Art world darling (and certified creep) James Franco recently launched a new and appallingly bad photo series at Pace Gallery, New York, that riffs on Cindy Sherman’s iconic film stills. “Cindy is an artist who used cinema as a source for her work; she ‘played’ at being an actress” says Franco. “I am an actor who inserts himself into his work. I am fully embedded in Hollywood, but these photos allow me to take a step to the side, look back, and refashion the work I do in Hollywood. I am at the same time actor, critic, artist, and character.” Hmm. When asked about Franco’s appropriations last week, Sherman said: “I was flattered, I can only be flattered. I don’t know that I can say it’s art, but I think it’s weirder that Pace would show them than that he would make them.” Not exactly a glowing endorsement then…
LOL’s just discovered a suite of early films by Raymond Pettibon, all shot by the artist in 1989 using home video equipment. The tapes address various elements of West Coast American subcultures from Charlie Manson and The Family (in Judgement Day Theatre: The Book of Manson) to the kidnapping of Patti Hearst by militant group The Symbionese Liberation Army (in Citizen Tania). The last of these videos, Sir Drone (above), focuses on the emergence of the American punk movement, to which Pettibon was intrinsically linked though his work with Black Flag and SST Records. In it, Mike Watt of the Minute Men and the late Mike Kelly (formerly of Destroy All Monsters) play teen punks trying to start a band. Pettibon himself also makes an appearance, as a character called Vomit. Shot over two days, Sir Drone contains a rambling script read awkwardly from cue cards. Despite their crudeness, Kelly later claimed that “Raymond’s tapes are strangely moving: he is a brilliant script writer”. LOL leaves you to be the judge of that…
This time care of the late Polish artist Wojciech Bruszewski
(via A Sound Awareness).
How is it that Leg of Lamb has only just discovered Derek Jarman’s ode to Marianne Faithful’s 1979 album Broken English?! Made in the same year as the album’s release, the short, 12 minute film features 3 songs from the record: ‘Witches’ Song’, ‘The Ballad of Lucy Jordan’ and ‘Broken English’ accompanied by a mix of found footage superimposed with strange, ritualistic scenarios and clips of the singer – imagery made all the more haunting given Faithfull’s contemporaneous descent into addiction.
Photographer Polly Borland and her Director husband John Hillcoat (of The Road and Ghosts of the Civil Dead fame) have joined forces to create a short film in collaboration with band IO ECHO for MOCAtv. In it, found footage is spliced together with classic Borland figures, their features distorted by dowdy stockings and clumsy protrusions.
Hillcoat’s no stranger to making music videos, he’s directed them for the likes of Siouxsie and the Banshees, Depeche Mode and a couple for his good pal Nick Cave (who Borland has photographed on a number of occasions). Above is the latest Hillcoat/Cave collab – featuring Ray Winstone no less – for Cave’s new single Jubilee Street.