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HEAVYWEIGHT KEVIN LYONS DOZE GREEN PSYOP NIGO. A BATHING APE JAMES LAVELLE WILL BANKS HAJIME SORAYAMA

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Publisher. Keep Left www.kleft.com Editor. Matty Burton Art Direction. Luca Ionescu Design. Michelle Hendriks Head Writer. Adrienne Adams Features Editor. Emma Adams Website. www.refillmag.com Contact. matty@refillmag.com +61 410 311 829 luca@refillmag.com +61 414 417 635 Printers. Simon McAvoy Energi Print +61 385 748 700 Distribution. Refill Magazine Advertising. Matty Burton +61 410 311 829 Copyright. All content within this magazine is the property of rightful artists or Refill Magazine. No part, whole or otherwise, may be reproduced without publishers consent. A BIG thankyou to. Peter Burton, Pav of Modular People, Nigo and Matt Takei at BAPE, Junko Tozaki, Geoff McFetridge, James Lavelle, Zolton Zavos, Melle Di Mattina at Agent Mad, Sam at Nine09, Jodie Artis at Maverick, Ben and Lucy Drury, Emmet at Park Walk, Jest at alife, John Loekman, Daisuke and Mayumi Kawasaki, Nakatani Toshiki at Skull Dezain, Terry Lynne Bader and Rohan Dean at Spicers, Host, Terrence Chin, Dmote, Fafi, Tyler Gibney at Heavyweight, Milu, Annica Lyndeberg, Michael Place, Of designbybuild.com, Lenny and family, Justin Fox, Nick Garret, Eva Barret at Adidas, Collin Blake at GP, Tiger Beer, Priscilla Goei at Royals, Dave Bowman, Renee Hartl, Everyone at the Glue Society, Sean Finlay, Steve Thurlby, Angela Boatwright, Andrew Smith at XLR8R, Simon Morrison and Kat, Lana Kim at Soul Assasins Studios, Alethia Weingarten at Doze Green, Chris Apple and Marie Schneier at agnes b, Kevin Vo, Beatrice and Aurel Ionescu, John and Marie Hendriks and all our ongoing supporters - you know who you are. Credit. Photographs by Terrence Chin in Issue 02 were shot on assignment for One Teaspoon.


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KAB101 CNDTN LOGAN CODY HUDSON GRANIPH ESTEVAN ORIOL EVAN HECOX BRAND NEW SCHOOL GEOFF McFETRIDGE 123KLAN MATTHEW CHAPMAN

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HEAVYWEIGHT FEATURE INTERVIEW BY LUCA IONESCU P.008

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Feature. Heavyweight www.hvw8.com


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COULD YOU INTRODUCE YOURSELF BRIEFLY? D: MY NAME IS DAN. T: TYLER BENJAMIN GIBNEY. G: GENE PENDON, FROM MONTREAL. How many members form Heavyweight? D: three When did you get together? D: Gene and I have been working together since the early ‘90s, we met and started working with Tyler in ‘98 right after the ice storm and our premier getting flesh-eating disease. G: We started sharing a studio in ‘98. Before that we were all working freelance, doing art projects. Dan and I worked together for a few years doing mural work and live painting. Then I met Tyler on a design job. He had a studio space under the name Heavyweight: the working title of a defunct music magazine project. We threw after hour parties in the studio for three years, selling beer to make rent and having our own art shows in the space. How do you define your work at the moment? It seems you are still graffing but doing a bit of design work. G: Dan and I did a stint with graffiti but now our work is dedicated more to canvas pieces, painting and design. We never defined our work as graffiti: it’s not illegal, we don’t use spray paint and we don’t tag. But many seem to slot us into the graffiti thing. Hip-hop is one of our many influences, as is graffiti, club flyers and album covers. T: I was a graphic designer and musician before I started painting. Who comes up with the composition and who does the illustration work in your pieces? T: Generally, Dan does the figure, Gene freestyles the background, and I do the composition/concept. G: I do the backgrounds; I use a lot of forms and shapes that are reminiscent of graffiti, but I also use abstract design, textures and washes. My technique is pretty spontaneous. I rarely prepare sketches. I just go with what hits me. Dan does the detailed rendering of the figures. That’s his specialty. Tyler prepares the overall composition, (researching the subject/figure) and assists in the background. But these roles aren’t exclusive; we switch it up if the mood strikes. What advice do you have for other younger graf/artists getting into the industry? D: Um, there is no graf “industry”, but I think I know what you mean. If you want to make a name for yourself find out your favourite thing to do and then do it every day, in public, if you want. Get good. G: Depends on what industry. There’s fine art and then there’s commercial art. I suppose both require dedication and consistency. Fine art requires that you know what you want to see before you do it, and commercial art requires that you know what the client wants before they see it (or being able to convince the client that they want what you’ve got!) How has the environment, where you grew up, influenced your designs and art today? D: Everything is an influence. I grew up in a small town with no art, so I moved to a city and did graffiti. T: I grew up in Calgary, Alberta. It was a very young city with lots of space and no traditions. It was a place where you could create your own world. G: My dad is a painter, portrait artist, photographer, and is part of the Royal Calligraphy Society in Canada, so I grew up constantly drawing, making art was a regular activity. For a while I didn’t understand how someone couldn’t draw! I think my dad’s calligraphy is a strong influence. He taught me all these writing exercises, making loops over and over until they looked just right. How did you develop your style? D: Avoiding real work, always drawing in my sketchbook. T: Lots of music posters, club flyers, reggae graphics and art school. G: Our collective style was born out of our separate talents coming together, and our mutual love for the environment. Music is the main influence and inspiration in Heavyweight’s work, from club flyers to album covers. We created our style together in front of an audience during music shows. The live aspect gives you time to second guess. I suppose my style is sort of amorphous. I like to change things up every once in a while, until I’ve mastered it and then I’ll try something else. My live painting is more of a Zen thing. I just fall into the moment and flow with it. I’ll pull out techy-block stuff, or sample photo based images. I’m also trying to paint with both hands. When did you make the transition to computer? D: Around ’98, but It wasn’t a transition, just an upgrade. G: I didn’t work with a computer until I met Tyler. He is a trained designer, where Dan and I are more hands-on. How has it influenced your work? D: Makes some things way too easy, but that’s okay. Some people think that computers make you lazy, but I’ve tried a lot of things digitally that I wouldn’t have had the patience to do. It’s a tool. T: It made everything easier and more accessible. G: In the design work I do for Heavyweight, I really like the combination of hand drawn stuff mixed with technically accurate computer work. What are you currently working on? D: Being a good boyfriend. T: a hvw8 t-shirt/cut and sew line. G: I did the artwork for Gift of Gab’s latest release, fourdimensional rocket ships, and Bobbito’s Earthtones (R2 Records), also t-shirts, t-shirts, t-shirts… What projects are on the horizon? D: We’d like to put out a book, keep traveling, making art, and visit Australia. T: Political Minded II: an exposition of influential political figures, such as Romeo Dallaire and Simon Bolivar. It will be at gallery 33 1/3 in Los Angeles with NO corporate sponsorship. G: Part two of Heavyweight’s Political Minded series. We pay homage to figures and icons of social and political interest: people who have risen above the fray, whose stories give us inspiration for political responsibility and acts of humanity. Bush won’t be featured in this series. What would you say has been the favourite piece of work you’ve been involved in or produced so far? D: I remember the trip more than the individual piece. Japan and Puerto Rico stand out in my memory T: King Kong destroying London on 110 skateboard decks and this year’s Candela piece in Puerto Rico. G: Hard to say. The painting of Afrika Bambaataa that he signed after the show holds a special spot. But the original Montreal Jazz Festival is my favorite series; it was our first live work as Heavyweight. And the music side of things… please tell us a bit about it? T: We have a hvw8 presents compilation album coming out on Ubiquity records in Fall 2004. The majority of the musicians contributing are trading their original songs for a hvw8 painting. It’s a project about mutual respect. Toys and figurines are quite popular for artists at the moment. Is that something you will consider? Your characters could easily lend themselves to 3D pieces? D: We’d love to try it, but it’s expensive. T: Yes, I would love to do a Heavyweight kubrick or biddies series. How is the art scene in Canada/ Montreal? D: Canada is big, sparsely populated and cold most of the time. Most of the creative types tend to gravitate to Montreal, which I am eternally thankful for. There isn’t much money here, and it feels like a tiny village outpost cut off from the rest of the happening world sometimes, but it’s the best city I’ve ever been in.T: I have been living in Los Angeles for the last year and half. G: It’s an amazing place to make art. Everyone’s an artist, writer, dancer, musician… The city’s bombed like crazy; it’s hard to find a wall that’s not tagged. One of my favorite graff artists here is Other. Quebec is very French in influence. How would you say that influences the work? D: Thank God for the French. G: The local Montreal French art scene went through a period in the late ‘80s where there was a rejection of institutionalized art. They started these art parties featuring live painting. I caught the tail end of them at the age of 18 when I could finally get in to bars. It’s called “la peinture en direct”. They were of the same spirit of Yves Klein’s performance painting. There were art groups not unlike us at these places, and they were doing shows in Europe at the time. That’s where I first saw how an audience could watch and enjoy live painting. What’s on The CD player? D: Either Plants and Animals or the Four Freres: a drunken, foul-mouthed barber shop quartet. I want to get some Django Reinhart soon. T: Gilles Peterson’s new worldwide exclusives (unreleased + unleashed) G: Ty Upwards, (Big Dada) Any Future co-labs exhibitions we should look out for? D: Hopefully Bubbles and I are going to do some outsider shopping cart sculpture, as long as Ricky doesn’t fuck it up again. T: Yes, a BIG show in NYC in June/July. Check hvw8.com for details G: LA, gallery 33 1/3, and a live show in San Fran and Club Milk. Have you collaborated with any Australian Artists? D: Not artistically. T: No, well Australian artists living in Tokyo. Does that count? G: No. Would you like to? D: I’m sure that Australia is a lot like Canada, in the sense that there are probably millions of super cool, talented, crazy, hilarious freaks working their asses off that no one has ever heard of (yet). T: With Perks and Mini. G: Yes. Any plans to visit Australia? D: I’d love to. T: I hope so. G: I’d love to. Any Shout outs? D: What up to Devon, Venta, Marcus and Ben, I think they’re in Melbourne. T: Peace in the Middle East.


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Feature. Heavyweight www.hvw8.com


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Feature. Heavyweight www.hvw8.com


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Feature. Heavyweight www.hvw8.com


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KEVIN LYONS NATURAL BORN FEATURE P.016

Natural born is the experimental studio from which I work. Now based out of Philadelphia, it still mantains strong ties to SSUR studios in New York City. Natural Born exists as a hybrid of both field and borough / mountain and project / revolution and culture. It is ideas and graphics that have seemed too personal and self-driven to fit anywhere else. So they have collected here. They are ideas spurned out of two basic concepts. One is this concept of “nature” ˆ our earth and roots; a history of struggle and joy which sway us unconciously in one direction or another. The other is the more concious reading of “birth” - of and being born or reborn into some new knowledge a self-confidence and awareness that brings forth change. It is in this dynamic juxtaposition of the two that heroes like Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Cesar Chavez, Sun Ra, Bob Dylan, Huey P. Newton, Gil-Scott Heron, and Thelonious Monk all dwell. It is a running dialogue of equal rights and justice of liberation through intellect and art. Born of this earth 1969 just outside of New York. Former Art Director at NIKE, former Art Director for Girl Skateboards, former Art Director at TOKION Magazine, former Design Director at Stussy. Current clients include Stussy, Adidas, HUF, Ubiq, SSUR, Nieves Books.

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Feature. Kevin Lyons www.naturalborn.com


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Feature. Kevin Lyons www.naturalborn.com


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Feature. Kevin Lyons www.naturalborn.com


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DOZE GREEN FEATURE WORDS BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.022

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Feature. Doze Green www.dozegreen.com


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FROM DRAWING SUPERHEROES AS A CHILD AND WRITING GRAFFITI TO THE ABSTRACT AND OFTEN COMPLEX WORK HE PRODUCES AT PRESENT, DOZE GREEN’S ART HAS DEVELOPED THROUGH HIS EXPERIMENTATION WITH FORM.

He says that eighties icons Dondi White, Ramellzee, Basquiat and Miro, have inspired his painting style. Family has also been a strong influence. “As a child my mother immersed me in the arts. Music was a big part of that – lots of jazz, funk, soul etc. My biological father, my mother, grandfather, uncles, aunts, brothers and sisters, all expressed themselves through art in one way or another… sometimes pretty eccentrically.” Born in New York, Doze is well known for his part in the local graff scene and was a member of the Rock Steady Crew. He sees art, music and dance as a defence against oppression. Central to his artwork is the ‘Ghetto Defender’, a critical reference to imperialism, racism and classism. “I want my work to question previously accepted notions of reality and for people to gather their own interpretations”. Steeped in spiritual symbolism, his recent artwork “retells stories of antiquity” from a contemporary perspective. He combines “sacred geometry, myth, symbols from the West Indian Catholic tradition Santería, masonry, and the 5% Islamic nation” with present day elements such as graffiti and images from popular culture. He says: “I ultimately want to explore… and express human experience. Also to connect human history throughout its tragic past of empire, myth, sex, oppression and irony.” His artwork has appeared in galleries in France, Puerto Rico, Japan, the UK and Germany. He has a new exhibition coming up with David Ellis in Los Angeles.


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Feature. Doze Green www.dozegreen.com


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Feature. Doze Green www.dozegreen.com


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Feature. Doze Green www.dozegreen.com


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Feature. Doze Green www.dozegreen.com


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PSYOP FEATURE WORDS BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.032

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Feature. PSOP www.psyop.tv


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APPROPRIATING THE MILITARY TERM FOR PSYCHOLOGICAL OPERATIONS NEW YORK DESIGN COMPANY PSYOP IS “A CREATIVE COLLECTIVE FOCUSED ON PROVIDING VISUAL SOLUTIONS FOR TELEVISION COMMERCIALS AND THE BROADCAST INDUSTRY.”

The company was established in 2000 by three creative and two technical directors: Marie Hyon, Marco Spier, Kylie Matulick, Eben Mears and Todd Mueller. Their clients to date have included AT&T, Intel, the Sci-Fi Channel, Starbucks, Starburst, Volkswagen and VH1. They have received award recognition in the AICP 2002 show, the Broadcast Design Awards and ID Magazine’s Design Review. For their work for Lugz footwear – for which they combined live action film, CG and animation – they were nominated for the 2003 Design and Art Direction awards show in the Crafts animation category. Says directors/designers Hyon and Spier of the commercial: “We wanted a spot made up of lights and shadows, capturing the essence of urban structures and elements at night. Looking at long exposure black and white pictures, we imagined how they would look animated. We incorporated blurred and blown out light sources, overexposed areas, depth of field, hard contrasts and glow. By mixing tons of layered digital and analog elements - like real smoke, lens flares and particles – we created the ‘real unrealism’ seen in the commercial.” Their work often involves creating a clean, graphic look and combining live action footage with animation.


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Feature. PSYOP www.psyop.tv


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NIGO. A BATHING APE FEATURE WORDS BY ADRIENNE ADAMS TRANSLATION BY MATT TAKEI JUNKO TOZAKI P.036

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Feature. A Bathing Ape www.apeshallneverkillape.com


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WITH NO SET DIRECTION OR MARKETING STRATEGY NIGO, FOUNDER OF FAMED JAPANESE LABEL A BATHING APE, SAYS THAT SUCCESS HAS COME ABOUT BY CHANCE.

“We made some T-shirts, we made other things, it became a little more popular etc - it progressed like that... It just happened that we were successful right away so we never had to grow up and get serious or learn how things were supposed to be done. We do things in the same way now - we are not motivated by commerce.” Starting out as a stylist and DJ Nigo opened up a shop, Nowhere, in the early nineties with his friend Jonio (Jun Takahashi). They sold second hand clothes and stuff that interested them. After about a year they both decided they would like to produce their own clothes. Nigo discussed his ideas for a new brand with (the now head graphic designer for BAPE) Sk8THG. They came across the phrase ‘A Bathing Ape in Lukewarm Water’ and felt it reflected a new trend in Japanese youth culture: directionless young people who got by “just doing what they felt like - no career or planning.” Nigo explains the analogy: “we felt that we were like apes floating comfortably in water that was just warm enough… no goals, just kind of doing what feels right day to day.” They soon met like-minded individuals from all around the globe with whom they collaborated to produce clothes, cds and sneakers. Nigo now has a gallery in Tokyo and shops in Japan, London and New York. “Clothes are the most noticeable thing that we do, but the movement that we were involved in has always been about more than that, and most of my friends and I are interested in all aspects of pop-culture - art, music and fashion are all linked. We show things which are made by friends and people whose art we like, sometimes the same people will work with us on clothes or record sleeves.” While they do have a certain way of doing things at A Bathing Ape – “we deliberately limit stock… partly because that’s what we’ve always done and its worked, and partly because we don’t want so many people wearing the same T-shirt that we don’t want to wear it ourselves” – Nigo insists that their only objective is to work on things that they think will be interesting. “There is no marketing master-plan to be this kind of company or that kind of company… I want BAPE to go as far as it can go, but if it has to become something that I don’t like in the process, what’s the point?” “Next is the USA. There is an interest in BAPE there and a demand for the clothes - so it makes sense to me to open a store. I feel that I’ve taken things as far as I can in Japan for the moment. I have a store in London already, but America is the next big thing for me since the brand and myself are very influenced and inspired by American culture. “As well as A Bathing Ape I’m also working on a new brand called ‘Billionaire Boy’s Club’ with my friend Pharrell Williams. There will be a sneaker brand too, which will be associated with the label called ‘Ice Cream’. You should start to see those things happening around the start of Summer. “I have also released an album, which features Japanese rappers and singers working with some American and some Japanese producers. You probably wouldn’t be aware of the Japanese rappers, but on the producer front there is a track from the Neptunes and a track from DJ Shadow.” Official website. www.apeshallneverkillape.com Bape TV. www.spaceshowertv.com/bapetv/onair/index.html A Bathing Ape London. 4 Upper James Street London W1 Bape Cafe. Aoyama Tokyo Bape Exclusive in Aoyama. 1F Nowhere BLDG 5-5-8 Minami Minato-Ku 107


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Feature. A Bathing Ape www.apeshallneverkillape.com


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Feature. A Bathing Ape www.apeshallneverkillape.com


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Feature. A Bathing Ape www.apeshallneverkillape.com


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Feature. A Bathing Ape www.apeshallneverkillape.com


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Refill Store Opening June 2004 157 Regent Street. Redfern. Sydney. Australia


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JAMES LAVELLE FEATURE WORDS BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.050

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Feature. James Lavelle www.unkle.com / www.unkle77.com


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GROWING UP IN OXFORD, IN THE UK, JAMES LAVELLE STARTED ORGANISING BLOCK PARTIES AT 15 AND BOUGHT HIS FIRST PAIR OF TURNTABLES SOON AFTER.

A year later he left school and moved to London where he was employed in a record shop. At 18 he formed his own record label Mo’ Wax and three years later, in 1996, started the label UNKLE. “As a kid I was obsessed with labels like Major Force from Japan that were incredibly well designed… You picked up a product and kind of felt like you were buying into something rather than just a random record.” Lavelle says he has been working with artists to create an audio-visual package, which has definitely contributed to the success of the labels, and has also been a motivating factor: “It’s the opportunity to work with your heroes”. 3D from Massive Attack, Ben Drury, Will Bankhead and Futura 2000 were some of the first artists Lavelle got on board. He met Futura at a gig in Germany through a mutual friend and they hit it off. “It was one of those very lucky scenarios, I met him at a time when he wanted to do something and there was this great opportunity for us to utilise his artwork… There really wasn’t the street scene phenomenon that you see now globally. It was very, very small, and there weren’t many outlets for those artists.” Art exhibitions, limited edition toys, stickers and magnets have been ongoing components of Mo’ Wax. “In its hey day Mo’ Wax was like a creative bubble of things. We worked on music for fashion shows, launched records, worked on exhibitions and books…”. Since the establishment of UNKLE, production has expanded to include music videos and film, for which Lavelle has gained further recognition. The music video he produced with Animation Company, Shynola, won a short film award at the Edinburgh Film Festival. He also did the soundtrack for Jonathan Glaser’s feature film Sexy Beast. Lavelle explains the different processes involved in working on print and film projects: “With album covers, what tends to happen is, I choose the artwork, commission a painting or photograph, and Ben (Drury) and Will (Bankhead) work around that... When we did the music videos Eye for an Eye and Rabbit in your Headlights for UNKLE… the treatments were written by everyone, so it would be me and Shynola, myself and Jake Scott.” Working on the soundtrack for Sexy Beast, Lavelle says, was easier than creating visuals for a song as he was able to respond to the mood of the film - so if a scene was tense or sad then that’s what he conveyed with the music. “It was really good fun. But those opportunities are few and far between.” Recently Lavelle has been working with Medicom toys in Japan. “I designed ten new toys for them… more kubrick stuff and other bits and pieces. It’s something I really enjoy doing.” Now he would like to work independently and hopes that the current popularity of ‘all things street’ will allow him to do that. “I’m trying to get control back of my life, I’ve worked with so many different companies, so many different people, that I just crave my own space. I’m thinking of starting another label.”


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Feature. James Lavelle www.unkle.com / www.unkle77.com


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Feature. James Lavelle www.unkle.com / www.unkle77.com


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Feature. James Lavelle www.unkle.com / www.unkle77.com


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WILL BANKS. ANSWER FEATURE WORDS BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.058

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Feature. Will Banks. Answer www.answerking.com / www.parkwalk.net


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THROUGH HIS WORK IN THE SKATEBOARD INDUSTRY UK ARTIST WILL BANKHEAD DEVELOPED A LOVE FOR SKATEBOARD AND MUSIC DESIGN AND FOR PHOTOGRAPHY.

He took up professional photography and was asked by a friend, Russell (Silas and Maria), to take a portrait of James Lavelle for Phat Magazine. That marked the beginning of a long working relationship with Lavelle who got him on board as an artist for Mo’ Wax and later for UNKLE. Collaborating with graphic designer Ben Drury he worked as a photographer and designer to produce record sleeves. Since Mo’ Wax Bankhead has been working on his own record label PK with John Knight and Mark Ainley. In 1998 he established t-shirt label Park Walk with Emmet Keane. Originally set up and sold only in Japan. The opportunity to begin the label came through a connection Bankhead made while working at Mo’ Wax. Park Walk designers have included Bankhead, Ben Drury, Christian Petersen, Fergadelic and Ed Gill. Deciding that they wanted to distribute Park Walk in the UK and also that they would like more control over production Bankhead and Keane later formed their own company Answer. The first t-shirt range was designed by graff and comic legend Vaughn Bode. All the tees were hand printed. Answer is now an umbrella organisation for the many projects they undertake. Bankhead is currently working as graphic designer and photographer for companies such as Honest Jon’s Records, Basic Replay, Human Records and PK Records. The following Park Walk artwork has been created by both Will Banks, Rob Dukes, Chris Love, Fergadelic, Ed Gill, Fergus, Ben Drury and Ben Chatfield.


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Feature. Will Banks. Answer www.answerking.com / www.parkwalk.net


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Feature. Will Banks. Answer www.answerking.com / www.parkwalk.net


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Feature. Will Banks. Answer www.answerking.com / www.parkwalk.net


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Feature. Will Banks. Answer www.answerking.com / www.parkwalk.net


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HAJIME SORAYAMA FEATURE INTERVIEW BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.068

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Feature. Hajime Sorayama www.sorayama.net


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WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO GO TO ART SCHOOL? I TRIED TO CHALLENGE VARIOUS THINGS WHEN I WAS YOUNG, THEN I FOUND OUT I WAS NOT CUT OUT FOR ANY OF THESE. THE ONLY POSSIBILITY LEFT FOR ME WAS TO DRAW AND I WAS GOOD AT IT. Did you focus on illustration while you were studying? No! When I studied at school, there was no such course as illustration. Therefore I studied graphic design. I could not even differentiate between fine art and illustration back then. Some people have mistaken your work for being airbrushed? I read that you use a brush painting technique. If so, can you describe this technique - how do you get that airbrushed look? At the final stage of painting I use an airbrush to soften the hard edges… I also use paint brushes in a more traditional manner, which seems to attract attention to my artwork. Many think only airbrush or computer graphics can obtain these results, and mistake my technique as airbrush. Airbrush is one of my tools; the traditional brush is my instrument of art. Has anyone/anything had a major influence on you and your work? As an artist I consider Leonard da Vinci and Hokusai as my masters. I admire their passion and the way they lead their lives as artists. In a technical sense: the way photographers approach the motif/objects. I also study printing techniques. What is your interest in robots? And in combining robots and eroticism? When I became a professional illustrator, robot subjects were treated as B class subjects and not many people were touching that subject. I thought this was a very interesting theme. I was also very impressed by the movie “Star Wars” back then. I think I always liked Eros and I had a metallic fetish even when I was a child. Where do you get your inspiration from? These days I think the world of written media is full of imagination and fantasy… because there are no visuals in it. One can extend their own imagination. So from these written worlds other artists take an idea and digest it, make movies, photos and even paint. From these secondary products I get inspiration. How did people respond to your first gallery exhibition?It was about 30 years ago so I really do not remember it well. It was a group exhibition. I am very shy so I was not much aware of the reaction of people around me. In any case I am not interested in the past so much. I try not to focus on the past. How did your working relationship with Penthouse Magazine come about? A gallery in USA approached me and said they wanted to produce limited edition prints of my work. So I made an offer to the galley that if I could work with Penthouse or Playboy magazine (I had been wishing to work with them), I would also work with the gallery. That’s how it started. Would you describe the work you do for them as pornographic? It is all up to how people perceive my images.. Some people think it is art and some think it is porn. People see things differently and it does not matter much to me. Opinions are all different depending on ones background and ones intelligence. I do not mind if my art is seen as pornography… but if it is only seen as that then I may be a little disappointed... I hope it is something more... kind of complicated feelings I have... You have said: “Unlike art, illustration is not a matter of emotions or hatred, but an experience that comes through logical thinking.” Can you elaborate? Do you think your work provokes an emotional response? My strategy is to try to provoke one’s emotion logically. If I try to make my work too refined and perfect, then the work sometimes becomes less exciting, has less impact and the tone of my message becomes weak... It is kind of a frustrating situation I get in. And: “Superrealism deals with the technical issue of how close one can get to one’s object”. Is this how you describe your work (superrealism)? What about when you are combining the female form with mechanical parts, and your robot images? To me they are both life-like and fantastical. It may be so because I take the equation of technique in photography. My theme is always sexual fantasy and if my images (female form with mechanical parts) look fantastical and have a life-like form, then I would be very delighted. That is my image concept. Superficially it looks female, but it shows the preference of its choice. What is your aim with your illustration? MY aim is at first to surprise people. Second it should be an entertainment for myself and my fans. I try to make my fans happy and to satisfy them. What are you working on at the moment? Right now I am consciously trying to paint younger women/girls. The image I am painting is of the strong headed teenager, ‘premadonna ballerina of Swan’ is about being sexually awakened by an evil snake. It shows her opening up toward masochism, sexual pleasure and a sense of shame. Normally I like mature women so I seldom take younger subjects. Maybe I will be done in this subject after a couple of paintings. Plans for the future? I do not have any specific plan for my future. I can say 100% that I will be painting even in the future... Recently I wonder if I really enjoy painting. Whenever I have time I paint, so I think I must like it. It sometimes makes me feel kind of sad that I do not have any other passions toward other things. And probably I will not find anything more exciting than painting for the rest of my life.


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Feature. Hajime Sorayama www.sorayama.net


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Feature. Hajime Sorayama www.sorayama.net


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Feature. Hajime Sorayama www.sorayama.net


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KAB101 FEATURE INTERVIEW BY KANO P.076

In reading a book recently called The Fortress of Solitude’ by Jonathan Lethan, I came across a line which spoke to me of long time friend and fellow artist Kab 101… ‘Under oblivious eyes, the invisible autographed the world’. For two decades, he’s an artist who has chosen to burrow himself into his studio alone by day and then in the dark of night further his work on the street, a canvas he is right at home with and one that suits his neo-mechanical alphabets and characters. His body of work is truly astounding and varied, yet to a degree his talent has remained a secret, relatively hidden from the worldwide public’s view. With so much work, graffiti, design, clothing and everything else behind you, why do you think it is that there are still only select people around the world who know your work? I think it comes down to not really exposing my work through marketing myself. I have been more of a get on with the work type of person, because at the end of the day its about what i do not me personally. Its an easy trap for people to replicate imagery and ride off their recognition and not develop their style and technique . I dont have a problem with that, i just choose to try and constantly evolve through new ideas. Also i use different mediums and techniques for painting certain styles so its likely to be less recognisable as mine as some concepts look completely different. What exactly goes on in your studio? - give us an overview of the things you get up to by day and night.. Daytime is usually spent in front of the computer working out the design side of my work, either print design or drawing the basis of paintings. I usually paint at night as there is little distractions. I work usually until the sun rises and sleep for a few hours then continue on. Im pretty much nocturnal and find it productive concentration wise, the downside is the lack of sleep. I work on so many things at once it can be quite erratic but i get alot done. Your retail shop Area 101 seems to function way beyond just being a clothing store. Can you tell us a little about the concept behind the store and what happens there? The store has been operating for about 7 years and has always been about art / design and clothing. It stocks spraypaint and markers, books and a variety of both australian and international street wear labels. Instore exhibitions take place and its used to provide an outlet for artists/designers to show their work. We are into supporting independant designers who produce their own products as we know what its like to do this. My partner Sooz and i have been producing a clothing label called OK101 for around 8 years which is still a very low key project but is always in demand. I’ve been to your studio many times and it’s really jam-packed with an array of interesting objects. It really reflects your personality. What are some of your favourite objects and things that inspire you? I love so many diverse things that i own and spend alot of time looking at my books and toy collection, other things like my railway padlocks and metal signs, i collect old and new markers and paint cans, my records , hand held games etc. I enjoy between working watching the fish in my tank and also gazing over the city rooftops out of my studio windows. Im a bit of a hoarder, its not unusual for me to bring home old pieces of wood and metal i find in the street. What is most important to you both artistically and in life? They are one and the same, i would love to develop my work further as its a never ending process. To make products based around my work and exhibit my paintings. Also collaborating on projects with like minded people. To create things i love and hopefully have others enjoy what i do.

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Feature. Kab101 www.area101.com.au


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Adidas Gallery. Every trefoil has a story


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Opposite Page. Left to Right. Cameron McKean, Dyle, Deus, Matt Dowman, The Wilderness, Rene Vaile and Rush Fay. This Page. Left to Right. Mephisto Jones, Otis Frizzell, Bjorn Houtman and Kath Gould.

In a celebration of adidas Originals and the holy streetwear trilogy that is the adidas “trefoil” a selection of New Zealand’s best graffiti artists, fine artists, photographers and graphic artists have come together to create an exhibition of streetwise inspiration called Every trefoil has a story. For every trefoil has a story is a continuation in the expression of what adidas is and means to those who’ve grown up wearing and being inspired by adidas and who are now the ones who are inspiring adidas and showing the way forward such as with this exhibition and the works that have emerged and are their impressions of the trefoil and adidas originals which range from the stencilled portraitures of RUN DMC to a trefoil tree landscape and beyond. For this is an exhibition in which memories and interpretations have been evoked, and evolved and emerged through the minds of Atip Wananuruks, Morgan Hammond, and Nick Gray who questioned what could be done not only in terms of an adidas perspective yet a New Zealand perspective and the combination of the corporate and creative worlds and every trefoil has a story is the reality of that thought and combination and the setting of a precedent of this merging within New Zealand. P.079


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Gallery. CNDTN www.cndtn.com


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LOGAN FEATURE INTERVIEW BY LUCA IONESCU P.082

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Feature. Logan www.hellologan.com


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COULD YOU INTRODUCE YOURSELF BRIEFLY? ALEXEI TYLEVICH AND BEN CONRAD. WE DIRECT MUSIC VIDEOS AND TV SPOTS UNDER THE NAME LOGAN. IT’S ALSO THE NAME OF OUR DESIGN AND PRODUCTION COMPANY IN LOS ANGELES. How many members form Logan? We are the two co-founders and partners. Kevin Shapiro is our Executive Producer. We staff up and down depending on the amount of work in the door. When did you get together? September of 2000. Who was your first client? Can’t remember... honestly, it’s been a while. What formal training did you guys have before starting up in the industry? We met in art school in Minneapolis (MCAD). We studied in different departments (design and media) but both discovered digital filmmaking and switched the focus of our studies. Where were you before Logan? Doing random things, freelancing for various clients. You have a very unique blend and style when it comes to broadcast design, choose your favourite clip and tell us a bit about the people behind it how it all happened? Money Mark Information Contraband was the first music video we directed, and as such holds a special place in our minds. Mark and Emperor Norton Records gave us complete carte blanche to experiment and it was a great experience. There are a lot of similarities between Mark’s process of combining analog and digital sources in his music and the visual texture of the clip. There was a feeling of mutual respect and trust that defined the project. How was it executed from a technical aspect? Shot on DigiBeta against green screen. Composited in AfterEffects with animated photographic backgrounds, hand-painted elements and typography. Inspiration? Ben’s collection of Thai movie posters. What kind of setup do you have equipment wise, what do you produce your pieces on? Mostly Macs with AfterEffects and Cinema4D, a few PCs running Maya, DigiBEta deck and HD setup. How long do you usually spend on a music video/tvc/other? There’s never enough time. Usually no more than a month from the moment the job is awarded to completion. The Money Mark clip was done in three weeks. Give us a breakdown of the process and individuals involved when producing a clip? We come up with a treatment and some style frames, pitch the idea to the label and the artist, and hope they are into it. Once everyone’s on board with the idea, we put together a live action shoot (casting, wardrobe, stage, art department, etc.), which is usually a producer’s job to organize. During the shoot we work with a DP and a crew; the size of which depends on the budget. After the shoot we digitize the clips and do a rough edit, sometimes hiring an editor to do it. A team of animators (the size of which can vary between 3 and 10 people) begin prepping different scenes even before the live-action shoot. They create the environments and camera moves based on the clips chosen in the rough-cut. We continue working closely with each animator, remaining pretty hands-on the entire time. At the end of the process, the clip gets colour-corrected during a tape-to-tape session, before being handed over to the label. What other sources do you find inspiration from? 70’s sci-fi. Italo Disco. Ghetto Tech. Rocky IV. What projects are you working on at the moment? This month we are shooting a TV commercial for Target, two music videos for Felix Da Housecat, which will take until the end of April to complete. We are also finishing up a short film for Getty Images called Big Idea, alongside people like Jeremy Hollister, Pleix and Intro. Any individuals that have helped Logan along the way? Jonathan Wells, Money Mark, No Doubt, video commissioners who gave us a chance, our talented team of designers and animators, Carl Sagan. What artists would you say have had an influence on your development as artists/designers? Seijun Suzuki, Al Columbia, Alejandro Jodorowski, Sly Stallone. If there was one client you would most like to work with who would i tbe? NASA Favourite hangout? (not at work) Club Tee Yee, a dive bar next door. Any pets? Does a cactus count as a pet? What’s on the studio CD player? Four Tet, Danger Mouse The Grey Album, Dizzie Rascal, Neu!, Boards of Canada. Any Future co-labs/pieces we should look out for? Murmurs of Earth, Side B. This is a self-initiated project that’s going to take quite a while to complete. Check our site for updates: www. hellologan.com Have you collaborated with any Australian Artists? Not yet. If “No” would you like to? It could be fun. Any plans to visit Australia? Nothing planned, but it sounds like a great idea.


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Feature. Logan www.hellologan.com


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Feature. Logan www.hellologan.com


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Feature. Logan www.hellologan.com


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CODY HUDSON FEATURE INTERVIEW BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.090

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Feature. Cody Hudson www.struggleinc.com


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PRODUCING ART FOR SOLO GALLERY EXHIBITIONS, WORKING ON A BOOK AND ANTI-WAR POSTERS, AND IS JUST ABOUT TO RELEASE THE FIRST RANGE OF HIS NEW CLOTHING LABEL HEADLOCK. In addition to the commercial art and graphic projects he works on for his company Struggle Inc, Cody Hudson has been producing art for solo gallery exhibitions, working on a book and anti-war posters, and is just about to release the first range of his new clothing label Headlock. A bit about yourself: How did you get into graphic design? Do you have any formal training? I wanted to go to school for art but after I saw how expensive it was I put that on hold. Then one day while working at an animation house painting cells, I met a girl there who told me about commercial art. So I took some classes at the local tech school and started getting into design. You have worked for companies like Chocolate industries and Stussy. How did you make those connections? Do you have a background in skateboarding? Most of my connections seem to spring up from friends of friends and random connections from there. Also I’ve been working in a somewhat consistent style for the last few years so people have started to look me up when they want a certain kind of look and feel. And I’ve been skateboarding since I was 13 so that connection will always be with me. Your work has been described as bridging the gap between street art and traditional graphic design. How do you describe your work? If you do feel you bridge the gap between street art and design, can you explain how? I’d have to agree with that. Some of the work I do has a slight street feel to it, mostly based on the bold colours or raw lines and simple styles. Some of that comes from… hip hop record covers that stray a bit from the traditional hip hop look that I’ve done. I think that “bridging the gap” quote originally sprang from working with raven at 12oz prophet about 8-9 years ago. He was publishing a graf magazine and I started helping him with the layouts and art direction. And at the time it seemed most magazines were all about the flicks, and we were as well, but we tried to start bringing in a more traditional design feel to the magazine. Now it seems like there is graf inspired design everywhere but at the time it felt like we were doing something new. Did you/do you do art on the street? Not as much as Id like, I’m a bit of an old man these days, but I always carry stickers with me and still will scrawl some random verbage on the streets. And I still do wheat pasting and such. Also got some big plans for this summer doing some collaborative stuff with some Chicago friends. How do you feel about definitions like ‘street art’? Anytime you label something you start to take away from its power but unfortunately for lack of a better phrase a lot of stuff gets labelled “street art”. A lot of the stuff can be traced back to its beginning on the street whether through skating, graf, etc so I guess it’s as good a term as we’re going to get, although it does start to play out the work by labelling it that. What role does politics play in your art (for instance your part in producing pro art/anti war posters)? Is your art an extension of your ideas, political or not? Is it important to you that your art carries a message? Its not important that my art carries a message and there are plenty of times when it doesn’t but if I feel strongly about something, I’m not afraid to use any platform I can get to get the message out. I guess if a republican was checking out my work, he might be turned off by a “will trade bush for peace” splash screen, but I guess I’m at the point in my career where I’m not worried about that and if I feel strongly about something, i’ll put it out there. Do you think the sale and exhibition of art is an effective way to educate and disseminate information? If you do a whole installation show about a certain topic then I can see it opening some eyes. But I don’t think the selling of a painting will help spread information much, if someone likes a painting, they’ll buy it and hang it in there flat but I don’t think it goes much further than that. Maybe some of their friends will see it and start a discussion but I don’t think that happens very often. Do you distinguish between your design work and your artwork? If so how? I definitely draw a line between whats a painting and whats “commercial art”. It gets blurred sometimes but I can tell the difference. I do art shows and paintings under the name Cody Hudson and all the graphic design work I do goes through my little company “struggle inc”. Sometimes someone will want a more hand drawn style so I’ll do an illustration but it still ends up going through struggle inc before it makes its way to a client. Can you tell me about your clothing label Headlock? When did you start producing clothes? Headlock is a very small line that is basically an outlet for me and my friends to put out random ideas without any pressure to really sell them. Although the idea has been in the works forever this will be our first real season. Have there been any major turning points for you in terms of your design work and your art work? As far as design goes these last 2 years have been good. When people used to try to hire me to do work and they would show me a reference to follow that was frustrating sometimes. But now… they are calling because they are familiar with my style and want me to do my own thing... As far as art goes, I was in a big group show in Japan in 2002 with a bunch of artists that I looked up to... That felt good and made me feel like it was going somewhere. What are you currently working on? I’m painting and drawing quite a bit, I have a solo show in California at Selective Hearing Gallery in late June and a solo show in Chicago in September at Bucketrider Gallery. I’m curating a few group shows next year. I’m working on a couple of seven inch records with chocolate industries. Working on a new book publication called “also known as” with the crew from 12oz prophet. I’m doing some more fun t shirts and shoes with fifty24sf. Anything you wish to discuss? Not to sound too much like a motivational speaker, but I always like to stress to people to enjoy life more, don’t work so much. Get out of the office and go ride a bike or take a swim. It sounds like obvious stuff but sometimes people get so caught up they forget to enjoy themselves. What do you think of Australian Design Art? It looks fresh to me, but when I see something I don’t think of it as Australian art or design, I’ll just see it as design so a lot of stuff I see comes from there and I’m digging it but I don’t even realize that’s where its from. If that makes any sense? Have you collaborated with any Australian Artists/Designers? Not a lot, but I hooked up with Jade at Basefield and he put me in a couple group shows over there and I’ve been talking to Tania Bowers (via Tania) about doing some fun stuff. Would you like to? I’m always down to have some fun and in some small way I guess we kinda are right now?


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Feature. Cody Hudson www.struggleinc.com


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VAPORS PROJECT CO-LAB WITH THE MIGHTY OILS

KEVIN TAYLOR PRO MODEL FOR AESTHETICS

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Feature. Cody Hudson www.struggleinc.com


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L to R: T SHIRT DESIGNS FOR HEADLOCK, 2K, BEAMS T, MATTER, NIKAO YOUTH PROJECT, FIFTY24SF, HEADLOCK, STUSSY, HEADLOCK

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Feature. Cody Hudson www.struggleinc.com


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ASSORTED SONOTHEQUE POSTERS AND INVITES

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GRANIPH FEATURE INTERVIEW BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.100

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Feature. Graniph www.graniph.com


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WHEN DID YOU START GRANIPH? WE STARTED GRANIPH IN 2000. ANY WORK HIGHLIGHTS? EVERYTHING. WE ARE PROUD TO OFFER HIGH-QUALITY PRODUCTS AT REASONABLE PRICES.

You sell a range of products - tshirts, handbags, bracelets, lighters, cds - What is the concept behind the store/label? Are all the products in store your own? We want to make our stores always enjoyable. Our products are sold in selected shops. Apart from selling on the internet, do you stock your products anywhere else? Some of our products are sold in street stores. They are different designs from those on the internet. Do you do any non-commercial work? Not yet. We are planning to act to protect the beautiful, natural, Japanese environment in the future. Can you tell us a bit about your gallery? We hold exhibitions in our gallery, which is attached to a graniph T-shirt store in Kyoto. How do you see Graniph evolving? We currently sell our products to Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and Malaysia. We will open and manage a store in Hong Kong in the near future. What are you working on at the moment? We are making new stores in several places.


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Feature. Graniph www.graniph.com


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Feature. Graniph www.graniph.com


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ESTEVAN ORIOL FEATURE INTERVIEW BY LUCA IONESCU P.106

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Feature. Estevan Oriol www.estevanoriol.com


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PLEASE TELL US A BIT ABOUT YOURSELF? I WAS BORN IN 1966 IN SANTA MONICA, CALIFORNIA. I LIKE TAKING PICTURES AND HANGING OUT WITH MY FAMILY AND FRIENDS. I LIKE MUSIC. I LIKE DRIVING MY CADILLAC. I’M A SIMPLE MAN. How did you find growing up as a kid in L.A? It was cool. I came from a normal dysfunctional family. I grew up on the Westside where the air is a little bit cleaner, so that was nice. There’s always excitement going on here. Like my good friend Cartoon says, “You’re only bored if you’re boring.” Do you think your experiences growing up have influenced your work and determination to be successful in your career? Definitely. I think growing up with no money has had an influence on my determination to be successful in any career. When did you first learn of your talent with the camera? I picked up a camera at the end of ‘94, and it was at the end of ‘97 that I first realized that I had something more than just a hobby. I had opportunity, I had a career. Where did you study? Or has it been mostly self taught? It’s all been self taught. The last thing other photographers want is you as a threat to their source of income. When was your big break career wise? I still don’t feel like I got my big break. Please tell us a bit about Joker Brand? Heads involved? Joker Brand started in ‘95. B-Real (from Cypress Hill) and I took it over from Cartoon and his former partner that same year, and have been strugglin’ ever since. Had I known how hard clothing was, when I had my t-shirt idea, I would have never started it. But now I’m in it to win it. Most of the people involved in it now have been part of it since the beginning. Cartoon went from being just one of the artists, back to being an owner. We still have Lil Lucky on the design team, along with Mando, our New York connection. Please tell us a bit about the photographs you’ve submitted? Do you know the individuals personally? Yes, that is how I was able to take their photograph. With these types of people, you can’t just go up to them and start taking their picture. You have to get to know them, so that they’re comfortable around you... Cause they don’t know why you’re there. You could be an enemy or a cop for all they know, so you have to gain their trust. What advice do you have for young photographers starting out? Pick up a camera and start shooting. What has been the most important lesson learnt so far in the business? People like to be cheap when it comes to paying a photographer. They think all you do is press a button and that’s it. There’s a lot more to taking a picture than people think. It’s a form of art... That’s why they have photographs in all the museums. What inspires you? Women, gangsters, musicians, and L.A. lifestyle. Was directing film/music videos a natural progression from photography? How did that all come about? Yes it was. It came about that a friend of mine told me to take a super 8 camera with me on my photo shoots. So I started collecting a bunch of super 8 footage, and eventually cut it to a friend of mine’s music, Psycho Realm. That led to directing their first and second music videos. And to date, I’ve shot 20 music videos, for bands like Blink-182, D-12, and Cypress Hill, to name a few. That led me to shooting my current project, a documentary about my partner Mr. Cartoon. It’s called “Ink the Movie”. Please tell us about the Hip Hop Immortals project? The Hip Hop Immortals project happened before I met the guys from Sock Bandit. I finally met them after the book came out, and I told them that I had photos that would have been good for their book, and they said that they wanted them for Hip Hop Immortals: The Re-Mix. That was the beginning of our good and on-going working relationship. What are some projects you are working on? What’s next? I just got finished co-producing Hip Hop Immortals/Sock Bandit’s We Got Your Kids the movie. I’m working on my own book of stills, called Ink, that’s gonna go side-by-side with the documentary. Also I have another book coming out called Havana Hip Hop, that I shot with New York photographer Angela Boatwright. I also have some work in a book called Morningwood, which is a compilation of some of today’s hottest street artists. S.A. Studios just finished album packaging for Blink-182, Cypress Hill, and Everlast. What do you do when not in front of the camera? I’m at Joker, on tour with Cypress Hill, or with my family. What tunes are playing in the studio right now? Led Zeppelin, Rolling Stones, Transplants, Eminem, Cypress, Blink-182, 50 Cent. Do you know any Australian Photographers? What do you think of Australian Photography/Design? No. They look like they’re shot here in L.A., but they’re in Australia. Any plans to come out to Australia? I just got back from there. Cypress Hill was there doing a 5 city tour during the last couple weeks in December 2003.


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Feature. Estevan Oriol www.estevanoriol.com


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Feature. Estevan Oriol www.estevanoriol.com


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Feature. Estevan Oriol www.estevanoriol.com


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EVAN HECOX FEATURE INTERVIEW BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.116

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Feature. Evan Hecox www.evanhecox.com


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HE DESCRIBES HIS WORK AS A “BALANCE OF CONTRADICTIONS: TIGHT AND LOOSE, ROUGH AND SMOOTH, BORING AND INTERESTING, OLD AND NEW.”

A designer of snowboards since 1993, Evan Hecox started working for Chocolate Skateboards in 1997, and also began exhibiting his art. I read that music and skateboarding have had a big influence on your artwork. What sort of music were you listening to and how did it influence your work? Skateboarding is good when I feel like taking a break from my studio work, which usually involves a lot of sitting around. It’s fun and nice to get out and do something physical, clear my head. Music is more of a direct influence; what I’m listening to while I’m working effects my state of mind. I usually listen to pretty mellow stuff. Lately I’ve been listening to stuff I liked when I was a bit younger like My Bloody Valentine, the Stone Roses, Joy Division, The Jam, The Smiths, etc. I like Reggae and Jazz a lot, especially when I’m working on prints. Hip-hop and soul if I’m feeling energetic and trying to get things done. You have said that you intentionally keep your illustration work simple so that it will endure. Why is longevity important to you? Is it your aim to make your artwork accessible to a broad audience? It’s not really that I’m trying to reach a broad audience, I’d rather try to appeal to a smaller group of people who appreciate good work. I want to keep working my whole life and I don’t want to feel like what I’m creating now is too trendy or will look dated in ten or fifteen years. I’m not sure why I see longevity as an attribute, I just do. I guess I feel like quality of design is measured in part by how well it holds up over time, like an Eames chair or something. I think one way to ensure that design will last is not to over-design things, keep it simple and clean. Have there been any major turning points for you as a graphic designer/artist? I think that every time I finish a project or an art show I reach a turning point. I always see things that worked well and things that didn’t. Things that I’m embarrassed about or proud of and want to continue with. I have nothing totally figured out, but I learn a little from everything I do. Do you think working with other people helps you develop ideas and perspectives that you might not necessarily develop on your own? Yeah, definitely. It works both ways. When I do work for clients it forces me into subject matter and ways of working that I wouldn’t have gone towards if I was just doing work for myself. I also try things in my personal work that find their way into my commercial projects. I read that you like to put quality before productivity, that you wouldn’t do commercial work for a brand like Pepsi but have done portraits for Nike, and that you would like to be known for finding a good balance between commercial graphics and art. What does selling out mean to you? Is it just about personal limits? I think it’s really a personal issue. For me, it’s just a matter of intuition more than any absolute rules. I just try to stay away from anything that seems too cheap or corny. Other people may look at what I do and think that having my art on a t-shirt is cheap, but to me it’s not. It’s just a matter of perception. When I was younger and getting started I just hoped to make a living as a graphic designer. My artwork was something I did privately in my own time, something that I didn’t really intend to show it or make a name from. I started getting offers to show my work, so I did, and it just took off. It was more like sneaking-in, rather than selling out. In Tokion magazine you said “art is expressed in how you live your life” and that you would like your life to reflect that more. Can you elaborate? I think all artists do this even if they’re not aware of it themselves. Artwork is an extension of your personality and your personality compliments the work you do. Ways of speaking, the friends you choose, your views, it’s all an art form of sorts. I think that Margaret Kilgallen was a beautiful example of someone whose life was like this. She painted, repaired books at the public library, played the banjo and surfed, so great. Is there a piece of work you are particularly proud of? Not really. What have you been working on? Skateboards, always skateboards. I have some shows coming up. I’m working on some larger paintings, doing a lot of prints. I built a big outdoor table made of cypress wood; I had fun doing that. Future plans? This summer will involve a lot of gardening, outdoor cooking, playing with my daughter and skateboarding. Maybe a trip to New York soon, I haven’t been there in a while. What do you think of Australian Art / Design? I’m probably not aware of as many Australian artists as I should be. I like Perks a lot. Rys Lee is really good, I love his work, when I look at it I always feel like loosening up and doing a bunch of big paintings. Have you collaborated with any Australian Artists /Designers? Would you like to? Never have but it sounds like a good idea. Any plans to visit our shores? Possibly. There are some plans in the works to bring the whole Girl/Chocolate Art Dump over there, to do a group show, I hope it works out. I’ve never been there, always wanted to go. Thanks for your time. You bet.


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Feature. Evan Hecox www.evanhecox.com


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Feature. Evan Hecox www.evanhecox.com


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BRAND NEW SCHOOL FEATURE INTERVIEW BY LUCA IONESCU P.124

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INTRODUCE YOURSELF BRIEFLY? JONATHAN NOTARO, OWNER AND CREATIVE DIRECTOR; JENS GEHLHAAR, CREATIVE DIRECTOR, BNS LA Brand New School is a studio of designers, filmmakers, photographers and illustrators working in all fields of commercial art. For its creatives, it is a school that provides an opportunity to learn new things using other people’s money. For its clients, it is a place to spend money to get new things. How many members form BNS? We are 16 creatives and 12 production staffers in two offices in Los Angeles and New York. There also always seems to be a bunch of at least 10 freelancers around. When did y’all get together? The company was founded in Summer 2000 by Jonathan, starting out with one designer, Dennis Go, and one producer. Jens joined at the end of 2000. By the Summer of 2001 we had about 15 people. We opened the New York office in the Fall of 2001. Who was your first client? The Sundance Channel. What formal training did you guys have before starting in the industry? Where were you before BNS? Some of us met at Razorfish in a broadcast design division that is now closed. A lot of our creatives came directly from school to BNS. Most of them are alumni of either the Art Center College of Design or Otis College of Art and Design, while Jonathan and Jens graduated from California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). Most of us have an education in graphic design, but we also have a few creatives with illustration or film backgrounds. Jens also did a few years of print design before he went to California. You have a very unique blend and style when it comes to broadcast design. Please choose your favourite clip and tell us a bit about the people behind it how it all happened? How was it executed from a technical aspect? Inspiration? (JG) One of our favorite current projects was the packaging for MTV’s Sunday Stew - a programming block featuring the hit show “Punk’d”, as well as two Jackass spin-offs, “Wildboyz” and “Viva La Bam”. The shows are about pranks, hidden cameras, the wildlife, and skateboarding - all very young male-oriented. Jon Santos in the New York office had designed a teaser, and a team of 4 people in the Los Angeles office took over to create three more rounds of stuff: a promo package; the show package (bumpers and motion backgrounds for the framework of the block); a bunch of random “Art Breaks”, ten second pieces without any sign-off. A show package doesn’t typically ask for any story or messaging. So we knew that all we needed was imagery, not a strong narrative, so you can easily edit pieces at different lengths. Our first thought was actually creating images about making a really gross stew, maybe in a pot over an open fire... Our client Aaron Stoller from MTV thought that was way too literal, which it obviously was. We nevertheless liked the idea of a whole bunch of disgusting things being thrown together, as well as the imagery of wildlife. We – Jens, Saiman, Tim and Andy – came up with the concept of an alien landfill, imaginary landscapes filled with exotic plants, wild animals, wacky characters, bizarre creatures, junk and trash. The animation is as simple as a Quicktime VR — the camera just dollies along a parade of oddities, outcasts and otherworldly outlandishness. The technical process started with the four designers making Photoshop collages using a lot of images found on the web. After the client signed off on the direction, we had Andy Kim, one of our 3D animators, model and animate little loops of dancing dumpsters, crashing guitars and drunken robots. At the same time, four 2D animators started to move the After Effects camera along the collage and animate little things here and there. Andy and Tim went out for one day and shot digital pictures of anything trashy, including his step dad’s junkyard. We hired our longtime collaborator Jennifer Jones to rent animal costumes, cop and safari uniforms, hazard suits and anything else that would be fun. We arranged a twisted pre-Halloween party at the office and had pretty much the whole staff dress up and perform. Ian Brook, our photographer, shot the performances with a digital camera with a motor drive. We also blew up a few plastic animals, since we had some explosives left from the stop motion masterpiece “Chinatown” that Ben had just finished. Everything came together magically, without much interference by Aaron. For the “Art Breaks”, Aaron didn’t want to see any treatments or storyboards, but merely asked us to deliver them one day before air date. We asked Rob to make two of them, and he came back with some straight liveaction ideas (“Bambi” and “Pink Surprise”). The rest of us just took the funniest bits of our Halloween party and created worlds around them. We also used some drawings of an old idea we had developed for the FOX Fuel network, but which they rejected, and with their permission we produced it (“New Tricks”). Another bit was taken from a digital still sequence we had shot of Tim playing his Vodaphone. The whole process to create eight Art Breaks took four days. Oh yeah, the music... we hired a fairly young company called Echo Park to do the sound design, and they immediately understood the spirit of this project and added a whole other layer of wittiness and drama to the imagery. What kind of setup do you guys have equipment wise, what do you guys produce your pieces on? eg: After Effects, Macs, etc.. We use Apple Macintosh computers for design, 2D animation and editing, and Maya and 3D Studio MAX on PCs for 3D modelling and animation. We also have Discreet Flame machines in both offices. How long do you usually spend on a clip music video/tvc/other? The length of our projects ranges from one week (for an end tag) to four months (for a network package). MTV Sunday Stew, for example, was a total of five weeks. Fuel “Fantasy” was about a month or so. Give us a breakdown of the process and individuals involved when producing a clip? Jobs come typically from ad agencies, networks or record companies, very rarely from direct clients. We have sales reps for all three business segments orchestrating the acquisition. Most jobs go through a bid or pitch phase where we compete with other design studios, live action companies or post houses. Depending on the nature of the job, we assign one or two art directors to put together a team. The team can include: just the art director(s), a few junior designers, freelance designers, 3D modellers, writers, live action producers, photographers or whatever else is needed. We never really go straight into animation, we always previsualize the clip in the form of a storyboard, lookframes or a scrap reference. After revising the storyboards, we start production. With live action, we go through the traditional process of scouting/casting/shooting/editing; with animation, it depends on the amount of elements that need to be built, whether it is drawings, cel animations or 3D spaces. What other sources do you find inspiration from? (can be answered by several creatives) Apart from wide-ranging topical research for each project, we listen to music and look at films, fashion, architecture and art. We’re also quite obsessed with the histories of graphic design, image-making and animation. None of us feel that there is much of an inspiration in current graphic design. What projects are being worked on at the moment? In New York, Jens, Doug, Sean, Jon S., Dennis and Sarah just finished a consultation on the rebranding of MTV2. Jonathan is directing the opening sequence for a documentary about sneaker culture for Nike. In Los Angeles, Chris is directing three character animation-based spots for British wireless provider Orange. Rob is designing the package for a programming block on Cartoon Network. Ben and Saiman are working on the new season of MTV Sunday Stew. Do you collaborate on projects between NY and LA, do the designers get to travel around? Jonathan and Jens quite often trade places to lead a particular project. Other creatives get to travel when a shoot happens someplace else. The two offices frequently help each other out in the storyboard phase or when developing singular elements such as 3D models or illustrations.


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Feature. Brand New School www.brandnewschool.com


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Feature. Brand New School www.brandnewschool.com


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Feature. Brand New School www.brandnewschool.com


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Feature. Brand New School www.brandnewschool.com


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Feature. Brand New School www.brandnewschool.com


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All original illustrations copyright of their rightful owners.

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GEOFF McFETRIDGE FEATURE INTERVIEW BY ADRIENNE ADAMS P.138

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HE STARTED HIS OWN DESIGN COMPANY CHAMPION GRAPHICS IN 1996 AND HAS SINCE WORKED IN PRINT MEDIA, FILM, TV, AND HELD A NUMBER OF SOLO ART SHOWS. Straight out of art school, LA-based designer Geoff McFetridge won a distinctive merit award for his thesis ‘Chinatown’ from ID magazine. Work credits include the opening titles for Adaptation and The Virgin Suicides, award winning title design for Chocolate, and design work for Marc Jacobs. What made you decide to study graphic design? I always loved to draw. I drew a lot, really a lot. When I discovered graphics in high school it was sort of a relief from drawing - moving things around using colour instead of drawing or painting was a revelation to me. I loved making things, and drawing was a way to do that, but with graphics the things seemed more real, like album covers and posters - the stuff that was influencing me at the time. Why did you decide to move to LA? Was it for study purposes or did that eventuate later? I came to LA to study at Cal Arts (California Institute of the Arts). I was in the Masters of Fine Arts program there. It was a great school for me, and I wanted to be in California. I had a scholarship for the School of Visual Arts in NYC, but I wasn’t interested in being in NY. I didn’t know anybody in California, but everything I had always loved came from there. I was also doing snowboard graphics and skateboard graphics, so I had some work contacts. Can you tell me a bit about your thesis ‘Chinatown’? Did the ID award have much impact on your career (recognition, exposure...)? While at a Cal Arts I was focused on learning Graphic Design. My undergraduate program was sort of hokey and focused on illustration and super commercial art type skills. At Cal Arts I really exposed myself to a pure graphic design world, I stopped doing illustration work and really worked hard at learning typography etc. The main focus there was on developing a conceptual type of design process, a way of making graphics in a personal way. In the end, for my thesis project I went back to doing more image based work but applied the conceptual design processes to how I did it. After two years of torture, not making images, doing the Chinatown piece came so easy. Except for the part that involved learning to program in Director. The ID award was pretty amazing. I have always had good luck with that sort of thing though. It was a big help, and really opened the door for me in the world of magazines and publicising my work. You seem to work a lot with symbols/logos from popular culture, and I read that you like to make people laugh. Are you trying to get any other responses from your audience? I try to use the language of graphics... super reductive visual language to express sort of personal things... or to tell jokes. Jokes are like graphics, simplified clear communication. Yes, reaching people is important to me, when you spend so much time making things, you want them to have some sort of impact. It is the only thing that keeps you from feeling like you are a trash factory... How do you describe your work/style? I work in a very reductive way. I try to keep the images graphic and simple, and the idea complex (well sometimes complex, some times just stupid!) For me this means making the work personal, often autobiographical. I try to put a lot of personal thought into the work so as to combat the commodity of the graphics... Graphics are generally used to generate WANT, I try to work against that. My worst fear is to be making a lot of graphics that are just a lot of self-promotional things in a gallery. How have people responded to your work in a gallery setting? What kind of work have you done for your exhibitions? People have reacted in different ways. Some of the shows have been ok, some so-so. I am always experimenting with how I do the shows so it works that way. I do a lot of prints, fabric and wallpaper prints and posters. Almost everything is mass-produced in some way, but in small amounts. Just recently I started to show drawings and monoprints, one-off things. I have always wanted to sell the work, and for cheap, so I came up with different ways to mass-produce interesting pieces. Playing with ideas of commodity has gotten totally boring to me now though, so I am just focused on making interesting work. How did you become involved in the ‘boycott Esso’ campaign? They called me. I liked doing it. When people approach me with a project I believe in, I always do it, if the project works to my strengths. When did you begin working on animation/live action graphics/movie titles? Was this a natural progression from design and illustration? I started to focus on animation around the time of my first art show in 1999. I was really interested in pursuing movie titles, but Hollywood is a tough place to work. So I found other ways to do animation work, in videos and commercial work and other weird projects. It was a natural progression for me; it is very easy for me to create animation work, and I was determined to only do work that suited my strengths, and that was fun. I was tired of challenging myself to do difficult design jobs. So I did all the animation jobs that I came across and also focused on art shows. Do you prefer working in one particular realm? No, I need the mix. How did you become involved with Sofia Coppola and the Directors Bureau? I met Sofia through Spike Jonze. I worked with Spike on commercials and for his skateboard companies Girl and Chocolate. We had a lot of friends in common through the Grand Royal world. It is a small world. I got involved in TDB through Mike Mills. I had always looked up to Mike and when he moved from NYC to LA we saw more of each other and when I had some video projects he asked if I wanted to be part of TDB. I’m told that you are a father? If so, has that influenced your work or your goals? Yes! Frances McFetridge... she is super duper. She has cleared my head in some ways. If I was not messing around before, I REALLY am not now. She reinforces the things I have always believed in. What are you doing in Paris? Parenting, drawing, drinking good coffee, walking, avoiding poops on the street, seeing friends and meeting with people. I have a few projects I am working on here. I recently had a couple of shows in Germany and did an installation at Colette. I have always loved Paris. What are you working on at the moment? Artworks for the Beautiful Losers show in Cincinatti, animations for a new Thomas Campbell surf film, and a fabrics and wall-coverings project. Plans for the Future? Sleeping on the beach and never eating a piece of cheese again. Anything else you wish to discuss? Enough about me... what about you?


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Feature. Geoff McFetridge www.championdontstop.com


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Japan Show. February 2004

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Germany Show. January 2004

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123KLAN FEATURE P.152

When. 1992 created by Mrs Klor & Mr Scien, 123klan is first a graffiti posse. In 1994 Scien & Klor did their first steps in graphic design. Who. Klor, Scien, Dean, Sper, Skam, Reso, Meric, 123klan is composed of 7 members. What. We do a ton of stuff: graffiti, logos, posters, flyers, illustrations, stickers, teeshirts, furnitures, mugs, bags, covers, walls, vector, character design, splash screen, motion, Ragga dance hall party etc... How. We create like a dj scratch, we work only for cool people and good money, never in hurry, alwayz with style and faith. “STYLE IS THE MESSAGE! PEACE!” Bio. Scien and Klor have been big on the graffiti scene since 1989. When they discovered Neville Brody’s work on typography, graphic art became a logical extension of their graffiti writing background. They produced their first digital graffiti pieces, and 123klan were the first to blend graffiti writing and graphic art on the web, making it not just an exhibition tool but a new creative medium. The screen, like a blank wall became a space to be laid out. In parallel, the influence of graphic art could be seen on their walls; everything revolved around lettering. For these trailblazers, graffiti writing and graphic art are closely linked and, as they say themselves, “Style is the message.”

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Feature. 123klan www.123klan.com


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MATTHEW CHAPMAN FEATURE P.156

Matthew Chapman is an Illustrator operating out of Melbourne, pushing his kooky ornamental style, and applying it to everything from T-Shirts to Nintendo games. Matt’s earliest influences, like alot of peoples were comic books, and some names he throws around as direct influences are Chris Ware, Jim Woodring, Mobius, Milo Minara and Robert Crumb. He also loves the paintings of Gustav Klimt and Egon Scheille, he thinks Shigeru Miyamoto is a genius and loves alot of now-adays popular designers. Matt’s previous endeavours have included working for the Disney studio in Sydney, making T-Shirts for the likes of Harley-Davidson, Triple J and Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Currently he is working for a Melbourne based Video Game developer as a conceptual Designer, and also churns out games for the Nintendo Gameboy Advance, PS2 and Xbox some of which are completely conceptualised by him. Matt will always find the time to work on designs for his own T-Shirts, buttons, magazine Illo’s, an art exhibition once in a while, CD covers, or just messing around with new styles and techniques.

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Feature. Matthew Chapman www.matthewchapman.com.au


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01. 06. 12. 18. 22.

A Bathing Ape ‘R’ 02. Refill 03. A Bathing Ape ‘E’ 04. Skull Dezain 05. KeepLeft Studio Power Graphixx 07. Refill 08. Refill 09. Sweden Graphics 10. Refill 11. A Bathing Ape ‘I’ TM 13. A Bathing Ape ‘F’ 14. Refill. 15. KeepLeft Studio 16. Power Graphixx 17. Refill Sweden Graphics 19. Sweden Graphics 20. Skull Dezain 21. A Bathing Ape ‘L’ Refill 23. alife 24. Refill 25. A Bathing Ape ‘L’ 26. Refill

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REFILL MAGAZINE 03  

Reill Magazine Issue 03. Featuring: Heavyweight, Kevin Lyons, Doze Green, PSYOP, NIGO, James Lavelle, Will Bankhead, Hajime Sorayama, KAB 10...

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