what if Vincent van Gogh was born today? painT tells the story of Vinny, a struggling artist and quintessential "art underdog" who sees the world as a living, breathing painting. Set against the backdrop of the New York & L.A. art scene, painT is an American update on the tragic life of van Gogh, seen through the eyes of his modern day counterpart and spiritual heir, examining the fine line between love, madness, and paint.

Monday, December 28, 2009

you can.

If you hear a voice within you say "you cannot paint," then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced. -van Gogh

locations, nyc.

nyc location scout. metropolitan museum of art, blue, red, and yellow banners ready to go. washington square park, lets paint it till purplepink sundown. the yellow house, now the green apartment a.k.a dackson's, caffe reggio on macdougal. and edgar allen poe says it best on a sign that has been up in there for at least 13 years.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

this is my buddy.

there was a time in 2005 when i was going through a breakup with a beautiful woman and mysterious muse. i had a broken heart before this one so the cuts weren't deep but they still triggered a rattling in the heart that made me want to get a fire started, i dove into art. some of the rawest paintings i made were after this breakup and i showed them to the standard hotel in hollywood. i proposed that i would like to have my first art show at their hotel and turn their pool/patio and lobby into a full on art gallery on Feb 13th 2006, theheartfirebreathemanifesto, and i would donate all the proceeds from the sales of the paintings to the charity J.U.I.C.E. Justice by Uniting in Creative Energy, a great charity that gives inner-city youth a place to rap, paint, breakdance, express themselves. I sold every painting. I gave them over a thousand dollars and I felt it was worth it to have a heart break for this. It hurt to say goodbye to someone you would hold and smell and bite and love but it felt good to know that something i could express in paint could be used to help people, especially kids. give give give. it's a good way to live. it was after this breakup or just at the peak of where the damn thing began to crumble that my buddy, popped out from behind a car on that beverly hills block, palm dr., with this mask on and scared the shit out of me. like the kind of scary shit that happens when you're only in your basement and it's pure dark and you can't see and you feel your breath run down your upper lip and hit your chest warmth and it feels like maybe, just maybe somebody else is down there staring at you and waiting to eliminate your whole being. buddy pops out, pulls off his mask, laughs like the clown prince, and says "you did shit your pants though didn't you? this is for you." he gives me the mask and the rest is the life to be lived on screen. thank you buddy. for entering stage left and bringing forth the play of things, for encapsulating these moments as they happened, dreamlike storybook images in a haze of what i remember and love about a path that looks so much like the one you wished for. an adventure of a lifetime. you art machine.
photographs by Stephen Dackson, Beverly Hills Buddy, 2005
thank you for the photos and for encapsulating the moment so well, just as i remember it and just as it was lived.

DACKSON/MASKED MAN –36, A mischievous artist with the thickest New York accent you have ever heard. The guiding example for Vinny. He has already become a successful painter on the NY art scene. Discovered by Scotty Vinny's brother, he backs and sells Dackson's work. Dackson leads Vinny to finding his voice as an artist. The closest friend to Vinny and harshfully honest when it comes to art. He has a penchant for big tits, cake, and the F word. When Vinny finds out that the only reason they've been hanging out together is because Scotty supports Dackson's work, their friendship ends in a bitter altercation at razor point. Character based on the artist Paul Gauguin.LEAD.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

to you.

to you. to all the artists eating crackers with butter and looking out windows wondering if it is ever going to get any easier, keep fighting. to all the actors about to go on stage tonight and who are saying their whispered prayers to the ones who left them, or the ones who are in them, or the air in the blackness blanket backstage, keep singing. to the writers who lose days and posture like seconds staring at the same phrase and crying at the same part again and again, to the butter on my pen, to the paper that's this plate, to the coffee in my cup, from the love in my heart, to all of you in your art, keep fighting. keep kissing. keep dreaming. keep living. i'll meet you there.-GS kitchen table 3:23 P.M., Rockaway Beach, NY 31 years old.

keep this object carefully.

the recipient.

RACHEL – 19, Italian, Brooklyn accent, tiny diamond nose ring, and a face more breathtaking than her waist. An innocent cocktail waitress at Wiggles Strip Club. Sunflowers tattooed on her side. In love with Vinny and he doesn’t even know it.

18. The ‘Chronique locale’ in Le Forum Républicain of Sunday, 30 December 1888 reported that in the night of 23 December Van Gogh had offered his severed ear to ‘a certainRachel’ (la nommée Rachel) at ‘brothel No. 1’ (maison de tolérance No. 1) in rue du Bout d’Arles. Nothing else is known about this prostitute.

Monday, December 14, 2009

painT the town.

as i walked home from work the other day i saw a white canvas on the wall. it was calling. i dreamt that night and woke up buzzing to get to work the next day. i held a black oil crayon in my teeth while the abstract of the 3 colors formed and then made the first teaser poster to the movie. i could not stop thinking about the paint on the wall as i watched the hours tick away. was it still there? did it dry? did it leak? did someone stop at canal and thompson and grab their heart or laugh or say, "that's dope." wow. the next morning i saw another wall the size of four movie posters. i had one of the last cartridges of polaroid film left, now that they are extinct, and shot the other one at the corner of west broadway and grand. i do love this poster and it is a wish and a promise and a dream come true on a wall today.

"I dream of painting, and then I paint my dream." - van Gogh

Saturday, December 12, 2009

your calling.

your profession is not what brings home your weekly paycheck, your profession is what you're put here on earth to do with such passion and such intensity that it becomes spiritual in calling.-Vincent van Gogh

i think of heroes. i think of vincent. i think of my father.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

the table read.

Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.

- van Gogh

Last night 15 actors got into it at SIMPLE STUDIOS
NYC and sat
in a round of chairs and read painT. After pizza and introductions, it was on. i am sitting there with actors, artists, writers, a powerhouse opera singer, and one cool accountant and thinking that all the words that were in my head are being held in their hands and coming out their mouth and making the world that was dreamt now ALIVE. i did not know how to react to the movie taking place in front of my face. i waited so long for this and it was here! it was insane and beautiful and scary and real and raw and all i could think was, are they feeling this? when THE END was said and i looked around the room, I saw open eyes,

acknowledgment and clapping. Everyone stayed and shared their words. I received feedback that opened up so much and begin writing fluidly on pages of anything I could find, the words were true, and the letters and texts that came later that evening gave me a new confidence
i wish can share with van Gogh. I cannot ask for better friends and better colleagues. It hit home. Truth, Hard Work, and Faith, will see this movie off the page, onto the screen, into the hearts, and into forever. THANK YOU BIG TO LEE SEBASTIANY, JOHN TORMEY, KIM MATULOVA, JOANNA BOWZER, JERRY STILIANESSIS, NICK JOB, LARRY SHEA, LAUREN KELSTON, CHRIS GENTILE, ANNA BEILEN, BOBBY HICKS, MEGAN ARDIZONI, PENNI DANIELLE TINSLEY, and BRUCE GREENBERG. I love actors. I love saying things and doing them. I love living. i love painT. the snow came down like stars in the atmosphere. i walked outside of the bar in a tee shirt. I shut my eyes and remembered the moment forever. head tilted back slightly, chill and wet flakes of star on my skin and cool wind in through the nostrils.

What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything? - van Gogh

Sunday, December 6, 2009

perfect day.

i have been serving lou reed breakfast for a year now at my job. we don't say much to each other but words like egg white and coffee. today i told him i wrote a modern day movie about the life of van gogh and i am going to play him. he says to me, "that's ambitious." damn right. thanks lou for the perfect day.

from letters, to lust, to brothers, to power, to painT.

"playing the part." an vivid assessment of what came first and what hits the heart. thanks bob.
click here: ART BLOG BY BOB

Thursday, December 3, 2009

electricity in the feet and neck.

the metropolitan museum of art is real. it is on 5th ave. and 82nd st. and if you are looking for reasons to be magic and see miracles, go in there and see jackson pollock's autumn rhythm (number 30) or put your face so close to van Gogh heavy brushstrokes that the alarms go off and they tell you to back away from the painting like you are uncovering too much about the artist. Also Gaugain's tahitian women are easy on the eyes! i also say go with people who you admire and make you laugh. i took a night trip with jade and a day trip bobby and laura. bobby introduced me to autumn rhythm and how among the raw canvas of black and grey and white and tan gestural strokes was a small drip of color. i stared at it and smiled when it was revealed. the met is a key location for painT because it is where our hero will visit on his first trip to NY(Arles) and he will see the masters, stare them in the face. Bobby reinacts this as he stares at one of his fav's Velazquez's Moor. Vinny will see Warhol's self portrait, autumn rhythm, and Basquiat's skull (not at the met). The museum's exterior will be the where the finale of this tale takes place. going there twice and standing in the exact locations where we will shoot one day soon give a rush of electricity from my feet into my neck. my heart beats even fast now as i type this to you. please do well to make the best of your evening tonight. go to the met. give yourself a gift. with a handshake and a smile, greg