Last month, Hell came to Chicago, courtesy of Frank Kozik and Rotofugi. Nerd City was at the show and had the chance to have a brief chat with Mr. Kozik, himself.
Your recent Hell Comes to Chicago show at Rotofugi was a shift back to more 2-D/ painting-type work from the extensive amount of toy design that you had been doing for quite a while before that. What is the transition between these two mediums like for you, artistically?
Not much…I always draw and paint analog, and do all the packaging layouts for the toys, so it is always a mix.
How do you feel about the emerging philosophy that the designer toy is a small piece of art?
Personally I feel its quite important..basically ‘underground’ pop sculpture..before this its always been either 2d , film, audio or live performance. the sculpture thing is novel.
Political icons like Mao and Ho Chi Minh appear throughout your work. What is your fascination with these figures and what do you feel they represent?
Just look at it as my ‘self help’ manual. all those dudes went from zero to a hundred in record time.
Punk imagery is another recurring theme in your work and you obviously spent years making music posters/ prints. How does music continue to influence your art and what are you listening to at the moment?
Music has almost no effect on the current toy design. I mostly listen to nothing at work. I like no noise.
What’s on the horizon for you, artistically?
More of the same, forever.