Arizona artist Frank, known as LIVED1904, is based in the heart of Downtown Phoenix, one of the fastest growing cities in the U.S. Working with an array of mediums, LIVED creates some truly amazing works of art that range from playful to political, but always rings true to his signature style. After swinging through my local glass shop, Bud’s Glass Joint, I spotted his work on the walls and knew I needed to meet the artist. I was stoked to learn that LIVED was more than happy to sit down over a session to discuss his work.
After spending years crafting his skills as an artist, LIVED developed his signature abstract cactus paintings, for which he is most recognized. Years later he is still painting beautiful visions of the southwest, but has also branched out and begun to explore other areas of inspiration… namely, Cannabis. LIVED has used cannabis for years as a means of relaxing his mind and opening the visionary channels to allow the creative process to flow through him without any obstacles. “I wanted to paint some fun things for a new audience”, said LIVED. The result is an amazing series of work that I couldn’t wait to see more of.
It can be difficult to pinpoint where an artist’s inspiration comes from some times, but looking around his studio it became blatantly clear that LIVED was not only a fan a cannabis, but also a fan of cartoons, a lot of cartoons! The most impactful of which were, “The Simpsons” he noted. After years of collecting Simpsons memorabilia, LIVED found himself surrounded by inspiration, which quickly found its way into his artistic style structured in bold colors and thick black outlines. LIVED also draws much of his style from his years of experience writing graffiti in San Diego in the ‘90’s.
Primetime cartoon shows have done more than entertain, they have helped shape generations of budding artists, like LIVED, giving them a platform to explore their creativity and deliver their own brand of artwork. For people growing up watching The Simpsons, they can’t deny that the show has advocated for the use of Cannabis on more than one occasion. So, it was no surprise that The Simpsons became the ideal stage to represent modern concepts with a few visual twists.
Using images captured from the television screen, LIVED manipulates the concept and incorporates a variety of elements. From cactus to cans of spray paint, the canvas always has a center theme of Cannabis. The images generally include Homer, with a cactus head, medicating in a variety of stages. From his hands holding sheets of dabs, to puffing on a blunt, or blowing out a winding snake of smoke, Homer’s eyes always tell the story.
LIVED has recently painted live at the 2nd Annual Southwest Cannabis Conference and Errl Camp 2016. Now that he is openly advocating for Cannabis use through his imagery and by painting in the Cannabis Community, LIVED has been met with a host of new clients and opportunities. 2017 looks to be a promising year for the artists so be sure to follow him on social media to keep up to date.
Featured in the March 2017 issue of Dope Magazine http://www.dopemagazine.com/arizona-issues/
Written by Jesse Perry