Saturday Jan. 28, 2006 Scott Fitness will be celebrating their 10th Anniversary with an Open House party at their River Market location in the KC. There will be live music by Plaza Noise Ensemble (7 -9:30), DJ Sarahplease (9:30 - Midnite), wine, food, treadmills, beer, coffee, weights, gum and art by several artists, including the incomparable Chico. A sample of Chico's work hangs in my kitchen, as photo'd here.
Click here to see the large version (1014 KB) of the photo and observe the spooky details. (right click on link, open in new window).
Back in the Spring of 2005, Chico was visiting Columbia and chillin' at my place and he complimented me on some of the "art" i had collected on a recent trip to Omaha. This "art" was a bunch of old prints with cool frames i acquired at thrift stores at $3-$10 apiece. Chico was especially interested in a 15" x 29" still life that featured items displayed by a bird lover. Chico said, "Can i take this?" Thinking he wanted it for keeps, i said, "Sure, it's yours." "Thanks! I like taking these old prints and painting my own stuff over them," he added. "Right on, do whatever, that's cool, man" said i. i was proud that i could contribute something to help an up-and-coming young artist practice his craft. Besides, it only cost me a few bucks, and i had plenty of other low-brow prints from the 70's i could put in its place. I was familiar with Chico's work, so i was curious about how he would fuse the subtle and soft lines of this print with his decidedly bold and eerily dramatic style. i figured i would see it someday the next time i chilled with him in the KC.
Cut to a coupla months later, in the Summer of 2005. I came home to a dark apartment, exhausted from a long and satisfying vacation. I entered my kitchen, flicked on the light and there he was: Mr. Blue Zombie, incorporated into the context of the old print on the wall in my kitchen. "Mmmmm...berd brains" he grunts as his undead face glowers up at me. In the lower right, where the original artist had signed his name to the original art, there was a circle with a line through it and the words, "remixt by Chico." Genius! i had no idea Chico had meant to bestow this wonderful gift upon me. i reckoned he and his brother chilled at my place some night while i was gone, which is always cool with me, but extra cool when my visitors leave me something as deece as a genuine Chico remix.
i will always be proud and honored to display his remix in my home, and Mr. Blue Zombie reminds me every day how fortunate i am to know such a talented person.
Although many of Chico's paintings are zombie-related, his body of work encompasses varied subjects in oil, acrylic, pen & ink, sculptures, mixed media and many of his "found art" remixes like the one in my kitchen. Check out an interview and more pics of his work here.
If you're so inclined, join us at Scott Fitness Center at 200 Wyandotte Street, at the Kansas City River Market. Did i mention there'd be free food, beer and wine? Here's a map.
I'll be there taking lots of photos and enjoying the art, tunes, coffee, food and gum.
Other artists featured on Saturday night:
Jen Mellard's photography
Jon Bidwell's "art for people"
Krista Gagelman paintings and watercolor monotypes
Stormy Jackson - i don't know what he/she does.