a lot of painters got famous doing this in the 50's. A couple of Russians blew people's minds doing it in the 20's. Doing it now is pretty, but not really next level stuff.
That said, its still really good.
Very entertaining. Now if I could just get a nickle for every comment posted .. :idea:
I think seeing this poster in person makes it much better. I saw it at Geoff's house and was really impressed. It looked great.
I always interpreted this as a 'mousehole' too. The fact that it was rectangular instead of curved, as assumed, meant that the mouse was a 'modest' mouse...not trying to show off. Just being simple and modest.
On further thought, tho...the TYPICAL, traditional mousehole IS curved. So, a mouse which chose this type of opening to his home is actually TRYING to be different...in fact, 'showing off'. So this isnt the home of a 'modest' mouse at all...but an 'immodest' mouse...
..And thats why this poster is all wrong.
one thing i've learned from watching my 'scoring' system as i used it, aside from the fact that it's completely arbitrary (which i think is good because it reveals individual attitudes and thoughts), i've noticed i'm a terribly harsh critic (shock). the highest i rated was only 80. the one that of jeff's that started this whole attempt a 'score' approach rated a 67 (without jeff's input). that's the second highest i rated. so, even if i criticise a poster, i may still hold it in high esteem.
think about it.
cool, I hearing about the thought process behind things like this. I dog this poster because of it's simplicy, but also because it isn't like every other poster out there..If everything was a devil girl or had a robot in it it would be pretty fucking boring. This deviates, or did at the time it came out and this sets it apart. What's so horrible about making something for yourself when advertising for others? As an artist I think it's important to add yourself to anything that you do..and if the client signs off on it, then what's the harm?
I don't always find it necessary to make a statement about the band or a particular song in the way you would make a statement about a play for a theater poster or about a novel for a book cover. But I'm usually TRYING to say something (maybe not always very well). Maybe it's an inside joke to please myself, or to start a dialog with someone else who I know will see it, or maybe I'm just reacting to the personal shit I'm dealing with. (Is that selfish?) This poster fits in to all of those categories. I did it because I was rebelling against what I came from, what I had done artistically, and what was going on around me in poster design. (Remember, this was before the current 'poster explosion' and before gigposters with it's dialog about pink being the new whatever, etc. and daily access to EVERY POSTER IN AMERICA BEING MADE EVERY DAY FOR EVERY SHOW). It was a kind of 'fuck you' to the people expecting a certain thing from a rock poster. It was a reaction to what I saw as typical rock show poster design in the early nineties. I don't think that works as well in today's climate but I thought it did then. I was saying, "look, I know you are expecting me to put a (controversial/ pretty/ any) image here with some type, and I'm not going to do it". AT THAT TIME it did it's job, smashingly. I got a lot of reaction. AT THAT TIME, TO ME, it was highly successful and 'conceptual' by my 1997 definition. Does it hold up? You tell me. It's like when I listen older music like Roy Harper or Jethro Tull or Joy division or Led Zeppelin or Thin Lizzy or UFO, I tend to judge it on two levels: What does it do for me NOW? And what was it's context in the time and culture it was recorded? It requires two totally different sets of criteria for analysis and I get two totally different sets of results.
so, check it out. does this system work at all? for instance, in one 'crit', another commenter pointed out that i missed the 'busy-ness" of the layout that he found detrimental to the composition. i, personally did not find that very obvious or detrimental (outside of the sideways type).
so, i think that fella who didn't like the 'busy-ness' should attempt his own crit and include that observation. i think that would be extremely useful in attempting to figure what we thinkk of all this stuff. mu opinuion should be no more or less than anybody else's, excpet in the points i make.
ART- I think we get that from the quick "hate its" and "love its" we always get from people on here. If I'm looking to see what people simply think I get that from those type of comments. What I would value from an assesment on concept and craft is a select group like you, kozik, jeff, and maybe even some of the newer people who are starting up succesful practices under today's challenges, to make the assesment. Maybe that's just me.
Problem is I loathe most contemporary culture, at least the mainstream/everyday stuff. Of course I enjoy a lot of the local/homemade/underground stuff, that's why I'm here. At least in the '50s-'70s everyday objects were built to last, and had some style to them. Nowadays we have McMansions, vinyl siding, Helvetica signage, ugly bubble cars that all look the same, etc. Know what I mean?
I was just asking art-cuz we don't always get to hear from the artist before judging thier work. As far as craft-I love silkscreen because of the tactile qualities and since I don't have one of these poster I can't judge that aspect. They placement of shapes and copy information is pleasing to look at.
The colors are pleasing to "me" .
So to me it is successful as far as design. Concept--Well, I don't know much about the band so I don't know if the poster reflects their music. Mouse hole sounds good!
I shouldn't have said "no one want's a 72 pinto" but yes some people do just as some people collect and document anything in this world. But within all of those pooled items (bottle caps, candy wrappers, whatever) there are examples that are the epitome of the rest, they embody what the rest were represent. At the same time there will be some that are revered and sought after just because of their rarity as well as some just for their aesthetic.
allenboe - ah, but the beauty of this idea is that it begins to reveal the thinking of the people doing the aasessment. you begin to see the inner biases of those involved - as in, "oh, that guy hates anything with a coartoon in it". and it becomes a better way to figure out this stuff.
But like any assesment a scale or a grade you need someone or a select few to hand out the assesment. For everyone to do it you will end up with the the color brown everytime, because at different levels of talent and experience "the bar" changes and so would the scale. So who is to be the teacher or teachers?
wow, that's a toughie. jeff's statemments command a LOT of import in a discussion like this.
if it was a 'mousehole" - well. i LIKE that little joke. i'd actually give it lotsa points for that. if it was a rip of a local sign - i dunno. i've done the same thing many many times. at the same time, i consider it a lazy cheapshot (something i know, becasue, again, i'm guilty of that same act many many times).
so, to be fair to the poster and to myself(a bias) i'd give a middle score. 25.
total (without jeff's input): 67.
plantweed - forget the obvious - try to preserve the stuf that is the contemporary equivalent. dance culture is an obvious extreeme example. what are the current versions of style (like 'googie' was of the it's time)?
i think these posters are a PEREFECT example.
I like the concept of Urban Archeology, which is the study and preservation of discarded popular culture, specifically Googie style/California Coffee Shop Modern/Atomic Age/Tiki architecture, design, signage, etc. I'm starting to take snapshots of all such things in my area, before they're gone. We lose a few every year.
again, i dislike the idea of 'grades' as we conventionally think of them. i see much more potential in a 'scale' complete with basic areas of concern to all of us (concept and craft).
it also allows people a basic foothold into the activity of ANALYSIS. when we have to split away concept from craft and vice versa, we have basepoints from which we can look at things and begin to explore our reactions and opinions.
reactions and opinions are BASED on stuff. what is the STUFF?
I would have to agree somewhat with that. Just as a packaging is not Art, some people collect it and it also does reflect the aesthetic and culture of the times. A McDonalds hamburger wrapper from the 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's, 2000's are all different, different materials, colours, layout, you can definitely tell when one was made. I kind of relate posters to cars. Cars are utilitarian, some however go that extra bit and become "the" cars of the period. No one wants a 72 pinto, but anyone would take a 72 Cuda. As well as being a nice car, it too is totally a product of it's time.
I like the sound of that.
I find that a lot of people who have purchased our posters do so because it brings them back . They like having something to remind them of that particuliar show they went to. In this case -I suppose in this case the poster serves as a snapshot of the past for them. I'm not sure the execution or design matters to them.
i wish i hadn't used a 'grade' in there. that's really unfair in the long run. i put that A- as a way for the reader to relate a familiar 'level'. what i really wanted to propose is a sliding numeric scale split into two major areas of concern.
dspring - i agree with you on the simple fact that this is intentionally disposable art. that is the nature of "commercial art" as we defined in our culture.
but that is EXACTLY what fascinates me about this stuff - the realization that AFTER it's function is over (i.e. the show has happened, the product is sold, many years have gone by and it's initial meaning is lost), it still EXISTS in front of you. it's no longer a functial piece,and it's technically not art 9as we ahve decided to define 'art' in our culture), so what IS it? it's THAT basic concept that is the underlying thread in everything i do.
my personal solution is to view these things as "cultural artifacts" (keep in mind i wanted to be an archaeologist when i was a kid). these posters are the artistis remains of our civilization. i hope that 100 years from now, my work id institutionaized in a museum as a piece of this era. it's a remnant of another lost culture.
a lot of my work has already reached that territory (remember 'grunge').
i don't do 'art" , i do 'artifacts'. at least that's my view on this.
My opinion on this poster is similiar to Jeff's, I see two large blocks of colour and some text. Very appealling colours but all the same. Art I agree with your "subconscious" aesthetic and compostition theory. But what I hold all of these posters on this site and that I see to, is the fact that they are disposable art, meant to promote 1 show, relay the facts, hopefully relate to the band/bands somehow (either blatantly or subtely) and then they are done. Yes it helps if they are beautiful, or cool looking but going too deep into a poster is like overdesigning a beer bottle cap, in the end it is not important enough. Some people on this site have the ability to consistently produce thought provoking, visually appealing work, but I think that is pure talent and deductive ability, not them sitting around actively trying to propagate some bizarre artistic theories in their work. I like to believe it just flows from some and doesn't from others.
fair enough. but. please note, i'm not talking about "right and wrong" here. i'm trying to asses fairly what turned out to be a difficult discussion about a poster that seemed to challenge a lot of us. obviously there is no 'right and wrong' to any of it.
do you think my "scale" is a fair way to asses posters? would it be possible to use (expanded or otherwise) the scale in order to have some sort of conversational way to analyze posters for our discussions?
Art wrote: 3) art doesn't think anybody here has very nice manners.
I've got nice fucking manners...
Hey, I like Art's summary. I think any comment section that goes beyond 150 posts could really use a summary. And possibly some footnotes.
this poster is not my cup of tea. I see 2 squares, different colors and some type. I like a lot of Jeff's stuff. I'm more of a fan of illustrated posters, that's what I like. Probably because I'm simple minded and need things laid out for me. I like Kozik, Coop, Maxflo, Gaither...so on and so forth. And Art I even like alot of your stuff, I think many people like this poster regardless of it's "meaning". It's like music...it means something different to the individual. no one's right and no one's wrong.
the thing that keeps dragging me back to this site is the opportunity to have thoughtful discussions with my peers - something that i used to have in seattle and no longer have in st. louis.
unfortunately, this site has a long history of clever one-liners and smartass remarks substituting for discussion (as do all websites to some degree). basically, poster designers seem to have lousy manners. ok, but let's try to look past that and develop a dialog. let's actually TALK about these poster things we make and discuss different ideas about them. resorting to name-calling is very very small-minded. it's also addicting.
so, jeph, let's talk?
The written word, in the hands of all but the best writers whose work you know well, lacks the ability to express tone, irony, sarcasm, and cadence, in all their various levels, thus misguiding readers as to intent, resulting in often hostile exchanges that would not happen if the parties were speaking face-to-face.
I find imagining everyone in a crowded tavern, hovered over drinks, an effective neutralizer, so I seldom get too worked up.
seems to me that things like this just plain feel better if there is a summary.
the comments below are all fair assessments, and not intended to piss anybody off.
perhaps, jeph, if you think this summary is insulting, you should make a thoughful statement and not some smartass insult.
so, i'm asking you straight, what are your thoughts?
so, allow me to summarize:
jeff claims that this poster has no meaning at all. he often says that. so, we must believe that his work is intentionally meaningless. is that fair?
on the other hand we all agree (even me, if you bothered to read the posts) that it is a gorgeous piece, well crafted and worthy of framing and admiring.
furthermore, we all tend to read meaning into these things, whether jeff intended conciously (or, as the surrealists would have it, subconciously) or not.
so, on a two-prong scale - 1/2 concept (which is the idea), 1/2 aesthetics (which includes things like craft and composition and execution) - of a total of 100 point total (50/50):
aethetics: i'd say about an A- (on a scale of 1-50, it would be about 42 points)
concept: since jeff said 'no concept', it gets zero points.
grand total (out of possible 100 points): 42 points.
1) jeff is a helluva guy.
2) art is a jerk who picks on jeff.
3) art doesn't think anybody here has very nice manners.
so, fair assesment?
nope. this is a great poster. I wish i had done it.
regardless of the creator. if fucking speed had done it i woould praise it.
like seripop..they are retards and backstabbers but their posters rule.
deal with it.
I would posit that jeff did this with rubyliths.
it's a refined design. very nice. deal with the fact its probably better than anything you'll ever do..unless you commit suicide in some spectacular,public and amusing way.
obvously the mouse has been exposed to a special brain serum and used power tools to build a snug modern home instead of chewing through the wall with his teeth like his simpler brethren.
From what has been said in this thread, we're not supposed to. However I see a mouse hole and the mouse has been so modest as he didn't even bother to round the top of his hole....the mouse is like Jesus really, and who is more modest than Jesus???
Luckily I can, probably the last generation to be taught compulsory Irish (12 years). The subject everyone hates most in school, but i am now glad I actually retained some of it. I also learned latin for a couple of years, now thats a redundant language.
I'm a closet Liberal.
Surrealist? hm...yes...I would agree. except there are actualluy like lengthy,intricate layers of meanings behind each and every poster i ever did.
Pick one and I'll happily deconstruct it for as long as you want.
I think it's completely immaterial hoe Jeff's poster came to be.
it IS and it's completely visually appealing.
I don't know anything about Modest Mouse or La Puerta but I would purchase and display thi9s because it is very very well done.
I forgot to finish my tirade post, ...I really think chantry gets bored when people lick his arse and tiptoe around his statements. I think thats the reason he leaves not because he ends up in an interesting debate, or someone disagrees with him.
Again speculation on my part.
Good God, as soon as Art Chantry posts something after a timely absence everyone starts walking on eggshells, and thinking he'll disappear if someone argues with him. Nothing about this thread was in any way derogatory, condescending, inflamatory etc, - by anyone who posted. It's about the only interesting dialogue i've seen here in months, and thats what it is - interesting dialogue based on a subject we all love and have an opinion on, design. Talk about mixed messages, Jesus, i'm lucky I hav'nt had to read trivial gossip all day today. People are touchy as fuck, and Art chantry has interesting stuff to say. Quit pandering to what you think will happen if someone says this or that.
eh art? i was asking jeff if he could explain what his inspiration really was since he mentioned that he wasnt inspired by the restaurant logo but by something else.
no games here... well besides my failed attempt to start my last post with something funny... but that was good hearted and meant in the bestest kind of way.
i love this whole discussion and hope it continues, maybe not for this poster but for others... the whole context aspect of evaluating a poster is pretty interesting and new to me. It made me realize why I like that Kozik NIN poster so much... besides being pretty to look at with nice colors there are some things that play in the background of my head that make me really click with that poster.. too long of a story to tell.
anyways... carry on. i am listening
raindog - well, perhaps i did misread your post (even though you worried i was being 'foolish' in my "heavy" conversation, which doesn't exactly sound complimentary). and funkytramp - nope, nary a drop of foam (or spittle) to be found.
i'm just asking questions again. i tend to ask questions that get to the poiint. it makes clients very nervous.
When things get a little too serious around here, there is never a shortage of folks who think, "Fuck it, this is about rock posters, not foreign policy, I'm gonna start poking fun at all the serious people."
i never said you were angry Art.
i was concerned about you being misunderstood as angry.
it has happened to me - been misunderstood plenty.
MY post was even misunderstood by you.
im happy to see people commenting on posters the way you guys do. when your gone - nothing really happens other than....."this rocks"
perkins, what are you talking about? debating is fun and and is a way to wrest ideas out of your head. no problems there. nor, do i expect everybody to agree with me even 25% of the time. but total dismissal based on erro or even unwarrented attack is (by everyone's standards) completely disruptive and off-subject.
if jeff wants to get into the discussion, or if micheal wants to add to it, hey why not do so? why do this other thing that has nothing to do with anything being talked about. i don't understand.
does this only happen when i post? does it happen to anybody else? does it happen to frank? any answers?
so, maybe somebody out there should sit me down and explain the "game" once and for all. good cop/bad cop? is that it?
Art, you're simply fun to debate. You have to admit that sometimes you make matter-of-fact comments that beg for a rebuttal. Your opinions matter to many of us...that doesn't mean they're always agreed with. I don't think it's anything bigger than that.
like i said, raindog and piemel - you guys play too many games. please go back and re-read the thread and try to imagine i'm not angry when i wrote it. you might be surprised that it was innocent.
in fact, why don't you guys go back and read everything i ever written here and, again, put yourself into the mindset that i'm talking in a simple conversational tonew. again, you might be surprised.
ah, but then it's waaaay too much fun to imagine i'm a crazed asshole foaming at the mouth,isn't it?
play nice children
what was the inspiration then?
maybe i dont want to know... this is my favorite poster and if i hear that it is inspired by - say- a tampex value pack that experience of dreaming while staring at this poster might diminish... i have no context regarding this poster except that i like to stare at it.....
ART - i see your in another fairly heavy conversation - i haven't bothered to read the whole damn thing - hope it's nothing too foolish, but i just wanted to ssay that i sincerely hope that this does not drive you away from the site again. your knowledge is important.
did i say something wrong? i said jeff has integrity. seems to me that's a compliment. i also apologized for pissing jeff off. seems to me that's a GOOD thing.
or, do you guys assume i meant soemthing else?
you know what they say about "assume".
Anyone who has met Jeff knows what a horrible person he is. I mean, you can barely get a word in because he's constantly talking about himself. I heard he likes to kill baby kitties too. I also heard that he likes to make fun of slow, fat kids. Oh and one time he punched a pregnant woman in the belly just to see what would happen.
Oh, and I taught him everything he knows about design.
And he has horns.
And he drinks the blood of ponies.
You wanted context. It's not a Mexican restaurant logo rip. Figure out a new angle. Otherwise what you had to say about it is dead-on. As per usual. We all continue to learn from your wisdom.
Not mad at all. Quite the contrary. I rather enjoy it. I see it for exactly what it is.
True, that I've ripped off plenty of things. I'm not proud of it. I anticipate it will follow me around for years. It sucks. Wish I could go back. I learn as I go.
I try to have integrity but I've made mistakes in the past. I will continue to make mistakes. I learn as I go.
sorry if i pissed you off (again), jeff. accusing you of theft was never my intention. i was (we were) trying to figure it out. i had my thoughts on it and others had other thoughts on it. i thought it was a nice discussion.
i know you'd never rip off anything or anybody, jeff. you've pointed that out to me that many times...
you are a man of integrity.
WARNING: Artist talks about own poster, self, career.
Whether this poster is good, my best work, lazy, or even a rip is irrevelant to me. It represents a shift in my way of looking at poster design - AT THAT TIME. I pushed myself to purposely do something different (as I've tried to do all along in my 14 years of doing this stuff). Is it lame? Does it mean anything? Is it derivative? Is it just two squares? Who cares?! It is merely one step on the path. An exercise. So, whether it ITSELF is successful is unimportant. What's important to me is what comes after.
And while most of my posters have been inspired by Seattle Mexican restaurant logos, this one was not. Art told the same story at the beginning of this thread a few months ago and I let it go because it didn't really matter. I saw it mentioned again this morning and I had to chime in. While there are definitely similarities between this poster and that logo - colors are similar and there is a 'door' - it was in NO WAY consciously or subconsciously inspired by the La Puerta Mexican Restaurant logo. It's just amusingly coincidental. It WAS inspired by something, but not by this. I felt I needed to set the record straight ONLY because Art wanted context and a false premise had been established by which it was being judged.
Personally the thing I like the most that came out of surrealism was the idea of "automatic" writing, painting, drawing, whatever; to try and tap into your ego-less subconciousness, where dream images are the purest form of art. Something that Giger, among others, is into.
i think this is an interesting point:
one of the things that the early surrealists used was the idea that if you put strange and disparate images together into one frame, then the human mind will want to create a relationship between them (they call them 'dream images'). it's part of human nature - we want to build meaning into what we see.
the truth behind this poster image is - like mike said - two squares with some type. however, we want to build in "mouseholes" (modest MOUSE) and 'la puerta' (the seattle experience) etc. etc. in reality it's two squares.
it's the secret strength on sooooo much design. jsut find a vague relationship bewteen image and subject and slop them together and our own minds will build all the meaning desired INTO it.
i've actually experimented directly with this idea - intentionally juxtaposing meaningless images together just to see what folks read into them. quite surprisingly, i've discovered that the reason i CHOSE those supposedly unrelated images was that my own mind was attempting to read meaning into the selection process. it was fascinating - some of my most famous work emerged form that experiment (no i won't tell you which).
in a way it's frank's great strength. he's a closet surrealist...
I happen to dig this poster. So much it's hanging framed in my house. Right below Art's Flaming Lips poster. To me it fit Modest Mouse because it's so sparse. Modest Mouse's sound isn't sparse but "the Lonesome Crowded West" dipped heavily into the wrongs of urban sprawl. I related this to Isaac's want or need for open unpopulated space. Of course that relation could be so far off it isn't even funny. It is however how I related this design to Modest Mouse and why I thought it was a really successful piece. It's all context and personal interpretation.
i always admired this poster for its simplicity. i never thought it was a door or a mousehole or anything but some squares, i just liked it because it was a poster i could never make in a million years, i couldnt let all that space be, i would have screwed it up with a robot or a rainbow or some other shit
i don't think that's true. for instance, i was commenting on the factor 27 "bag" poster before this. i don't think i comment on jeff's work all that often.
it's also an area (seattle in general and jeff in particular) that is my personal experience. so, it's what i know. i would be happy to comment on your work, but i don't know it at all. i can comment on my work, but who cares? it ends up sounding stupid. i work best when i can challenge and question other thinkers. it forces mw to use my head and i 'm able to relate my knowledge better. i tend to forget (intentionally) my work (it bores me). jeff's gets commented on a lot, so i once in a while chip in..
now, if you spent more time talking about hank trotter or franko or dennis white or any other 'non-illustrator' stylist, i'd happily chip in, ya know? i know the context there.
see- what jeff wrote I think is a very refereshing thought for poster art today...in advertising period....its a challenge to interject those concepts into a medium that usually does not support such thought in principle...i.e. its not rock n' roll.
the white creates a greater seperation for sure. I would like to know where jeff started and his progression with this...most of my minimal-esque work has a ton of add and subtract and its very time consuming before I get it to where I like it.
this dont help much but this is a quote from jeff regarding this poster :
“For this poster, I was inspired by stuff that was coming out around the late fifties/early sixties — a sort of mod-ish theme — just experimenting on less image-based design and focusing more on abstract color fields.”
art- i wish you would be more critical of a wider range of posters (i know im in the minority with this). I think it opens up some dialog and makes the poster that more interesting in the end. seems like you just focus on jeffs work becuase you are familiar with it or can comment about it in context to regional things or things of the era. expand.
again, i think it would be disengenuous (sp) to attempt to analyze that without more information. otherwise it would be idle speculation and even gossip. we would need a stsement of intent to get to the heart.
like, i need to find a la puerta matchbook and scan it and show you. then, we could compare and look at the elements "in dialogue" as opposed to an "echo". i know, for instance that he added that white inline. i thought it was smart. it separates it from the field nicely and completely. interesting.
im waiting to hear the mouse story.
as far as this poster goes, i dont think its one of jeffs best i like the color i like the simplicity and i think its a nice departure from some of his stuff but i dont get it at all. sure i might be missing something.. but a stylized mouse hole? why would you stylize a mouse hole into a square? I think jeff's subtle use of text really really really helps this piece and makes it a very beautiful design but, like i said, i dont see a aconcept.
ya know, i think we're at a point that we need more input from the artist. what were his thoughts?
knowing jeff as well as i do, i can likely predict what he will say, but that's not my job.
perhaps jeff should pitch in here?
what was your idea here?
yeah. and it could not be a mouse hole...but I think it looks like one abstracted...which then turns it into layout possibilities and using the colors to differentiate the band and the info...
so there is some dialogue between the elements...without it being over the top.
and to be totally honest - until you pointed it out, the "mousehole" idea never hit me. i've looked at this poster for years and years and it never occured to me that this was a moushole. being from seattle and having interatced with modest mouse (quite a story, there) and the seattle scene and bsk and jeff and 'la puerta' - it just said "look, i copped the la puerta logo. pretty funny, huh?" and that was it. the idea that it represented a cute little mousehole, i never saw it.
besides, i thought mouseholes were curved at the top. at least all the mouseholes in every cartoon i've ever seen. this may be my very first 'squared' mousehole i've ever seen.
see what i mean by context?
as far as what I think.
one thing i think is that the masses dont get enough simple thought provoking art as they get super hyper active wwf color blasts. So when I see an abstact mousewhole with a nice two tone color field I am excited that someone may come upon this never thinking that something so simple could be striking or appeakling, yet beautiful...the normal reaction is my kid could do that.
I like the challenge to the viewer to find meaning...to be challenged...and not just hit over the head with an obvious social or political statement.
over the years, i had the opportunity to jury different design shows (ca, aiga, regionals, etc.) and that's precisely one of the biggest flaws with trying to understand this kind of work. in a jury situation, the context is COMPLETELY removed. all you have is you first impression in total isolation. the result is that the judges constantly go for pretty, pleasing, color, shock value, cleverness, etc. etc. and the work selected is shockingly shallow (we ALL have that complaint). in other words, all the surface value and none of the depth. that's a huge reason why punk graphics were ignored by mainstream design for decades - imagine a punk poster in a design competition - no chance. it may have been brilliant in the extreme, but who could tell?
that's what i've always hoped this forum could rectify. it's a rare place for work to be taken into some larger context - simply because people could actually DISCUSS a piece. unfortunately, this medium is subject to banal surface reactions as well, and such discussion devolve into "i like this and you suck".
so, i wish we would make more of an effort.
and in all honesty, plastk, i don't really care WHAT you LIKE. i want to know what you THINK (and i'm not talking about your OPINION).
my point being that's all I have. I was never in Seattle at the moment this was made. I can recreate an experience or episode that this was within the context of. I can only speak to its aesthetic appeal to me at this moment...that's where my opinions lay.
You have much more valid arguments individualy within the context of its origin. I can't even debate that...I can consider it and evaluate and gather a greater context of meaning but am unltimatly left with what I have...a poster that I receive through sentient ability....i.e. i looked at it because i liked it.
I do agree that, that should not be the limit nor the level at which one measures good and bad...but with that said...sometimes we are left with these limitations to begin with.
well, if you want to just fall back on the 'taste' argument, then there is no more need for discussion. you have your taste and i have mine. it's all fair.
but, if you want to really discuss the in-and-outs and different pints of view of something, then we have a real discussion going on.
if you want just "taste", theni actually LIKE this poster. i think it's pretty. beautiful, even. it's a gorgeous design. the colors are great and it's vague enough that i can read all sorts of deep and profound ideas INTO it. perfect.
but, if i look beyond "taste" and really start to figure this stuff out for what it really is, then it's a whole different story...
taste become virtually irrelevant. it's just another tool at your disposal.
that i agree with art. contect is everything...and its under those circumstances that I like this...as it has come to me. I never lived in Seattle or ate at a Mexican restaurant with a similar sign...non of it takes away from its effect it gives me. that which I like and fancy.
That said I can completely understand that it may also not be one of Jeff's best work to someone else like yourself. Taste is ultimatly flexible to those who take on the role as the audience.
it's all context. with the background i have with this work, i can see the reasons behind the work and the relative strength of the ideas with a different, possibly more clear view. surface impact means far less to me than how and where a piece was developed and used and how successful it was in that particular context. 90% of the posters on this site i can't properly evaluate because i don't have the context. but some i can.
what seperates the good from the bad in anybody's work is the quality of the concept. otherwise, it's just a decoration no matter how well executed. a DESIGN connotes a larger, more expansive idea involving systems manipulation and utilization.
also, i know some folk's bullshit levels better than others...
like i said before, this may look brilliant, but it's a rip (almost dowm to the colors) of the signage of 'la puerta' - a mexican restaurant around the corner form blt/moe/comet on cap hill. half of seattle's scene ate there regularly. 'la puerta' means 'the door' and it's a brilliant signage/logo admired by most of seattle's designers/hipsters/etc.
it makes wonderful sense if you're a restaurant, it makes no sense if you are a rock band called modest mouse.
sorry to be pissy, but i've never thought this was jeff's strongest work, but some of his weakest. it's like when i just cop an old ad and expect to fool everybody. lazy.
Once, I was in Mexico and our table ran out of chips and I thought I was all neat cuz I had some Spanish in high school so I asked for more "chipas" por favor. The dude lost it and left and I saw him laughing with his waiter buddy so I asked him what I'd said and he said I asked for more sheep testicles.
bueno, a tí te conviene ir del punto de vista economico. aparte que el viaje por el sur se hace por muy poco dinero. no hay casi nada para comprar de todos modos. te recomiendo bariloche y la cordillera de los andes por Rio Negro. nunca fui al norte...
Tengo amigos alla en Buenos Aries Y estaba pensando huir me al Sur, pero ahora esta la cosa mala...habia la idea de alquilar motos y viajar a la Sierra Andes y
ponermos drogadas alli con los Indios, pero ahora no lo voy a hacer. Son bastantes pobres mis amigos y estan bien jodidos con el dinero ahora...los Tios del conjunto Natas...
A mi me gustaria ligarme con las tetas del norte....
Oues, hombre, pe parece que hoy dia con viente pesos nortenos sue podia comprar patagonia en la entera. Tiene que ser muchos anos que escribo en espanol, y nue se come hacer la 'nye' en esta maquinao computadora. Vamos a ver si la chavalle Brasillena nos puede comprender....
I have this framed and on my wall right under Art's Flamimng Lips poster for Moe. One of my many favourites of Jeff's. It's very striking and Jeff you should submit a bigger jpeg. The typeography is awesome on it and you can't see it.
Modest Mouse does have an architectural aesthetic going on. We used a rendering of a grain elevator for one of ours and a series of squares for the other and they bought almost the entire run from us both times. They flipped when we walked in with them. They are HUGE poster fans.
i think it really only appears on 2 albums, well 3, which i suppose is alot. i think they more pertain to the songs on the album. Lonesome Croweded West had major themes about urban sprawl and vanishing of open space so its cover had an apartment building on it. Building Something Out of Nothing the title itself kinda talkin about that the album as a B-Side comp.... plus some of the songs are very arch. in nature. never ending math equation etc.
I think with the "arhictectural" thing, Jeff is just playing off of what exists in their packaging (maybe) or is doing the door mouse thing (maybe) that BlueJellyBean suggested...or maybe he likes Joseph Albers.
I realize Modest Mouse is huge...I just can't fucking stand them and everyone I know who has either: booked a show for them/played with them/met them face to face, says they're the biggest jerks they've ever met...and personally I think the whole asshole routine in indie rock needs to stop. The singer's legendary misogyny also leaves a bad taste in my mouth.
I love Jeff's work, and I love this poster, I think it's one of his best, I just don't like who it's for...personal taste, that's all.
I would consider this a collectors piece..if you didn't know Jeff's work this might not be appreciated at first..especially if someone had little interest in PosterArt.. My warped mind however loves this piece because I see the green first..then the red.. then Modest Mouse..The eye is being drawn down to the concert info in stages..Wonderful. Many folk may not appreciate it's simplistic design but then they obviously have little imagination..I have two readings on this already..Go wild folks! Think Door mouse!