Design Log / Illustration / Festival

I Make Work As An Outlet For My Anger —Tuesday Bassen

In conversation with the badass artist-designer Tuesday Bassen about the therapeutic aspects of art, creating eco-conscious apparel and her zinemaking days, among other things.

By Rohini Kejriwal on 26 March

  • 3 Cruel

Tuesday Bassen's CRUEL line, Winter '17-'18

LA-based illustrator, designer, and art director Tuesday Bassen is constantly making cool things in her signature tongue in cheek and honest style. Since she graduated in 2011 from Minneapolis College of Art and Design, she has constantly been creating. Stickers, pins and patches, hand-painted ceramics, clothing lines inspired by her grandmothers, Ugly Girl Gang zines...she’s made them all, and sells them on her online store Shop Tuesday.

Apart from her refreshing range of clothing and accessories, she’s also worked on illustrations for the likes of The New Yorker, Adidas, Nike, Urban Outfitters and Playboy among others. She’s an activist fighting copyright infringement for artists, and in 2016, set up a website Shop Zara's Art Theft with friend and collaborator Adam J. Kurtz, showcasing the original works that Zara has purportedly stolen. She also co-owns a boutique brick and mortar with her partner Ben Goetting called Friend Mart, which is focussed on selling products created by independently owned artist brands.

We had a quick chat with Tuesday ahead of her India trip to speak at Design Fabric Festival, where she will also be conducting a zine making workshop with Adam J. Kurtz.

What was is your first memory of making art?

I have a baby book drawing of a bear with giant claws and fangs, though I don't remember making it, but it's the first *recorded* drawing of mine.

The Ugly Girl Gang zine by Tuesday Bassen

Does your mood affect what you make?

Absolutely, I make work as an outlet for my anger. I don't like planning what I will draw. I like letting my hand take control and enter a kind of meditative state.

You've done your fair share of collaborations. What do you look for in a collaborator?

I don't collaborate as much as I used to. I'm mostly producing clothing for my own brand now, but my boyfriend Ben Goetting and I still collaborate often. He stitches on my jackets and it's a great collaboration because it's both our specialties coming together.

What prompted you to make zines like Ugly Girl Gang and Miserable & Worthless?

Ugly Girl Gang and Miserable & Worthless were both symptomatic of how women are recognized and treated based on the perceived value of physical attributes or work output. It became the theme of both zines: women outside of societal expectations.

But do you enjoy zines as a medium of storytelling?

Zines were just an early form of me making sellable artwork and the same concepts apply to how I produce clothing.

  • Miserable

Tuesday Bassen's Miserable zine

What are you looking forward to most about the India trip?

I'm looking forward to visiting India for the first time and hopefully checking out some textile factories after the Design Fabric Festival. At the festival, I'm most excited about hearing Indian illustrators and fashion designers speak about their approach and ideology.

What’s next on the cards for you?

I'm in the process of expanding my clothing line to include more pieces, while simultaneously making sure I'm using the least environmentally impactful materials and practices. We use deadstock fabric for the majority of our pieces, but we're expanding into more casual wear, which are being designed with USA-made organic cotton fabric.

Tuesday Bassen's CRUEL line, Winter '17-'18

Tuesday Bassen will be speaking at Design Fabric Festival on March 30. She will also be conducting a Zine Making workshop with Adam J.Kurtz.

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