2021 Ben Kweller Poster
Most of us thought the end of COVID was near when we dropped last year's poster. I hope that you and your family have adapted and are living life as full as you can while staying as safe as you feel necessary. Time with the ones we love is a finite resource that we never get back.
My father in-law, Jeffrey B. Smith, passed away this year. Luckily we were able to be by his side in Mexico as he lay in his hospital bed. His eyes lit up as soon as he saw his baby girl Lizzy walk into the room. We held his hands and kissed him for 8 hours as his heart gradually beat slower and slower until it finally stopped to let his spirit travel to another realm. Jeff was an amazing artist, jeweler, and photographer. He was an open-minded free-thinker who lived on very little and it was more than enough. He was kind and generous and probably the most non-judging, unpretentious human I’ve ever met. He believed all people should be free to be their true selves and live how they wish. He himself was unyielding in his wacky ways and didn’t give a fuck what people thought of him - and why should they? He was 3 years younger than his musical hero, Bob Dylan, who said it best…
“I'm just average, common too. I'm just like him, the same as you. I'm everybody's brother and son. I ain't different than anyone. It ain't no use talkin’ to me It's just the same as talking to you.”
This year's poster is a tribute to JBS and depicts his tall lanky self gazing into the campfire. His favorite author was late-60's psych-novelist Carlos Castaneda. Castaneda’s Journey to Ixtland prompted Jeff to leave the U.S. in ‘98 and live out his life in Oaxaca, far away from technology and the American urgency. This campfire scene surely would’ve been a happy place for him. He loved Swiss Army Knives, clocks, calculators, plants and pottery. More than anything in the world, he loved and believed in his only child Elizabeth, whom he would’ve under any condition done anything for. I miss asking him questions and hearing stories about the exciting alternative life he lived. I’ll always love him and will never forget the huge impact he made on me. So as the firewood of time burns up in smoke, so does the year of 2021. I hope very much to see you in the next one! xoBK
ACCESS • If you're a Bright and Early LIFE member, you'll receive this poster for FREE along with your 2021 Box of Radness... If you'd like to become a Life member and receive this poster for free, you must join by December 20th, 2021. Due to a shipping debacle, these posters will not be delivered by Christmas unless a holiday miracle occurs.
ARTIST • Signed and numbered by Austin, Texas artist, Dan Grissom
PROCESS • Hand silkscreened by Biscuit Press on 90lb craft stock - 18" x 24" - Limited run of 100