Yet another Bob-Gruen-photo/The Clash-inspired t-shirt graphic. There is a great set of photos that Gruen shot during the epic 18-show Bonds run by The Clash in 1981; sidewalks full of fans, camping out in the que; graffiti and show flyers on the street, etc. One image really jumped out at me; this great collage of news headlines, stickers and graffiti ("Clash Power") on an alley door. The effect for me visually, was something like a Borroughs-esque pile of recontextualized wordplay and type; or a Rauschenberg combine of silkscreened newspaper headlines.
When I was invited to do a t-shirt graphic for the LA-based Clash tribute band, 'Clash City Rockers', I knew this would be the perfect inspiration. I started by digging up tons of sensational headlines and pull quotes, most with associations of Clash songs and themes. I clipped, scanned, photocopied and physically collaged them together to make my own interpretation of that 1981 NYC alley door...the band produced a small run of these T's with their logo on printed top of the collage, but one day I am gonna print it as a straight collage.