30,000 words and four years later, the manuscript of my first piece of long fiction has been wrapped up. Now it’s off to trusted confidants for initial remarks and critique before I refine the third and hopefully final draft.
Just been published in France! Very excited to be adding Jacker Magazine to my client list and another example of ‘art writing’ to my portfolio. Have a look at the link below for my first piece of published work exclusively on the subject of graffiti. See my entire interview with the incomparable GROM and grab the crisply designed and laid out hard copy in quality skate shops, coffee shops, music stores and speciality magazine distributors internationally. SEE THE WHOLE STORY AND CHECK OUT JACKER MAG HERE : http://www.jackermag.com/the-incredible-story-of-groms-monsters.htm?lang=en
Here’s a taste :
J: Your use of manipulated pop culture symbols (Ren and Stimpy, The Simpsons, Beavis and Butthead, King of the Hill, Family Guy, South Park etc…) could elude to a personal philosophy that you’re trying to translate through your work. Why does ‘dementing’ icons seem to be a theme for you?
GROM: Honestly, I didn’t think about my art like that. If you or other people want to try to explain my stuff? Go for it. I never know what I’m doing or how it’s going to end up. But if you or other people have an idea about my work and, let’s say, it’s a good idea, I’ll just say: ‘oh yea, you’re right! [laughs] oh yea, you’re right!” I’m still trying to figure it out myself. All I know is that I’m just going to try and keep it real for a long time and I want my work to be everywhere. That’s it. I mean, because of painting trains, people actually think I’ve been places where I’ve never been! And that scale takes more effort and thought than blatantly getting up, too. ‘Being up’ is more of an ego thing, and to me, it’s just not important enough. Being creative, inspirational and unique is a whole different thing.
J: Some say that within the graffiti world “for some, the allure of being caught is part of the draw.” How do you respond to that?
GROM: It’s absolutely not exciting and it’s actually extremely stressful. There’s so much boredom and money that, in Calgary, cops are basically paid to use photos to gather information and get people to snitch on each other. Then they break your door down with ten cops, try to take your computer and your parents computer – but there wasn’t any evidence at my house so that was good [laughs] – that’s why it can be so stressful. But then I come here (Vancouver) and nobody cares. When I was unknown it was all a little exciting, but now that I’m balancing between legal and illegal, my social life stays completely away from it. I’ve come really far now: I’m getting known. And for the past five years cops have been trying to get me. If I flaunted my personal life – like a lot of people in graffiti do these days – I would have already been charged with more illegal pieces and counts than I want to mention
A good friend said ‘way to star in your own film, Ben.’ Is it too much? Regardless, I’m super proud to have the images and words featuring me / of mine, released in such a stellar publication as SBC SKIER with Jeff Schmuck and Leslie Anthony at the helm. Both action shots on the upper page (180 safety to flat and tree wallie safety)are of me, by photographer Andreas Eder and the lifestyle of me and Sebastian Fischer drinking was taken by Tom Winter. (RIP FREEZE MAGAZINE) All were produced in Austria. All last winter. The travelogue is mine and the issue is in stores internationally NOW!
Go download this on your iphone or ipad now! It’s a revolutionary new type of ski-media from the brainchild of FREEZE magazine, Tom Winter. Click this link to get started http://www.tinyurl.com/muuzuhp !! Can’t believe I’m on the cover with one of my best friends on the planet, Adam Lynam. The image was taken in 2007, and to see it released in this format, now, is a wonderful full-circle feeling. Looks like I’m starting to monopolize the ‘Breakable Crust’ column in this publication too!
Collaboration is all we have. Here is one of two of my edits that Super Proof’s Nevin Falloon and I with the help of FOOTYFIEND, @stews__art and ROGUE MEDIA produced. Hope you like it!
I have collaborated with Eric Iberg of Inspired Media Concepts for a number of projects now and am seemingly his ‘go-to-guy’ for the written word when it comes to all things INSPIRED. From “Education of Style” reviews in the IF3 Program, to full features in SBC Skier on Phil Casabon, to writing Iberg’s personal cover letter, to Mikael Deshenaux-Comte features in The Ski Journal and now talk of being Inspired Media’s Senior Columnist and possibly biographer: when Iberg asked me to do the synopsis for Harlaut’s new benchmark ski film ‘The Road to Zion’ I obviously said yes. It’s always an honour to work with these taste-makers. See the entire film and my abstract below.
“Suffering a tragic and unexpected loss when skiing’s unabashed maverick and Harlaut’s friend Tom Warnick passed away early season, Harlaut started his wildest contest season yet: defending X-games gold, throwing Wu-tang signs in Russia during the premiere of slopestyle at the Olympics, and organizing his first ever invitational event with his brother, Phil Casabon. “Looking back at this year is so crazy for me,” Harlaut says. “After the craziness of the Olympics filming finally started and I was off to Finland, Austria, Italy and Colorado before jet-setting back Europe for the premier B&E invitational event and finishing it all off up in northern Sweden, I had the most fun and it’ll all be exposed in ‘The Road to Zion.’