Thursday 25 June 2009

i meant to write about the full length documentary film PROCEED AND BE BOLD much earlier than this, but I’ve been in a funk for a couple of months. I’m jolted out of it suddenly by noticing that there’s a connected exhibition in Chicago that only has a couple more days to run:
QUIT YOUR JOB AND BECOME AN ARTIST- Closing Party Saturday, June 27 from 12pm-6pm. Free and Open to the Public. Please join us at the Cash-and-Carry Poster Sale, where you will be able to meet Amos Paul Kennedy, Jr. and purchase posters at $15 each. Posters can be signed by the artist. Enjoy beverages by Peroni and music from the Manley Diehl at this free event.

Amos Paul Kennedy is a very personable fellow who creates letterpress posters of immediate appeal, using type and colour in support of mottoes that are variously serious, utilitarian and mischievous.

The rise of letterpress as a small scale artform is a current that up till now has not caught my eye and I'm finding it full of charm and interest. The documentary, made by Brown Finch Films captures the spirit of this movement in flight, with several international practitioners commenting on Kennedy's work. You can view excerpts at the link.

Amos is particularly good at the Art of gentle disruption- see the sequence where he is called in by the university police to explain his provocative postcards and he takes his mascot lawn jockey along with him. “He enjoys being a social irritant,” says one commentator. As the film proceeds we see him obtaining an old machine and collecting printers’ unwanted type here and there. Intercut through the film, director Laura Zinger shows clips from an old black and white 1950s documentary on the history of printing. At one stage I suddenly realized she had just cut in a couple of shots of Amos in mock old-style monochrome.

Kennedy's work ranges from richly vibrant like the detail above, to simply practical like his job for a local night club (Proprietor, Tee, shown below with the poster):
“LADIES, NO FIGHTING IN THE BATHROOM. (This is a grown folks establishment)" – "I had a few left over," says Amos, "and mothers started buying them, mothers with two daughters- I need ThAT in MY bathroom!"

I love the Dvd and recommend it. It mulls over many questions about art in our times, such as who owns it and who has access to it, and why and why not. They're on sale for twenty at the producer's site and also at the event linked above. Also keep an eye on the Brown Finch news page for screenings and hopefully more to come.



Blogger spacedlaw said...

So lovely to see you back, Eddie.

25 June 2009 at 21:24:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Kelly Kilmer said...

We missed you here!

Are you going to Comic Con? You know it's not the same without you! Even my boy is asking!

25 June 2009 at 21:30:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Eddie Campbell said...

Hi, Natalie
Sorry, Kelly, but not this year. Say hi to Tristan for me.

25 June 2009 at 21:55:00 GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear about your funk - it can be an enervating thing indeed.

Have missed your blogging, please come back to it when (or if) you feel up to it.


26 June 2009 at 04:24:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Matthew Adams said...

Hope the funk stays away for good, or at least allows you to have a bloody good rest from it.

I am looking foward to getting my hands on your alec omnibus (hmm, a good line for the ladies to practice on men at the pub? Not that ladies need to use any line apart from "Let me buy you a beer").

I really like Kennedy's simple practical posters (deceptively simple?) There is something nicely old world about them, all the design elements revolve purely around the type.

26 June 2009 at 07:56:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Nino said...

Hi, Eddie:
As Kelly has said:
We missed you here.
Wish you well!

26 June 2009 at 11:34:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Kelly Kilmer said...

Drat! Comic Con won't be the same without seeing you. We will miss you there. I showed Tristan your comment and he got a big smile on his face. He says hi back.
Be well and take solace in knowing I'll harass whoever's at your place in the booth! ;)

26 June 2009 at 12:29:00 GMT-5  
Blogger Austin Kleon said...

The internet's a bore without you, Eddie. Thanks for pointing this out!

26 June 2009 at 13:30:00 GMT-5  

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