Wednesday, December 19, 2012

presently posted

during my time as an artist-in-residence at facebook campus i also utilized their amazing silk screen workshop to make some prints. the "analog research lab" has a nice spread and it really made me miss having my own set up. i need to change that. i need to build my own shop for this sort of stuff. this is me saying i am going to do that. anyway:
it's hard to tell, but this is kind of a monster, 27x39 inches. i used some letraset rub-on type that  i got from fellow residents and awesome people, artists a+b, blew it up on the copy machine then made some films. the black line is torn newsprint stencil. 

and this one, which is smaller. 14x22.
both of these go in that category in my brain of "promotional posters for the present moment". maybe i'm hammering that into the ground and making too much of a thing about it, but these all fit together to me. how do you deal with liking how some advertising looks but hate what they are in fact advertising?  i'd like to be able to do about a hundred more of these and i am going to try to. 

ps in case anyone is curious, i don't have any of these to sell. but i am planning on a 2013 onslaught of new posters and prints and other things, some based on some of this batch of work, but expanded and fine-tuned.  
i am pumped to put this year in the bag and get on with some newness. onward!

future past

i have a 2013 calendar etc available next week

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


hey man, mollusk had a sweet poster show a couple weeks ago and it was sweet. what happened was they got serena mitnik-miller, jeff canham, alex kopps, tom adler, andy davis and myself to make some prints special for the show. all were expertly printed by bloom press in oakland, california, simply the best silk screener in the lower 48, and all are looking sweet as heck. only available at mollusk in sf but they do mailorder so relax.
 here's mine. kind of riffing on an old pelican paperback, but don't tell anyone.
 detail shot of dog guy
tasteful nudes

Friday, December 14, 2012

hitting the books

so as i mentioned earlier, i did an artist-in-residence stint at facebook campus last month. my project was supposed to interact with and engage people on campus in some way. after my initial instinct to go with some confrontational performance art, i decided to continue on with a project that will probably keep going until i'm dead. i made a bunch of posters.
 i call them "promotional posters for the present moment" but in this case i thought of them as anti-productivity propaganda. sort of, don't work so hard, take some time for yourself and for what is really important in life cornball stuff. no word yet if this has brought facebook crumbling down to ruins.
 i then put up some posters around with no explanation. 
note: this is a drawing of a satisfied old man, but some people thought it looked like dave thomas, founder of wendy's.
 let us travel to exotic lands
file this under thing i might actually do one day
 this too
 you figure it out
 snuck some gratuitous nudity in there
 i didn't realize until later that this sort of looks like the facebook "like" symbol from the back. timely!
 also file under things i eventually want to make real
 all these prints were made on a risograph machine, which looks like copier, but is actually a weird mix of silk screen, offset lithography, and digital printing. it's super fun.
then i did a little demonstration and a talk and gave away all the posters to whoever wanted them. many people wanted the cat thing to be real.
 drying plants
 risograph, man, i wish i had one
would love to paint this one real big on a big old building somewhere. hit me up, grant-givers!
i also made some big silk screens which i will save for later. 

Thursday, December 13, 2012

keep it casual

a nice journal/magazine thing just came out in australia. it's called "casual devices".
 it's a labor of love from a very nice dude named simon perini. i am included in this debut issue and i am flattered and stoked. look at that line-up!
 he did an interview with me, and the questions were thoughtful and considered. 
 rad little spreads
 stoked on this shot of my studio dungeon
 BPB bringing it all back home. have you read that new will oldham interview book? i suggest it, because it's great. it's a great read about process, the vibe, and goofiness.
there's a lot more in here but i don't want to ruin it. pick one up if you can. 
here's one place you can get it.

Monday, December 10, 2012

the hand that holds the thing

so i have been gone for a month and not really putting stuff up here. partly because i've been busy and have not made the time, partly because i've been cheating on my blog with instagram (@nathanielrussell), partly because i don't know why. in any case i was not around because i was doing an artist-in-residence program at facebook campus. as weird as that may sound, i can assure you that is a real thing and i did it. i will be showing photos and drawings of things i made and did as well as sorting through my various feelings about them for the foreseeable future. 
i was there for a month. i got to be back in oakland for that time but did not really get to hang with buds that much as i was kind of working or tired from working the entire time. next time, buds, i promise. i'm going to begin with the easiest thing to begin with, which is the last thing i did: this mural. i did it the last two or three days i was there and it was a nice last thing to do. i could do whatever  i wanted, wherever i wanted. getting all up in people's faces is not really my deal, so i found a nice quiet spot that you might have to try to find if you ever go there, which i suggest because the food is delicious.
 you know me, i'm keeping it simple. i started by painting a big blue hand.
 then i painted what the hand was holding
 then we took a break and went to the alcatraz night tour, which is expensive but really awesome. this is the best picture i got.
 also this one, some san quentin prisoner art. i have a thing for prison art and tv shows about prison. i am against going to prison, for myself. 
i was hoping this would happen:
this has got to be the second best san francisco movie, in my opinion. and the first is not "bullit", it's "dirty harry":
anyway, then i came back, finished painting the thing the hand is holding and then spray-painted a long  line that went around some corners, a plant, some conference rooms, and then back to the beginning. 
here it is in real time:
 the line was fun
 but it made me tense, too.
 if you look at the video, i start making a weird clenched half-fist with my left hand. that's an unconscious tension, man. you can't see, but there's a handful of programmers (?) i'm pretending to ignore. 
 at first i was all, "i'm gonna spraypaint that plant!" then i remembered that would be the lamest possible thing  i could do. then i thought "i'm gonna spraypaint that tv screen" then i remembered i didn't want to be a jerk for no reason. so i avoided both and went along my merry/stressed out way, which i think is an entirely more apt social commentary.
 the line again
 it's still going
 this part was very pleasing to me, but maybe the people who painted that wall are bummed
 going over the door was a major moment for me
 and now we're back
and that's it. and then we packed up and left and drove home three days later.

Friday, December 7, 2012

absence, fondness, slackness, roadness

oh wow. where have i been? where haven't i been? this is my longest blog absence since ever. i'm going to organize my thoughts and come back strong, i swear. in the meantime: there is a fun time to be had tonight if you are in san francisco at mollusk in the sunset. farmer dave band live! i am sorry to miss it. and there are new posters by these artists made especially for the show, available only at mollusk. please check it out and have a good time. i will come back and talk to you about things very soon.