I’ve done several murals. Mural work is art at its most blue collar and most sublime: half carpentry and half metaphysics. You’re exhausted and filthy, wobbling on a rickety platform, but you’re creating a world. Anyone who enters a room you’ve painted does it on your terms. When I do murals, I feel as if I’m John Henry, racing the steam engine through a mountain. If I will die, it will be with a paintbrush in my hand.
Last year I started doing giant paintings about the revolutions of 2011. I was inspired by Diego Rivera.
“I didn’t go there to write an article. I went because his conviction was wrong and my friends and I cared for him. I meant to be another body filling the courtroom, to provide whatever support that’s good for.”
Artist Molly Crabapple talks about her new exhibition of paintings, entitled “Shell Game” (which opens April 14 in New York) and her documentary drawings of #OWS, #15-M and the global unrest, with writer and broadcaster Paul Mason, who has reported on the crisis from Zuccotti to Tahrir Square.
Molly Crabapple – visual artist, and Kim Boekbinder – musician, are both champions of the crowd funding age. Both have received international praise and recognition for their groundbreaking work in their respective mediums, as well as the way they run their careers. Though they work in different fields what the two have in common is that they have both built their careers on their own: no management, booking, labels, or galleries of any kind have made possible what they do. Yet they both make a living as full time artists in a world where we are told that fewer and fewer people are paying for music and art.
Molly Crabapple discusses circumventing the rigid gallery system which favors the sale of large and expensive works of art over the quick, passionate, and current work of such a prolific artist.
Kim Boekbinder brings to the table her groundbreaking pre-sold tour concept and the successes and pitfalls of an artist in close contact with her audience.
25 Red Lion Square, London, WC1R 4RL Friday, February 22, 2013
Event runs 10am-4pm
I go on at 12:00pm. I’m going to talk about art and politics.
London School of Economics Women Writing History @ LSE and Gender Institute Literary Festival
Sheikh Zayed Theatre, New Academic Building
The London School of Economics and Political Science, Houghton Street, London WC2A 2AE Wednesday, February 27, 2013
I’ll be speaking about Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, and ideas about men’s and women’s art. Free, but you have to reserve tickets online
Has the successful transmission of images become essential to engaging in and sustaining dissent? In our mediatized world, issues of visual representation lie increasingly at the center of the social movements. Join illustrators Peter Kuper and Molly Crabapple in discussion with comic-book scholar Jonathan W. Gray about the politics of representing dissent from Oaxaca to Greece to Occupy to the Gaza Strip.
The old world’s machines are breaking. In 2011, millions noticed: in Spain and Greece and New York and Cairo, they sat down in public squares, and said the machine was defunct. Those squares are empty today. Spain’s protest movements are now doing the slow work of building spaces to help each other, while the world decides what it’s going to become.
But what Ariadne discovered on her walks with the Meadow was that there were bigger places to see. The multiverse hangs in the metaverse, a room where all the universes hang like sheets on a great hypermagnetic wave. And the Xenoverse is the weather outside that room that causes the wave. And the Hyperverse is the weather system that causes those winds. And the Hyperverse is the impossibly giant ecology that contains all things. Ariadne, of course, knew as well as you and I that weeds get bloody everywhere. So it was not an impossibly long time before she, in a boat of Meadow, could look down on all of creation and know that everything everywhere was really nothing more than things growing. And she, no less than a clever woman who never learned not to ask questions, did look down, and smiled.
Words by Warren Ellis, pictures by Molly Crabapple.
The giant wrap-up of things I’ve made that you can buy for the holidays. The last day to order in order to get things for Christmas is 12/15.
Have Molly Crabapple do a custom portrait illustration for you! Your original artwork will be drawn on 13 x 19″ stained art paper with pen, ink, gouache and dye. It will be in a similar style to the image listed. Please be prepared to send one or two photos that clearly shows the subject’s face within 5 days of commission purchase. Limited to ten portraits, guaranteed delivery by the holidays with timely delivery of photographs.
For 2013, Molly Crabapple will produce one limited edition 8×12″ (paper size) silkscreen per month. You can purchase the full year’s worth of silkscreens, which will be released on the first of every month & mailed to you. If you order the year in advance, you will also receive a hand made portfolio case to store your artwork in, emblazoned with the “Art of Molly Crabapple” logo.
+ Subcribe to Silkscreen of the Month here
A few weeks ago, I went to Madrid for the general strike, where I swigged whisky, watched teenage anarchists smash banks, and drew mass protests. I wrote and sketched it for VICE.
Of course, protest doesn’t change the world. By itself, protest is carnival. Masquerade, song, fire- liaisons made and kings mocked. Daily gray briefly overturned. Rebellious ecstasy that ultimately serves to keep the hierarchy in place. Those in power, if they’re a speck self aware, allow carnival as a safety valve. Carnival is not power itself.
Ladies and gentlemen! Today BoingBoing.net is premiering the short animation “I Have Your Heart” directed by Jim Batt, illustrated by Molly Crabapple, with a song by Kim Boekbinder. 2 years of paper cuts and patience!
Last week, Hurricane Sandy hit New York. I was one of the million or so people without power or water. The day after we walked past downed trees and the looted stores at South Street Seaport (someone really wanted sensible women’s office wear).
flares guiding people onto the blacked out Williamsburg Bridge
A week later, we’re fine, but much of the city is not. The Rockaways, Red Hook, Staten Island, and other neighborhoods are devastated. Me, Fred, and photographer Kate Black hitched a ride on the 666 Burger Truck to Rockaway Parkway, to hand out delicious fried foodstuffs. One girl nearly wept, at having had her first hot meal in a week.
In the Rockaways, Red Cross has little presence, and FEMA is mostly there to survey damage. Wrecked boats block intersections, and people’s entire possessions are covered in toxic sludge and piled out with the trash. We passed gas lines 20 blocks long.
Burger truck in Rockaway
In situations like this, where the government is failing, we have to be good to eachother. For people wanting to volunteer, Occupy Sandy is doing a fine job in Red Hook, as is New York Communities for Change. The Ali Forney Center, which helps homeless LGBT youth, was devastated. Other people with construction experiance, like my friends Veronica Varlow and Burke Hefner, are going down to the Rockaways to help clear out flooded basements themselves.
Very soon, the solar system was a mass of warm and grassy island computers. But Ariadne was far from finished. The best machines ever should be able to answer all the questions, and she knew there was more to see. And so there were soon trees that stood so high and strange that their silver tops crested up into the universe next door. Ariadne grew bridges across the multiverse, the set of all possible universes, just to see what she could see, which is of course the best reason of all. And, on the foot of every bridge she crossed, she gave Meadow to every Earth she found. As did Meadow itself, when it explored on its own, as it was a friendly kind of Damned Stuff, and also because weeds get bloody everywhere.
Words by Warren Ellis, pictures by Molly Crabapple.
A woman’s beauty is supposed to be her grand project and constant insecurity. We’re meant to shellac our lips with five different glosses, but always think we’re fat. Beauty is Zeno’s paradox. We should endlessly strive for it, but it’s not socially acceptable to admit we’re there. We can’t perceive it in ourselves. It belongs to the guy screaming “nice tits.”
Saying “I’m beautiful,” let alone charging for it, breaks the rules.
I wrote an article about my time as a naked model for VICE. It was hard as drawing blood to do, but it had been a long time coming.
Molly Crabapple is an artist and writer in New York. Her 2013 solo exhibition, Shell Game, led to her being called “Occupy's greatest artist” by Rolling Stone, and “an emblem of the way that art could break out of the gilded gallery” by The New Republic. She is the fourth artist in the last decade to draw Guantanamo Bay. Crabapple is a columnist for VICE, and has written for The New York Times, Newsweek, The Paris Review, CNN, The Guardian, The Daily Beast, Jacobin, and Der Spiegel. Her illustrated memoir, Drawing Blood will be published by Harper Collins in 2015.
Get In Touch
Speaking Engagements: The Lavin Agency
Literary Agent: Lydia Wills
Special Projects: Quinn Heraty at Heraty Law
"Equal parts Hieronymus Bosch, William S. Burroughs and Cirque du Soleil."