Photos and words by Geoffrey Dicker.
Here are 15 times quotes from “I Won The Internet!” by Geoffrey Dicker made your life better. Remember, sharing is caring!
The Best of the Music & Art Scene In New York From A to G. Daily!
Photos and words by Geoffrey Dicker.
Here are 15 times quotes from “I Won The Internet!” by Geoffrey Dicker made your life better. Remember, sharing is caring!
Artwork by Troy Gua.
“Does this status update make me look fat?”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
A Hilarious New Book “I WON THE INTERNET! – DAILY WIT, WISDOM AND SELFIES, ACCORDING TO G.” To Be Released In September 2014
New York, NY (September 10, 2014) – Poet and blogger Geoffrey Dicker announces his third book, “I WON THE INTERNET! – DAILY WIT, WISDOM AND SELFIES, ACCORDING TO G,” which will be available to purchase through Amazon on September 20, 2014. The book chronicles some of the encounters of a “modern day Zelig” who has met a celebrity born on each day of the year (including Oprah Winfrey, Bono, Amy Winehouse, Adele, Morrissey, James Franco, Lady Gaga, Joan Rivers, Bryan Cranston, Jane Fonda and Ringo Starr) and presents his witty and uncensored one-liners and words of wisdom disguised as Status Updates and Tweets. Dicker encourages the reader to use this book as a guide to put them at the forefront of pop culture. It’s literally three books in one!
The book contains two sections of thoughtful and hilarious ideas for people to ponder and share online to make them the most popular person in their social media newsfeed. The third section is dedicated to “Selfies” which showcase a small portion of Dicker’s impressive celebrity autograph and selfie photo collection. Using this book as a daily calendar, readers get the chance to view these superstars and legends in the making in an entirely different light. The book features 365 exclusive color photographs of some of the biggest names in entertainment, music and art, and features cover art by pop artist Troy Gua.
“As a consumer of social media, I got sick of seeing people posting the same ideas and being afraid to voice their opinion as it might not be politically correct, so I’ve written this book to help people find new things to complain and laugh about. This book is my response to some of the good and not so good things I’ve experienced on line as well as some satire on social (and anti-social) media and the current state of the world. Plus, there are 365 exclusive color photos of celebrities!” Dicker said.
For celebrity enthusiasts, pop culture critics and aspiring social media superstars, this book is a must read. Featuring 365 exclusive color photos, the book is available in September 2014 from Amazon. Go viral!
About the Author
Geoffrey Dicker is a poet, lyricist and blogger. In its five year existence, his popular art and music blog According2g.com has posted over 6,500 original pictures, videos and reports of his adventures from celebrity encounters to attending art openings and reports of rock and roll concerts. He is the author of “Sketches of Verbal Alchemy,” a controversial collection of “abstract poetry,” maxims and aphorisms designed to make the reader think of new possibilities to age old problems. His second book “Unfinished Lyrics,” is an anthology of song lyrics he’s written inspiring three full length albums of his words that have been recorded by pop singer Jim Emmons (“In the Absence of Red,” “Throwing Stars” and “So Strange”). “I Won the Internet!” is his third book. He has taken more than 1,500 selfies with famous people and has amassed in excess of 25,000 autographs in his personal collection. He’s worked in the entertainment industry for over 20 years, both behind the scenes and in front of the camera. In his spare time he designs T-shirts, writes witty banter and creates abstract paintings. Geoffrey Dicker currently resides in New York City.
Photo or interview requests, contact
Photos (except for the “Le Petit Prince” series, which were taken from Google Images) courtesy of Troy Gua.
A2G: The Prince fan community, which can be very hard to please, really seemed to love “Le Petit Prince,” but Prince himself did not. What happened?
TG: I don’t know what finally caused the cease and desist order, because I had been advertising the sale of prints of the work (*my* work) for a while, but it was when I began selling calendars that I got shut down. I have to point out that I was only selling merchandise of this work to fund the project’s continuation towards the completion of the book. And I still feel that I was doing no wrong – I was simply filtering my memories, expressing my vision of a great artistic influence in my own artistic language – based on existing imagery, yes, but made wholly new by my interpretation – which so much of art is. Anyhoo, after 11 months of work, I received an email from the lawyers and a letter via FedEx the next day. It basically said that because of my use of Prince’s likeness to sell work, I needed to erase LPP from the internet and never show the work online or off. So – in the end I guess it was about money.
A2G: Did any of his associates give you advice/support for dealing with the cease and desist order?
TG: No advice, really, but a lot of support – several of his former bandmates/associates posted really wonderful, supportive comments on Facebook and such.
A2G: Aside from working through lawyers, you were never contacted by Prince. If you could send a message to Prince, what would you say about this whole situation?
TG: Wow, I really don’t know what he personally thinks of the project, so that’s a tough question. I’d like him to know that the LPP Project was meant as a loving and respectful tribute to him, and nothing more. It grew out of something I made for myself into something so much bigger than I could have ever planned or imagined, and was fueled by his fans’ adoration and passion for him and his art, on a global scale. The only ingredients in this project were admiration, joy and love, and it was a sad thing to have it stamped out so unceremoniously. I’d like to say “Let’s get together and make some wonderful art and make people smile – the world needs more of both”.
A2G: If Prince or his legal team were to change his/their mind(s), would you continue the “Le Petit Prince” project or has this experience soured you?
TG: I would, and I have continued – I just don’t post the work online. I was in the process of filling the visual gaps in Prince’s career to compile images for the book when the c&d came down, and I was actually getting close to wrapping – at least as far as that part of the project went. If Prince would change his mind and get on board, it would make a lot of people happy. We could offer the book (which is a beautiful, 12×12″, 160+ page coffee table volume including tons of never before seen, unreleased work), and who knows, maybe even LPP reproductions. The fans would LOVE it. I’ve been doing the most recent looks and some more surreal, fantastical stuff referencing the whole ‘3rd Eye Girl’ thing that’s been going on. I could, of course, go on forever with it, being there is so much source material, but I won’t…or will I?
TG (continued): At the end of the day, I do have a problem with reconciling the concept of an artist censoring another artist, especially when the artwork in question was clearly a loving tribute. Appropriation is a tradition, art historically speaking, and there would have never been an Andy Warhol without it. Appropriation happens to be a big part of what I do as an artist, but the work I did with “Le Petit Prince” was a reimagining, an artistic interpretation of Prince as my life’s greatest inspiration, and *I* created that work using that inspiration, stealing nothing. I hold to that truth – and it could be argued. When the cease and desist order came down, my first reaction was to acquiesce – to fight would have been in direct opposition to the spirit of the project itself. But looking back on the situation now, I do feel it’s a bit extreme and quite unfair to the project’s fans as well as myself to not allow the work to exist or be shown anywhere – online or off. I still hold some hold hope that that decision can and will be reversed at some point.
A2G: After the Prince debacle, you wasted no time and designed your own line of customizable T-shirts? Please tell us about them and what made you go this route?
TG: I got no time to waste! 🙂 I have so many ideas that it’s a struggle to get them made – they were backing up all last year when I was so focused on LPP, so now they’re starting to come flying out in various forms. I’ve been thinking about this particular design for a while – the <3 texting code for love. I call my design ‘Metamodern Love’. I’m fascinated with symbols and pictograms, and I wanted to use it as an updated version of Robert Indiana’s LOVE works, and it just seems like a design that would be big for the digital demographic. I’m into getting my work into people’s lives any way I can, and if that means on a t-shirt, I’m cool with that (I plan on releasing the design as a ‘floating heart’ pendant as well as a pin in the very near future). Plus, it is a symbol of positivity, of love – and as for the term ‘metamodern’, from Wikipedia: “Van den Akker and Vermeulen define metamodernism as a continuous oscillation, a constant repositioning between positions and mindsets that are evocative of the modern and of the postmodern but are ultimately suggestive of another sensibility that is neither of them: one that negotiates between a yearning for universal truths on the one hand and an (a)political relativism on the other, between hope and doubt, sincerity and irony, knowingness and naivety, construction and deconstruction.”
A2G: You’ve also done a series of “Pop Hybrids.” (please explain the process or how the series came about). Have you received any feedback from the artists you’ve immortalized?
TG: The whole idea started when I decided to reboot my style by making abstract, highly graphic paintings of overlapping circles – the overlapping colors would make new colors, and new shapes were made by the overlaps. At the same time I had started making these 2D paper cutouts representing iconic faces that I would sandwich between glass in shadowboxes. I melded the two ideas together, essentially. I thought about the idea of overlapping, layering, and how we’re all running out of space – literally, mentally, memorially – and I thought about how, in the theoretical future, in order to save room, we’re going to have to combine objects, combine personalities, combine everything – distillation and hybridization. That made sense to me as a concept – and in keeping with the concept, I wanted to insert as many layers of interpretation into the work as I could. For instance, ‘The Boy King of Pop’ is a combination of Michael Jackson and King Tut. Layer one: the title – it hybridizes their popular monikers “The Boy King’ and ‘The King of Pop’. Layer two: they were both children thrust into the limelight without a choice or a voice in the matter. Layer three: they both ended up in masks of different sorts, literally and figuratively. I try to implement this layering system with all the pieces in the series, sometime more successfully than other times. As for feedback, I haven’t heard from anyone, but then again, many of the subjects are dead and buried.
A2G: What’s a typical day in your life like?
TG: I live a pretty low-key life, really. I get up around 7am, have breakfast with my beautiful bride, and scan my computer in my usual loop of email, Facebook, job search (I need to either find a better way to make the art career pay off, or sell my soul – I’d prefer the former to the latter). Then I either exercise at the gym or go running to maintain my girlish figure, run errands, and then it’s time to work on whatever project(s) I’m working on, which is usually several at once. I stay pretty attached to my laptop and keep connected as much as possible with the social medias, which I see as part of the job of being an artist today – at least an artist at my level. My wife is going to school full-time and doing a couple of courses online, so we spend much of the day in close proximity and share meals and such. I love it – she’s my bestie. At night, we usually watch an episode of whatever show we’re currently obsessed with and turn in around 10 or 11. I used to go to a ton of art events, but that became draining and felt obligatory, so I stopped for about a year. I’m trying to ween myself back into going out more, though. Pretty mellow lifestyle, these days.
A2G: Any plans on exhibiting in New York?
TG: Of course, that’s the dream – no plans at this point, because I haven’t been able to make any gallery connections, but if I can make it there…and if you know anybody, I’m so ready for a big break.
A2G: What does the future hold for you?
TG: I’ve got ideas for daaaayzzzz…I really just want to be able to continue to manifest my concepts, execute my work to the best of my ability and share what I do with the hope that it invites people to think, ask questions, and smile – on as big a scale as possible. I do have a solo show of my ‘Pop Hybrid’ series coming up in May at the Kenneth Paul Lesko Gallery in Cleveland – working my way towards NYC.
As you have seen from all these extremely diverse works of art, Troy Gua is definitely an artist to watch and I am very excited to see what he comes up with next. Thanks again Troy and my fingers are crossed for a New York exhibit soon! And Prince, if you are out there, please reconsider your harsh decision and let “Le Petit Prince” live again. Art lovers and Prince fans unite and let’s help make this happen! Visit Troy Gua’s official website here. (link will open in new window)
Photos (except for the Le Petit Prince images which were found on Google Images) courtesy of Troy Gua.
There are few artists around that are truly masters of many styles. Seattle-based pop artist Troy Gua is one of them. As you will see and read from this Q&A that I did with Troy Gua, be prepared to be impressed by his art. His work even caught the attention of music legend Prince, however, as you will come to learn, that story (as of press time) did not end happily.
Troy was given Seattle Magazine’s 2011 Spotlight Award and with or without Prince’s support, Troy Gua is an artist to be reckoned with. I recently chatted with Troy about life, art, Prince any many more subjects and what you will read below (and in a future post) are the highlights of our conversation. Enjoy and thanks again to Troy for his honesty and of course for rocking my world (and hopefully yours too) with his great art!
According2G: What’s on your iPod / Kindle / Netflix?
Troy Gua: Prince and associated artists are always in heavy rotation, but I’ve also been listening to Frank Ocean, Glen Campbell, Zapp, David Bowie. I’m reading a Jack Reacher novel by Lee Childs (one of my guilty pleasures), and have been watching Six Feet Under damn near daily for a few weeks now. Recently watched Looper and For a Good Time, Call…
A2G: You have a vast body of work that is extremely diverse. What’s your favorite medium to work in?
TG: I wouldn’t be able to say what my favorite medium is – for me, it’s more about the idea than the material. I use whatever I can get my hands on to manifest my concepts physically, whatever makes sense, whatever the party calls for. Of course, the aesthetics are extremely important to me as well, but I generally let the concept dictate the materials.
A2G: When and how did you get into art?
TG: It’s always just been ‘my thing’. From the time I was a small kid, I got the pat on the back for being ‘the artist’ of the class. That part felt really good, and just like a drug addict chasing the dragon of his first high, I’ve been chasing the dragon of that first pat on the back ever since.
A2G: Who are your heroes or influences?
TG: I’ve got many from varied sources: my wife quite literally saved my life when we got sober together 6+ years ago. She helped me find a new path and renewed my dream of ‘making it’ as an artist – pretty heroic. My father was a hero of sorts, in that he always made me feel safe from harm – when he died, that feeling did too, to a certain extent. Prince is my artistic hero, and will always be my biggest influence. David Bowie, Luke Skywalker, Johnny Depp. From the art world, I love Maurizio Cattelan, Marcel Duchamp, Jeff Koons, Yves Klein, Sal Dalí, Xavier Veilhan, Andy Warhol, Damien Hirst, Donald Judd, Robert Indiana, Chuck Close…in no particular order, and I’m sure I’m leaving some important names out.
A2G: You’ve done a series called “Colorbandz” Tell us about the process and how do you decide who makes the cut?
TG: The process starts with a color photograph – a head shot, straight on. I use the subjects features as guides for placement of transferred color samples from the photo, creating horizontal stripes. The idea is that of a portrait ‘at the speed of technology’, and is meant to reference today’s incredibly faced pace world. We see pictures of each other online, we get blips of information, we have short attention spans, we’re doing a million things all at once – we only see each other as we’re flying by at mach speed. That’s what the Colorbandz™ are meant to represent. As for who makes the cut, initially it was my friends and local art colleagues, but then of course, my celebrity obsession leaked into it and I began using famous folks that have iconic looks, that would also assist in delivering the concept to folks that just couldn’t get it. When I used Bert and Ernie, who are about as distilled as you can get as far as representative imagery, a lot of people had the aha moment with the series. I still take commissions for them, although I don’t regularly work on the series much at this point.
A2G: I know you are a big Prince fan. What’s your favorite Prince song and Prince related memory?
TG: Eesh – I’ve been asked this many times, and my answer always wants to change, because it really depends on the mood, but I’m gonna go with Erotic City – followed closely by I could Never Take the Place of Your Man, Anotherloverholenyohead, Adore, Bambi, and She’s Always in My Hair. Favorite Prince songs are like potato chips – I can’t have just one. Best Prince memory? The first time I saw him live – February 15th, 1985 in the Tacoma Dome. Transformative. I have to thank my sister for that.
A2G: Favorite unreleased Prince song/concert?
TG: Lovesexy Dortmund [from 1988], and the song I’ve never heard that will make my head cave in. 😉
A2G: How did the “Le Petit Prince” project come about?
TG: I was really just doing something fun for myself. I’ve been working hard to make a living as an artist in Seattle, and it’s been a tough go. I feel like if I could get my work into other markets, I’d be much more successful, financially. Anyway, I’d had a real busy 2011, which was pretty successful as far as local visibility and recognition goes, but I was frustrated that it wasn’t really yielding anything opportunity-wise or money-wise. So I just wanted to take a small break and make something that wasn’t meant for exhibition or sale. I’ve always been fascinated with Gerry Anderson’s Supermarionation work and wanted to make a sculptural doll of my hero that would be in the style of the Thunderbirds and such. I went about making that happen, tried to find someone to sew a ⅙ scale Purple Rain outfit (Purple coat, black pants, ruffled shirt), but couldn’t find anyone that would do it – so my wife convinced me to do it myself. I’d never sewn a thing in my life, so she helped on the first jacket and I took it from there. I posted some pics online, they began to get shared around, I started getting requests to do recreations of other Princely eras, took the requests as challenges, and went for it. It blew up from there. I began fabricating tiny guitars, all the clothes, using different wigs and cutting and styling them, making sets, and basically recreating Prince’s career visually with photography, all in ⅙ scale. I got to the point where I had done so many looks and eras that it just made sense to me to see the project through and complete the visual timeline. I was working towards a beautiful coffee table book and was hoping to exhibit the work at some point, but as you know [and will be addressed further in the second part of this interview], that idea was squelched.
Stay tuned for the second part of this interview. You will not want to miss it. In the meanwhile, check out more of Troy Gua’s art on his official website. (Link will open in a new tab).
You can also purchase some inexpensive works of Troy Gua’s art for a limited time here.