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    Rich Jacobs Interview

    Rich Jacobs, Move 2,  1998.
    Rich Jacobs at the Move 2 art show opening at New Image Art in Los Angeles, California, 1998. Photo by Pat D.

    What do you lust for?
    Wow. Maybe nothing or something simple and mundane, like looking at interesting photographs, older printing processes, design and different approaches to designing things, layouts, funny or strange fonts, good cropping jobs. Bad choices are fun sometimes, too. I go to record and bookstores to try to see as much as I can, on purpose. I guess, really, the answer is I have to see new things constantly, or I have to at least look at things, so I would probably say anything visual that looks earnest, amazing, interesting, dull, extra-boring, accidental, handmade things that have imperfections or traces left of humans having had contact with them.

    Rich Jacobs, Plasticratic, 2000.
    At Plasticratic in San Diego, California, 2000.

    Record covers, bookbinding, magazine articles, newspapers–especially Indian, Asian, Moroccan, Greek, or places with very different text–signs, hand-painted signage, digital pixel-damaged type on computer printouts, receipts, scraps, words that have been scratched out, crossed out or painted over, ghost letters, traces of old writing, layers, tags, graffiti, vandalism, and evidence of someone having an emotional experience visually. It’s fun seeing the ways people try to communicate, express themselves, or just get pissed–frustrated and angry. I like dialogues that are open and spontaneous, on and off the street. Words waiting to come out of people’s mouths–I even like those.

    Rich Jacobs, flowers, 1994.
    “Yes, I’d like a large order of puffy hair with a side of flower power.” 1994.

    Then there are shapes and forms abstracted. They may mean nothing or maybe they mean everything, or more than words, even. You can see these everywhere, even if you just look to any side. Go on walks. It’s easy to become addicted to looking at things. Really, it is. There are millions of more opportunities for looking and seeing. You can’t help but take them in. I look at people. I look at their shapes and forms, their expressions, their eyes staring back at me or into space. I look at their choices. Somedays, it helps me remember that we’re all human. I look at what people do, how they do it, why, when and where. I like seeing things people have done, like drawings, sketches, noodlings, ideas, fully finished works of their art or expressions, their pictures, how they look at things.

    Rich Jacobs, Beautiful Losers, 2005.
    At the first Beautiful Losers art show in Cincinnati, Ohio, 2004.

    All of this is very intriguing and interesting to me. I like to see people do things, makes things and play things. Occasionally, I like watching people make sounds, play instruments or noise devices. People can do a lot of amazing and crazy things, don’t you think? I guess if I lust for anything, it’s visuals or being able to look and see things. Maybe this makes me lonely, shy or even depressed at times, but it can also bring me extreme happiness, as well. I’m glad I have eyes. I’m grateful I was given the chance to use them. Maybe I can learn to use the rest of my body in a similar manner eventually.

    Rich Jacobs, Keep in Mind, 1989.
    Rich Jacobs wields the axe for Keep in Mind, 1989.

    Locations: I’ve lived in Long Beach, Seattle, Denver, Salt Lake City, Venice, Los Angeles and San Diego. Next is New York City, then hopefully Spain. I am 28 years old.

    Record cover artwork: Iceburn, Gentry Densley, Three Mile Pilot, Bluebird, Tristeza, Ganger, Back Off Cupids, J Majesty, The Wad Squad and Beth Capper.

    Magazine artwork: Ray Gun, TransWorld Skateboarding, Warp, Skateboarder, Powder, Juxtapoz, Double Negative, Grand Royal and Move Zine, among others.

    Selected fine art shows: George’s, New Image Art, No Life Records, Burgamot Station, La Luz de Jesus, Pageant Rico, The Smell (all in Los Angeles), The Luggage Store (San Francisco), Milky World (Seattle), Space 1026 (Philadelphia), P.S. 122 (New York), The Phoenix (Boston).

    Draw More, Talk Less.
    Draw More, Talk Less art show at 68 and Brothers in Tokyo, Japan, 2005.

    Selected favorite musicians: Charles Ives, Edgard Varese, Iannis Xenakis, Harry Partch, Harry Bertoia, the four minimalists and Tony Conrad, Charlie Patton, Skip James, John Fahey, Derek Bailey, Hans Reichel, AMM, early raw bluegrass, a lot of stuff on the Folkways Anthology box set, Sun Ra, Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, the Art Ensemble of Chicago, Charles Mingus, Marion Brown, Albert Ayler, Charles Gayle, Peter Brotzmann, Ennio Morricone, Voice Crack, Silver Apples, Breadwinner, This Heat, Faust, Can, Neu!, Metabolist, Liquid Liquid, Agitation Free, Slint, Tortoise, Jim O’Rourke, Fugazi, PJ Harvey, Happy Go Licky, Autechre, Aphex Twin, Photek, Squarepusher, Ed Rush and Nico, Sonic Youth, Big Black, My Bloody Valentine, Pita, Fennesz, Radian, Labradford, Monolake, Dumb Type, Various Artists, Matmos, Lesser, Pluramon, Latin Playboys, Tom Waits, Captain Beefheart, C Schulz, Three Mile Pilot, Public Enemy, early LL Cool J, Run DMC, On-U-Sound Dub, Powerdresser, JFA, the Faction, early DC hardcore, The Ex, SSD, Void, percussion-oriented stuff like Indian, Morrocan, African, Balinese gamelan.

    Note: This article originally appeared with different photos and art in Arcane Candy Issue 1 in the year 2000.

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