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The Pariah: Scribblings from a Confederacy of Dunces
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Kasch For Questions...

The work of painter CHRIS KASCH first came to my attention in the mid 90's during his tenure at one of that decade's rash of 'lad's' mags, bequeathed to us by the post- feminist backlash. This was before the sub jazz-mag misogyny, so prevalent in that market today, was fully ingrained and Kasch's modish retro-futurism was wonderfully apposite for those boyish and boisterous times.
I remember being particularly taken by his slavish attention to detail when rendering a palpably aroused female nipple beneath coarse fabric. There was something in that painstaking devotion to bosoms that made me want to seek him out, and after a series of unusually violent misunderstandings, I did just that.


Kasch, the man, is a relentless louge of contradictions - forever twisting over our dull presumptions in an all-body condom.
For a giant in his field, he is of surprisingly small stature, resembling, as he does, a partially chewed tennis ball resting on top of a chest freezer.
A noted figure about town, he is, in fact, never happier than when he's pottering about the house. Except when he's about town, of course. A skilful and subtle artist of measureless facility and unquantifiable depth, he communicates in daily life chiefly through a series of angry stabbing gestures directed variously towards his mouth, genitals or the locale of the bar. A self-confessed Dandy, he nevertheless contrives to dress like a model plane maker. He is a riddle wrapped within an enigma, wrapped within a large carpet and pushed off a pier. 
Attempting to probe this most outerly of insider artists, HAWLEY GRIFFIN barely escaped with his life...


Hawley Griffin: What are you up to at the moment?
Chris Kasch: Just done the front cover for Mojo magazine and am - ahem - doing an ad campaign for After Eight mints.
HG: What artists pictures do you have adorning the walls of your home (other than your own)
CK: There are no artists works on my wall other than my own. My home is a
monument to myself.  
HG: Have you ever turned down a job on moral grounds?
CK: Yes, for LOADED magazine. They wanted me to paint a man fucking a horse
and a woman shooting ping pong balls out of her vagina. They couldn't, of
course, understand my dilemma. I almost did it out of guilt because they were
the first people to commission me.


HG: Has anyone ever been turned off your work on the grounds that 'they know what they like', and your work wasn't it?
CK: I don't really care.
HG: Generally speaking do you hate explaining your work?
CK: Generally speaking, yes, because I've got fuck all to say. I'd rather let someone else interpret the work. Some might say that's laziness  - and, of course, they'd be right.
HG: Who is best: Rolf Harris, Tony Hart or Neil 'Art Attack' Buchanan?
CK: Tony Hart - such a gentleman


HG: What is your idea of hell?
CK: Being in a room full of people. I think we need another Biblical flood.
HG: What's the worst smell in the world?
CK: My Mother's knickers
HG: What's the most terrifying thing that's ever happened to you?
CK: Considering the army as a viable career option when I didn't get the grades I needed for art school.


HG: Did you vote new labour?
CK: Does it fucking matter, really?
HG: Have you ever walked out on a film ?
CK: Yep - Who framed Roger Rabbit? (Transcribers note - Kasch excels himself here - not sure what this fantastically inoffensive film has done to offend him, but he's quite vehement)
HG: Do you still know how much a pint of milk costs?
CK: I buy four pints, not one. (Transcribers note - again, not quite sure what he's getting at here - unless he's actually boasting about the amount of milk he can drink )


HG: Which celebrity would you least like to be trapped in a lift with?
CK: Jo Whiley. Is that so wrong?
HG: Have you ever shop-lifted?
CK: I got caught robbing a 10p mix from the cornershop, but gave a false address. Oh, and this hard fuck I hung around with ( who I was scared of ) made me steal a pint of milk from a doorstep, drink it - and told me he was going to tell my Mum. He later robbed a Post Office and left behind his jacket with his address in. Stupid fuck.
HG: As a Northerner living in London have you found most Southern men to be a bunch of soft, shandy-drinking poofs?
CK: You'd have to ask a proper Northerner - I'm not exactly Sean Bean.

HG: Is the art work of Adolf Hitler misunderstood?
CK: I haven't got a clue, to be honest. I haven't seen any of his work. 
HG: As a student ( or young man ) did you ever own a poster of one of
Escher's line drawings or, failing that, a female tennis player scratching her arse?
CK: No. I did have Dave Lee Roth posters though...
HG: What are your all time, solid gold, guaranteed floor filling compilation tape classic three tunes?
CK: Bubbles by The Free Design, Stormy by Scott Walker and Lettre de Fans by Johnny Hallyday


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