“Active Imagination” is the second single from the forthcoming Nalepa album Thoughtforms. Crafted together from live takes in the studio, “Active Imagination” finds arpeggiating synths colliding with shimmering effects, waves of droning shoegaze and jacking Chicago house beats. The video features a collection of ephemeral and shapeshifting self portraits that David Henry Brown Jr. creates as the character David Nobody on his @davidhenrynobodyjr Instagram account.
Mr. Nobody created the word Resemblagè (the combination of the words resemble and collage) to describe this expanding body of artwork. As a virtual consciousness with No Body on Social Media, Mr. Nobody defies the corporatized cookie-cutter versions of the vanity of ourselves. Resemblagè is like an inside-out person and shows the grotesque, cryptic and traumatized side of humanity hidden behind the masks of the everyday. He wears the excesses of consumerist society on his exterior self to expose and question society. He wears food to show how we live in waste and that we ourselves are essentially food for corporations. David Nobody’s immersion into this mental/emotional space of Resemblagè stems from the still new medium of the internet, which gazes into us far more than we look into it (which is unprecedented). This new way of feeling is affecting how we see ourselves and each other through troubling and distorted political times. The work is as much a Sociological experiment as an expansion of what art can possibly become in the present and the future.
Californian polymath Steve Nalepa is known for his vast and eclectic array of artistic collaborators, a key node in the electronic music scene cultivated through years of creating music and producing events. He releases music and tours with his bands The Acid (Infectious/Mute) and Airspace (Mute). Nalepa is a founding member of esteemed beat collective TeamSupreme, scored several feature-length documentary films and devised/engineered Ableton Live rigs for such acts as Blood Orange, Nick Murphy, Drake and The Weeknd. After graduating Yale with a degree in Mathematics and Economics, Nalepa moved to Los Angeles and taught high school math and science, worked as a costumed children’s party entertainer and became a paranormal news researcher for daily TV show Strange Universe. He also cleared clips for Busted On The Job and World’s Worst Neighbor before growing tired of TV’s need to dumb everything down to the lowest common denominator. He left TV to publish award-winning art books through the self-launched Dilettante Press. Nalepa first met David Henry Brown Jr. installing “Starstruck: Photographs From a Fan” by Gary Lee Boas at Deitch Projects in January, 2000. The exhibition, accompanying the art book of the same name, won Artforum’s “Best of 2000.”
David Henry Brown Jr. is an Interventionist/immersionist performance artist and sculptor who works in diverse mediums, often placing his physical body into the work. Frequently riffing off of the dark side of American popular culture, he has been showing his work since the early 1990’s both in the New York art world and as a renegade underground figure and as a collaborator. During his many different artistic periods, his work often involves the creation of characters that perform and make objects. His work first became notorious when he Impersonated New York socialite Alex Von Furstenberg, crashing VIP parties for one whole year in 2000. Sixty photos document “Alex” meeting the Clintons, Puff Daddy and other luminaries. The project was shown as his first solo show at Roebling Hall gallery In new York and created an international news scandal in the media, appearing in The New York Observer, The Globe and on ABC’s 20/20 with John Stossil, to name a few. His work has been collected in prominent private art collections.
The theme of the DIY Fantastic Nobody, the ‘loser’ that acts like they are famous but who is not, drives David’s work deeper inside the images and social masks of an image obsessed culture. David predicted the Trump presidency in his 1999 Stalking Donald Trump performances, where he followed Trump for a year and even made Trump For President 2000 campaign posters and campaigned on his behalf, as a prescient social experiment. With this point of view, David has gone on to continue to break new and experimental ground in his Red Carpet Rollers Project (collaboration with British artist Dominic McGill), Shopping Mall Portrait Series, Wax Museum Host project, post 9/11 Fashion series, Drawing series, Polaroid series, Pizza Infinity series, Banksy Impersonation series as well as an assortment of ongoing studio works/objects.
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