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Posts Tagged ‘nyc’

Immediately after the 2016 presidential election, there was a huge outcry. Which prompted someone on Facebook to do an art show titled “Nasty Women.” It shortly turned into an open call for artwork, proceeds going towards Planned Parenthood. The submissions came in fast furious to the point where the curators had to end the deadline earlier than expected.

The space where the show took place was at Knockdown Center, located in Maspeth, Queens, NYC.

I was one of the many artists who contributed work for this show. My piece was a print titled #trumpsucksballs. It was originally designed for my greeting card line. (Still available for order for $3.00, plus $1.00 S&H = $4.00 if ordering online. Comes with orange envelope. Send payment to psychobunnycomix@aol.com and specify you want the #trumpsucksball greeting card.)

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Not all the art was anti-Trump related. Overall it had a feminist voice with or without Trump. The show itself was titled Nasty Women.

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A few days before the opening reception, me and a friend went together to drop off our work. That Saturday it was the first snow of NYC in 2017.

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Artist Beata Slazak Zalewski of Ridgewood, Queens. On our way to Knockdown Center to drop off art for the Nasty Women exhibition. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Jan. 2017.

Finally we arrived at Knockdown Center from out of the freezing snow. It gave us a chance to witness the display being put together. Various people were building large scale letters that spelled out NASTY WOMEN. The idea was that the art was to be hung on these letters. As the art gradually sold, the letters would be revealed.

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Knockdown Center. Maspeth, Queens, NYC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Jan. 2017. 

While we were standing there, we felt a slight buzz. The type of buzz when you know something is going to be magical.

A few days before opening night, the Nasty Women event was getting tons of press.

Opening night arrived. The turnout was larger than expected. People came from all over NYC for the reception, despite the remote location of Knockdown Center in Maspeth, Queens. My print sold within the first hour of the show. By the time I arrived, it was gone. Luckily someone snapped this photo for me. To whoever brought my print, thank you.

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As seen at Knockdown Center for the Nasty Women art exhibition. Sold. Illustration by Michele Witchipoo. Photo by Beata Zalewski. Jan. 2017. 

The artwork was flying off the letters as the crowd grew. At one point I saw a determined woman purchasing five separate pieces of art. The event itself raised 35K for Planned Parenthood. When the exhibition ended, all of the work donated had completely sold.

The entire weekend at Knockdown Center was dedicated to raising funds for organizations that would be unfortunately affected by the upcoming Trump administration. What seems to be the beginning of the Resistance art movement, there’s other upcoming Nasty Women events happening all over the world. Check here if you would like to be involved.

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Attendee at the Nasty Women art exhibition at Knockdown Center. Queens, NY. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Jan. 2017.

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Right after Commander Cheetos got elected, there were immediate calls of action. Especially in the art field.

One of them was Knockdown Center who had an open call for their upcoming Nasty Women exhibition. Proud to say my illustration was accepted into the show taking place Jan. 12 – 15, 2017. The opening reception will be on Thursday Jan. 12th from 7:00 to 10:00 pm.

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Image: Clive Murphy

Proceeds from all sales will benefit Planned Parenthood. To find out more about Nasty Women, click here.

My print of the illustration #trumpsucksballs will be part of the display. Basically I took a combination of a lewd joke and a popular Instagram hashtag which resulted in this:

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Since the result of the presidential election, I’ve decided to get more involved in women’s and LBGQT issues.

I’ve also put this image as a greeting card. So if you would like to order one for yourself, It’s $4.00 ($3.00 + $1.00 for S&H). Comes in cellophane with an orange envelope. You can send payment to PsychoBunnycomix@aol.com. Just be sure and specify “Trump card” when ordering. The card is blank inside so you can mail your own personalized message to the White House. Again, this card will not be available at all future events due to the nature of this work.

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I was being nice with the title of this blog post.

For this blog, I’ve more or less stayed away from politics, except for the webcomic Shitty Mickey and occasional mentions of Occupy Wall Street. That was way back when, however. In late 2016, it’s a whole other matter. What 2017 will bring is very unnerving.

Getting to the point, I’m not happy with the current president-elect. I think he’s unfit for office, and a very dangerous man. The last thing you need to read is yet another blog offering up political opinions. So I’ll let the below image speak for itself.

WARNING: NOT SAFE FOR WORK (NSFW)

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I was aiming for tacky, lewd and orange. Oh, and the hashtag I got from Instagram. So thanks Instagram.

Who knows what 2017 will bring. Perhaps the electoral college will change their votes, or he will get impeached. Pence, his VP is actually worse, but Pence is also a career politician – also less likely to press that red nuclear button. Following Pence is Paul Ryan. Basically we’re doomed.

Never have I been so grateful to live in a blue state in all my life.

In general, 2016 has been a wretched year. For me personally, it’s been kind. On an international level, not so much. What’s worse is for all the nonsense news we hear such as Kayne West meeting up with Trump, Aleppo was being bombed. Hell, I even surprised myself by shedding a tear for Mohammad Alaa Jaleel. He’s better known as “The cat man of Aleppo.” If you don’t know who he is, you should. A fellow cat lover who risked his life to help care of all the stray and abandoned cats in war torn East Aleppo. He has everything to lose and nothing to gain by taking care of these animals, but he has something that’s becoming increasingly rare today – compassion. If anyone deserves the Noble Peace Prize, it’s him.

Enough of my soap box. I’ve made greeting cards out of that repulsive image that resembles Cheetos man. I’m NOT going to be selling these cards at every future event. If I decide to, i’ll be very selective as to where. Regardless, these will be available on demand. If you want this card, you can send $3.00 to PayPal. Some of the proceeds from this card will be donated to charity. Just haven’t decided which one as of yet. Maybe it’ll be a feminist organization, an LGBT group, or for Standing Rock, or towards the Cat Man of Aleppo. As long as it’s a reputable charity. We’ll see how many are actually sold. Regardless. Buy a card for someone you loathe.

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#trumpsucksballs greeting card. Dec. 2016.

For the past month, I’ve been passing this wall inside the Union Square subway station in NYC. Here’s some of the photos I’ve taken. I also added to this Post-It wall. Some of the Post-It notes are now being archived.

You can kinda tell which ones I did. And yeah…I did the testicles one too.

  2016 has been an overwhelming year. It’s enough to make anyone misanthropic. So before I go, I’ll leave you with this meme. Cause if you’re going to be misanthropic, make sure it’s everyone equally.

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From Thursday Oct. 6 to Sunday Oct. 9, I felt as if I lived at the Javits Center. That’s because it was the annual New York Comic Con. Earlier this year I received my Pro pass for which itself felt good.

As usual it was packed and the cosplayers were out in full force.

To the left as you walked into the main entrance, there was a entire section dedicated to Wonder Woman. Not just because the Wonder Woman movie will be released in 2017, but Oct. 2016 marked the 75th anniversary of the character’s first appearance. There were also a lot more Wonder Woman cosplay than ever before.

To my relief there wasn’t as many Harley Quinns, but plenty of Pokemon characters. There was some unique ones that stood out above the others. Darth Maul looks happy here.

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NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo Oct. 2016

NYCC 2016 had an increase in Bob’s Burgers cosplayers. Louise and Tina Belcher were the most seen. Occasionally you would run into the entire family.

During the course of the four day event, I checked out a few panels. Panels are very good. For one, they give you a wealth of information in regards to the comic book industry, or discuss pop culture. If all else fails, you can rest your weary feet in the seat closest to an outlet to recharge your cell.

Some of the panels I attended were: BOOM Studios, DC Comics, and IDW (where they discussed an upcoming release to benefit the Orlando Pulse shooting victims).

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Panel for IDW during NYCC 2016.

Two panels however intrigued me the most. One was for Trump magazine (NO! Not Donald Trump!!!) put on by Dark Horse and Kitchen Sink Press. In 1956, Trump Magazine was a short-lived publication financed by Hugh Hefner, and put together by MAD Magazine’s Harvey Kurtzman. Among some of the speakers on that panel were Denis Kitchen and Al Jaffee.

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The Panel for Trump Magazine (No, not Donald!), a short-lived publication from the 1950s.

The other panel that grabbed my attention was the panel titled ‘Bringing Stories To Life: Holding a Comic Con at Your Library.’ Here local librarians from Connecticut explained the ins and outs of operating local comic cons from the library.

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Librarians from CT discuss how to do comic cons at the local library. NYCC Panel. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

Back for more cosplay.

One thing you cannot forget. The real reason why we have comic cons in the first place. To promote comics. As in artists, writers, pencilers, inkers, etc. Onward to Artist Alley.

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Walking around the Javits Center was exhausting. It was time to head home and come back another day.

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Everyone needs rest sometime. NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

During the NYCC, I found out there was going to be a panel for the latest Planet of The Apes reboot series. Since I was a huge fan of POTA, I trekked all the way out of the Javits Center to the Theater At Madison Square Garden. That’s where they held the special events, like the one for Doctor Who earlier during NYCC.

Point blank, this Q&A ‘career conversation’ with actor Andy Serkis, who portrays Ceasar in the Apes reboot was the only letdown during NYCC 2106. This might be clarified why in separate blog post.

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Actor Andy Serkis after finishing his Q&A panel during NYCC 2016.

I stuck around however to catch the Stan Lee panel at the same venue. Which went off much smoother. Moderated by film director and famous geek Kevin Smith, the panel also had Walt Simonson and Chris Claremount. The packed house was treated to an oral recollection of Marvel comic history. Insert very crappy photo of the panel itself.

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Very bad, blurry photo of the Stan Lee panel at NYCC 2016 with Kevin Smith, Walt Simonson and Chris Claremount.

Barely getting enough rest, it was time to head back to NYCC.

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Classic Star Trek cosplay on the NYC subway. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

Since NYCC has become so popular, expect free swag. During the weekend I got a free Monster energy drink which I usually never touch, some wafer cookies and a complimentary sample of Death Coffee.

The cosplaying continued.

The last day of NYCC was spent getting merch I didn’t need like this Muttley POP. Then off to cruise Artist Alley once more.

This year there was some new interesting talent in Artist Alley, as well as those established such as Terry Moore (Strangers In Paradise), Joe Staton, and Erik Larsen (Savage Dragon).

One person that stood out was graffiti artist Andre Charles, otherwise known as ACharlesNYC. I brought a pin from him. He was so kind to give me a second one for free. Which was a score because I was having trouble which color to choose from. Besides, it’s always good to share old school NYC memories with someone.

Another new comic I discovered during NYCC was titled Pugly.

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Also snagged a free issue of Faith, a popular comic book title now published by Valiant.

Of course some more cosplay.

Some T-Rex creatures were spotted as well.

Another trend I noticed. This year people were cosplaying with their pet dogs. I asked someone cosplaying a character from Adventure Time how he got his dog in. He replied listing your pup as a service dog. While it’s cute, I was left wondering if it was safe at all for the dogs themselves.

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Adventure Time cosplay. NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

Another curious observation during the NYCC weekend. I kept on seeing something scribbled on the bathroom doors inside the ladies room. Later I discovered it was a quote from The Handmaid’s Tale in Latin: ‘don’t let the bastard grind you down.’  Quite fitting for these times, especially during the current U.S. Presidential election, in which NYCC was the perfect escape from. Ironically, this was the same weekend that news broke out about Trump ‘grabbing pussy.’

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Quote from Margaret Atwood’s book The Handmaid’s Tale in Latin: ‘Don’t Let The Bastards Grind You Down.’ NYCC. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

In all it was fun as always. Maybe one day I’ll have another table at NYCC Artist Alley again. Till next year.

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Superheroes resting at the shoe shine stand. NYCC 2016. Photo taken by Michele Witchipoo. Oct. 2016.

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The Made In Ridgewood exhibit has done so well, the showing has been extended through Oct. 24th, instead of Oct. 15th. So if you’re in the area, check out OUTPOST Artist Resources. I have a new piece in this group art show. The exhibit was originally put together by OUTPOST and Ridgewood Artists Coalition for Bushwick Open Studios 2016.

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Artist: Michele Witchipoo

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The next day after the opening reception of the Made In Ridgewood exhibit at OUTPOST Artists Resources, decided to spend Sunday checking out the rest of Bushwick Open Studios 2016. After all, BOS is in my backyard.

This year, 2016, Bushwick Open Studios was moved from summer to fall. Rumor had it that BOS was attracting too much of the “frat party” crowd. Therefore it was moved to late September. In a way, can’t say I blame them. Although the tourists have already discovered part of Bushwick. Which means the clock is ticking. At this point it’s just a matter of time. Gentrification really does suck.

My first stop was this tiny flea market on Wyckoff Avenue between Dekalb and Jefferson. I was greeted by this sight:

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What is Floraissance anyway? Whatever it is, there’s already haters. Floraissance resistance? Bushwick, Brooklyn Oct. 1st, 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

Didn’t stay too long in this flea market. Having always been a fan of thrift shop curios, there were some things that caught my eye. Didn’t buy anything basically because I have too many items in my home already. Met this lady who has this neat shop on Etsy called Neocronomicharm. The jewelry is right up my alley.

Continuing along Wyckoff. Here was my first official sighting of a BOS showing. Inside a parked car. Nearby that overpriced gourmet market Hana Natural. Hana’s is the only place in Bushwick where its mark-up is more pricey than anything in Manhattan.

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Art exhibit inside a parked car during Bushwick Open Studios 2016. Oct. 1st, 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

Due to being busy, I didn’t bother looking up any BOS guides online. My first stop was the popular Cobra Club. Used to spend a lot of time there, meeting the usual dysfunctional characters. One time me and a friend heckled this host doing some lame trivia night. Turns out we knew all the correct answers, but what was the point? So we said “peanut butter” to every question asked. At one point the host requested not to answer anymore questions with “peanut butter” but that only prompted us even more. This was nothing compared to one night in early November 2014. The host doing trivia that night presented a question about The Sex Pistols. Sex Pistols!?! How corny can you get? I was already in a foul mood, so I yelled from the back of the place “WHAT THE HELL DO YOU KNOW ABOUT THE SEX PISTOLS!?!” The millennial host stood there in silence for about a minute, then dropped the question completely, moving onto a different subject. While it wasn’t fair to assume he didn’t know what he was talking about, it was still a cheesy trivia question regardless.

Despite trivia nights, I still like Cobra a lot. This year Cobra has a music photography exhibit in the back room. This is where Cobra usually has bands perform, karaoke (another thing I hate), burlesque and yoga. The photographer was Jeanette D. Moses.

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Photography by Jeanette D. Moses. Cobra Club, Bushwick Brooklyn at Cobra Club during Bushwick Open Studios 2016. Oct. 1st, 2016.

Having only stayed in Cobra Club for a few minutes, I moved on to the next few sightings. Such as the street art and wall murals. Just as I snapped the below photo, someone approached me claiming to be a talent scout. She complemented me on my hair, said I had a “good vibe”, then took a few photos of me. This doesn’t matter as I’m not photogenic anyway. Was this a scam? Regardless, I suspect she was turned off once I revealed my true age.

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Bushwick street art. Wyckoff Avenue. Oct. 1st, 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

Continuing onward. Checking out more street art and wall murals.

Then I saw this:

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A tour guide giving tourists a lecture about street art in Bushwick, Brooklyn during Bushwick Open Studios 2016. Oct. 1st, 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

A tour guide giving guided walks discussing street art to tourists. A fricken’ tour guide. In Bushwick, Brooklyn. Hey, guess everyone has to make a living. Still prompted me to post this on Facebook from my smartphone:

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Saw some more street mural art.

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Street art mural in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Oct. 1st, 2016. Photo by Michele Witchipoo.

A reminder of where I was:

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Switching gears, I decided to check out the studios 1717 Troutman Street. I found this tiny place on Cypress Avenue called Mextasis Se Habla Arte Mexicano.

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Mextasis Se Habla Arte Mexicano gallery during Bushwick Open Studios 2016. Oct. 1st, 2016.

Once arriving at 1717 Troutman, it was kinda like BOS jackpot. Every studio was buzzing with activity. Exhaustion was starting to come down, so I only stayed on the third floor.

Artist Jaclyn Brown uses dogs and cats in her paintings.

It was time to head back home, passing by the empty PBR cans as if they were hipster crumb trails (as my friend kindly stated). Despite my snarky commentary, this year’s BOS was a good one. Definitely way too many things to see for two days. Till next year, unless I get priced out thanks to the glory of gentrification.

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This just in. I will be participating in the 2016 Bushwick Open Studios (BOS) event with the Ridgewood Artist Coalition (RAC) over at OUTPOST Artist Resources from October 1 – 15 2016, from 12:00 pm to  6:00 pm. This will be a group art exhibit featuring many artists from the Ridgewood, Queens area of NYC, displaying work in various mediums.

Opening night details can be found on this OUTPOST page, from noon to 7 pm.

I’m especially pleased because I’ll be showing something fresh. This is part of a new series I’m working on. The series is still in process but I managed to get the first part in on time.

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Reverend Mother. Pen, ink, illustration board. 2016. Loosely based on Frank Herbert’s Dune series. Illustration by Michele Witchipoo.

The new series is loosely based on Frank Herbert’s Dune. For a little over a year and half stone, I’ve been getting back into the science fiction genre. (In fact, the 50th anniversary of Star Trek happened this past Wednesday as of this posting.) Particularly those of a Dystopian nature. Dystopia is very fitting into these times, especially with current world and political events. Also, I think Dystopia forces us to confront some very uncomfortable truths about humanity through fiction. Many times Dystopian fiction is very disturbingly prophetic.

Despite some slight reservations I have about how the women are depicted in the Dune series, it’s still one of the best sci-fi stories of all time. My introduction to Dune came during my early ’80s adolescence. The film adaption finally came to the big screen, which I was lucky enough to catch during it’s original theatrical release. The film was produced by flashy producer Dino De Laurentiis and directed by art house fave David Lynch. It wasn’t the greatest film adaption, but at least it supplied some sort of visualization. It had enough impact upon me to buy the paperback at a local Queens drugstore, with the movie poster as the book cover. Years later gave this copy away, which I came to regret. Since then I’ve re-brought the novel at Topos Bookstore.

Enough details. What drew me back to Dune once again was through personal conversations, and it’s correspondence to magick. There’s a brilliant quote that’s pretty well known. It goes like this:

‘I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.’

You can apply this passage not only as an occultist, but also as any sort of creative. Whether you’re an artist, a writer, a musician, actor, etc. This can apply to life in general. In order to accomplish anything, one must get over, or break away from whatever holds the person back. You will never discover your true Will if you allow fear to overtake you.

Revisiting Dune the second time around, the characters that appealed to me the most were the Reverend Mothers.  Otherwise known as the Bene Gesserit. The Bene Gesserit is a very powerful sisterhood that can be liken to witches. So I’ve gone back using symbolism such as alchemy and combined it with the likeness of the Reverend Mothers.

The above piece is for sale. If anyone wants to acquire, you can send me an email.

See you during Bushwick Open Studios.

 

 

 

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