Seditions: The Subversive Art of Frank Kozik and Winston Smith

Seditions: Winston Smith and Frank Kozik at Varnish Fine Art

Seditions: Winston Smith and Frank Kozik at Varnish Fine Art, San Francisco

Frank Kozik and Winston Smith shared a double bill this past month with Seditions, a show of limited edition prints, original collages and resin and vinyl toy art at San Francisco’s Varnish Fine Art.

Seditions: Winston Smith and Frank Kozik at Varnish Fine Art

"Punk Labbit Print Set" by Frank Kozik and "Turn of the Century" by Winston Smith

The work in Seditions takes a critical look at the postwar era, filtered through a punk rock lens. Both Kozik and Smith lived in Europe during that period of intense upheaval, and the imagery reflects their views on politics, government and the status quo. Kozik’s use of the propaganda poster format mirrors the authoritarian graphics of Franco-era Spain and post-WWII America. Smith’s collages offer a controlled perspective on the chaos, class struggle and socio-political turmoil of his time in Italy.

Frank Kozik resin

"Gipper/Reagan Bust (Clear Orange resin)" by Frank Kozik

While Kozik cast a special edition clear orange resin Gipper/Reagan bust for Seditions, this was his only “new” work in the show. Matt Hisey and I split that Punk Rock Labbit print set at Comic-Con 2011. The Gipper busts have been circulating since 2011, and Kozik dropped those propaganda posters in April of last year. It’s always nice to see Frank Kozik’s work in a gallery setting, but it was disappointing that so much of his Seditions were previous releases.

Frank Kozik prints and vinyl

"Gipper/Reagan Bust (Silver vinyl)" and prints by Frank Kozik

The majority of Smith’s work, on the other hand, was new to me. In addition to a selection of work spanning his career, Smith created a new series of col­lage com­po­si­tions from rare late 1800s steel plate engravings.

Winston Smith

"Down the Drain" and "In the Grip of Official Treason" by Winston Smith

Music fans will also recognize Smith’s style from the covers of albums by The Dead Kennedys and Green Day.

Winston Smith

Original collage art by Winston Smith

Seditions closed this weekend, but some of the work is available online through the gallery. Click here to view the art and make an inquiry.

Winston Smith

"Act Like Nothing's Wrong" by Winston Smith

Winston Smith

"Turn of the Century" by Winston Smith

Winston Smith

"Turn of the Century" by Winston Smith