Sweat Stains, Beer, and Cigarettes

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“Sweat Stains” postcard, featuring a photograph by Mark Murrmann

Sweat Stains, Beer, and Cigarettes (2011)

Presented by: Motorik Arts and the Stevens Square Center for the Arts

This exhibition ran from March 26 – April 17, 2011

Featuring artwork by: Bill Hauser | Dan Wieken | David Moreira | Erik Farseth | Janelle Olson | Jason Knudson | Jim Blaha | Joe Morris | Lizardman (Matt Wells) | Mark Murrmann | “Mr. Mike” Haeg | Tom Kaczynski | Tony Tudisco and the Altered Esthetics Art Vending Machine Artists

Curated by: Erik Farseth

Reception and Closing Night Party: April 16, 2011, featuring music by The Blind Shake and the Knotwells

Location: SSCA Gallery, 1905 Third Avenue S., Minneapolis, MN 55404

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PHOTOS: Sweat Stains, Beer, and Cigarettes photo gallery

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The Blind Shake performing at SSCA Gallery

SWEAT STAINS, BEER, and CIGARETTES

Out of all of the human senses, it is the sense of smell that’s most strongly linked with long-term memory and emotion.

The smell of cookies baking in the oven can trigger powerful memories of early childhood; “new car smell” serves as an emotional trigger; while scientific research has shown that a chemical exuded by the male armpit produces increased heart rates, heightened levels of cortisol, and positive mood changes among heterosexual females.

There is even evidence linking clinical depression to a decreased sense of smell.

We live in a culture in which many natural aromas have been sanitized or masked by chemicals. In an increasingly disembodied and desensitized world, the local nightclub or dive bar remains a treasure-trove of musky aromas. From the sour tang of spilled beer, wet denim, and leather jackets; to the smell of ozone from old tube amps; or the perspiration running down the back of the roadie’s t-shirt, bars and nightclubs exude a raw physicality akin to that of full-contact sports.

Picture a summertime concert, where the heat of a thousand whirling bodies causes condensation to form on the ceiling, water droplets raining down on the heads of the dancers, their clothes clinging to their bodies like saran wrap, soaked with other people’s sweat and the grease from the half-naked bodies of the 800-pound gorillas diving off the stage.

It is in this same spirit that we bring you “Sweat Stains, Beer, and Cigarettes,” a tribute to bar culture, tobacco-stained walls, and sweaty, dirty rock ‘n’ roll.

Sponsored by SSCA Gallery and Motorik! Arts

ARTIST BIOS

Bill Hauser

A Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art graduate, Bill Hauser’s artwork has graced the record covers, t-shirts and posters of numerous punk, hardcore and heavy metal bands from around the world. Inspired by ’80s rock and roll artists like Pushead and Richard Corben, Hauser’s attention to detail, jagged line work and bright color schemes reflect the chaotic urgency of punk rock gigs.

Bill Hauser is well known in the realm of underground music, having worked with bands like: ANTiSEEN, Brody’s Militia, Hirax, In Defence, Skit System, BANE, Hellnation and Ozzy Osbourne.

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Daniel Thomas Wieken

Daniel Wiekan’s drawings are influenced by underground comic art, with heavy doses of metal and punk imagery (cultivated from album covers, posters, and the like), coupled with pop culture commentary. Wieken draws inspiration from disparate sources, including: wildlife art, fashion photography, and 15th century apocalyptic paintings.

David Moreira

David Moreira (aka SkatRadioh) is a Duluth-based printmaker and poster artist. Moreira writes:

“Two years ago, I decided it was time I attempt to build a studio from the ground up in order to screen print my own art and posters. Spending most of my time in a punk DIY music community while a student at the University of Minnesota – Duluth, I found myself supporting some of our city’s bands and house venues. The imagery I work with often refers to modern consumption –whether it applies to a beer festival revolving around the cheapest beer we can find, a charged debate on what disgustingly awesome foods are better, minor internet celebrities and memes, or my own childhood jealousy of the friend who had all those objectified dinosaur toys from Jurassic Park.

Erik Farseth

Erik Farseth is a founding member and former Chairman of the Stevens Square Center for the Arts, and co-founder of the Twin Cities Zine Fest. He holds a BA from St. Olaf College in Art, Culture, and Politics, and an MA in Journalism from the University of Iowa. Farseth was the recipient of a year 2000 MCBA-Jerome Book Arts Fellowship for “Wipe Away My Eyes.”

A printmaker and collage artist, Farseth recently teamed up with the Missoula-based print shop Garage Tees to create silk screened posters based on some of his designs. Farseth’s original collage art (as seen here in the middle piece, “Well Played”) is cut-and-pasted entirely by hand, using scissors and a glue stick.

Janelle Olson

Janelle Olson was born in Minneapolis, but moved to Chicago to finish her bachelor’s degree in Photography from Columbia College Chicago.

Olson writes: “I focus on Hip Hop photography because it is closest to my soul. I try to embody the grittiness along with the beautiful that is Hip Hop. Since graduation I have been freelance shooting in hopes to get the right connections to shoot for prestigious Hip Hop and Fashion magazines. I have since then moved back to MPLS.  My goal is to surround myself with the Photography world in the urban fashion setting.

“Hip-Hop has been the biggest influence of who I am and where I am going. The atmosphere, the culture, and the feeling that it gives me allow me to express that in my photographs.  Fashion is the center of my photographic medium. Whether it is urban gear or couture clothing. I am planning on traveling the world and gathering new genres of Hip Hop and continue to represent the truth.”

Jason Knudson

Mankato-based designer Jason Knudson is the Lead Graphic Designer for buyfun.com. Knudson studied Painting at Minnesota State University-Mankato. He is affiliated with Outhouse Arts.

“I like punk rock, junk food, and science fiction. When I’m not at work designing websites, I’m either on the toilet, hanging out with my awesome family and friends, at the practice space, at a show, or drawing pictures involving punk rock, junk food and science fiction. I wanna say ‘Thanks’ to all the bands I’ve done art for. It was fun.”

Jim Blaha

Jim Blaha is a self-taught artist living on the edge of St. Paul.  He plays in the noise/garage band “The Blind Shake,” and spends the rest of his free time thinking about skateboarding.

These collages were inspired by the magical size of the vinyl LP cover.

Joe Morris

Chicago-based artist Joe Morris graduated with a BFA from the St. Paul College of Visual Arts in 1998 and has been pounding the pavement ever since. His rockabilly-meets-street style poster art has generated a major following around the world. The work is uniquely identifiable, like a band you know right away when you hear the first chord. Morris’s work is bold, familiar, and groundbreaking on new levels at the same time. He works in a mixed-media style that is oftentimes in a very large in scale that demands attention from the viewers.

Joe Morris Art is owned by some of the biggest companies in the world, including the 100th Anniversary mix-media painting commissioned by Kellogg’s; the Indy 500 Champions series; the Chicago Blackhawks Legends series; and the Ultimate Fighting Championships official fighter series. Many of his works have sold at Mars Gallery in Chicago, a 20-year-old gallery in the warehouse district.

For more info on owning or commissioning work, e-mail joe33morris@yahoo.com

Mark Murrmann

A former editor of Maximum Rock ‘n’ Roll, San Francisco-based photographer Mark Murrmann currently serves as Photo Editor for Mother Jones Magazine. Murrmann’s photographs have been featured in the New York Times, L.A. Times, Thrasher Magazine, The Guardian (UK), and Newsweek. But it is his passion for live music that has driven Murrmann to criss-cross the nation in the back of a tour van, sleeping on floors, and eating garbage from the 7-11 in pursuit of the perfect concert photograph.

You can see that same insatiable hunger in the eyes of Murrmann’s subjects, as they claw their way through a sea of thrashing bodies, arms akimbo, limbs flailing, guitars aimed at the audience like machine guns. Murrmann’s 2006 photograph of concertgoers at the Touch and Go 25 festival hints at an underlying current of violence and ambivalence, a fist-pumping physicality that is also reflected in the raw masculine energy of Joe Morris’ pugilistic paintings of UFC champions, and in Janelle Olson’s photographs of prize fighters and martial artists.

Matt Wells (Lizardman Art) 

Matt Wells (aka Lizardman), co-founder of the Rogue Citizen collective, is a graphic artist and designer based in the Twin Cities. Wells creates graphic art in both traditional and digital media, and has worked with a diverse clientele in publishing, music, film, performing arts, and the nonprofit sector. Wells’ clients and collaborators include: Hellcat Design Group, Substance, Aniccha Arts, Doomtree, Rainforest Action Network, SSCA Gallery, Phantom Tails, Disasteratti, John Keston, Chuck U, and Sam Thompson.

The two pieces here are the front and back cover illustrations for Disasteratti’s recent LP “Transmissionary” on Learning Curve Records.”

Mr. Mike (Mike Haeg)

What would a bar or nightclub be without a condom machine? –don’t worry, we’ve got one on display. Three, in fact. But instead of dispensing prophylactics and other “adult novelties”, these condom machines will be selling one-and-a-half inch mini-comics by Mr. Mike, a local cartoonist and graphic designer.

The Mayor of Mt. Holly, Minnesota (population 4), Mr. Mike, has designed artwork and record covers for bands such as Built to Spill, Jawbreaker, and Babes In Toyland. In addition to the condom-sized comic book dispensers, Mr. Mike will be exhibiting one of his original poster designs, the iconic cover art from Cake Magazine #17 (1993). (“The ink has faded over time.”)

Tom Kaczynski

Tom Kaczynski was born in Poland. He’s been drawing comics since the age of 10.

Kaczynski’s work has appeared in the Dave Eggers’ collection The Best American Nonrequired Reading (Houghton Mifflin); the MOME Anthology; Swindle Magazine; Punk Planet; and countless vanity publications.

An insatiable scribbler, Kaczynski keeps a regular sketchbook diary. Kaczynski’s sketchbook drawings, done in the midst of darkened nightclubs, capture the energy and the immediacy of live music better than a thousand people armed with camera phones.

Follow his blog at: www.transatlantis.net/blog

Kaczynski’s work is available from Fantagraphics Press and from Uncivilized Books.

Tony Tudisco / Altered Esthetics Art Vending Machines Artists

The Altered Esthetics Art Vending Machines are vintage cigarette machine that have been re-purposed by Tony Tudisco to vend original works by Twin Cities artists that sell for five dollars. Each piece is the size and shape of a pack of cigarettes. Look for the Altered Esthetics Art Vending Machines at Altered Esthetics Gallery and (coming soon) at Big Brain Comics on Washington Avenue.