Art November 3, 2010 By Matthew Chokshi

Illustrations and Photography courtesy of JP Thurlowe

Illustrations and Photography courtesy of JP Thurlowe (Click images to enlarge)

jpthurlow title JP Thurlowe
Back in January, we stumbled upon an interesting reinterpretation of our now famous Issue One cover featuring the notorious Vincent Gallo. Although we weren’t certain of the artist who was responsible for the sketch, we speculated that perhaps the reinterpretation was a rendering by none other than the provocateur himself. Months later, we’ve found the real artist, John Paul Thurlow. The illustration is a part of the London- based illustrator ’s 100 Covers series, a collection of incredibly stunning and precisely illustrated re-interpretations of contemporary, classic, and little-known covers of magazines. PLANET spoke with JP about his upcoming 100 Covers exhibition at the KK Outlet, Vincent Gallo as a Christ-like figure, and his inspiration behind the series.

What was your inspiration and how did the Covers project come about?
I made a cover version of a 7″ single whilst at college years ago. It was “Yes Sir, I Can Boogie” by Baccara and I was a little confused as a kid about the gender of one of the singers. I loved the idea but forgot about it. The circumstances of the start of Covers were kind of fucked up. I was made redundant. I got very depressed. I went away on an artistic retreat to Japan. I lived in a Buddhist temple for a while. I started drawing, drawing the contents of my room. There was a copy of Elle I had for the flight. I drew it. I drew it again and again. I knew I had something, the college idea came back to me and I haven’t stopped working on it since then.

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Events July 30, 2010 By Matthew Chokshi

"Colony" Film Still, courtesy of Fastnet Films.

Colony Film Still. Photography by Ross McDonnell courtesy of Fastnet Films.

docuweek title DocuWeek
The International Documentary Association presents the 14th annual DocuWeek. Audiences in New York and Los Angeles have the opportunity to view some of this year’s best independent non-fiction short and feature length documentary films. DocuWeek takes place July 30-August 19 at New York’s IFC center and Los Angeles’ Arclight Hollywood.
     IDA is a nonprofit membership organization that supports documentary filmmakers throughout the world by promoting an increase in public awareness of documentary film form as well as expanding filmmakers’ opportunities and access to aid for production, distribution and exposure. IDA’s DocuWeek helps these select films meet Academy Award consideration by providing a week-long public theatrical exhibition in both New York and Los Angeles, the Academy’s minimum requirement for a film to be considered for an award.
     Since DocuWeek’s premiere in 1997, the showcase has qualified more than 160 short and feature films for Academy consideration, and produced seventeen Oscar nominations. This year’s lineup includes twenty-two films by filmmakers from around the world spotlighting a wide range of topics.

For a full list of films as well as showtimes in both Los Angeles and New York, visit The International Documentary Association.

Art July 13, 2010 By Matthew Chokshi

harveypekar cover RIP Harvey Pekarharveypekar title RIP Harvey Pekar

American writer Harvey Pekar died July 12 in his Ohio home. He was 70. Pekar is best known for his autobiographical comic series, “American Splendor”, which narrates the everyday life of Pekar and his fellow Cleveland residents. Pekar won the American Book Award in 1987 for his first series of American Splendor. In 2003, the film adaption won the Grand Jury Prize for dramatic films at the Sundance Film Festival. Over the years, several well-respected illustrators collaborated with Pekar on the comic series. The most notable, R. Crumb, was a personal friend who met Pekar while working at American Greetings in Cleveland during the 1960s. He encouraged Pekar to explore comics as a medium for his writing.
     Unlike comics chronicling tales of superheroes, villains and their fantastical battles, Pekar detailed the stories of a different kind of hero: the everyday, working class man who battles depression, loneliness and anxiety while attempting to preserve soul, pride and authenticity. Both ordinary and extraordinary, Pekar will be remembered for his humor, honesty and gift to narrate what he described best as “a series of day-after-day activities that have more influence on a person than any spectacular or traumatic event. It’s the 99 percent of life that nobody ever writes about.”

In a week in which the media focuses on the departure of an athlete from Northeast Ohio, it is the man who R.Crumb called “the soul of Cleveland” who will truly be remembered and missed.