One of my greatest gifts (or maybe it's a curse) is that when I get an idea in my mind, I go for it, and I don't stop until I get it...which means that I am often fixated on one particular for thing for weeks, if not months and years, on end before it can come to fruition. In March of last year, I not only threw together my "milestone" list (the list of things I want to accomplish by the time I'm thirty), but I also published it on this website for all to see and hold me to. And though I am still far away from completing it, as of today I have officially checked off at least one item: #3-- Commission my custom Fazzino.
I have been a collector of Charles Fazzino art pieces for only a few years now. My mother bought me my first one, "Twilight L.A" when I got my own apartment in Los Angeles as a way to christen it. But I had been an admirer for years, stopping in every hole in the wall gallery from Tribeca to Times Square when I was wandering around New York, looking for new releases or just checking to see if my favorites were still available for the day I could finally afford to buy one. After "Twilight L.A" came "For The Love of Lucy," to commemorate my deep childhood admiration for Lucille Ball, and then "The Girl Can't Help It," a somewhat fitting ode to my expensive shopping habits. His art was unlike anything I had ever seen hung on the walls in the museums my school paraded us to as kids-- it was brightly colored and practically alive with its mixed medias and 3D "technology." It grabbed the eye but that each time you looked back and looked deeper, you would find new details to focus on. Oh yeah, and no one yelled at me if I touched it!
After those three came home with me, I began to think about "completing" my collection with one final piece-- the cream of the crop, so to speak. I already had an idea in my head about what it should be: I had seen so many of Fazzino's works crop up in my favorite television shows, that I thought how great would it be to have a Fazzino featuring my favorite television shows? I found one online that was very close to what I was looking for; it was titled "Remembering 60s TV" and fit the basic description of what I wanted: classic, popular television shows popping out of TV sets. A little more research found a version set in the 70s, but that was where the pieces ended. Assumedly with enough demand he would create and mass produce one for the 80s and/or the 90s, but I just wasn't sure I wanted to wait. Besides, even if he did end up creating one for the 90s, it would probably be chock full of shows that hit the mainstream culture but didn't necessarily mean anything to me (like Beverly Hills 90210 or My So-Called Life). So I decided to start saving for the day I could just commission one for myself-- using the exact shows (and images-- no Bo and Hope to represent Days of our Lives for me!) that defined my childhood.
Color on Canvas-- it's really coming along
So when I found myself with a generous check in my pocket earlier this year, I decided that I could either do the sensible, practical thing and "invest it" in a future that may or may not end up holding all of the things on that list if I didn't also get my ass in gear in other ways, or I could actually use it toward one of those things on my list. So naturally, I did the latter. I've always been very good with spending large sums of money on things.
After submitting my original idea to Mr. Fazzino, though, I was told that the sheer number of shows I wanted represented (which grew hourly, as suggestions that had somehow slipped my mind kept flowing in from friends) would cause the piece to be four feet by five feet long, which was too big for the space above my couch that I had earmarked for the piece...not to mention that the price tag was, oh let's just say, a wee bit higher than my bank account, new check and all, would allow. So I ended up cutting the shows down to just the eight that meant the most, with another thirteen sprinkled around for good measure.
My design, now in 3-D!
Though it was his busiest time of year (Super Bowl, Art Expo, etc), Mr. Fazzino quickly sent me a line drawing, and once I gave my notes and approved the design, he went to work on the actual canvas. The whole process took a lot less time than I had originally expected, probably because I really didn't have many notes on the initial sketch: from the very beginning it was exactly what I had been picturing (and even attempted on a canvas of my own the previous year). A few short weeks later, my "Growing Up With 90s TV" piece was delivered, immortalizing all of the shows, and the specific people on those shows, who greatly influenced my childhood and ultimately defined the woman I grew into.
I'm not going to tell you the exact number I spent on such an item, but you can be rest assured this: it cost more than a month's rent, the purchase price of my purebred Shih Tzu, membership to Local 871 (of which I am a member, though currently I'm on "sabbatical"), and my "new" nose-- but not more than all of those things combined! If you are interested in obtaining your own custom Fazzino, you will have to email one of the galleries that deals exclusively in his works and ask them to get you a price quote; the number will vary based on size and detail, but owning a one of a kind piece of art from your favorite artist? Priceless!
The Final Piece-- it looks great on my wall!