To continue with our interviews with more drawrers than we could stuff in the magazine, may we present Gregory Jacobsen, who paints and draws some really pervo stuff. It sort of feels like he's laughing at all of us. Why would we get paranoid around hyper-pink innards dressed up with ribbons, dripping slabs of flesh, and orgiastic wrinkled faces with all kinds of skin diseases? We had to find out.
Vice: These drawings...what am I looking at?
Gregory Jacobsen: My paintings take a long time to finish and I try to make them monumental and iconic. Lots of trial and error and frustration. I tend to get too precious. With the drawings, I try to just shit out ideas...stuff that I'm obsessed with...lady shoes, stockings, underwear, long dark hair, soiled crotches, asses, ludicrous headwear, leaking fluids, folded flesh. I have a love/hate relationship with the ickier of these things--I guess as a way of coming to grips with the frailty of bodies.
What's your life like?
I wake up at around one in the afternoon, dick around on the computer for a couple hours, and then paint or draw until 6 AM. I take too many breaks. The computer is a constant distraction. Girlfriend tries to drag me out of the house and I get crabby, she gets crabby. I sometimes waste time playing in a , throwing my money in a pit.
Do you hate everyone?
That's an odd question. No, generally I get along with everyone except for loud-mouth bores. I like good conversation and the most frustrating thing is being stuck in a corner with someone who is talking at you. I'm too nice to walk away and by the end of the "conversation," I notice that we are ten feet away from where we started to talk because I slowly inch away...and they follow with their yapping mouths.
What's always struck me about your drawings (and especially your paintings) is how disgusting the warm and familiar human elements feel. Like, say, putting a pretty bow in some sloppy monster's hair, or tucking in a blanket somewhere. That stuff feels more perverse than all the orifices and rot and debauchery.
You're really the only person that has picked up on the blanket thing. I think it's more perverse than the orifices and rot because it is direct evidence of something disgusting, whereas the sloppy holes are portrayed in a more fantastical way. You can hide all your flappy skin and rotten holes in pretty clothing but you can't hide the cum stain on the couch...it's all there for public discussion. When I get rid of old clothes I make sure to go to another neighborhood to throw them away because I have a fear of some bum tearing through my garbage and throwing all my disgusting shit all over the alley for everyone to see.
As revolting/disturbing as your work might seem at first look, it actually comes off as funny, a real good time. Like, sometimes I wish I could be one of your creatures and just be fucking gross and lick open asses and festering wounds and stuff ungodly things into any of my invented hairy orifices. Do you ever feel like this too?
All the time! Sex is too much a serious business with me, even though I view it as funny and ridiculous.
Do you like your characters?
Yes. I need to relate and empathize with them in order for me to give a shit about spending long amounts of time on an image. Too many people look at my work and think it's some indictment of pop culture and gluttonous humanity. I hope I'm not that simple...I paint what I love...which usually involves a certain amount of hate.
Do you ever wish you could just draw something else? Something nice and pretty and lovely with no perverse undertones?
I try and I try. I want to be a classical painter. But every time I try, I get bored. But if you look at all the greats, they are greats because they had their quirks and obsessions and it comes through in their work in subtle ways. Maybe as I get older, this perversity will work itself out in a more subtle manner. But I'm alive now--I paint and draw my experiences and how I absorb them...and now is information overload, shit tumbling down on your head.