Merkley???

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by horrorsleazetrash on October 14, 2010

Surreal, straight shooting and fond of Spongbob; HST catches up with multi-talented and always interesting Merkley.  Hilarity ensues.

HST: Dude, what’s happening? What are you wearing? Gimmie all the blueprints.

MER: right now I am fully dressed in a three piece suit watching infomercials because I am too lazy to reach for the remote. Wait, maybe this isn’t an infomercial, I think maybe these black people on TV are giving “how to be black” lessons to white people. I should pay attention. I wear my shoes to bed.

HST: Sounds smooth – I can understand the confusion. In response to a nude photo shoot with a pregnant woman you said, and I quote “the kid was kicking like a maniac. I could even SEE the kicks — the one where she is pointing was a mid kick shot which is the closest I’ll probably ever come to sports photography”.  Was this ever a venture you would have chose? Sports photography or high end fashion? Or was there never a choice for you and you were simply destined to shoot hyper surreal nudes with chicks flinging cats into the ceiling fan?

MER: Well I don’t believe in destiny but I certainly do believe in   following the path of least resistance and if that means making   visual riddles with semi-nude pregnant ladies then why fight it?  Everyone likes to fling cats, but I promise; I only do it until the cats tell me to knock it off.

HST: From pussies to puppies. It’s all relative, right?  You have probably seen more sets of tits in your life than Gene Simons, and that’s saying something.  I heard he keep Polaroid’s of all his conquests. Is this kind of the same thing? Or am I being a filthy cunt asking such chauvinistic bullshit?

MER: Self awareness is a fantastic thing Ben; I see no reason why you can’t get good grades and a nice job if you set your mind to it.  Also Gene Simmons’ “reality” show isn’t very good. I think he should keep the makeup on and concentrate on taller boots and bigger explosions. Just sayin. Polaroid’s of his conquests? Ew. This is why I hang with the gays 🙂

HST: Geez dude, you must hang around a high level of Gays, I’ve drank with some pretty hard core gays in my days, non of which would bat an eye at shooting a fuck buddy.  But that’s beside the point, right? Your paintings are like Crumb and pop surrealism mix tapes. Are the paintings for business or pleasure, for that matter, in your line of shenanigans, is there a difference?

MER: Painting takes too long. The satisfaction from making one is fine and   all but it’s sort of a solitary accomplishment and the self high five   rings a little empty. It’s much more fun to make art with some  friends because high fiving is a really really fun game and it makes   everyone feel like they are in a mountain dew commercial, which is   rally the whole point of everything right?

HST: As interesting as your photography is, the titles are often just as bizarre. “Dominique – Reclines Half Startled with a Chicken Parmesan Sandwich on a Black Velvet Chaise Lounge as a Zebra Head Rests with a Makita Portable Drill Drilled in Its Neck on a Zebra Skin Rug While a Common House Mouse Half Hides Behind a Dirty Spatula”  Come on dude, are you taking the piss here? Or shooting the shit straight from the lip, you don’t seem like your one to mince words.

MER: I see no reason why blind people shouldn’t be able to enjoy pictures   on the internet like everyone else. That’s all I’m really doing with   the titles, just givin a play by play for our blind friends 🙂

HST: You say “minimalism” is for the lazy. I dig that.  Are the props pre ordained, is there a method to the insane shit you throw around in your photos.  Kebabs, bananas and, err, chipmunks?

MER: I over anthropomorphize objects and pets so when it comes to making a little story of a person, the cast of characters can sometimes get a little bloated because I have an overly inclusive nature when it comes to putting on a show. It’s just art, it’s not like any resulting trophies actually mean anything. Let the fat kid play.

I have no idea what the fuck I just said.

HST: Me either dude; but it sounded cool as shit. I want the fat kid to play to, it’s only fair.  You mentioned on your site that every one you have ever photographed is or was a friend of yours, are you being philosophical or is that legit?  You must have a fucking killer crew of dudes to party with.

MER: I should probably update that flickr profile. But yeah, I’m a bit afraid of complete strangers so I like to make art with people that have some sort of elevated accountability due to being part of thesame social circle. I like it when everyone has good manners. Strangers are too litigious

HST: Merkley may not be god, but at least he’s real.  If you could have a beer with god and he got a bit pissy would you take a photo of him with his dick in a hollowed up pumpkin and spread it across the internet. If he was/is real, I mean, you know, for artistic reasons.

MER: Well, in that scenario I would probably work on a concept that didn’t   involve making love to a pumpkin, not because it’s not a fantastic   idea or anything, but because you know if god was real, I’d probably   have a lot of other questions like about natural disasters,   hermaphrodites and Mormons. Not sure I’d even get around to taking   photos, from his bio, god seems sorta dickish. I avoid power trippin  douchebags.

HST: How much is Photoshop or computer editing a part of what you do? I know allot of dudes who get a bit shirty about its “authenticity”. Personally I think that’s just old dudes being wankers but obviously there is some debate?

MER: Photoshop is a way better babysitter than these old wankers of which you speak. Also probably a way better cuddler and conversationalist. Authenticity in art is about as important as…umm, well, listen, I  can feel myself beginning to get really boring here so how about we  all just take a quick break and watch some SpongeBob square pants.  Come back when you feel nice and relaxed.

Ok did you feel that? That’s a nice feeling right? I mean watching SpongeBob.

Next time old wankers wanna talk about authenticity in photography, watch  SpongeBob instead.

HST: Word, I’m all over it mate. You tweeted – “Don’t get caught considering leaving in the typo “Moistly hipster lesbian type girls” because it’s not THAT rad and people apparently universally hate the word “moist”.  Just for the record, I fucking love the word moist; it’s my all time favorite

MER: Ewww.

HST: How about your new book? Good shit, right?

MER: oh boy the new series I am doing has been really fun so far. When I am done I will make a book about it. Books are fun to make. Especially the kind without words.

HST: In closing, I just wanna say thank you man, I know it’s not professional of me to act like a fan boy, but you nail your shit.  And your women… Jesus Christ, your women are amazing.  Thanks for letting me wash my eyes with them, its damn kind of you to share.

MER: aw well that is awfully nice of you to say, I feel really fortunate to be getting away with this shit.

Photography on flicker

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