Back Talk: A Conversation with Hargo

Juxtapoz // Friday, 05 Aug 2011


It all started non-innocently enough; Knocking off a familiar commercial sign style so ubiquitous you hardly realize most of them are illegal. Hargo has co-opted illegal commercial messages with one artfully identical, raising a question about which is more worthy of a ride on the paddy wagon. The commercial come-on is a winking allusion to the relative value of aestheticism, its intersection with capitalism, blind arrogance, and the gasoline-pouring hype that can drive all your common sense into a ditch. The christening bit of genius for Hargo's ongoing social experiment is the phone number. Call it. ~ Steven P. Harrington and Jaime Rojo

1. One reason you make art:
To be able to express yourself, without consideration of the outcome, is truly liberating. 

2. The last good movie you saw:
That one with the talking German Shepherd...

3. Something you’ve always wanted to do, but have yet to:
Rent a Winnebago and drive around for a few months.


4. Favorite country or city visited:
Germany (country), New York (city).

5. A few words that sum up your philosophy on life:
"Why not?"

6. Something you want the world to know about you:
I don't think of myself as a street artist - it seems too limiting.


7. Something that annoys or frustrates you about people:
People who eat popcorn in movie theaters past the opening credits.

8. Something that concerns you:
People who eat popcorn in movie theatres past the opening credits.


9. Artists you admire:
Olafur Eliasson, Sol LeWitt, Alec Soth, William Eggleston, Shepard Fairey, Faile, Andy Warhol.


10. Favorite quote(s):
. . ..

11. The first record or CD you ever bought? The last album you downloaded?
My first record should date me accurately: The Beatles Second Album. The most recent one: the latest from Pete and the Pirates. Favorite from the past year: Deerhunter's "Halcyon Digest."

12. Something you do when you’re procrastinating?
Check Facebook to see the ways in which everyone else is procrastinating.

13. What is your most defining characteristic?
. . ..

14. What is your greatest fear?
Sarah Palin gets elected to public office again.


15. The moment you realized you were an ‘artist’:
. . .

16. Your greatest quality:
Haha, nice try.

17. Something you wish you could change or alter about yourself:
. . . .

18. What is the biggest risk you’ve ever taken and was it worth it?
. . .


19. Something you wish you had known five years ago:
That the Dow would go to 6547.

20. What do you hope to accomplish in the next five years of your life?
To recognize a good idea when it's staring me in the face.

All photos © Jaime Rojo

You can see Hargo’s work in the new group show, “Street Art Saved My Life: 39 New York Stories”

Curated by Steven P. Harrington and Jaime Rojo, founders of Brooklyn Street Art

In collaboration with ThinkSpace Gallery

Opens at C.A.V.E. Gallery, Friday August 12th 6-10pm

Runs until September 4th

C.A.V.E. Gallery



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