I love music, grew up in a super musical household and can proudly say that the first concert that I ever bought tickets to was Lauryn Hill (Outkast was the opening act). And the first show I ever saw...humm I can't remember, might have been War but I'm pretty sure it was Morris day and the Time, I'll have to ask my dad on that one. I remember stopping by the studio when Tony! Toni! Toné! was recording their album and introducing my self to Raphael Saadiq...crazy huh..It's even rumored that Jimmy Jam use to baby sit me, when my folks lived in Minneapolis...I don't remember. As of now, they are all stories that my parents tell me mixed with childhood memories. I started taking pictures for two reasons A: I loved working in the darkroom B: I wanted to shoot Musicians. Well I had a chance to do my fair share of both and must say that I prefer to make Junk more. One day I'll post my archive pics of Common, Mos Def, Saul Williams, Alicia Keys etc. The only ego I really have to deal with in Junkprints is my own...and I can usually handle that. After a year (2003-2004) or so of editorial work I decided to focus strictly on my art and design..no more musician egos, bands and broke artists. My love of music has never gone away, it's transitioned and though I rarely specify personalities in my work music seems to oooze through and I always find myself surrounded by musicians. This is the first year that I've embraced the music connection since my editorial days. It's been really nice. This has def been the summer of music for me. Between studio Sessions w/ 'The Faculty", Tough Dumpin and George Reefah, making tees for Earl Greyhound, enjoying the live shows of Femi, Janelle Monae . In fact It's been so nice that I decided to focus the little bit of vending I'm doing around music events. Starting with the Brooklyn Hip Hop Festival. Thx to all of you who came out despite the rain. My next event is the Afro Punk Block party, this Sunday. It takes place July 12th, on on Clinton Avenue between Myrtle & Willoughby, noon- 8pm. click the flyer for more info.
I'll also be in Coney Island at the Siren's Music Festival on Saturday July 17th from 10a-Sundown I'll have more on that next week 😉
No matter what your stance on Michael Jackson as a person and his personal choices, there is no denying his impact on music and pop culture. He's such an icon and influential person. I'm completely saddened by the loss of Michael Jackson and glad that he left us such an amazing life soundtrack. This tee is to celebrate the artistry of MJ.
Every time I walk the streets NYC I'm astounded by how vacant it's become. Many of my pals who live on the island tell me how their building are becoming so empty. Many are even negotiating lower rent prices, which is awesome. The most visible signs of this mass vacancy is the store fronts. I went to the movies in Union Square (yes, I do actually leave Brooklyn) and was stunned to see that Circuit city and The Virgin Mega Store that share the block with the theater were closed or closing soon. What's going to become of this vacant city?
Interestingly enough recently I've been approached by a couple of people with access to prime retail locations to open a Junkprints brick and mortar store. In theory this all sounds amazing but the reality is that running a store and running a brand are two very cumbersome endeavors and right now I can't handle both. Both have their advantages and disadvantages but the overhead stocking and staffing a store sounds like the formula for a quick bankruptcy.
Over the last six months I watched dozens of indie designer stores close due to a major reduction in sales. Some of the still existing indie stores are keeping their stores stocked by only carrying brands/designers on a consignment basis or attempting to run stores using alternative business structures. Consignment may be a way to introduce a line that a buyer is unsure about, to their store, but is not a substitute for not being able to afford new stock. Dealing strictly on consignment is isn't a good long term solution for brands or stores. For brands/designers it can result in going into production on items that may be returned to the brand/designer at the end of season making it so the brand/designer is forced to discount the items before having a chance to expose them to perhaps a more targeted audience. For stores it creates a cycle in which they are never able to purchase lines within true wholesale parameters (40-60% off retail). By purchasing on wholesale terms the profit margin is larger and allows for seasonal sales and a healthy rotation of inventory. No disrespect to stores that deal strictly on consignment, but I haven't seen one transition into larger business models. If anything I suggest stores attempt to negotiate smaller wholesale minimums and diversify the lines they carry instead of committing to the whole season of a newbie line. Now's a great time to negotiate. I also suggest that smaller designers hold there ground and not do go into production on consignment orders. With e-commerce it's hard for me to justify having back stock, so the expense of having stock overhead isn't something I'm trying to tangle with. If it doesn't make sense, it can't make cents.
I'm always trying to improve my hustle, let me know yer thoughts on this.
Thanks to all of you who came out to my opening on friday and Habana Outpost on saturday. It was quite a weekend. After the opening We trecked it out to Coney Island for a crazy burlesque show that included a knife thrower and bull whip dude...pretty random huh? The Knife dude kinda freaked me out, he seemed like he was just barely good enough to do a show. Here'e a clip
WNYC Radio invites you to a wine reception on Friday, May 8, 2009,
7:00-9:00 p.m. for the the opening of The VOICES FROM THE BOROUGHS
Exhibition, the first visual arts show in The Greene Space, where we
will celebrate New York City’s artistic diversity with works by 10
artists from all five boroughs. The exhibition is produced and
curated by Danny Simmons & Brian Tate. A list of artists is presented
Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than May 6. Space is
limited, and reservations are accepted on a first-come, first-served
The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space
44 Charlton Street
(Charlton & Varick)
New York, New York 10014
We hope to see you there!
WNYC Radio’s The Jerome L. Greene Performance Space
VOICES FROM THE BOROUGHS
A Digital Exhibition by 10 New York City Visual Artists
Produced and Curated by Danny Simmons & Brian Tate
May 8, 2009, 7:00-9:00 p.m.
Hosted by Kurt Andersen
With spoken word performances by
Derick Cross and Liza Jessie Peterson
Featuring work by:
Joeonna Bellorado-Samuels (Manhattan)
Amir Bey (Bronx)
Domenick Di Pietrantonio (Queens)
Paul Jansen (Manhattan)
Chanel Kennebrew (Brooklyn)
Jason Lewis (Brooklyn)
Carol Pereira (Queens)
Ann Marie McDonnell (Staten Island)
Miguelangel Ruiz (Bronx)
Martha Trivizas (Staten Island)
Naomi Beckwith (Manhattan)
Carrie Cooperider (Staten Island)
Heng-Gil Hahn (Queens)
Diana McClure (Brooklyn)
Helene Ruiz (Bronx)
The Voices from the Boroughs exhibit continues through May 24
Hours: Tues - Fri, 11 AM - 6 PM; Sat/Sun, 1 - 5 PM
For more information on The Greene Space Opening Festival,
please visit www.thegreenespace.org/openingfestival/
Some Black folks in North America wanna be African REAL bad, they take African dancing (as if Africa is city w/ 1 style of dance) wear Kente cloth that was made in China and listen to Fela. I love Fela as much as the next person but it's like we have such a warped sense of self that we've filled in the blanks with this idea of 'Africa' and run around calling each other King and Queen (as if everyone on the whole continent was a Queen or King, hey some folks were/are farmers, prostitutes, traveler and or thieves. And if we're making up some magical idea of Africa is, than what about the perspective of the various people in Africa. I just feel like some extreme pan Africanism is Fakin' the funk. So I've decided to explore his with my aFAKIN Collection. All pieces are limited edition and are made from fabric rescued from a closed down textile store...and yes the 'African' batik fabric wasn't even made in any part of Africa, but it was labeld 'African Fabric'...my point exactly.
This will debut on Junkprints.com in Early May