This was back in the day (a whoooole year ago) when I was preparing to do my first ever performance of Kurt Schwitter’s Ur Sonate with Urchestra (something which I’m kind of antsy to do again these days, because it’s such an opportunity to play with vocalization.) Remember? Remember?
While we’re on the subject of “Living In La La Land”, I’ve found the first review of the print version (so far I’ve only mailed out two review copies though.) over at Poopsheet Foundation:
This ‘zine style offering centers on a fringe-y art collective affectionately referred to as “social misfits” by the creator. By extension, there’s a really interesting discussion of NYC “Loft Law” and the gentrification of parts of Brooklyn. Gonzalez-Blitz opens the book by calling it a “journal comic for beggars,” and dives right into a heady brew of NYC cultural decline, knife sex, art interpretation, and society’s vapid fascination with Charlie Sheen. The ideas seem to dance around at will, but this near-OCD flirtation with multiple topics is an oddly compelling cacophony of cultural snapshots. The creator later admits that this deliberate jumble reflects real life vs. the discrete closure of a made-up narrative. That sense of honesty is them most attractive component of this endeavor. The collage-y photocopied presentation is sometimes difficult to discern, there’s crude handwriting that finishes out the edges of the paper that didn’t reproduce, and the thing is filled with typos, “enviornmental” probably being the most repeated, yet still the warmth and honesty of the effort shine through despite some technical foibles. This isn’t my favorite comic, but it’s easy to see how it’ll be someone’s. Grade B.
Despite his disdain for the photocopied collage aesthetic (I admit it, I was on a Destroy All Monsters kick.) and statement that it isn’t his favorite comic (from his review of a different book: “I generally enjoyed the aesthetic, with the large nipples and pouty-lipped voluptuous women. “) , I actually quite enjoy this review, incorrect assessment of my diagnosis and all. It interests me what aspects of the strip he chose to highlight, Charlie Sheen only mentioned in one strip , as well as only one passing mention of knifeplay. Another housemate says she was perplexed by the lack of mention of more significant recurring themes such as disability, mental illness, and if nothing else, multiple police raids.
That’s exactly what intrigues me. What people perceive and respond to, and how much it says about the work versus what it says about the viewer. As I type this Eric interrupts to show me a review from an old New York Times, of a dancer with cerebral palsy, saying the article rubbed him wrong. It is written in the mawkish tones of a “feel good story of the moment” – is that due to the dancer’s performance, or the reviewer’s biases? Or the editor’s idea of the least challenging way to present the article for mass consumption?
One might be led to doubt my faith in humanity. Which is why I must go into insular mode for now and focus on stuff for Bushwick Open Studios next weekend, instead of writing here.
7/5/2012 UPDATE: Just read a write-up on some other comic by the same reviewer that contains this sentence: ” I will say that I enjoy the more subversive and bold nature of the non-consensuality as turn-on riff, which moves the grade back up a notch,” CREEPY AS FUCK. Makes me kind of glad he didn’t like it more, and also a bit weirded out that he said anything positive at all. Would it be gauche to request a different reviewer for future issues? (Though the site has a few listed, it doesn’t seem like any are currently active.) Also note to douchebags out there. I don’t give a flying donkey’s ass about your exegesis on how “empowering” or “liberating” you think rape fantasies are. It makes me puke. So spare me the soliloquies about how you’re entitled to your desires around this while at the same time insisting to me that I’m not entitled to my revulsion. Assholes.