Thursday, March 29, 2018

Neke Carson and Andy Warhol, 1972

If this was the opening of a Twilight Zone episode, Rod Serling would be saying something like. 

Meet Andy Warhol. 

One of the originators of the art movement known as pop art, he is also known for his lifestyle and for the phrase that in the future, everyone will be famous for 15 minutes. Warhol is about to have his portrait painted by another artist. Neke Carson: 

But this is no ordinary portrait and Carson is no ordinary artist, because this painting is to be carried out in . . . the Twilight Zone. 

Carson, in the 1970s, had developed a new artistic technique which, he said, separated hand and eye coordination. He did this by painting with the brush held in his behind, the technique being called “rectal realism” by him. 
I was working on a new form of portraiture, Rectal Realism.  
This was the era of body art, and it was sort of a parody of that. I watched a lot of kung fu movies, and in one, the guy gets so angry, he thrusts his hand into a wall and pulls out the sword. I wanted to do something like that with a pen or pencil, and finally my wife at the time said, "Why don't you just stick it up your ass and be done with it?" And I thought, you have a point there. My first idea was an El Marko, but it was way too big and had a big stopper at the end. So I tried it out with a paintbrush and Pentels. I'd dip one end into rubber latex so you could kind of grip them in a way.  
I had to do it upside down and backwards, lifting my crotch. My idea was, your hand is way too sophisticated to make art. This had much less baggage, to get this eye-ass coordination going. You had to rewire your brain, go from your eyes to your butt instead of your arms. I don't know if it helped that I was dyslexic.
Here is a rectal realist painting by Carson of Fred Flintsone: 

Carson's story of how the Warhol portrait came about: 

The creative process: 

The finished work:

According to Carson, Warhol said "Oh, it looks great."


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