Tag Archive | Death

David Bowie: 1947 – 2016

David Bowie By Rugman
David Bowie at Aladdin Sane By Rugman (Photo By Gail)

Planet Earth is Blue, and There’s Nothing I Can Do…

It seems hilarious to think that I was six years old when David Bowie released his self-titled debut album, which would have been on June 1st of 1967. Coincidentally, and in an act of incredibly bad timing on Bowie’s part, that was the shared release date of another album you may have heard of: The Beatles’ Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. What a way to ensure that your most heartfelt artistic efforts are completely and totally eclipsed by another act! Bad Timing! In hindsight, also hilarious.

Point being that David Bowie has been part of the soundtrack for me since childhood. Surprisingly, in 2014 (four decades on) I learned more about the guy than I ever imagined I didn’t know. First, Showtime aired David Bowie: Five Years, a fantastic documentary spanning five key years in Bowie’s music career that was just one mind-blowing revelation after another. For example, I had no idea that Legendary keyboardist Rick Wakeman played piano all over Hunky Dory. Who even pays attention to stuff like that? Mind blowing. Five Years definitely deepened my respect and admiration for the man, his music and his insane contribution to global pop culture. David Bowie was a Musical Genius!

David Bowie Young

If you have ears and eyes and you are a David Bowie fan, then you also probably heard about David Bowie Is; the universally critically lauded, career retrospective that became the fastest-selling exhibition in London’s Victoria & Albert Museum’s history. The David Bowie Is exhibition — which featured over 300 items including photos, costumes, artwork, hand-written lyrics, stage props, videos and other items from David Bowie’s Personal Archives toured Toronto, Sao Paulo and Berlin, and Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art — its only stop in the US, among other destinations. At that same time, a documentary film about the touring art exhibition, also called David Bowie Is, had a one-night only screening in various theaters across the country. I saw the film in NYC and it was so exciting that it made me want to spend a thousand dollars just to go to Chicago and see the exhibit. Directed by Hamish Hamilton, the film was an excellent primer and would  certainly have greatly enriched your visit, should you have had exhibit tickets at the ready. For those who wwere never able to view the exhibition in person, this film is the next best thing.

In addition to a detailed tour of the exhibition’s key features, the film included tons of back-story and insights from curators Victoria Broackes and Geoffrey Marsh who serve as onscreen hosts and narrators. And let me tell you, they know their shit. One of my favorite parts of the film is a viewing and explanation of extensive, illustrated storyboards that Bowie created for a film to be based on the Diamond Dogs album. It is unreal. You’ll also hear conversations with exhibit-goer-fans, and commentary about Bowie’s far-reaching influence with pop taste-makers such as Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker and fashion designer Kansai Yamamoto, who created the iconic costumes from the Aladdin Sane tour that you’ve been looking at in photos for years.

Everybody who loved him has a David Bowie Story, but I was never so fortunate as to meet him in person or even interview him over the phone, and the only time I saw Bowie play live was when he toured with Nine Inch Nails; a show which I recall absolutely nothing about. So, my story is to recommend these films to you if you have not yet seen them. David is gone now, and all we have are our shared memories of him and a life well-lived. RIP.

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Fruit of The Tomb T-Shirt

Fruit of the Tomb

Oh Boy, this one is lots of fun: Rotten Fruit with Little Skull Faces! This snarky take on the legendary and iconic Fruit of The Loom undergarments brand, designed by Gimetzco!, would look especially smart on a navy men’s or lady’s tank-style T, don’t you think? Check out all the styles, colors and sizes you can choose from, starting as low as $19.95 per shirt, at This Link!

Joy Division Fan T-Shirt

Death Post Punk Fan Joy Division
(Image Source)

The official name of this design is Death: Post Punk Fan (Joy Division) and it is by artist Anderson Green Devil based on Death, one of the seven Endless characters in Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series.

This design is available in a variety of shirt styles for just $19.95 in the Neatoshop, at This Link!

Jeff Soto’s Decay & Overgrowth at Jonathan LeVine Gallery

Memorial of the Forgotten By Jeff Soto
Memorial of the Forgotten By Jeff Soto

Just when you thought the art reporting on this blog couldn’t get any more exciting, Jeff Soto, one of our very favorite American contemporary artists, returns to Jonathan LeVine Gallery for his fourth solo exhibition! Having been deeply affected by the  recent passing of two of his grandparents, Soto’s new series of works Decay and Overgrowth is his memento mori of sorts. For Decay and Overgrowth, Jeff maintains many of his signature motifs while incorporating a distinctive fecundity in the  broad use of new colors, such as mossy green, and images of plants and vines that entwine through skulls in a series of paintings that seem to personify the members of Soto’s family.

Cora By Jeff Soto
Cora

Joe By Jeff Soto
Joe

Kathryn By Jeff Soto
Kathryn

Man By Jeff Soto
Man

Expanding upon the themes explored previously in Lifecycle, Soto’s solo 2010 exhibition, works in Decay and Overgrowth deal with the passage of time, early man and life after death, as well as primitive myths and legends attempting to explain the unknown. A connective thread of mortality runs throughout the work, conveying themes such as the transient nature of life, brevity of the average lifetime and inevitability of death.

Monster By Jeff Soto
Monster

Soto selected symbols of hope and growth to symbolize the cycle of life, death and rebirth. Organic shapes and elements such as mountains, plants, flowers, rocks and crystals are juxtaposed with manmade objects such as cell phone towers, weapons, polished gems and modern architecture. The resulting imagery combines a bit of magic, unanswered questions and a glimpse into the unknown.

Jeff Soto Poses with his Work
Jeff Soto at Jonathan LeVine Gallery

I found this exhibit to be deeply moving and also life affirming. Jeff Soto was at the opening reception on Saturday and he was just the nicest person you could meet, signing a card for me and also posing with his art for this post. Thanks Jeff for your beautiful art and also for being so cool.

The Bike Ride
The Bike Ride

Jeff Soto’s Decay & Overgrowth will be on exhibit through October 6, 2012  at Jonathan LeVine Gallery, Located at 529 West 20th Street, 9th floor New York City. Gallery Hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM.

Jeff Soto Reception Crowd at Jonathan Levine
Fans Enjoy Jeff Soto’s Art at Saturday’s Opening Reception

Davy Jones: Dead at 66

Davy Jones of The Monkees

British singer and actor Davy Jones, best known as vocalist for The Monkees, passed away suddenly today, February 29, 2012. Jones reportedly suffered a heart attack Wednesday morning. This is so crazy and unexpected, as I literally just saw Jones and his very excellent band perform at BB Kings night club here in NYC on Saturday, February 18th and he looked and sang great. Davy Jones was 66 years old. RIP Davy.

Metal Guitarist/Producer James Murphy Suffers Brain Tumor Relapse


James Murphy Has Brain Tumor Relapse; Donations Welcome

James Murphy, former guitarist of both Death and Testament, as well as founding member of the death metal band Disincarnate, has had a relapse of the brain tumor that sidelined him back in 2001. Murphy stated that the tumor had returned but that it was a non malignant and that it was being treated pharmacologically. Unfortunately, those medications have serious side effects that have left him unable to work. The option for different medications is available, but at a cost of over $1000 a month, and he needs a minimum of 6 months of medication for treatment to be effective. With his medical expenses extremely high and James not being able to work due to the side effects of the current medications, the metal community is being asked to come together and help one of their brothers and donate to help him beat this once and for all.

To donate funds to help offset James’ medical bills please visit PayPal at this secure link. Thank You!

Read more about James previous surgery and ongoing treatment after the jump. Continue reading