4.19.2007

I AM 8 BIT 2.007: And So It Went

Last night I went to the 2007 edition of I AM 8-BIT, the art show inspired by classic 8 bit games that many of my peers played as children, and now play again today, but with a new, retro-hipster confidence added to their button mashing. This is the third year in a row for I AM 8-BIT, and every year they seem to draw a bigger crowd. Me and my posse arrived at 7, the proclaimed start time for the art show. Apparently some artists were invited to come earlier, to be interviewed by G4TV... Maybe other non artists caught wind of this, seeing as how by the time that I got there, there was already a line stretching about half a block down the street.


This guy found the best part of the line to peek from...



Me and Kevin strutted our way past all the chumps in line, up to the table by the front door, and were issued two fancy wristbands, one green one for alcohol, and another with Megaman on it, that I haven't the slightest idea why it was issued. Once inside, there was a sea of people to wade through, not to mention a few camera crews, all squeezed into a space about the size of a studio apartment.

This is Gabe Swarr, being interviewed by some guy that I could've sworn was Jack Osborne, of The Osbournes fame. Possible thoughts running through Gabe's head:
1. Don't let hair grow out, might end up looking like that.

2. Glasses make me look smarter than this guy.

3. Cool, we both have brown shirts on...

4. I am SOOO taller than you, sucka...
I wanted toencapsulate the awkwardness of this moment by making sure not to crop out the Coach image floating above Gabe's head. Was that even a real game? I think Gabe was being interviewed and taped practically every time I spotted him at the show. And every time it was also blocking all the artwork behind them from my view.


And then...




it seemed like this dude was having more than his fair share of interview time, I wanted to scope out the art that was on the wall that he's standing in front of, but seein' as how he's sportin' a 'hawk, a crapload of tatts, piercings, and was talking about some metalic cobra snake he made, I figured I would just wait till he was done talkin' to the pretty lady.


This guy creeped me out, just by the mere fact that we were stuck next to each other at some point, and he said hi... Look, dude, as I recall, Mario was not bare-chested under his red overalls, he had a moustache, but that is much different than a 5 O'clock shadow, and last time I checked, Mario didn't wear any kind of velour jacket, draped over his delicate shoulders--



Oh come on...


This girl a) knows nothing about video games, and b) had this exact, "why the hell am I here in this sea of nerds when I'm so hot," look on her face the entire time she wasn't on camera.

I finally located my piece, and it was already sold! WOOOHOOO!!!



As a preface to this next section, I want to admit that I am going to start being a little more open about my personal opinions on my blog. I've tried to leave my opinions to a minimum for the most part, but lately I have been a little more than disappointed with the quality of work people have been trying to pass off as art, and I think it would do everyone a favor if artists start to realize that not everyone thinks their work is great merely by the fact that they have a piece hanging on the wall in a gallery. That said, I don't think people should feel limited and restricted, I'm just hoping for higher quality and less BS...

Here's a really cute Luigi painting that I liked a lot



Here's a guy taking a picture of a painting that is quite the opposite of the Luigi painting. I couldn't really believe that he was taking a picture of it... This was one of the suckiest pieces in the show. I hated it. It reminded me of something that somebody in my highschool art class might have been praised for... Hey, maybe the person that did it is a highschooler, but somehow I doubt it. To the artist: learn how to mix paints! Everything doesn't have to be at the same saturation level...



These were tiny, abundant, and well executed. Very cute, pacman inspired pieces... They remind me of Scott C... Oh..

my bad...

I just wish I had been able to see all of them, unobstructed.. but there was always someone right in front of them...






Again, why do I feel like I went back to high school. I mean come on... and then I found this mural outside that I thought could've been done by the same artist...


After I got tired of being crammed in a hot, crowded space, me and my friends went out back for some drinks and good times with a giant atari controller and

My friend Erin and... hey it's Roman Dirge!



He didn't have art in the show... and was waiting out back for a friend... I think I made him cringey and uncomfortable... at least that's what his expression seems to be saying... He was a lot nerdier than I ever imagined...

I'm tired of typing, here are more images of friends...

Mari and her cool skeleton-heart hoodie


Jeremy and Hugo...



Me and Kev (who looks like he can shoot lasers out of his eye)



Me and Mari


And our sour cream alien friend, who we met at El Coyote...

11 Comments:

Blogger Inhae Lee said...

Arr... I wish I've made to the show on opening night. Cool arts!

4:16 PM, April 19, 2007  
Blogger Tony Mora said...

I can agree that there were some pieces that just seemed out of place and seriously lacked any thought or exectution. I think the biggest problem is the "hey look at my version of (insert character)" that was much more prevalent in previous shows. The theme of old school games is great because the old games are so vague on who or what the characters are, that the artist can really inject their own ideas onto them. Its a great opportunity for an artist to take advantage of that and try and tell a story. I really think the show has gotten better over the past two years. Jon Gibson has done an awesome job of assembling some really great artists just like yourself!

9:23 AM, April 20, 2007  
Blogger Chris Battle said...

Thanks for covering the insanity so the rest us us didn't have to deal with it! I'm gonna wait 'til later so I can actually see the artwork...

...and you're totally spot on with your critiques.

1:31 PM, April 20, 2007  
Blogger MARILLA said...

Ha Ha Ha-!!
good report and gooood pictures!!(>_<), Japanese cool-nerd kiku-chan...
Honestly, I was not able to be close to your art work. and I did not know it was the real tiny original size!
Too many people, but you know I love your stuff...
You should do series of the photo booose drawings..
Well..best part of the night was "we could hang out together!!"
and I forgot to get the art work from you........

2:04 PM, April 20, 2007  
Anonymous elio said...

awesome behinde the scenes look of the show!

9:45 AM, April 21, 2007  
Anonymous Jason Torchinsky said...

I'm the guy who made the big Atari joystick. I just thought I'd say hi, andt that I liked your photobooth piece. And I think I'm the only artist in the show who got to watch their piece stomped on by everybody. Which is fun, once you, you know, let go.

1:07 PM, April 23, 2007  
Blogger chickennuggets said...

we went to the show saturday, it was cool. Lots of work.

11:04 AM, April 25, 2007  
Anonymous Tommy said...

Your art is awesome! Keep it up!

2:41 PM, April 25, 2007  
Blogger cdeboda said...

Thanks for sharing your photos of the show. Enjoyed the commentary! :D

10:05 PM, April 25, 2007  
Blogger Bill said...

Looks like an interesting show, but I agree with what you said about some of the art being overrated. (Though some of it is awesome...I love scott campbell's stuff too.) Anyway, I've been reading your blog off and on for a long time, but I didn't really know who you were. Then you posted pics of Kevin and I realized I just saw him last weekend at APE here in San Francisco. Weird! Small world. Hope your new job is treating you well.

4:11 PM, April 29, 2007  
Anonymous Eric Homan said...

The Mario guy is GameJew.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fA8u2tqwRLg

1:52 PM, May 16, 2007  

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