As Douglas Adams so rightly put it ‘It’s not the fall that kills you. It’s the sudden stop at the end’. Is this guy ever going to find that out? I could hardly resist a cheeky little unauthorised addition to the otherwise uninspiring flooring whilst up in Peterborough on the weekend. Have paint, will travel…
When we got a call from Korp to see if we’d like to freshen up a large wall in Peterborough we jumped at the chance and ‘Mr Mayhem’ is the inevitable result. If you’ve seen Sons of Anarchy (which, if you’re unaware, is a TV series about gun-running biker gangs in California) then you’ll probably know that ‘meeting Mr. Mayhem’ is a club euphemism for killing someone. If you haven’t then now you do.
Now, I’m certainly not advocating violence of any kind but it got me to thinking about Mr Mayhem as a kind of mysterious character rather than a euphemism. And here he is. Resplendent with his ‘Mayhem’ ambigram. To me he’s like a dapper English gent version of Winston Wolfe from Pulp Fiction. Except he puts people into sticky situations rather than helping them out. And if he had wallpaper in his fictional house it would undoubtedly look something like this.
Graffiti small print – ‘Jean Paul Sartre as paraphrased by Cher’
As I’m sure we all know French existential philosopher Jean Paul Sartre once said ‘Words are loaded pistols’. I think we can all appreciate the sentiment behind this statement as surely we’ve all said something we regret every once in a while. And once those words are said the pistol has been fired and there’s no turning back.
Original image of Jean Paul Sartre which our design is based on
This design started life as the image of existential French Jean Paul Sartre’s head with his loaded pistol words alongside but as I love an earworm if I can possibly get away with it I took some inspiration from the world of music to see if I could get Cher’s seminal 1989 hit ‘If I could turn back time‘ playing unheeded in your brain.
In the song Cher utters the immortal words ‘Words are like weapons, they wound sometimes’ and this rang a bell in my brain as it seemed close enough to Sartre’s words to make use of. Hopefully that will strike a chord in your brain and you’ll be singing it all day. Mission accomplished!
Whilst we were painting it some hapless busybody decided to try and let me know that I’d misquoted Sartre but, of course, I hadn’t as she had neglected to read my ‘Jean Paul Sartre as paraphrased by Cher’ small print graffiti. id-iom 1 – random passerby 0. Ha! In your face!
On Saturday we packed up the id-iomobile with just about as much stuff as we could get in there (as we never like to travel light and be without something we may need) and headed for Peterborough for the Overground Arts paint jam. This collaboration piece was actually our second piece of the day and was painted alongside the ever affable Parlee. Our barely thought out plan was to have Parlee’s ‘Rocket’ character being attacked by our large and angry looking Godzilla. As we progressed we thought what better than having Rocket deal with two Godzilla’s – both of which were now to be sporting laser eyes. Whilst Rocket seems to be defending himself from the blasts his little fly companion seems to have suffered a direct hit. If it wasn’t for those pesky Godzillas…
We also had some added assistance from Process Smith in creating the clouds and rather surprised looking budgie at the bottom and Miss Wah for the kind loan of her bunny skull stencil which we turned into a little swarm of flying bunny skulls hovering near Godzillas’ head. Their intentions aren’t entirely clear but i suspect them to be evil.
Our ‘l’esprit de l’escalier’ moment came when driving back and we thought we should probably have added some parachute lines to Rocket. Ah well, c’est la vie…
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