I could be really ticked at myself for missing The Skrauss’ gallery installation last fall or his Master’s thesis project this past winter; or I could be beside myself for not getting in line four hours early to catch Skrauss’ big screen debut in the Milwaukee Film Fest short The Wheel, or I could just be happy The Skrauss self-publishes a video blog now.
With MFA nearly under his belt (or pillow) Skrauss lately indulges himself mastering other gifts besides his obvious talents in painting and illustration. A hearty appetite for spoken prose and an unearthed alacrity for video production makes Skrauss an unlikely multi-media super hero on a plane with The Tick.
I got a chance to share a choice exchange with Skrauss, a few verses of quilled mental banter.
LS Trolley: So you’ve just got done selling out, with your big bad MFA, if you haven’t repressed it all already tell me about your work you’ve just completed… Time told with actions, a pity when words conjure, just a sound can provoke the wits of the ages, in envy do we begin again, do we find our way again?
The Skrauss: I am your master as of December and only later will master, in November, Fine art. Remember this footnote: I burn midnight’s embers toil for the F in the above designation. Then without hesitation I’ll move through Tomorrow’s history and obliterate the Art World. You’ll see, here in Milwaukee headlines read: “The Skräuss Decimates Modulation, Mighty-and_High Mediation. Unchains imagination. Adulation!”
Self-production: the new sustenance…
via The Skrauss Speaks, You Listen, Youtube
LST: The floor approaches my feet with ease, I stop so my fingers can curse the cursor, I will not point, worth your bid?
The Skrauss: I make it your bidzniz, my bids. They this: I snap my fingers, I prime the pump, I squirt some Lysol on my tongue. My life jumps not lingers. It leaps from the box, unsprung and breaking hinges.
LST: With freedom the mind wanders, how is it best served?
The Skrauss: Work out your freedom with fear and trembling. Take the fork in the road, make an absurd turn. Deny the mind mumbling, spiritus Mundi, the Cistern Chapel and
and her resigned grumbling.
LST: What else have you been up to, what’s next, lets just define art while we are at it. Feel free to drift off into some poetics. Tell me about your dabbling with the power of words and video images, as much as you have with traditional visual art mediums and technique… sort of in line with what seems to be distilling from your video blog…
The Skrauss: I’ve moved from comics to paintings to sculpture to video. I’m utterly time-based. A cartoonist hastening through the democratic matrix; that you call youtube and all of its individual moments beautiful and hideo. Next up, a schematic for the “Milwaukee2 Epic Cycle.” An info graphic, a map.
Formerly words did all the work cultivating culture, codifying our clamoring, the noise of civilization’s hammering. Then America mixed, from engraving’s catalyst, words and pictures creating comic’s first scriptures. I contradict high-brow strictures.
LST: Typical artist, can’t decide what talent to batter people with next… That’s good news, I wasn’t sure Milwaukee was even going to make ‘epic’ status before people stopped using that term… tell me why I’m going to the like this ‘Milwaukee2 Epic Cycle’ or did you just make that up? Growing in the time between now and when, places when just out of reach enough to keep exerting… exhorting…
The Skrauss: Milwaukee’s been epic since the first cataleptic foot down in the root, but we’re all separate, suff’ring like puffer fish, with our minds in the box, blinds drawn, buffering. The Milwaukee2 Epic Cycle, unicycle, 9 reels of treacle dubbed by Hitchcock, with Ed Wood on ballaleika. It’s a pocket full of rockets, a gun at a bottle fight, a nun rolling down a hill at night going, “Grey, grey, grey, spectrum!”
The M2 EC squared, cubed, hypercubed, I declare, it’s a package of delights a fountain of fireworks gurgling out your nightlight. A novel told out of order in the least efficient form or media possible. It’s inaccessible. It’s painting, comics, poetry, films. It’s all my whims, lassoed, hog-tied. Scarier than Grimm, I’m coming from mythology just like Icarus, just like a satirist. I’m a Chestertonian paradox. Milwaukee2 stuffs the ballot box, but rolls a harmonium.
LST: Hit me again…
The Skrauss: …Ectoplasmic retorting! Bend the rules of blues and create the sound of the screws in the clockwork. Accept it all, no matter how lame, cheesy, hackneyed, or corny. God is in the strings. Why not show them? We’re not rabbits in hats, we’re the kings, we go anywhere. One step. One step at a time…
The Skrauss recently smashed a couple of Milwaukee art venues over Spring Gallery Night, UWM’s Peck School of the Arts Annual Kenilworth Open Studios and outlet in development Orcanine Abbey.
If you’re in the mood for some disorienting audio/visual stimulation check-out Skrauss’s video blog The Skrauss Speaks, You Listen, which is pretty much poised to put Hulu Plus out of business. In print, Skrauss dabbles in poetry and other artistic and not so artistic muses on Phooey Gun Fight. In the mean time, let Skrauss demystify one of Milwaukee’s favorite holidays for you.
Do you know who you’re toasting on St. Patty’s Day?
via The Skrauss Speaks, You Listen, Youtube