I Want David Klein to Illustrate My Life


About a month ago I became aware of the existence of David Klein, who was an artist and illustrator who made a lot of weird and gorgeous advertisements in the 1960s. He's maybe best known for all these TWA posters, which I'm in love with. Apparently you can buy originals of some of the posters on Etsy for hundreds of dollars, like the L.A. one on the left here:

There's a stupid lack of David Klein info on the Internet, but I did learn he was an active member of the California Watercolor Society, which charms my socks off. David's bio says the California Watercolor Society "often chose to paint watercolors depicting scenes of everyday life in the cities and suburbs of California," and that makes me wish David were still with us now so that he could illustrate everywhere I love in California, especially my neighborhood and Topanga Canyon and the weirdest parts of the Valley (Lankershim Boulevard in particular, where I took all of these groovy pictures).

But David Klein died in 2005. He came from Texas, and he was in the army and fought in World War II. And at first my whole point in posting this post was so I could do this:


...but then I looked at more of David's work and saw that he also made posters for movies and foods and books and everything. I haven't found any David Klein music art, but I'd really love for him to make art for all these people/albums/songs/whatever:

-The Beatles, especially Help!-era Beatles
-Ex Hex
-The Kinks Are the Village Green Preservation Society
-Courtney Barnett

-the first two Shins records
-that Strokes song about Hawaii
-mid-career Sonic Youth, especially Goo
-Ram by Paul & Linda McCartney

-late-era Pavement
-The Hollies oh god I love the Hollies, I love Evolution by the Hollies so much right now

I think my basic criteria for music being David Klein-worthy are (1) a fluency in the nuance of thoughtful/subversive whimsy and (2) an undercurrent of scrappiness, melancholy, and serious feminine energy to keep said whimsy from unraveling into precious bullshit.

Anyway here are some more David Klein pictures. Here's the solar system, and a king:

And some movie posters. I'm so happy he did the Return of the Jedi poster; Return of the Jedi is the first movie that I ever obsessively loved. It's the first anything I ever obsessively loved, and on my sixth birthday my mom took me to see it for the third time, and then we went out for pizza, and that's the day Denny Wilson died. I kind of wish this poster were just all Ewoks and Leia, but it's okay. The red guards look pretty great.

And here is "Wine Book." I don't love "Wine Book" but I wish I did. 

Mostly I want us to do another Strawberry Fields Whatever Diet and have David Klein paint everything we eat for that week. My most recent great eating day was Saturday: I went to the Inn of the Seventh Ray with Sarah and we ordered the exact same thing, a la the week before when we went to rock-and-roll Thai and each got pumpkin stir-fry + purple rice + wine. This time it was a champagne glass of Love Potion #9 (kombucha, damiana, jasmine flowers, I forget what else) and a salad of cashew-encrusted tofu + bok choy + baby onions + little wisps of carrot. After lunch I went to Hidden Treasures and got a perfect camel-colored cashmere v-neck sweater for 12 bucks, and then I met up with my housemates and we went to this adorable pizza parlor in the middle of Topanga Canyon. We got a gigantic plate of hot garlic knots nicely buried in parmesan; my pals had beer and I had some good cheap chardonnay. Later in the night we went to a wine bar in Burbank and ate a plate of zucchini fritters with garlic flowers and creme fraiche and raw honey, and a bowl of beets and burrata. I'd never had garlic flowers before: they're all tiny and delicate with these prissy little white petals, but they taste so intensely of garlic. I also had picpoul for the first time, and am now a passionate picpoul fan.

So, I want David Klein to paint all of that, along with some McDonald's sundaes, the coconut and/or banana flaming margaritas at my favorite Mexican restaurant in my neighborhood, some jam jars, some ice cream cones, every cake I've ever seen. There's some cake in this "Lucky Whip" painting, which I want to stare at all day - check out that hunk of lemon meringue pie! Ever since Matthew McConaughey talked about his dad drinking a Miller Lite and eating lemon meringue pie in heaven, I've been dreaming of doing the exact same thing, but on Earth.

I also want David Klein to combine my food life and my music life, and make a picture of every food ever mentioned in a Beastie Boys song: French toast, pannekoeken, Rice-A-Roni, Dunkin Donuts, Krispy Kreme, cherry pie, cherries, apples, peaches, plums, etc. All of it. All of the Beastie foods.

AND BASEBALL. I guess David Klein designed MLB sheets and bedspreads and pillowcases or something? I'm into it. I've always vaguely cared about baseball, but it wasn't until last year that I fell in love with the Boston Red Sox and figured out why people need baseball to live-- it's because watching your home team keeps you psychically connected to where you came from, and therefore allows you to travel through both space and time while sitting in your living room or on a barstool. Baseball is sci-fi magic. So I want a Red Sox tote bag, designed by wonderful David Klein.

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