“In the beginning, I had ready access to piles of letterpress-printed posters because my father had them made for custom-car gig he was involved with. It was a simple matter to recycle them for art projects—I’d paint over them, silk-screen new graphics, and then repost them. Eventually I got a letterpress proof press and did them myself. But not much has changed—I continue to post them in incongruous, inaccessible locations, and I quite enjoy that no one sees them… I prefer to think of them as being utilitarian improbabilities rather than conceptual artifacts.”
—C.R. Stecyk III describes his history with Colby posters. Pictured here is his installation for Art in the Streets (2011) at The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA.
CR Stecyk III (aka skateboarding icon. aka Dogtown aka Jeff Ho Surfboards and Zephyr Productions surf shop) created this video full of images and moments that date back to 1965. All in all it’s pretty rad.
“This clip is a very rough cut of a deleted segment from the Z-Boys documentary that talks about the original DogTown articles that C.R. Stecyk III wrote for the original SkateBoarder magazine.
It begins with some material that will be familiar to those who have seen the film, in it’s rough cut form, but then goes on to show various quotes from the stories and an entire scene that is an homage to the DogTown godfather Craig Stecyk that was cut from the film.”
Until its doors closed on December 31, 2012, the family-run Colby Poster Printing Company made the letterpressed signs, posters, billboards and showcards that were a ubiquitous feature of the visual landscape of Los Angeles.
For three generations, promoters of boxing bouts, rodeos, reggae concerts and literary-minded visual artists were drawn to the swift graphic science of the day-glo poster, and to the durability of the product, hanging on telephone poles and chainlink fences from Venice to Las Vegas for months and years after commission.
In 3 Union Shop, an original documentary by Felipe Lima and C.R. Stecyk III, Stecyk visits the company to make one last print—entitled ADIOS—and to expound on its enduring appeal to anyone who ever wanted to leave a mark of their own in the city of signs.