Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Director Profile: ASPHALT WATCHES' Shayne Ehman and Seth Scriver

Shayne Ehman, Asphalt Watches (mixed media)

Shayne Ehman and Seth Scriver have had impressive enough careers as artists, with their illustrated works appearing in galleries and exhibitions around the world. Maybe you've even been lucky enough to catch Ehman's large-scale installations at the Vancouver Zoo, or scored a copy of Scriver's book, Stooge Pile. If not, don't fret, because experiencing Asphalt Watches at this year's Festival will be like nothing you've ever experienced before. 

In 2000, Ehman and Scriver hitchhiked across Canada, starting in Chilliwack, BC (home of Chillwack), and making stops in Agassiz (not the home of Ándre), Calgary, and Regina. As you can expect from hitchhiking across Canada, they met some interesting characters. And by "interesting characters", we mean the wait-did-this-actually-happen-that-is-totally-crazy sort of characters. Not content with telling their story through static illustrations--or verbally, or through slam poetry, Ehman and Scriver set out to create a feature-length animated film of their adventure. 

Seth Scriver, Fatty Negative (airbrush, ink, paint)

The project took seven years, starting in 2006 and finishing up this past year. During most of this time, Ehman and Scriver lived at opposite ends of the country and could only work on Asphalt Watches sporadically, whenever they happened to be together. As Scriver described on their Indiegogo campaign, their "work is intensively collaborative, so it [was] important [they were] physically in the same space".

It was worth the wait, because Asphalt Watches takes the road-trip genre and flips it on its head, all the while singing bizarrely catchy songs about boiled hot dogs and Boston Pizza. (Seriously.) And it's all true. Each of the people they encountered on their journey have been re-imagined as bizarre characters, with Ehman and Scriver playing the parts of Bucktooth Cloud and Skeleton Hat, respectively. 

Shayne Ehman, Zen Capacity

Ehman and Shriver have a knack for storytelling (and illustrating, but, come on--that goes without saying) and we can only hope they continue to bring us along on their adventures. 

ASPHALT WATCHES Screening Times:

  • Tuesday, Sept 10th, 9:45 PM SCOTIABANK 8
  • Thursday, Sept 12th, 8:45 PM SCOTIABANK 13
  • Friday, Sept 13th, 2:15 PM SCOTIABANK 4

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