Nick Flessa has released a new video for the “The Investors.” The song is from Flessa’s 2020 country-disco-karaoke romp Hey Partner (Different Pep) and the video is animated and directed by Rasterbahn. In their first collaboration, the duo teams up to spin a “guillotine karaoke” diabolical anti-corporatist fantasy. It’s a cathartic mix of voluptuous narrative animation, dialectical stock footage, and singalong moments with revolutionary overtones. Thought-provoking, disturbing, and totally out there, you’ll be sure to have an opinion on this strange yet masterfully-crafted work of art.
Flessa On the video:
This video and song address the injustices perpetrated by a neoliberal system that exploits and punishes everyone except the wealthy and pushes our planet further towards climate catastrophe. We see injustice in the complacent way the art world has served as a weapon of class warfare by valuing the investments of the rich, luxury class over its own artists and workers. We imagine art as something more than a tax write-off for the ultra-wealthy; we wonder if we can apply our skills to fight injustice by building an animated guillotine. In a world of bankrupt promises of prosperity and endless greedy resource extraction where the Big Dog’s office is way larger than our austere abodes, decapitating the unjust system may be the only meaningful investment we can make.
Hey Partner is a flagship release on the new artist-run label Different Pep, founded by Taggie Coppins (Beetsblog) and Siena Riley. Proceeds from the release were donated to Look at Us Zine’s emergency relief fund for queer and trans black artists and musicians in LA, with Flessa and the label donating 1$ per stream for the first 24 hours of the release.
01. There Comes a Time
02. Social Club Theme Song
03. The Investors
04. Ditch the Dirtbag
05. Hey You
Flessa is also an active singer and saxophonist. He has toured as Nick Flessa Band in the US and internationally. In 2018 Eliterecords (Germany) released Flessa’s full-length LP Flyover States, produced by Neil Wogensen of Valley Queen. Upcoming releases include Sax Beat — a collaborative split on Symbol Group Records with Kern Haug (Young Jesus), Ross Chait (Total Heat, Girlpool) and Joshua Sushman (Eyeshadow, Wild Nothing). In 2020, Flessa released Hey Partner via LA’s Different Pep. Following the release of the 2020 record, Flessa will be releasing a slew of collaborative videos with various visual artists, with the first being a collaboration with Rasterbahn (Campbell Logan) for “The Investors.”
Nick Flessa hails from Cincinnati but has spent the better part of his life in Los Angeles. Nick’s work has shown in places like REDCAT, Echo Park Film Center, UCLA and the University of Puget Sound. From late-2016 to mid-2019 he helped guide programming and printing at Los Angeles Contemporary Archive, where he presented his solo exhibition Death Production: The Archive of Janna Flessa (executed by Nick Flessa) in 2018. His book Case Number: 87-447 can be found in national and international library collections. This year he presented work in Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery’s first digital exhibition, Archive Machines, and was awarded the Time Space Money Residency from Human Resources Los Angeles. His recent work focuses on abolishing capital punishment in his native state Ohio, and will be on view at Actual Size Los Angeles from October 31 through November 13 2020.
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