Exploring Beauty and Hell With Gay Artists SUPERM
BY Savas Abadsidis
November 29 2012 5:00 AM ET
You have been working together for eight years now. How did the Skingraphs series come about?
Brian: It happened totally spontaneously and organically, like everything we do. We wanted to create a series that could be both a gallery exhibition and potentially a book. We’ve done plenty of shows and projects together, but this is perhaps our most conceptual, ambitious and extensive collaboration to date, with over 30 collages in total, with similar style and composition, all hand-made and mounted on identical canvas panels, 11 x 14 inches each — very intimate size.
Slava: To make a long story short, we wanted to get rid off a massive pile of vintage gay porn magazines that was sitting at our studio for years, so we thought it could be a good tribute to the good ol’ print porn, which is about to disappear with the advent of the digital age and Internet takeover. Years ago I used to shoot for some of these magazine, like Honcho, Inches, and Playguy, and the editors always complained that I never had enough dick shots, so eventually I got sick and tired of it and decided to make a transition into the world of fine art. So I looked at this old magazine pile and thought, why not turn this old porn into new art? First of all, we removed all the faces and genitals, cut them all up and mixed together, then re-assembled piece by piece, limb by limb, creating these alien looking amorphic metabods that resemble either deep sea creatures or ancient sculptures with missing limbs and genitals — so mysterious and pretty to look at, and perfectly G-rated. Collaging them together was an extremely tedious and time-consuming process, but very satisfying nevertheless, like meditation or solving a puzzle. We would never be able to achieve anything like this digitally in Photoshop.