Why aren’t you listening to Chae Hawk right now? This Buffalo NY based rap cinema artist and founder of hip hop collective TeamRadio has been producing some of the best progressive hip hop to ever come out of WNY. Be sure to check out Dance Party for The Heavy Hearted on his website (especially his track Chin Ups featuring another past subject of mine – Keith Buckley of Every Time I Die.)
Most people know Grover Cleveland as America’s only President to serve two non-consecutive terms. Fewer know him as the former Mayor of my hometown of Buffalo NY, and later as a Governor of New York State who was praised for his honesty and constant opposition of political corruption.
But now a new story is being told about Grover Cleveland, one that takes a “mostly accurate” look at the life of this “near great’ President and mustache enthusiast who continues to fly under the historical radar. The Life and Times of Grovey Cleves is a collaboration between outspoken illustrator Mickey Thoren Harmon and writer Scott Mancuso that tells the story of Cleveland’s days as a young bachelor and foodie in Buffalo during the city’s rise to prominence; to his rapid and reckless political ascent from Mayor to Governor to 22nd (and later 24th!) President of the United States in just three years.
Originally envisioned as a small exhibition Harmon’s drawings that revolved around his fascination with the political figure, the concept later grew into a more fully fleshed out publishing project with the involvement of Mancuso and the fabulous Western New York Book Arts Center who helped produce the limited edition work.
While you may no longer be able to get your hands on a print copy of this unique examination of the history of one of America’s more interesting but lesser known Presidents, you can still learn a little bit more about the man himself by checking out a digital version of The Life and Times of Grovey Cleves here.
Keith Harrington makes his art big – really big.
Red Rocks big, Silo City big.
It’s also fleetingly temporary. As a video & installation artist-DJ-VJ-audiovisual mixologist masher-upper guerrilla projectionist all-around culturally informed kind of guy (how many hyphens do you need before you can simply be listed as awesomely multi-talented? Or as Keith described it during our interview – Artistic Batman), Keith’s focused interests have resulted in a prolific and varied but ephemeral body of work Continue reading “THE PROJECTIONIST: KEITH HARRINGTON”
Welcome to 2013! I wanted to kick off the blog this year with some new work, starting with these portraits of writer Adam Rosina I created late last year.
Adam Rosina is the hard-drinking, foul-mouthed film critic and cultural essayist for Auxiliary Magazine – known as much as for his profanity laced and vitriol filled rants aimed at iconic directors like Tim Burton and Steven Spielberg as he is for his storied past in the rust belt punk scene. Despite his fearsome reputation as a renegade film journalist Adam remained an erudite and witty conversationalist during this assignment, cigarette always in hand as he jumped rapidly back and forth between topics as varied as the tropes of 60’s Japanese gangster films and his current love of the My Little Pony cartoon.
Winter was just starting to roll into Buffalo when we shot these images just down the street from my home. I wanted a setting that would offset Adam’s grittier style and too often the rust belt is portrayed as little more than a graveyard of derelict factories. The cultivated hedges and ivy of this neighborhood seemed a fitting setting for a writer who has made the conflicted personality of his city an integral part of his work.
When I received an assignment to create a series of VIP portraits for the 150th Anniversary of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, I was excited to say the least. I love the museum’s collection and often drag my assistants and interns along with me when a new exhibition premiers there (or I am in need of some quiet and inspiration). As the night of the gala grew closer the team and I actually started to nerd out a bit and get really fired up about photographing so many respected creators and art world luminaries.
Florian Reither is one-quarter of the Austrian arts group Gelitin, a collective with a reputation for staging unique performances and sensational artistic happenings – such as creating a blind sculpture at the Greene Naftali Gallery, constructing a fifty metre long pink stuffed rabbit in the Alps, or sequestering themselves inside of a giant art-Xerox for a week. Gelitin as a whole provided the closing performance of the evening and as such I only had a few moments to create this portrait between the evening’s scheduled proceedings and the rest of the images I was to shoot that night. We were all glad that we finished that night’s portraits just in time to see Gelitin’s performance – which was one of the highlights of the event.
PS. You should totally follow the Albright-Knox’s Instagram, which features a fascinating look behind the scenes of the gallery.
I have been continuing my collaboration with artist Nick Butlak that we stared on a few months ago. This collection of images is from our second session shooting together, its comprised of the some shots taken in a more natural setting but still juxtaposed against his use of man made and artificial materials combined with strong, candy tinted colors. The balloons on this shoot were a force to be reckoned with. It was a slightly more windy day than we had anticipated, and by slightly more windy, I meant that Nick was being dragged too and from by the balloons for the duration of the shoot. Even I was getting knocked around by them. We learned to be very conscious of the wind direction very quickly.
Other than the wind though, we were lucky to have absolutely gorgeous light and scenery on that afternoon to serve as a backdrop for Nick. These images will be for a number of promotional purposes and as part of the modeling/performance side of Nick’s artistic endeavors.
A quick preview from a new series of collaborative projects I am working on with artist and model Nick Butlak. Nick works extensively with themes of packaging, regurgitation, and the motif of plastic. We will be working on some more projects in the future.
More work can be seen at lukecopping.com