Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Dante's Pizzeria Chicago

Day 3

Day 4

Jen working hard on the signage above the kitchen window "omnes relinquite fames, o vos intrantes" trans. "abandon all hunger, oh you entering"

Day 4: The end of a hard days work

Day 5: Pizza by the Slice board

Day 5

Day 5 Detail

Day 5: Ta Da!

Dante's Pizzeria Chicago will be opening it's door this Monday, September 5th. Make sure to stop by and grab a slice! Aaron and Tim definitely make a killer pie!

3028 W. Armitage Ave.
Chicago, IL 60647


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Dante's Pizzeria-Coming soon!

I was fortunate enough to be asked to do a chalkboard mural for my friend's brand new Logan Square restaurant, Dante's Pizzeria. The space looks great and the food sounds amazing, can't wait to see how this place is gonna take off! It's being opened by the minds behind Rocking Horse and High Dive, and some buds from a previous job.

I jumped at the opportunity to create something massive and rife with hellish imagery. Since the main focus is the food, I'm leaving plenty of space for the delicious menu items on parchment scrolls and utilizing a cavernous hell design to border the piece. Dante and Virgil look out onto the scene as the head chef, Satan, roasts a hell of a tasty looking pie!

Take a look at the work as it progresses (a high quality pic will be taken by a professional photographer once the piece is completed). Be sure to click on the image for an enlarged view! The size is 6' x 10', chalk pastel on chalkboard wall.

Day 1

Day 1 Detail

Day 2

Day 2 Detail

Friday, August 12, 2011


Black-Hexed by Johnny Miller. 19.5"x19.5" Acrylic on raw, stained canvas.

Black-Hexed by David C. Thomas. 12"x 12" acrylic on canvas

My fellow artist/musician and good friend David Thomas and I have been pushing each other to take our creative minds out of the proverbial shitter and get goin' on some new work, visual and otherwise. We've kinda been giving each other assignments to keep ourselves motivated and excited about doing our art.

A few weeks back, I went to see the exhibit entitled "Movie Mojo: Hand Painted Posters from Ghana" with David. We had been talking about utilizing the exhibit as a springboard for some new paintings, so we decided to paint our own renditions of these Hollywood-gone-voodoo spectacles of violence, monsters, transfigurations, and frenzied religious symbolism. The catch was, that instead of painting an image for a movie poster, these paintings would be specifically created to function as a 7" single record cover for my solo music project tentatively-titled Holy Ghost. The painted image would be based upon the two tracks on either face of the 45rpm single in direct reference to or in essence of the song titles or lyrical themes.

After critiquing the two paintings we were both really happy with the results. Next step is to get this damn record released and really shoot for painting a lot more in the future! Hoping to have the two tracks mixed and mastered in the next few weeks and then get the ball rolling on shopping the material around to labels that would be interested in releasing it.

Please be sure to check out the exhibit at the Chicago Cultural Center as well David's amazing collage work, and the recent collection of long-forgotten material from his amazing band, DA! on Factory 25 records.

The Trilogia della vita

Aziz converses with his lover in a tent before his is castrated for betraying her love. Scene from Arabian Nights

I've been recently watching Pier Paolo Pasolini's The Trilogia della vita (Trilogy of Life), and have been blown away by the beauty of his cinematic vision. Much like his most controversial work, his interpretation of the Marquis de Sade's Salo: Or the 120 Days of Sodom, the three films in the series, The Decameron, The Canterbury Tales, and Arabian Nights, all based upon the seminal works of Western literature. Each film (incredible as individual pieces as well as a whole) retains Pasolini's aesthetic edge and his immediately recognizable raw and unflinchingly erotic storytelling style. The painterly quality of the images in each scene, conjures the spirit of the best Italian masters, the screen dripping with rich color, elaborate costume, and uniquely Italian humor and introspection.

Unfortunately, Pasolini was violently assassinated at his home in 1975 for his radical role in Italy's Marxist movement as well as his (then) controversial homosexual lifestyle. We'll never known what fullness of artistic vision Pasolini may have achieved.