Friday, September 12, 2008

What are the origins of Faile Dreams?

I was quite pleased the other day when someone sent me a question in an e-mail and suggested that I "...look like I know what I'm talking about".

Thank you! That's one of the nicest compliments I could hope to receive.

The question asked of me was whether I knew the origins of the image adapted for 'Faile Dreams' ►,
a recent print from the Brooklyn, New York-based art collective Faile.

What the person didn't know was that up until that moment I'd never heard of Faile, or ever seen their work.

I feel I've been deprived!

Thank you, E-mailer, for turning me on to something new. (and thanks to you too, wikipedia)

So the gist of what I've learned is that Faile began in 1999 as street artists pasting posters around NYC and elsewhere, they moved eventually into graffiti stenciling, and inevitably into the world of fine art.

Common to much of their work are images and themes adapted from comic books, trashy novels, graphics in the yellow pages, and other such 'low-brow' pop-culture media.

- Examples can be seen at the Faile website, and also at a FAILE flickr set.

Not unlike tracking down the sources of audio samples in hip-hop records, a 'game' that ensues for Faile enthusiasts is to try and determine the origins of the many visual 'samples'.

- Examples of those discussions can be seen in various places online, including the 'Original Sources of Images and Fonts' at the Faile Forum.

SO BACK TO THE QUESTION: Regarding the original source of the line of kneeling ladies image in the 'Faile Dreams' print, I don't know the answer.


In a large number of Faile works (from what I have determined so far), a common reference point are girl's romance comics of the 1960's and '70's, and that looks to be a fairly safe bet here.

I'm most familiar with the romance books published by DC rather than other companies, and in looking at other Faile prints I feel like I was seeing several examples of DC material, often in what looks like a typically 'flat' Don Heck or Vince Colletta drawing style.
(or someone from that 'school')
The kneeling ladies look just a bit different to me.

The font in the title looked at first to me like it could have been inspired by the old 'Logan's Run' title logo, but the two are a little different...

(UPDATE, 9.20.08: A reader has identified that title font as having been derived from the old Marvel Comics Micronauts series. See comments.)

... And that's about all I have.
To me the kneeling ladies image looks just a bit strange to have come from a comic book cover, but perhaps a splash page inside that comic book?
- - Of course, it doesn't have to be from comics at all...

Knowledge? Insights or clues to share?

Now I'm very keen to have an answer. PLEASE leave a comment if you can help.


MangMade said...

Cool stuff I never heard of before, either. Maybe a graphic from an Arbor Day plant-a-tree ad/poster with the animals pasted in?

Peter said...

The logotype is lifted from the Marvel comic book Micronauts.

The In Crowd said...

Aha!! Of course!

Thanks Peter.

Knew it looked familiar...,%20The%20[Marvel]%20V1&img=0035.JPG

I remember loving the early issues of that series, back in the day, with Michael Golden's artwork.

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