Sunday, September 17, 2017

Summer's almost gone - Identity exhibition - End of narrative -Personalized t-shirts

Sometimes I really don't know who I am.
Other times, I suddenly remember that my heart and soul was broken due to several personal problems that I've had in the last year that made almost impossible for me to focus in my professional or even personal life.
 Noticing my life in jeopardy because of a huge problem that I was having, I've tried to enter in a schizophrenic state of mind as a character for this identity with help by international artists, so I started gathering memories of talks that I've had with international artists with a clear narrative in my mind by chanelling my inner strength towards what was my work and what was my place in this world with personalized t-shirts, because I know that I really am a t-shirt freak.
 The world changes every split second and what are we without our memories or the work that some people tried to put in jeopardy while noticing that I was fragile for some months last year and even this year?
 At that I knew that my memories were intact, so some narratives started to form in my mind with simple images and t-shirts with the concept that this blogue is, because this is who I am: a simple, honest, direct and frontal guy that was born in a city named Porto.
 Social networks confuse me a lot and I don't understand them at all with several images being spread in them in nanoseconds and without words.
 I know that I'm strong, but all the chaos in life sometimes drives me crazy and without my digital files for exhibitons or not being able to attend several scheduled talks that I was planning for more than one year with publisher Gary Groth to countries such as Spain, Poland, Croatia, Finland, England, Czech Republic, Argentina and wthout my kitty Ilvie also stolen from my sight, everything turned into a huge blur in my mind.
 I've tried to focus on memories and conversations that I've had with international artists while thinking in those exhibitions that I wasn't able to curate.
 I know that editing books, curating exhibitions, translating texts in several languages and even organizing book collections for Fantagraphics and other worldwide publishers needed my full focus in my work, so my memories with talks and converstations sometimes were trapped in my chest like a bird that wanted to simply fly away.
 I thought on what to do to have these memories in my mind and spirit, so here's what ocurred to me while asking some artists for permission to print some of their works in personalized t-shirts for my own personal use based on what I was talking with them in my hometown and with a sense of movement all over it (I was thinking at the time that Porto was a canvas to promote magnificient artworks from international artists).
 Below each t-shirt, there's a simple narrative with every single artist and myself.

Personalized t-shirt by German artist - Lars Henkel 

I remember organizing a comic book festival in Porto named Mab in 2014 with a small team and German Lars Henkel provided the poster for it and I told him that I wanted this work printed in a t-shirt for me with logs forming a sort of human body, that in my mind seemed as a jigsaw of what we're as humans beings and Lars passed this idea to me with this image.


        
Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Argentine artist - Mr ED

Argentine artist Mr Ed created a tiny narrative based on social networks and I just loved it, because in my opinion social networks gives some peole the idea that in life what it counts more are images instead of words, giving me impression that images shouldn't destroy written words with feelings and emotions.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Spanish artist - Javier Olivares

I also remember talking to Gary Groth about the virtues of the magnificient book "ladies in waiting" by Spanish artists Santiago Garcia and Javier Olivares that later was published at Fantagraphics, so I've asked Javier for this wonderful drawing of that book in order to focus myself on the beauty of ladies or women while paying homage to this book in a simple t-shirt.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Spanish artist - Santiago Sequeiros

I've met personally met soccer coach Mourinho with Robson in Porto in the 90's and he was really nice and I know that he loves working with a team spirit against all odds, Spanish artist Santiago Sequeiros showed me a powerful image that he had created with Mourinho in mind and since I love Sequeiros work this image was stuck in my mind, spirit and soul while I was doing my job and conecting all dots that needed to be connected.


Personalized t-shirt with artworks by Spanish artists - Pedro Espinosa, Fidel Martiñez Nadal, Polish artist Magdalena Minko and Argentine artist Mr Ed

In life our work most of the times becomes who we're, while I was writing scripts to pay homage to a simple modern woman of the XXI with artworks by Polish artist Magdalena Minko, Argentine artist Mr ED, Spanish artists Fidel Martiñez Nadal, Pedro Espinosa among others that were settled in several cities and countries in the world, my personal memories were in them, what I love was there, what I was passing, will pass or who I am is also there.
 It was logical in my mind trying to gather the best panels of these stories with help by Argentine artist Mr Ed.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Argentine artist - Mr ED

Life is about love even when hate collides with it. 
I've always loved my pets and my memories with them all, without my kitty Ilvie, my energy was falling appart, so I focused on my memories with my kitty in order not only to do my job, but also to be with my kitty all the time covering my chest and my heart that was rushed without her physical presence.
 Argentine artist Mr ED clearly saw this and made an excellent artwork of Ilvie as I remember her, fierce, warrior and proud inspired in the famous Toulouse Lautrec painting "Le chat noir".    


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Spanish artist - Ruben Pellejero


I never know what will become of our memories as human beings and this bothers me a bit, so I thought on putting a bit of the work that I was having with a character named Valentina with Corto Maltese new artist Ruben Pellejero that gave me this original drawing in my birthday last year and to whom I also made an interview/coffee talk in my birthday last year.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by French artist - Walter Minus


French artist Walter Minus also offered me an original drawing and Walter is a real nice artist and human being, our comunication sometimes dwells between French and English.
 In my memories this is what I was doing then and what I continue doing without thinking on the price that an individual must pay while sticking firmly to his ideas and memories.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Croatian artist  - Danijel Zezelj

Croatian artist Danijel Zezelj is an awesome artist in my opinion and while I was printing in a t-shirt a drawing by him, I've thought on showing an image of a simple man that loved t-shirts, that carried others in a simple bag and a beautiful woman that danced while a static war was in movement in a parade in Porto.

      

  
Personalized t-shirt with artwork by American artist - Bill Koeb

People ask me sometimes why I'm so fond of cats and I answer them always the same.
"They're awesome as pets, they helped mankind during the black plague, they're simple, hav a free spirit and are independent and they've seven lives."
  "Why shouldn't I love them?"
My memories with my kittens were not only love, but clearly knowing what was their role in my life and also the one that they've had throughout world history.
 American artist Bill Koeb created a drawing based on me as a character and he told me that he "sees" me as a catman.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Spanish artist - Daniel Esteve

I remember talking with Spanish artist Daniel Esteve that's settled in Santiago do Chile and I was telling me that being Portuguese is hard because one must work a lot in order to be recognized as a person who works a lot developping ideas.
 He created a drawing based on myself as a character and I've told him if he could put the words "Buster or Lynch?" in the image because I admire David Lynch as a director that confuses people with simple things and actor/director Buster Keaton that worked without stunts.
 I've felt at the time that I was organizing this exhibition a bit like both of these well known artists.


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Swedish artist - Max Andersson

Being lost is a sense of wonder when you're trying to achieve a purpose or a goal in your life.
I always loved Max Andersson's stories since I was a teenager in Zero Zero magazine published by Fantagraphics with its wild rollercoaster narratives about how he sees the world and the changes that are happening all the time in it while making fun of everything.
 I've talked with Max about this image for a t-shirt and he told me "love the idea, I actually vision this as a way of promoting my own work", later on I've talked once again about his book "The Excavation" that is one of the best comic books that I've read in the last years and asked Gary Groth to send him a copy of his own book from England to Germany for him to sign it for me and suddenly, me, Max and Gary were talking about absent friends, western movies among other stuff and at that momet I've felt myself as a character in some Max Andersson's book.          
     

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Spanish artist - Santiago Sequeiros

I've already mentioned that Spanish artist Santiago Sequeiros is one of the best artists that I know of.
I've asked him permission to print in a t-shirt a sketch study of a modern woman of the XXI century of a work that I was doing.
 It's a real wonder seeing how Sequeiros studies a simple artwork, because lots of things always are in his mind during this process.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by British artist - David Lloyd


Several times it seems that I live in surrealism because I've asked David Lloyd that created "V for Vendetta" masterpiece along Alan Moore, that turned into a major motion picture starring Hugo Weaving, Natalie Portman or John Hurt and later to a worldwide movement named "Anonymous" with V's mask, to drew an original drawing to Portuguese book edition of this masterpiece and this was refused by the editor in chef due to not having enough pages to put in an exclusive drawing by David himself thar was the artist who drew this book.
 I was a bit shocked by this, but I've talked to David Lloyd and he told me that I could use this drawing in a t-shirt and the original was going to be given to charity.
 Sometimes life's simple and people complicate it.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Brazilian artist - Alex Korolkovas

To be born in Porto is to be vicious and I remember trying once again to pick up my memories about a conversation with two L.A. Models named Vika Costa and Katya that were shot by Brazilian Photographer Alex Korolkovas in order for them to promote a book that I was working on at Fantagraphics with them live in flesh and bone in U.S.A and they both told me "yes we can".
 I've talked with Fantagraphics marketing about the possibility of this increasing sales in the Books and they thought that it wasn't a good idea.
 I've thought to myself "They're L.A models, they've incarnated the characters that appear on this book, the artist that's being published with my help loved fashion, maybe I'm out of my mind while thinking that this could be a good idea to increase sales".
 I never understood and never knew how to figure out jigsaw puzzles, so I've stayed in good spirits laughing all the time with this thought in mind.


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Argentine artist - Mr ED


Never knowing where my ideas were going while organizing books, curating exhibitions and with lots of work.
 I've asked Argentine artist Mr Ed if he could do a tribute to maestro Alberto Breccia for a tribute exhibition to him with help by international artists since I was working on some Alberto Breccia's books and even on a worldwide collection.
 I've felt great first on this role, even seeing some of my real personal problems like were depicted in this "Perramus" masterpiece.
  Later money shouted and my voice suddenly was mute and instead of being a solution, I was a problem, simply because I prefer people to cash.


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by French artist - Walter Minus

Even heartbroken at some point in my life, I've asked French artist Walter Minus if I could print this beautiful woman drawn by him.
 I remember Walter telling me something like this "Manuel, don't smoke, because the pretty lady will cry" and my heart was beating and beating for a woman with a haircut style and colour as shown in this picture.


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Brazilian artist - Alex Korolkovas


Alex Korolkovas is one of the best photographers that I know with lots of love and passion on his works and that was having issues about a comic book character that I've instantly tried to solve in the best way that I could.

Barbara Nogueira is one of the best models that I also know and she's really nice and kind.
I had to put her seen through Alex's eyes in a personal T-shirt for my personal use.
Today I see Barbara's as a character that was shot by Alex all over the world in random places and I think to myself "this world sure is small for big ideas".


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Argentine artist - Mr ED

Curating exhibitions with heart, soul and direct communication isn't a simple task to perform.
Argentine artist Mr ED tried to portray me while being a character for Identity exhibition - End of Narrative as a foggish, workaholic, driven by demons kind of guy.
 Ed's really one of the best contemporary artists.


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by British artist - David Lloyd


I always felt myself a bit like Hellblazer comic book character with demons fighting me, being haunted by ghosts.
 I remember a talk that I've had personally 2 years ago with British artist David Lloyd that asked me this "Do you love suerheroes?" and I replied "No, I love hellblazer"-
 I've asked him if I could use a sketch by him of this character while he was telling me "no problem, Manuel"

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Croatian artist  - Danijel Zezelj

Memories usually are gold...
Dreams most of the times are silver in my opinion.
Being a character in an Identity exhibition is tricky.
Croatian maestro Danijel Zezelj tricked me with a drawing of myself quite emotional and my kitty Ilvie on my shoulder looking at me.

Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Argentine artist - Mr ED

I was born in Porto, I love Mourinho as a man with a strong personality.
Argentine artist Mr Ed prefers Guardiola tactics, but we both make a good team (or so I think).
This is the first personalized t-shirt that I've made with an international artist.


Personalized t-shirt with artwork by Finnish artist - Terhi Ekebom

Alpha and Omega...
This is the latest t-shirt that I've printed with an artwork by Finnish artist Terhi Ekebom and that has four panels describing a little girl dreaming and later awakening, this made me think on my four nieces Lara, Luzia, Isaura and Letícia and how they live life as little girls.

Da mui nobre, sempre leal e invicta cidade do Porto

Manuel Espírito Santo

                                    

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