We’ve long been subscribers to Kyle Pellet’s Pellet factory, his online store of his joy-crammed collages, paintings and musings. Kyle’s an artist from San Jose whose work keeps getting put on the site because it brings everyone so much glee. As well as making cool pictures and listening to an incredible amount of pop music dating between 1998 and 2003 (you can check out his incomparable Spotify playlists here) Kyle moonlights as a designer for San Francisco’s Suitor’s Club Records. Coolest guy ever? I know. Here’s his top five books.
Marcel Dzama: Dracula
I got a job as a security guard at an art museum right after college. Marcel Dzama’s The Berlin Years was for sale in the gift shop, and I decided to buy it because it looked neat and I got an employee discount. I’m not sure if this is titled Dracula, The Berlin Years, or if it’s simply untitled, but this thin book/booklet came with a bunch of high-quality prints, and in its entirety was packaged as The Berlin Years.
While the prints are gorgeous, this small booklet was what really burned into my brain. Some of the grossest, dumbest drawings I’ve ever seen in my life are in here – they’re fantastic and inspiring! This book reminds me of that feeling I got as a kid after getting away with drawing dumb, dirty pictures in library books.
Glen E. Friedman: Fuck You Heroes
Fuck You Heroes is a collection of photos of dudes looking tough, getting sweaty, and doing neat things. It invigorates me to (try and) look tough, get sweaty, and do neat things!
Cormac McCarthy: Suttree
This is a weird Cormac McCarthy book. It’s very, very funny. You’ve seen Raising Arizona, right? It’s at least as funny as that, maybe even funnier. It’s as least as funny as the funniest Coen Brothers movies, and definitely funnier than the funniest Farrelly Brothers movies (and I think the funniest Farrelly Brothers movies, the funniest ones I’ve seen at least, are very funny). I mean, it has its heavy moments too, but it’s funny! I’ve read it from front to back a couple times, and often pick it up to read pages at random. His use of American English in this book is like nothing else I’ve ever read. It’s magical. Every single page is magical.
Charles M. Schulz: The Complete Peanuts: 1950-1952
Hundreds of pages documenting Charles Schulz learning the ropes, before he was the best.
Frank J. Roos, Jr.: An Illustrated Handbook of Art History
This book contains several thumbnail-sized, high-contrast, low-quality, black-and-white images of paintings and buildings throughout history. Published in 1937, this book documents art and architecture from around the world starting before 20,000 B.C. and up through the early 1930s. It’s pretty dry and uninteresting, but I like it a lot. I feel like there are secrets and patterns I might eventually notice if I look through this book long enough, though I might just be kidding myself.