Shocking, funny and oh, so clever!

Eight Cuts Gallery Prize – Thomas Stolperer wins

As well as the Al-Aswad prize, Eight Cuts  also announced its Gallery Prize winner on the first of October. This award was open to EVERYTHING and in setting it up, Dan Holloway gave himself an almost impossible task when it came to deciding on the winner – as he said himself, it was like comparing apples and oranges. So do visit the site and see not just the winning entry, but also the others on the shortlist. I’ve already blogged about one of them – ‘ MUT@TUS’, the book by Joan Barbara Simon and I intend to blog about another of the shortlisters – Pereine Press –  at a later date.

But this post is about the winner – namely Thomas Stolperer’s blog

Don’t visit the blog if you’re offended by ‘bad’ language, sexual references or are in any way up yourself.

Do visit if you want to be entertained, made to think, shocked out of complacency and don’t mind making an effort.

It’s an effort that will be awarded. Okay you might not get it at first – but like any ‘good’ art it repays revisiting and a willingness to be open and actively engaged. You may have to attune your reading brain to the long, no pausing for breath sentence (or lack of) structure – but don’t be put off.

Thomas Stolperer is an artist and a writer. His line drawings appear (deceptively) simple – almost childlike – they’re anything but. The art and the writing work together – you really couldn’t have one without the other – and boy, do they work!

The blog is shocking, clever, arch, cynical, subversive and FUNNY.

Just three examples:

The August 11th post – ‘Woman Looking in Mirror in Hotel’ –  a wry smile of self-recognition was my main reaction. We all do it – well me and her do – justify our existence, keep busy-busy and avoid thinking about the real, the shameful and the insecure, terrifying aspects of being human.

The August 23rd post – ‘Sneak Peek – Titles of Drawings of the Anthony Bourdain Finnish Project’ NOT for the prudish – but worth leaving your sensitivities to one side and retrieving them after reading.

The August 12th post – my favourite – ‘Small Slidable Plastic Tiles’. Apart from wanting one of these ‘nostalgic toy/game’ things custom-made with images of people in my own industry, this is just SO CLEVER and SO FUNNY. It’s a knowing, mocking – largely self-mocking – piece on the artist’s craving for recognition.

He’s not got the write up in Artforum that he claims to crave, but Thomas Stolperer is definitely a worthy and deserving winner of the above award.

Congratulations and Slàinte Mhath to him.

Go on take your own sneak peek…

4 thoughts on “Shocking, funny and oh, so clever!

  1. Thank you – I love what he does – and since I became a fan I’m delighted to say that the artist behind the blog, an incredibly talented and lovely guy called Jeff Gabel, has become a personal friend. One of the more recent posts outlines (with pictures) a night when he locked himself in a public loo, drinking the night away whilst writing out an illustrated translation of an obscure German text that ended up covering the walls – just marvellous

  2. Dan,
    How lovely that you’ve formed a ‘real’ friendship as oppposed to a virtual one. I didn’t realise the name was a pseudonym.

    I’ll go take a look at his blog again – the post you mention sounds truly bizarre 🙂

    Thank you for commenting.


    • I’ve ended up forming “real” friendships with an awful lot of people I’ve met online. Many of them, like Cody, I now see “in real life” on a regular basis, some, like Sarah, I’ve met once or twice (not surprising given that she lives in Fresno!). Others I’ve yet to meet but very much hope to. I certainly hope to make it to Skye some day (Ann has been – it’s where she discovered whiskey! And my uncle lived there for about 5 years, but I’ve never been)

  3. I think it’s great that friendships have sprung up in that way.

    And yes, make it a mission to get up here – it’s so beautiful – and we’d make you very welcome. BUT get the spelling of ‘whisky’ right or you’ll be turned back at the border 🙂 That other way is (whispers) Irish.

    Slainte Mhath!

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