Monday, February 8, 2010

Collective Locale

I want to start taking photographs of window art by Scott Campbell of "Extremo the Clown" fame. If you don't know him, you should, he's one of the finest performance artists around. He's a painter in oils as well as a sculptor of cars, magnificent art cars. Gargoyles, fountains, scenes in bas relief and the man driving is dressed like a clown complete with puppets.

This is why I call him a performance artist. Sure he's a great painter and his cars are awesome but the whole package is just over the top bad assidry. He brings it to the people, on the streets, at the bank, down the freeway. I first started seeing him because he banked next to where I worked 11 years or so ago.

As far as his window art, I saw it randomly, then started looking for it and now it is a collection. A collections of locations where I have seen an Extremo window painting. Advertisements for the store inside. Smiling, expressive filing cabinets beckon you to come in and purchase an office chair. I have driven in Salem Oregon and seen an Extremo window and of course all over Portland. Once I was watching HDTV and the lady being interviewed gave a tour of her house. Low and behold she had an Extremo painting in her front room, I am good at spotting them. I asked him to confirm it was his. Also being from St. Johns Portland, Radke's Auto is a landmark for me. With its huge sign and neon race car, the huge lettering on the front of this corner building: wait could that be. I am 98% sure that it is the work of a younger Extremo, perhaps at the start of his career? It has been there since I was a baby.

The point is there is a level of local permeation that I think goes largely unnoticed. There are a lot of people who know of the "clown in the art car" but I think it might surprise people how at large he is. So support your local clown, he's just out making people smile. I think that is a might fine vocation.

And did you know he's a musician too? And ran for Mayor and placed pretty high. The next step is to document the locations, then compile them. A fun art project begins.

PS the painting of his that I own contains his actual hair, the hair that was cut off soon after the picture above was taken. I know that has a bit of an "ew" factor but I thought it was a good cross section of his more serious oil paintings and his sculpture. The bust is three dimensional and made in the same manner his cars are.
Extremo The Clown: Thirteen

No comments: