Thursday, 26 February 2009

ya bass

image from the boston globe
In my first year at University, we were set a project that involved the creation of a typeface in honour of a certain artist. The artist selected for me was dadaist Hugo Ball. After a few attempts, I decided upon a literal tribute to his above photographed performance of one of his sound poems.However, My favourite outcome from that project was a more conceptual typeface, inspired by my research into Ball's own practise and philosophy.
Ball's sound poems were an attempt at a more meaningful form of human communication by the breaking up of words into sounds and fragments.
A long time ago, a friend of mine, Phil Dodd, Asked me to make some artwork for a music project he was working on called 'ya bass'. He had taken a word from the novel, dealing with the breakdown of communication through the breakdown of language; the breaking apart of words.

My original piece for him was just 'ya bass written in the style of the typeface above, but this sort of betrayed my original concept, so Phil suggested muddling the title up. This perfect compromise not only preserves the meaning of my original work, but also enhances the meaning of Phil's title. He is clever.

Those extra holes are mistakes as this is just a mock-up. The print reads 'BA YA SS' and is folded, holding the cd inside. The case is then tied shut with cable ties. In order to get at the cd, one must either cut the ties or tear the case. More on that later. I'm pretty happy with it anyway.

p.s. Someday I will use colour in my work, I promise.

1 comment:

Phil Dodd said...

This is fucking boss!

By the by, the novel I took the phrase from is Mr Alfred, M.A. from George Friel's 'Glasgow Trilogy'. In the novel, the phrase Ya Bass is graffitied on walls by gangs in Glasgow to show their territory, but nobody knows what it means. More and more people start writing it and it ends up being plastered everywhere. The protagonist of the novel is an old English teacher who sees this increasing use of a phrase that has no meaning as leading to the breakdown of civilisation.

I highly recommend the novel.