“Beauty School Gave Me Brain Damage”

The world of Seth Bogart

Obsession and love makes us do extraordinary things. In Varoom 37 Zoë Taylor explores the work of Seth Bogart, an explosively messy confection of punk, Pee-Wee Herman and products – anyone for ‘Manty-hose’?

Crowned ‘the new king of camp’ by Pitchfork, Seth Bogart started Wacky Wacko as a record label, but since 2014 it has been a clothing and accessory line featuring drawings of his various obsessions – an eclectic mix of girl punk, LGBT and other pop-cultural icons, cosmetics, kinky sex, products and packaging. “That’s what I want to put out into the world,” he told LA Weekly. “Just stuff I love, tributes to my favourite pop stars.”

The Seth Bogart Show. Photo by Suzy Poling

Take the Grrrls Do Everything Better T-shirt. It’s a collagistic homage to Bogart’s fave punk and Riot Grrrl bands – Kleenex, Free Kitten, Bikini Kill and Wayne County, to name but a few. “To me, punk is women and gay guys,” Bogart told Bullett Media last summer. “They’re the only people that can be punk any more. And obviously trans people – that’s what punk is to me.” Hand-drawn copies of album artwork, portraits of pop stars and badges are cut and pasted together, along with band names and song titles. Like fan art or the pages of a Nineties pop zine, it’s both appealingly crude and carefully observed – and drawn with the kind of loving attention to detail that only a true fan could give.

Gurrrls T shirt

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