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no room for hipsters

the occupation of Ashley and Levon

(from addair)

The following is a letter to a friend about the prospect of stirring up a rebellion.  I thought I’d share it with you all as an opportunity to get more feedback:


to start out very generally, i’ve been increasingly aware of the preciousness and brevity of life. and though i’m wracked with conflicts about larger purposes and the apparent hopelessness of history. i dont see any sense in letting that fool me into inertia.

i say all that to say that i’m very ready and determined but still open and often unsure about the specifics.


a painting exploring the matter



since so much of what i feel dissatisfied with and often enraged about deals with intangible attitudes and in the realm culture, i feel like the only way to affect authentic and durable change will be by empowering people to change at a homegrown level. i hope that government policies will swiftly follow, but i think we have to win in our collective mindscape to make any real progress. i feel like if people are justly informed and then empowered to be fully human and restored (or at least made aware of) their rights to pursue actual liberty, change would occur.

i know thats a really wide-scope view of the problem. which leads to the question, “what is the problem?”

in my opinion, they are (i know you’re well-educated on these issues, so i’m just keeping it to bulletin points, but of course its more complex than a list):

1. detachment from and disregard for our environment

2. consumer culture and our economic structure

3. disregard for social justice (especially issues of class and us foreign policy)


painting detail



i didn’t outline all of the implications of each because i’m assuming you understand and that we are, for the most part, on the same page. but let me know if i need to clarify any of my thoughts.

as part of stirring up a culture revolution, i’d like to emphasize the interconnectedness of these issues and the extent to which they influence our lives.

currently, i’m thinking on what i can do to challenge and change the parts of the status quo that are unjust and unsustainable (outside of my personal choices). i’m almost embarrassed to say that my idea, so far, is as simple as gathering people.

i’m hoping that this will only be a beginning and is not meant to be the entire goal result, but i think what we need most right now is for people to be informed and empowered to take direct action.

obviously, there are lots of avenues to do this. but as i’ve pondered my own role in this shift its evolving as art happenings of a sort.

so, im thinking i want to start working on a series of paintings addressing the above (i know i need to make it more concrete but i’m not quite there yet). have levon work on a collection of songs. have some speakers, interactive installations, and some collaboration and/or involvement with some groups or individuals that are already working toward similar goals.


painting detail 2



the aim would be to inform, empower, and provide avenues for action. i’m ready to take our culture and my life on my own terms and i want to encourage those that are already working toward that and to free those trapped in readymade identities and lifestyles.

is this making sense? i know it’s not the entire solution, but i think mobilizing warm bodies is the start.


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