I’ve always been a movie junkie. I attribute my transition from childhood’s “All movies are fun!” sentiments to actually, really deeply loving film and movies to my Dad who harbors a keen interest and love for the form himself. On more than one occasion he handed out reprieves from getting my homework done so we could watch something great on broadcast television like Mel Brooks’ The Twelve Chairs or John Sturges’ perfect and perfectly American The Great Escape.
While working in the studio either screenprinting, packing orders or just cleaning up and re-organizing I tend to gravitate to watching old TV shows and movies (when I’m not listening to music or podcasts). Of late, I’ve been on a documentary kick, and came across the epic, whip-smart, and incredibly energetic film Best Of Enemies, written & directed by Morgan Neville & Robert Gordon, about Gore Vidal & William F. Buckley’s intensely bitter relationship. And it’s this relationship’s enmity that brought them both to wider recognition and audiences around the world as both political commentators as well as leading critical thinkers (for good or for ill) around the world. In this current Presidential election cycle, this film couldn’t be more current, prescient and on-trend.
Enough said, luckily it’s available in at the film website here, as well as on iTunes, Netflix, & On Demand. Enjoy!
ABOUT THE FILM
In the summer of 1968 television news changed forever. Dead last in the ratings, ABC hired two towering public intellectuals to debate each other during the Democratic and Republican national conventions. William F. Buckley Jr. was a leading light of the new conservative movement. A Democrat and cousin to Jackie Onassis, Gore Vidal was a leftist novelist and polemicist. Armed with deep-seated distrust and enmity, Vidal and Buckley believed each other’s political ideologies were dangerous for America. Like rounds in a heavyweight battle, they pummeled out policy and personal insult—their explosive exchanges devolving into vitriolic name-calling. Live and unscripted, they kept viewers riveted. Ratings for ABC News skyrocketed, and a new era in public discourse was born.
- Flatstock, in Austin TX during SXSW Music Festival
Here we go!
The very first Flatstock Rock Poster Convention of 2012 is right around the corner and we’re getting all of our posters, prints, tees, test prints and thingamajigs into gear. We’re chomping at the bit and rarin’ to go with lots of new work to show at first taste of Spring and favorite Texas town during the amazing SXSW Music Festival.
Flatstock 33 will display the works of more than 100 artists from across North America and the globe. The exhibition is free and open-to-the-public running March 14-17 and features posters representing decades of styles, colors and techniques for sale. Show up early and be ready to be overwhelmed with amazing posters. (You might want to bring some dough since you won’t want to leave empty handed!) The exhibition is free and open to the public.
This year is just slightly more exciting than ever with a couple of added events in Texas.
- Wednesday 3/14: Hot gig poster printing awesomeness! We were commissioned by the HGTV network to design a poster for one of 4 showcase nights of great music they will be hosting at SXSW at their beautifully renovated venue, The Studio. Our silkscreen poster (see the design below) will be hand printed on-site by Andy MacDougall of Squeegeeville with the help of Austin’s own Coronado Studio during the opening night of The Studio on Wednesday 3/14 and we’ll be there too, signing posters and they are completed and handing them out to the first 300 folks at the show. (Note, you must be a registered SXSW participant to attend The Studio showcase shows.) The bands appearing for Wednesday night’s showcase are: Say Hi, Young Orchids, Oh Mercy, Sean Bones, The Pierces & Girl In A Coma. For more info about HGTV’s The Studio, full band and poster artist list click here.
This limited edition, hand silkscreen printed poster will be available exclusively at The Studio by HGTV on 3/14 during the show.
- Thursday 3/15: We will be appearing at the SXSW Film Festival Premiere of the poster documentary film Just Like Being There by director Scout Shannon on March 15th at 4:15pm at The Vimeo Theater (inside the Convention Center at 201 Trinity St.) and Allison will be speaking after the Premiere in a Q & A session with a selection of other Flatstock posters artists who also appear in the film.
Who: Over 100 working rock poster artists from all around the globe. Click here for the list of Flatstock 33 participating artists.
Where: Flatstock 33 at SXSW in the Austin Convention Center on Level 1 – Ballrooms A, B, C – same place as last year!
- Wednesday 3/14 from 2:00pm – 6:00pm
- Thursday 3/15 – Saturday 3/17 11:00am – 6:00pm
What: The FLATSTOCK poster show series is presented by the American Poster Institute (API). It is an ongoing series of exhibitions featuring the work of many of the most popular concert poster artists working today and happens 4-6 times a year with scheduled shows in Austin, TX at SXSW, Barcelona Spain during Primavera Music Festival, Chicago, IL during Pitchfork Music Festival, Seattle WA at Bumbershoot Fest, and in Hamburg Germany during the Reeperbahn Festival.
If you are in Austin for SXSW we hope to see you at the amazing Flatstock Rock Poster Convention, so come say hello!
DIY art and culture lives, thrives and has been gaining a massive resurgence in the past decade. The growth of hand crafted work, arts and crafts that could easily have been made by machines and digital media, but wasn’t, by choice of the artists, is astonishing and rad.
One artist, director, craft show creator (Art vs. Craft), retail craft store co-owner (Paper Boat) and all around superwoman of DIY, Faythe Levine also undertook the writing of a book and making an extraordinary documentary film about this movement beginning in 2006. The film is called Handmade Nation and is just beginning to screen all around the country, and the newly released book is called Handmade Nation The Rise of DIY, Art, Craft, and Design. Both authors Faythe Levine and Cortney Heimerl are touring the US and abroad with their film screenings and talking to folks about the passions and work of folks who make art and crafts with their hands. Both the film & the book have been highly anticpated for 2 years and counting. I can’t wait to see the film and have the book in my wishlist, ready to come home any minute now.
Well, it’s a funny ol’ world and a funny time to be thinking about American politics. And not really so much “funny ha ha”. In a random stroke of good timing I just finished watching the film Chicago Ten after hearing a piece about it on NPR’s All Things Considered a few weeks ago. It was so compelling just to listen to the bits played that I “Netflixed” the movie right away.
The movie is a documentary, but with an interesting mixture of animation and live action archival footage of the 1968 Democratic Convention protests, riots and defendents in the subsequent trial. The animation and related audio portions are based on the existing film and audio recordings of the trial itself as well as appearances by the Chicago 8 themselves, in a sort of rotoscoped look, which is quite cool. For a documentary nerd such as myself, it’s an added bonus that the dialogue in the animated portions of the film are directly taken from court records and other filmed materials.
Ultimately, like other documentaries about the turbulent late 1960s in the US, Chicago 10 reveals an intense period of change, conflict and eventually some resolution. Albeit at times, seemingly tenuous. “Netflix” it.