We had Francine Dressler's daughter and business partner, Madelyn Somers, interview Francine about the re-launch of her original prints from Los Angeles circa 1979 AND WE GOT A SNEAK PREVIEW FROM THEIR UP COMING COLLABORATION WITH ARTIST HATTIE STEWART.
SCRATCH IMAGE BELOW TO REVEAL FRANCINE DRESSLER X HATTIE STEWART COLLABORATION
“I had often looked at them and thought like what am I going to do with all of these. I was done with her really, or I thought, but I guess not.” - Francine
Madelyn: Do you feel like the response that you got in the 70s with your artwork is like the same response you are getting today?
Francine: I think it is still brought about that people love to laugh, people love good sense of humor. I was a little bit shocking then, I was really the only one on the street showing boobies, in fact one time I did a show and they asked me to put a blanket over my work.
M: It is so relevant though, I have talked to so many of my friends and they are just like she didn’t make these today? Just how liberated and cheeky and boisterous these women are, and there is so much about feminism in todays world. I know you were just creating these women without thinking about a feminist attitude.
F: Well no, I did not get married until I was 32 years old, so I was single for a long time. I had to fend for myself. It was my life, that is how I felt about it, it was not really like I am a feminist it was just who I was. It was the times, and it was newly acceptable for women to behave in ways that it was not before. A lot of exploring.
M: Not only does her sense of humor relate to so many people, but also her figure it is very relatable. Was she inspired by someone specific?
F: I lived with my cousin and I used to draw her a lot, but I do not think she inspired me to draw her. I think when I ended up living on my own I used the mirror a lot and I posed myself. I think it is just all women, and just experiences I have had with women and their humor. You know if I am sitting across the table and somebody is eating something and they are eating something in a funny way, I would think oh that would be a funny drawing. People do say it looks just like you. So I guess it is me.
M: I mean definitely over time it is uncanny how much you look like her. Were you posing naked in the mirror for yourself?
F: I mean I did, not naked, but I used my hands and I used my poses cause I lived by myself so she had to come from that. I would just make myself pose and think, oh that would be funny I am going to draw that. It just evolved.
M: You were just doing selfies.
F: Yes I was doing selfies that is a good point!
M: And they are funny selfies.
M: It was cool to come home, because she has so many prints in her drawers that are not colored. She goes back and hand paints the color, and I was trying my hand at it. Then she brought out all her pen and ink and actually dipped the pen in the ink, and I really just didn’t fully realize the medium that she used. It felt like a quill, like old fashioned.
F: I get asked a lot what is it like to live in the 70s. If I asked you what is it like to live in 2014, I mean it is just your life you are just living it. When you are living your life a lot of times it is not that romanticized. Its not like oh wow you lived in the 70s, you lived when so and so was happening. Its like yeah you just sort of expect it. When I look back I feel fortunate to be young when the Beatles first came because it really did influence you and your life, but yeah it is just your life I can not really pin point anything, except...it was good.
M: Yeah I am sure one day someone will ask me and I will reflect back on it, but mine was more of a hodge podge of like the 70s, the 60s, the 90s the 80s, we are now all reliving the past. All these trends are coming back. I was just in a vintage store, he is like the 70s are coming back.
F: Yeah well it was the 40s and the 50s for when I was younger.
F: We started this collaboration with having Stewart, who Madeline told me about her and I love her, and I love what she does. She looks like she is having a lot of fun doing her work, and I was having a lot of fun doing my work.
M: When I approached her and just told her the adjectives of how we describe your women, liberal, sassy, cheeky, she was like those are exactly the same adjectives I would use to describe my work. I think that caught her attention. She has been so sweet. We are going to launch in 2015 and my dream would to create like a pop up Keith Haring like store, like he had in the 80s. Just gathering all these emerging artists and talents from all over. I mean now I guess you do not know who is going to be still talked about in 10 years like Keith Haring, Basquiat, and Andy Warhol, but kind of create the factory scene but now.
“THE ADJECTIVES OF HOW WE DESCRIBE [FRANCINE’S] WOMEN ARE, LIBERAL, SASSY, CHEEKY” - MADELYN