Archive for May, 2009

A Day in the Life of Century Guild: Silent Films, Dave McKean, and Gardening.

Posted in A Day in the Life, Silent Cinema, Transmission Atelier on 28 May, 2009 by Thomas Negovan

What we did today:

Jim Kay of Transmission Atelier: “I brought all of my gear- lights, monitors, and computers- into Tom’s bedroom so that I could color correct our edition prints of these Dave McKean paintings for the umpteenth pass.  I barely even noticed all the dirty laundry on the floor.  Barely.”

Jim Kay with multiple color variations of "Mélies (Untitled)" checks them against the monitor.

Jim Kay with multiple color variations of "Méliès (Untitled)" checks them against the monitor.

Jim and I have spent a lot of time together in my bedroom these past weeks.

Jim and I have spent a lot of time together in my bedroom these past weeks. Alone.

Checking the prints against the original Dave McKean painting

Checking the prints against the original Dave McKean painting

Hour four.

Hour four.

What Jim Kay sees (1).

What Jim Kay sees (1).

What Jim Kay sees (2).

What Jim Kay sees (2).

Bob Reveley: “The things we do for Gail Potocki and her garden.”

Upside?  Bob gets to be outside.  Downside?  He is digging a trench.

Upside? Bob gets to be outside. Downside? He is digging a trench.

Lyta and Lucyfur supervise Bob's gravedigging... from the cushy chaise on the back porch.

Lyta and Lucyfur supervise Bob's gravedigging... from the cushy chaise on the back porch.

Meanwhile, down in the cellar… (Jack will kill me if I pretend to be him and type something here.)

Jack hard at work on the posters for the Nitrate and Kinogeists weekend.

Jack hard at work on the posters for the Nitrate and Kinogeists weekend.

Thomas Negovan: “While Jack rots in the cellar and Bob wallows in the dirt, I ascend the staircase to the tower where the library resides.  In the recording studio, we are transported to Berlin in 1923; I use the wall space in here to hang silent film posters as I work on the Kinogeists book. Giant originals, and for sake of space, small prints that Jim from Transmission Atelier custom produces for my endeavor.”

Ok, I wouldn’t really use the word “endeavor” in a sentence, but it reads well.  The last photo shows not only my desk, but how much more sunlight I get than Jack.  I do, however, somehow still match him in pastiness.

Original 1915 poster for Italian silent film Zinga (Gypsy).

Original 1915 poster for Italian silent film Zinga (Gypsy).

Miniature Transmission Atelier prints...

Miniature Transmission Atelier prints...

Command central: the library.

Command central: the library. (I really need a steampunk keyboard.)

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Opium and Anarchy: Chris Kennedy’s majestic Artropolis, 2009

Posted in Antique Fairs, Century Guild Events, Silent Cinema on 14 May, 2009 by Thomas Negovan
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Artropolis 2009: drugs, rampant alcoholism, starvation, and anarchy.

“What you fellows did here is more relevant than anything up on our floor…”

Thus spake one of the directors of Art Chicago, one of the world’s most impressive contemporary art fairs.

Although we were on the “traditional” art floor, we proved that what was old is… in this case, sadly… cutting-edge new again.  We put together a show that was all gallows humor and intoxicating escapism, and from the overwhelming reaction and camera flashes going off all weekend, Century Guild was a runaway hit; the Chicago Tribune mentioned us as one of the fifteen “must see” things in the show.

Sex.  Drugs.  Disease.  Starvation.  Anarchy.  These were the themes that we decided the night before setup at Artropolis would replace the beautiful Art Nouveau we had been planning to bring to the International Art Fair for months.  Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele made the cut: a saucy nude, lifting her breasts seemed right at home in the aforementioned company.  A gothic syphilis poster stared from across the wall at this young and healthy girl; it was a daring contrast.

The show was two weeks ago, but it’s 2:41 and I need to go to bed, so a quick recap: (please note that I grew a beard in an attempt to pass as an adult.)

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Sex: in health, (Gustav Klimt, in magnificent period frame)

asdas

and sickness...

A charming 1897 tale about an Anarchist uprising resulting in the murders of the bourgeois rich in the forests of Paris.  We're currently trying to place this in the Human Resources department at AIG.

A charming tale about an Anarchist uprising resulting in the murders of the bourgeois rich in the forests of Paris. We're currently trying to place this in the Human Resources department at AIG.

Opium, 1919- this is one of the unbelievably rare silent film posters featured in our upcoming Nitrate and Kinogeists exhibition.

Opium, 1919- this is one of the unbelievably rare silent film posters featured in our upcoming Nitrate and Kinogeists exhibition.

Art

Art Nouveau treasures.

Gail Potocki shows her dark side...

Gail Potocki shows her dark side...

Jack was attacked by creeping baby-things; he survived, but not unscathed.

Jack was attacked by creeping baby-things; he survived, but not unscathed.

Jack and I posed in front of our cocaine-addled portraits.

Jack and Thomas, posed in front of their cocaine-addled portraits.

Thomas Negovan, Gail Potocki, and Stuart Tomc in front of 1909 anti-alcoholism poster.

Thomas Negovan, Gail Potocki, and Stuart Tomc in front of 1909 anti-alcoholism poster where 'even the baby had too much to drink at the party' according to five year old Sebastian Tomc.

Jack, Bob, and painters Gail Potocki and Brian Sindler at the end of a long show.

Jack, Bob, and painters Gail Potocki and Brian Sindler at the end of a long show.

Thomas Negovan and Stuart Tomc, Artropolis 2009.  We survived, preserving dandyism for another day.

Thomas Negovan and Stuart Tomc, Artropolis 2009. We survived, preserving dandyism for another day.

How a “Cursed Pirate Girl” left me in ruins

Posted in Olympian Publishing with tags on 11 May, 2009 by j.a.
Picturesque ruins.

Behold these picturesque ruins: Art Nouveau, Schnackenberg, and pirate chaos.

The International Antiques Fair here in Chicago has been bookended by a labor of Greek mythical proportions.  I can’t tell if it’s one of Herculean willpower or a cruel Sisyphisian effort.  If I’m a mythic figure, then these books must surely be an eco-friendly Hydra.  Stamp one, two appear in its place.  Stamp a table full, there’s an entire box containing several bundles more at the ready!

Cursed Pirate Girls drying out in the sun.

Cursed Pirate Girls drying out in the sun.

Do not mistake the pictures, though the studio looks to be in ruins thanks the multiplying amounts of “Cursed Pirate Girl #1” issues, the true damage is understated.  The toll is not only taken out across the surfaces of the studio, but the necks and wrists of the poor whelps who volunteered their energies (myself and Tom), their sanity, and those stamps.  What brave, durable heroes they are.

In the end though, this is God’s work.

Jack is the victim of Illegal photography.

Myself, as the victim of illegal photography.

Barring any unforseen world-shaking events (like the sudden onset of carpal tunnel syndrome) these hand-stamped copies of Cursed Pirate Girl #1 will be on comic store shelves- and in your hands- on May 20.

-j.a.