Jenny Hoepke met Brody Polinsky ‘Clean and Sober Tattoo’ at his old apartment in Kreuzberg Berlin, and then AKA Berlin, where he now works, to have a few words with him about his work and life. His style is defined through etchings, patterns, symbols and dot-work.
Alright, so my first question is. Where did you grow up and how would you describe your childhood?
(laugh) I grew up in Canada. It’s a touchy subject. Growing up was pretty chaotic. I was happy enough though. I mean I was a lucky kid. I grew up in North America. You know. I had shoes, went to school, had a roof.
And what were you like as a child?
(laugh) I was introverted and scared. I guess I was just always inside my head as a kid, which was my first escape, but as soon as I found skateboarding… I just skateboarded and that was it. Then I finally had an outlet that was just for me, by me, away from my family life.
Did you study?
I somehow finished high school in 1997 but I don’t know how, luck I think. Then did some art in summer classes at a university called Emily Carr. I don’t learn very well in a classroom setting. I wouldn’t even consider it studying. It got my feet wet, but it made me happy that I didn’t get in as a full time student. It showed me that I didn’t need that to find my way, ‘cause I will continue to find my way on my own, for myself.
When did you realize that tattooing was your thing? How did you learn to tattoo? When did you start considering tattooing as a profession?
1995. My cousin who was my biggest mentor, someone who I always looked [...]
After a recent sell out run at Soho Theatre New York underground legend JOEY ARIAS returns to London with collaborator KRISTIAN HOFFMAN to the ICA on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th February for LIGHTNING STRIKES, a tribute to the life and music of Klaus Nomi.
Arias and acclaimed singer/songwriter Hoffman celebrate the life of the late German counter-tenor KLAUS NOMI who would have turned 70 in 2014. Along with songs by Nomi, the show also features 70s rock anthems, popular standards as well as original material.
In a career spanning singing with David Bowie; hanging out with Andy Warhol; compering Cirque du Soleil’s Zumanity; and sold out shows at London’s Southbank Centre and Soho Theatre – New York diva Arias is a musical force to be reckoned with. Fellow East Village stalwart Hoffman was an active figure in NYC’s 1980s No Wave scene and wrote some of Nomi’s signature songs (‘Nomi Song,’ ‘Total Eclipse, ‘Simple Man’).
Featuring an eclectic musical selection spanning everything from Nomi to classic rock, Lighting Strikes is both an homage to Klaus Nomi and a dynamic musical collaboration sure to thrill fans of Arias and Hoffman alike.
You can book tickets HERE!
A survey of the extraordinary diversity of punk and post-punk graphic design, Pretty Vacant: The Graphic Language of Punk features several hundred posters, flyers, fanzines, handbills, record sleeves and other graphic ephemera from the collection of Andrew Krivine.
Emerging in the mid-1970s, punk was truly popular culture on the margins, with new ideas germinating out of a sense of urgency and seemingly random aesthetic collisions. Before it became commercially commodified into a simplified mishmash of safety pins, mohawks and anarchy symbols, punk was as much about its wide range of visual signifiers at it was a kind of music. A do-it-yourself approach and a loathing of commercial slickness were key hallmarks of the punk attitude, informing not just the music, but also the explosion of graphic design that accompanied it. Taking cues from a wealth of influences ranging from Dadaism to the Situationist International to pulp fiction, and communicating the themes of nihilism, black humor and reappropriation, the visual language of punk was a pastiche of imagery that reflected the consciousness and anti-aesthetic of a new counterculture.
Featuring several hundred works on loan from New York-based collector Andrew Krivine, the exhibition includes iconic works by some of the most illustrious graphic artists of the period, including Barney Bubbles, Malcolm Garrett, Raymond Pettibon, Jamie Reid, Peter Saville, Linder Sterling, Gee Vaucher and Arturo Vega, as well as pieces created by the hands of talented, yet anonymous, artists. Beyond the ‘holy trinity’ of punk – The Clash, The Ramones, and the Sex Pistols – Pretty Vacant includes posters, flyers, handbills, record sleeves, badges and other graphic materials created for both iconic and obscure punk and post-punk bands, including: A Certain Ratio, The Adverts, The B-52s, Bauhaus, Blondie, the Buzzcocks, the Circle Jerks, The Cramps, The Cure, the Damned, Devo, Elvis Costello, The Fall, Fear, Gang of Four, Generation X, The Gun [...]
Text Ariana Reines
Images Aza Shade
Styling Mireia Roelas
Accessories Gabriella Marina Gonzalez and EINE
Models Oliver Fay and Naya Shtreys
* * *
A silver corsair
In a violet distance
That I am capable of imagining
Inside of a world
In which the cashew-colored sky
Emits a musk
Is the zone in which
I will lay down what’s most harassed in me
And make it die.
A miracle of loaves
The cracked floor
With its silverfish
Face of the black-haired man
Whose purple cock just spurted
Is asleep, the face is asleep and it is
Attached to him as he
Is attached to the world.
I know that there are pavilions
Among the lumpy mountains
In which some knights sit crosslegged
In their mail and tunics
And make light of the blood-red sky.
It is cheering
To look at pictures
While the wide world
Slides down this faux-wood log flume
And does not disclose
Does not disclose
What I was sucking it
For. A loser is
Still a loser in death. A wind-hover
Does not love me just because
I am here even though
It lives in a purple that has to evolve
Into being dead
The wind-hover is just something that is
And so am I
And a weathervane has a place inside of the air
The lovely proportions
Of metaphors in bedtime stories
Written for children after World War Two
The strange mixture of fear
And trust, some shattered things
Still husbanded by something else
Mysteriouser and further off
An idea of a “the stars”
An idea of a “the world”
Licorice drops turn the eyeholes on
A flesh wound blooms
Polyps and cancers, iterative
Like our contemporary arts
The Master of the Conquest
Of Majorca made a painting
Late in the Thirteenth Century
In which I understand everything
As though I were
A serrated escutcheon
Or something perspicacious
Cut up or folded in
Poked and soaked
In what flowed out.
I have a face like a sackbut
It is not a style
It is a font
Awkward and somewhat alive.
Maybe I fell for the sigil
Hidden in the letter
This incredible photograph shows a man who was left with stars in his eyes after suffering from a 14,000-volt shock. The 42-year-old electrician from California, United States, experienced the shock after his left shoulder came into contact with the current. Four weeks later, suffering from reduced vision, he went to his doctor who found he had developed star-shaped cataracts. The shock caused an electric current to pass through his whole body, including the optic nerve, which connects the eyes to the brain.The unnamed man has had the star-shaped lenses removed but still has poor vision because of damage to his optic nerve.
Alice’s Adventures Under Ground, the original version of the book that Carroll presented to Alice Liddell in 1864, is presently housed in the British Library, which has graciously made it freely available online. The handwritten volume includes 37 crisp ink illustrations rarely seen by a wider audience.
This manuscript – one of the British Library’s best – loved treasures – is the original version of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll.
You can read the entire original novel online and enjoy the intricate and naive illustrations that accompany the story here.
Traveling around the country, booking appointments on his cell phone, and tattooing “semi-legally” from hotel rooms, errant tattooer Max Kuhn‘s way of tattooing seems to attract almost as many followers as the tattoos themselves. Yet, one would be remiss to write off such travels as gimmicky; anyone who looks closely at his tattoos–bold, romantic, nostalgic interpretations of classic Americana–can feel how their imagery and facture seem inextricably bound to his life as a tattoo outsider; with thick lines and bold shading, they’re a little bit crude, but dynamically angular, clever and strong. We recently caught up with Max to talk about his work, travels, and why he eschews the tattoo “community.”
How did you first start tattooing?
When I was a young teenager and really wanted to start getting tattoos, I didn’t have any money. The (pretty naive) way I saw it was: I could try to come up with $100 and then either buy myself a tattoo or buy a tattoo kit and give myself unlimited tattoos. I had some older skateboarding friends who had tattoo equipment floating around and took turns doing stick figures and devil heads and stuff on each other. I didn’t know anything about tattoos and didn’t really get to see tattoos very often so the stuff they had, to me, looked pretty good. It seemed possible, anyway. I got some equipment and I gave myself some terrible tattoos. I also tattooed a few friends that bullied me into it but I really didn’t have any ambition to do tattooing. I just wanted to have tattoos. Doing it myself was just the easiest way to get them. I was 16 and had no idea what I was doing, literally no idea. I’d never really [...]