Marcel Dzama On Making Art and Listening to Mexican Garage Bands with Raymond Pettibon
Though Raymond Pettibon's Black Flag and SST Records illustrations had made him a punk legend by the early 80s, artist Marcel Dzama didn't discover Pettibon's work until 1990, when he bought a copy of Sonic Youth's seminal album Goo. Dzama was compelled by the record's iconic cover—a black and white drawing based on a paparazzi photo taken during the Moors murder trial—and by Pettibon's style. "I was a fan of early Golden Age comic illustrations from the 30s and 40s. It kind of reminded me of that feel, but a lot more poetic," Dzama explained over the phone from the back of a cab one afternoon. When Dzama moved to New York from his native Winnipeg in 2004, he stopped by one of Pettibon's shows at David Zwirner, the gallery which represents them both. Instantly, they hit it off. The artists hosted play dates for their young sons, and doodled on napkins at art world dinner parties when they got bored. At one such meal in London, Dzama and Pettibon started drawing on the tablecloth. "It was a huge collaboration with Chris Ofili, Jockum Nordström, I think even Luc Tuymans did some doodles on it too," Marcel says. "David wanted to keep the cloth, and the restaurant owner held it for ransom for a little bit!"