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VISUAL NARCOTICS:20MG
Chicago, IL
About
It all began in the summer of 1991 on a street corner in Manhattan where I met the infamous Revs. I had no idea who he was at the time or how the brief interaction would change my life. I was visiting New York City with a friend. We were wandering around near Union Square when we happened upon a record shop where Big Daddy Kane was having a record release party. There were tons of people out front on the sidewalk. Through all the commotion I noticed some incredible graffiti murals on the side of the record shop. I busted out my camcorder and started filming the murals. While I was doing that I heard a voice behind me say, "Why you filming that shit?" I turned to see a guy decked out in a red and white Adidas track suit. "Because it's cool?", I said. "Kid let me show you where it's at." He motioned for me to walk out to the corner. I followed. Pointing to the traffic signal he said. "You see that shit. That shit up there." I could see he was pointing specifically to a sticker that read "REVS". "That's me. I'm Revs and you'll see that shit everywhere. I'm all over the city. So keep your eyes open." I nodded and mumbled "Thanks". And at that moment everything changed. A sticker wasn't just a sticker anymore. It was an identity. It was a message. It was something that could spread like a virus. I'm sure Revs never thought twice about what he said to me. But for me it was just the beginning. Thanks Revs. In 1997 I moved to Los Angeles. I was completely inspired by the incredible art I saw around the city. I found an image of a Prozac pill that I wanted to use in some way. So I blew it up on a photocopier and originally put the word "smile" underneath. But something was different about this image. It resonated with me in a way other images had not. The pill had the dosage "20mg" written on it. I focused on that, emphasized the dosage and edited out any other text from the image. I decided to write "Visual Narcotics" underneath and it was born. From 1999 to the present I've worked under the name "20mg" referring to my work as "Visual Narcotics". But to me "Visual Narcotics" also refers to the endless bombardment of images and information that the conventional mass media confront us with daily. So most of my work is meant to draw attention to the absurdities that are propagated by the media.
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Comments (1)
Cool stuff, I like the concept.
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