Put the internet, vintage TV, and C-SPAN's funniest home videos into a blender, and what you pour out might look something like the GIF art of German-American artist Peekasso. A quick glance at his Tumblr melts eyes with an avalanche of strobing fluorescent colors, heavily Photoshopped cultural icons, and ideological statements that range from the subtle and thought-provoking, to the politically incorrect, over-the-top, and unabashedly honest.
Peekasso, whose given name is Peter Stemmler, immigrated to the United States in 1997, and started the successful illustration company Quickhoney with artist Nana Rausch three years later. In 2007, he began putting personal projects on a the Peekasso Tumblr, filling it with stylized memes of Spock, Mr. T, and then-Senator Obama. In 2011 he began experimenting with GIFs, “out of boredom,” he tells The Creators Project. Here's his very first one. His frenetic GIF art style has developed over the last five years, through hundreds of graphic experiments mixing corporate and political branding, pornography, and nostaliga into a miasma of inside jokes and discomfort that reflects the miasma of online culture. “I like to see myself changing,” he says. “I don't mind my old work, but now I'm faster, more secure in my decisions, and more political.”