voyageur” is a collaboration between designer Naomi Baldauf and printer Rita Nicolussi. With good design and solid handcraft in mind, they create and produce premium stationery to this vanishing artisanship. You might even be inclined to take up hand writing cards, invitations and letters again! _ 12/
design by Big-Game available from www.tamawa.be
This combination of two balls, one for the lamp‘s socket and the other for the bulb, is the perfect eye-catcher for any room! _ 13/
design by Jessica Rosen available from www.superservices.ch
Nowadays, it's all about backpacks and this one is really pretty and boasts plenty of elaborate details as well. The two sisters Anika and Jessica Rosen produce them in small series - but only upon request. ._. Text & product selection: Luzia Kälin, Thomas Walde & Florian Hauswirth
INCASE X OBEY
OBEY X LOVE ME
VANS NIKE CARHARTT CONVERSE SWATCH
G-SHOCK X PARRA
Who's afraid of the giraffe?
Ladies! Finally, we managed to present you women products as well. Sorry for letting you wait so long. The selection was made by Mayra, Michal and Melanie from "eVe without adam" - a platform for women to express their own personal aesthetic, their very individual female feelings and perspective views. Artists, narcissists, lovers and mystics with their eyes open and their ears sharpened. www.evewithoutadam.net
THOM BROWNE X DITA AMBUSH BLACK MILK WAITING FOR THE SUN
WE ARE HANDSOME
POYZ AND PIRLZ
OPENING CEREMONY X CHLOE SEVIGNY
ZOE AND MORGAN
WORK IT LOVEME
DELLAS & CARLOS
A KIND OF GUISE
MCM CONVERSE X MISSONI
VANS SWATCH X FAFI G-SHOCK
WEMOTO X AMATEUR
OBEY X STEFAN GLERUM
OBEY X STEFAN GLERUM
WEMOTO X AMATEUR
ALIAS ONE VANITAS
URBAN GRAPHIC CULTURE For the second time, the collective PBK9 organizes a free entry exhibition of urban culture and graphic art, called DROP. The event will take place in the industrial area SĂŠvelin of Lausanne, Switzerland in June 2012. A gathering of more than 100 international and national artists, who will present and realize works in the diverse fields of creative expression. Please check out their website for the exact date, which was still unknown when we sent the mag to print. www.pbk9.com
Photos: DROP, 2010
The Urban Theater Mark Jenkins
By: Mark Jenkins Editors: R. Klanten, M. Huebner Format: 21 x 26 cm Features: 160 pages, full color, hardcover ISBN: 978-3-89955-396-3 Price: €35.00 / $55.00 / £32.50
Iron Curtain Graphics
Eastern European Design Created without Computers Editors: Atelierul de Grafica Format: 24 x 28cm Features: 208 pages, full color, softcover ISBN: 978-3-89955-394-9 Price: €29.90 / $45.00 / £26.99
A selection of handmade graphic design, illustration, and typography from the Communist era that is startlingly innovative and colorful.
Mark Jenkins is redefining sculpture as part of the urban environment. The Urban Theater, his first monograph, documents Jenkins's compelling, often disturbing street installations and demonstrates his talent for provoking reactions from passersby. For Jenkins, these spontaneous responses and interactions are an integral part of the life cycle of his works. www.gestalten.com
GALLERY SPEERSTRA FOUNDED IN 1984 / STREET ART AND GRAFFITI
BEAUTIFUL STRUGGLE 05|05|12 >30|06|12 online vernissage opens at saturday the 5th. may at 2pm on www.amateur-magazine.com
gallery speerstra chemin des cerisiers 1|1183 bursins (ch) email@example.com|+41 (0)21 824 20 10
with the support of 115
The Global Brotherhood By: Jörg Brüggemann Format: 28 x 22.5 cm Features: 160 pages, full color, hardcover, landscape format ISBN: 978-3-89955-420-5 Price: €39.00 / $60.00 / £37.00 Heavy metal is a cultural phenomenon that unites its fans across borders, generations, genders, religions, and social classes. Metalheads is a journey into the heavy metal underground around the world that documents the lives and passion of these fans. www.gestalten.com
Graffiti Tattoo Vol. 2
By: Alan Ket, Don Karl aka Stone Format: 24 x 31 cm Features: 240 pages, hardcover ISBN Hardcover: 978-3-937946-35-1 Price Hardcover: €29,95 This is an impressive and wellresearched reference work that documents the transition graffiti artists are increasingly making into the tattoo world. www.fromheretofame.com
S p r i n g / S u m m e r 2 0 12 Jacke t “a StON” t-Shir t “a e”
A v A i l A b l e A t S t r e e t - f i l e S m i n i m A r t b A d e n e r S t r A S S e 1 2 9 C H - 8 0 0 4 Z ü r i C H www.Stree t-file S.cOm
Made With Love
If you are fast you get Amateur at the following places:
For your work, love and help: Fabien Baudin, Chantal Bavaud, Sina Beeler, Beni Bischof, Pierre Bonnet, Oli Bürgin, Ata Bozaci, Alex Braunschmidt, Mélanie Breitinger, Diana Cabarles, Pedro Campiche, Harun Dogan, DXTR, Onur Dinc, Markus Fischer, Melania Fernandez, Reto Fischer, Rodja Galli, Gregor Garkisch, Galina Green, Camil Hämmerli, Florian Hauswirth, Paula Hedley, Stefan Jermann, Kikoboro, Luzia Kälin, Migi Keck, Greg Lamarche, Lisa Looser, Karl Maier, Dave Marshal, Manuel Mathys, Alex Matovic, Rudy Meins, Christoph Merkt, Chris Mettraux, Marc Müller, Kenny Need, Van Manh Nguyen, Thomas Raynal, Craig Redman, Enzo Scavone, Marianne Skvorc, Smash137, Michal Tesler, Patrick Urwyler, Sergej Vutuc, Ana Vujic, Thomas Walde, Ian White, Daniel Zehnder, Vedran Zgela, and everyone we forgot.
SWITZERLAND: Aarau: Home Street Home, Garage, Kunstraum Aarau. Baden: Frau Meise, Merkker. Basel: Ace Records, FHNW, Galerie Katapult, Gallery Daeppen, Marinsel, Obst & Gemüse, Parzelle 403, Seven Sneakerstore, Zoolose. Bern: HKB, Kitchener, Layup, Milieu, Titolo. Chur: Dings. Geneva: 242, Famous Ape, Speerstra Gallery. Lausanne: 242, Delicieux, ÉCAL, Outsiders. Lucerne: Doodah, HGKL. Yverdon: La Grille. Zurich: BlamBlamBlam, Carhartt store, Dings, Esperanto Rapperswil, Fashionslave, Grand, Kitchener+, On y va, Rio Bar, Roll Laden, Street-Files, The Gloss, The Trace, ZHDK. GERMANY: Berlin: Awear, HHV Selected Store Berlin, Le Gang, Overkill. Rest: Animal Tracks (Hamburg), Artyfarty Gallery (Cologne), Ozone (Bielefeld), The Spot (Dresden), Under Pressure (Hamburg), Vibes (Düsseldorf & Cologne), 874 (München). WORLDWIDE: 24 Kilates (Barcelona), Munk (Holstebro), Size? (London), Slam Jam (Milano), Reed Space (New York), Starcow (Paris), Black Rainbow (Paris), Homegrown (Rio de Janeiro). JykK Japan Inc. (Tokyo), Veteran (Warsaw).
For your trust and financial support. It’s not possible without you: Carhartt, Carhartt Gallery, Clae, Converse, Eastpak, G-Shock, Obey, Puma, Sixpack France, Swatch, Vans, Wemoto.
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IMPRINT Published twice a year. 5000 copies. Amateur Magazine is an independent, artist driven print platform. It is about creative people, projects, products and places. Editorial address: Amateur Magazine | Postfach 2235 | 5001 Aarau | SWITZERLAND Contact: email@example.com Publisher: Amateur Kunstverein | Alain 'Lain' Schibli | firstname.lastname@example.org Advertisement: email@example.com
COVERS. Amateur exhibition at Bread & Butter, Berlin 2012. Photo: Franziska Taffelt
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Anniversary issue of Amateur Magazine. An independent, artist driven print publication with an open eye on art, illustration, design, DIY cu...