Died Young, Stayed Pretty is a candid look at the underground poster culture in North America from producer and director Eileen Yaghoobian. This unique documentary examines the creative spirit that drives these indie graphic artists as they pick through the dregs of America’s schizophrenic culture and piece them back together. What you end up with is a caricature of the black and bloated heart that pulses greed through the US economy.
The artists push further into the pulp to grab the attention of passersby, plastering art that’s both vulgar and intensely visceral onto the gnarled surfaces of the urban landscape. The film gives an intimate look at some of the giants of this modern subculture. Outside of their own circle, they’re virtually unknown. But within their ranks they make up an army of bareknuckle brawlers, publicly arguing the aesthetic merits of octopus imagery and hairy 70s porn stars. They’ve created their own visual language for describing the spotty underbelly of western civilization and they’re not shy about throwing it in the face of polite society.
Along the way, they manage to create posters that are strikingly obscene, unflinchingly blasphemous and often quite beautiful. Yaghoobian shows these artists for what they are: the vivisectionists of America’s morbidly obese consumer culture.
Died Young, Stayed Pretty will have it’s US debut at this year’s SXSW, so make sure to add it to your list of must-sees if you’ll be in the Austin area.
More on Died Young, Stayed Pretty at www.diedyoungstayedpretty.com