A Day In Decay: San Francisco (Part 1) Can Change Your Life!


Sometimes life’s day to day bogs you down and you simply need a break from the norm. San Francisco is anything but normal…. so I thought I’d jump on the 5 freeway and head north to the land of new age hippies and dot com millionaires for a bit of fun and a lil bit of business.


Since we don’t have any wind farms on the east coast, I’ve always been a sucker for them. I had to pull over on the drive up to try to take a few shots of them. The sun was going down so this is all I have to show for it but you get the picture. The sun’s going down, the windmills are spinnin’, and all is right in the world.

IMG_3157No truck stop is complete without a cat scale logo. One of my favorite logos around. Maybe B/D should do a collab with them? Truckers all over the country haulin’ ass in a B/D shirt. It could happen.


Seth Curcio and Julie Henson were my hosts for the weekend. Not only are these two great artists, but they are also the brains behind art blog Daily Serving. The cute dog above is their pet Lark. Lark is as sweet as can be but he is very very hairy. Last time I crashed with Julie and Seth I got a mouth full of Lark hair every morning. Being that Seth is such a good host he decided to not let that happen again…

seth curcio

By way of the worlds tallest air mattress. Most air mattresses are under a foot but somehow Seth managed to find this triple decker air mattress is almost waist high. Look at that satisfied look on his face. He’s thinking: “no dog hair for Amir on top of this baby.” I forgot to snap a photo of Julie that night, but don’t worry, I got a great shot of her later in the post.


The next morning I stepped outside and got a big ol’ SF welcome by the neighborhood’s artsy vandals. This looks like a collaborative piece. Very, very deep…


Apparently Basquiat is alive and well. He’s still a junkie, but now he lives on Haight & Ashbury and spends his days drawing his signature crown up and down the street.


After a quick breakfast, we headed over to CCA where Julie’s a grad student in the painting department. Most of the other students were away for the summer, so I got to roam around and poke my head into a few studios.


CCA has a great campus that’s big and shiny. The studios aren’t the biggest I’ve seen, but the state of the art facilities and sweet cactus collection won me over.


Is that the school mascot?


You got me.

Sarah Hotchkiss

Saw this nice piece in Sarah Hotchkiss‘s studio.

seth curcio

Seth gives  art a thumbs up!

Mic Gaspay

Wandering the hallways, I was confronted by this massive 69 sculpture by Mic Gaspay. Needeless to say I had to see more.

Mic Gaspay

There’s a great amount of humor in Mic’s work. This is a curtain with a giant care label.

Mic Gaspay

Only a matter of time before someone made a smoking baby painting. Mic, you beat me to the punch!
Mic Gaspay

Does this look familiar? I’ll give you a hint. It’s what I’m tying this post on.

Mic Gaspay

Mic Gaspay

This painting is both funny and scary. Made out of blood (fake I hope) real tiles mounted to board, and a sponge… genius!

Mic Gaspay

Guess Mic’s not a big Obama fan.

Mic Gaspay

Okay we’re now leaving Mic’s studio. I think he painted this wall as well.  Not sure but I think this is his website. I can’t tell since I never got to meet him and the work looks a bit different. Maybe someone can confirm.


Okay I promised you a photo of Julie. Here she is about to dive through a sculpture. She’s got the eye of the tiger here. I’m happy to say she made it through to the other side without a scratch.

mark benson

No, this isn’t a security guard kicking me out of the studios, but Mr. Mark Benson aka “Earl Grey.” Some people refuse to take a break during the summer from their studio. Mark isn’t one of those individuals. Here he’s telling me about some new stuff he has going in the studio.  While lesser artists are enjoying the warm weather and sitting at home watching tv Mark is…

mark benson

DREAMING BIG.  This is a great introduction to Mark’s sense of humor. It’s a torn piece of paper taped to a canvas that simply states “dream big.” Not only is this a work by Mark, but it also gets air time on Mark’s business card. I tried to take a good photo of this piece 100 times and each time it came out blurry.

mark benson

mark benson

Another fun piece by Mark. It’s a Nerds box turned inside out. It’s funny, sophisticated, and well, nerdy all at once.


Mark spends a lot of time at the studio. Like all starving artists, he buys ramen in bulk so he can keep the creative juices going late into the night without a break.


A corner of Mark’s studio. This isn’t an installation, but I love the painting sitting on the ground sitting next to the palette leaning against the wall.

mark benson

Mark’s mop flag pole.


I love it when a boring sign can be morphed it something awesome with a few additional words. painter by day, comic by night.


SF has some of the best Architecture. Could this one day be the house I retire to? I hope so.

More SF trip in part 2…

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  • http://alexiskaneshiro.com Alexis

    I also approve of the cacti!!!

  • Seth

    Correction: That sweet puppy above is a girl. Get it right Amir or next time you are in town, she’ll attack!!! (she’s pretty vicious you know.)

  • http://www.artistsandastronauts.blogspot.com Serena Cole

    Word on the street was that my garden was featured in your lovely blog. That’s my semi-ironic Diesel jeans “Smart Critques” ad, too. I’m famous!

  • Amir

    famous indeed!

  • http://brigidmason.com Brigid