Here is a collection of Frank’s early oil paintings. We only know the dates they were painted for a couple of them. (Frank said he started painting in high school.) Frank painted with a brush attached to a hard hat.
1981. Written by Frank. Directed by Frank and Greg Rickman. Edited by Frank at CCAC in Oakland, California.
FAIRYTALES CAN COME TRUE is my first movie and most ‘normal’. Saying ‘first movie’ is misleading. I had been reading HOW TO (write scripts, direct, edit film, etc) books along with books on radical theater (I read all kinds of stuff) when I was a teenager, and wrote scripts that always had a role for me. But I was mainly a political radical back then [among other things]. But in the early seventies I wormed [I am good at worming!] into an intensive in-depth film course in Santa Fe. It was mainly for anthropologists to learn how to make 16mm field films! I pop up in the strangest places! But after the five month, five days a week, six hour a day course, I didn’t have money to make film [and couldn’t cut film, had to wait until video!]. So I went into performance art. In the late seventies in San Francisco I was doing THE OUTRAGEOUS BEAUTY REVUE for three years at The Mabuhay gardens, a punk club. An independent producer approached me and offered to do a feature film based on the O.B.R. which I would come up with, star in, and direct [my directing was my primary condition of doing the film]. So I wrote a treatment. We spent a year doing the Hollywood thing, working with screen writers, going to Los Angeles to cast it, flying the actress up to rehearse, etc. But when the producer came back from Florida with the backer’s money, he informed me I couldn’t direct! So I walked!
So I came up with a totally different story, when I was panhandling in San Francisco I found a guy with a super eight camera and did FAIRYTALES for about $300! Then I enrolled in the San Francisco art institute Master’s program in large part to transfer the film on to video so I could edit it myself.
I thought I was making a rough draft to show backers to get money to make the real movie. But it was picked up by a Special Ed distributor because it was the first film about how to develop a full relationship….rather than a boring explicit how to sex film. It was sexy, funny, dealing with real issues that everybody deals with but many crips think are special crip issues…and it was made by a crip! Crips loved it. But the film wasn’t selling. It turned out that the people who buy those films weren’t crips…but hospital administrators and the like, and parents of crips, etc….people, with the best intentions, but also with vested interest in keeping crips not functional. They felt the movie gave people “false hopes” (an interesting concept)! It didn’t matter to them that most of the people in the cast were in such relationships. “Well, that is a fluke…not real life!”
Once there was a guy in a psychology class at which I was lecturing. After the class, he invited me to do something at the adult drama class he was doing at the C.P. Center (really a daycare warehouse). He warned me that they rarely respond. So Linda and I went there to show FAIRYTALES. When we got there, most of them were sitting there in a fog, heads bent. But my being with Linda started a low-level buzz! Then during the 30-minute film, they went through an amazing transformation. They sat up and got excited. And after the film, they wanted to talk. THESE PEOPLE RARELY TALKED! But that day they were saying things like: “my sister does not want me to date. She doesn’t want me to get hurt. But I want to risk it!” The teacher was excited about the breakthrough. He actually thought he was hired to make breakthroughs! He wanted me to come back. But a few days later he called me and told me the director of the center had banned me from the center because the crips had been harder to control because they had a whiff of possible freedom…the whiff labeled “false hopes”!
I think this captures the true dynamics of such institutions…but also of our society as a whole. Breakthroughs to new possibilities, freedom, human connection, etc. are relatively easy (surprisingly) to induce by art, etc. But such breakthroughs are threatening to the control of the powers…and hence censorship of all forms! Btw, the director of the center was himself a crip…and had been in my community/theater group.
2001. Frank wrote:
Filmed in the mid-80s, edited in 2001. The reason for the gap of over fifteen years between the shooting and the editing was that I was waiting for the technology for me to edit at home on my computer so that I could do special effects.
FEISTO was screened at the New York International Independent Film and Video Festival in 2002 in New York and Los Angeles.
Awarded “BEST OF FESTIVAL – FEATURE”, Berkeley Film & Video Festival.
Out of Isolation
1989. Starring Frank Moore and Linda Sibio. Written and directed by Frank. Edited by Rourke Smith.
“Honorable Mention Award, Feature Length Video”—East Bay Video Festival
1983. Frank wrote:
I edited EROTIC PLAY with two remotes taped on a table before me using my head pointer. What we do when we have no money and when we are ahead of the technology! We just made videos and put them in our closet. And now the same videos are being watched by people all over the world on THE FRANK MOORE CHANNEL [even on their television]! Thank God we didn’t care whether people would ever see the stuff. We just did them to do them! And now we have a shit load of content!
1984. Edited by Frank with the same method as EROTIC PLAY.
The Nude Cave
1984. Also edited with the same method as EROTIC PLAY.
In this [The Nude Cave] I mined the same footage as I mined for my EROTIC PLAY. But in this I created a long surreal abstract erotic collage by slowing down and speeding up the footage. I also did the sound track by playing a couple of synthesizers with my head pointer. I laid down three tracks by playing to the visuals. Because of the primitive nature of the equipment, I couldn’t hear the previous layers when I was playing the next track. Oh, yes, I hadn’t played /composed music before!
The Outrageous Beauty Revue
1998. Frank edited this by watching the footage from a VCR on our TV and having Linda write down stop and start points for each segment. He then typed up a list of the segments in the order he wanted them to appear. He also created the title screens on the computer with Paint Shop Pro. Mikee then put the film together in (the very first version of) Final Cut Pro following Frank’s edit points and sequence instructions.
1992. Edited by Frank at the East Bay Media Center in Berkeley.
“2nd Place – Documentary”—East Bay Video Festival
The Outrageous Horror Show
1992. Also edited at the East Bay Media Center in Berkeley.
The new book, How to Handle an Anthropologist: Russell Shuttleworth, PhD interviews shaman/performance artist Frank Moore, was featured on “Jovelyn’s Bistro” on KPFA’s Cover to Cover Open Book, August 21, 2019.
Linda Mac and Michael LaBash joined Jovelyn Richards in the studio for this live broadcast. Listen to the interview here:
About Jovelyn Richards:
“Sometimes We Need Art, More Than Food & Water.” Jovelyn Richards interviews artists who explore emotional intimacy through their narratives within theatre, film and literature, along with voices less heard. She talks with artists who explore emotional intimacy and the fringes of our culture. Jovelyn Richards is a writer, international performance artist and speaker. She holds both an MA and MFA in the Humanities.
On Wednesday August 21, 2019, Vimeo abruptly terminated Frank’s account for violating their “guidelines”.
Frank had over 700 videos in his account that we have been uploading on a weekly basis for over eight years. His videos had over 33 million plays on Vimeo.com.
It will take us a while to get them all back up at a new place … but they will slowly start appearing on the site again as we upload them to their new home!
The other casualty of Frank’s account being terminated is the Vimeo group that Frank created called Nude Performance Art Dance and Video – EROART. This was one of the largest groups on Vimeo with over 14,000 members. It was part of the collateral damage of Vimeo terminating Frank’s account.
Connie completed the fading into death this afternoon. She has always lived in her young mind, always was a black sheep, raising black sheep, always wanted to know, always hungry for education, NO MATTER WHAT! WHATEVER IT TOOK! Deaf to CAN’T, to dumb rules!
No time for social frills, no time for BS, no time for limits. Just time for deadpan joy of just everyday, for no-nonsense love, for pushing and demanding for possibilities. She bit, or pretended not to hear, just going for what’s right like a tank… running you over.
You were a fool if you believed her mcgoo act! Hero? Yes! Always growing beyond working in a doctor’s office, after getting a college education, after the leaving of Jim, threatened by his black sleep wife, after pushing me onto THE REAL WORLD, after raising Jerry and me, after getting out of Utah as a free thinker!
Just taking Tums and aspirins, Connie at 79 lived a very rich life… always young in life… now always will be young!
Jerry and I are so lucky to be in the black sheep family of CONNIE!
This is an excerpt from the conversation between Christian Lunch (aka Xtian) and Frank on Frank Moore’s Shaman’s Den, December 9, 2001, right after the Fuck The War Ball at the underground punk club, Burnt Ramen in Richmond, California. Xtian performed with the Cherotic All-Stars that night. He was also at that time the sound guy at the Stork Club in Oakland.
Xtian: Well, I think the wonderful thing about eroplay, when you see it live is that, if you’ve never seen anything like that before, it’s like, hey, it’s a bunch of dancing girls … or, it’s a bunch of chicks, wow. This is cool, man. Let’s watch this! And the thing about it is there’s also that … um … it’s like it’s generating an erotic energy, but it’s being channeled towards something really powerful, like I said before. That’s the thing that makes it unusual. And it would shock a club owner but it turns the stage into performing, into a ceremonial space which is … I suppose the club people would be upset if you’re turning their club into a church. Maybe that’s what they are bugged about.
Frank: I am sneaky. It looks like rock.
Frank wrote this about the Fuck The War Ball performance:
Well, this was the period when I was producing a lot of music shows at the infamous illegal underground punk club BURNT RAMEN. This was the last two acts of a very long show. Traditionally my band closed the shows. Also, traditionally I cherry picked musicians from the other bands of the night to be in my band. But this show the musicians kept leaving during the show [the club was in the most dangerous neighborhood]. So at this point when I was the next act, I had no band except for Xtian [aka Christian Lunch] and a flock of nude women. So in the middle of Extreme Elvis’ set [which I consider one of the top five performances of ALL rock ‘n’ roll history!], I asked Elvis if I could borrow his band. So our two sets melted together! Btw, we performed in what normally passed for the GREEN ROOM there because that was where E literally pitched his tent!
After so-called feminists tried unsuccessfully to stop the booking of this show because they thought my art was somehow sexist, this show marked the transition from me singing to corny records [which I had been doing since THE OUTRAGEOUS BEAUTY REVUE broke up in the early eighties] to jamming. In fact, this could be considered the first CHEROTIC ALL STAR BAND. Barb Golden of THE WIG BAND opened up the night. Her sax player Toyoji had played with John Cage. I did backup vocals for her in her set. Then she played keyboard in my band with John Seabury of THE PSYCHOTIC PINEAPPLE [which formed after they saw my OUTRAGEOUS BEAUTY REVUE] on guitar. Before the show I tried to get Toyoji to play in my band. But he shyly declined. However in the middle of the glorious erotic chaos of the set, he crawled on the stage and got more and more uninhibited!
Written by Frank Moore January 19, 2000. Published in Lummox Journal, March 2000.
An artist starts, let’s say, a painting with a set idea of what he is going to paint. Sooner or later he makes a “mistake” — a color or a line which doesn’t fit in the original idea — which “ruins” the painting. When this happens most people give up, thinking that they are not cut out to be artists, and withdraw back into the common existence. Others try to pretend that they didn’t make the mistake, that the color or line isn’t there on the canvas. They go on painting as before. When they are done, they have painted the shadow of what they wanted. Moreover, this shadow is covered with a haze. Others keep starting over whenever they make mistakes, not accepting any mistakes. They are rewarded for their endurance with the perfect copy of the thought form which they had held for all this time. They are rewarded by what they think they want to create. Their thought form has been brought down into the material plane. The creation is perfect. But it is not a masterpiece. It is perfect within the limitations placed around it by the rigidness of the artist. The work is perfect, but not free.
A masterpiece is perfect and free. The master artist paints an adventure in color, words, or notes. What others see as mistakes, he sees as challenges, boxes out of which he has worked as the basis on which he creates a totally new, fresh pattern. These challenges, boxes, keystones, keep appearing as he works, demanding the artist’s flexibility. If the artist looks back, trying to hold on to what he thought the painting was or would be, he gets trapped in a box out of which he must battle or be turned into a rigid, bitter pillar of salt. The artist has to keep his whole attention on the swirling colors in front of him in order to be the creator.
To create a masterpiece, the artist has to use and risk every bit of himself. But he also has to create with God, for God is the one who creates what most people call mistakes, and that the master artist sees as his tools and materials. God does not create for the artist. God just provides the tools, the guiding bumps. It is up to the artist’s free will whether he creates or gets dragged down by the weight of the tools. When the artist is creating, he feels no weight.
The most important masterpiece is a lifetime. This is a statement of hard fact. Creating a masterpiece in every day living is governed by the same rules as creating a masterpiece in paint, but much harder because the artist is also the canvas. In every period of time, in every land, there are a few masterpieces of art and writing. But a masterpiece lifetime is much rarer.
the open mike is the most democratic channel… well maybe except for hyde park sproul soapbox freedom. anyone can sign up to step up to bat, step up to the mike and into the sacred belljar where art poetry is free to expose truth, free to use whatever it takes, whatever style it takes to expose truth… that is, until your given time runs out and hooks you around the neck and yanks you from the belljar stage. but in the belljar channel you are in danger testing, crying, being so sucking bad that both you and they curse your birth, sharing found ideas, listening to the silence and the polite clapping greeting your bombs or to your ravings of rage that hit too close to home, messing up the nice polite parlor.
entering the open mike belljar is a leap into uncontrolled possibilities, uncomfortable quest through good bad boring embarrassing and sometimes magical.
nobody owns the belljar, except when you are in the channel, in the pipe behind the mike, holding the modern talking stick until it is time to pass it on to the next. but the talking stick is everyone’s, for anyone with something to express. if one is banned, censored, from holding the talking stick just to punish, just to protect a neat fragile nice order, we all are banished from the sacred talking stick which becomes just a cock that we rub.
i get worried if my words and images fit through veins clogged with fatty taboos of polite appropriate of comfortability.
i get worried…is the art that small that it fits through that pinhole of a hole…so small that nudes on the walls, words on telephone poles, any shift in the social power structure threatens the very reality fabric.
i’m too proud to admit the art poetry is that small. so my art becomes a roto-rooting balloon covered in razors tipped in draino acid, pushing pressuring uncomfortable unsocial grinding against the grain until the killer fatty clots of taboos burst out the other end and go down the drain like trouble.
i don’t really go after the hitlers, the mccarthys, the helms, or their brown shirts.
they are just limp-dicked power-junkies with swiss-cheese egos, each hole filled with inferiority. they are just moons with no power light of themselves, just reflecting fear.
no, i go after the nice people who never asked where the trains were going, boxcars filled with people. didn’t have to. only suspected, only heard rumors…after all, the general is a friend. never said, excuse me, i am a jew too, a jap too, a gay too, i’ve negro blood running in my body, aids too. i’m a commie who took home movies of our nude kids. so better put me on that train too. better put us all on that train. there ain’t no train big enough!
i go after the nice people who keep going to work after seeing their friends missing, after hearing rumors of blacklist and blackball. must write something about that subject to THE TIMES. he used to be such a pleasant fellow…but now he is a whining paranoid…not a sort to have to tea. he is like a wet messy fart. not in my backyard!
yes, i go after nice people. but my time in the belljar is about over. so i’ll leave you with this. what is happening in your backyard is what really matters. so be sure to weed!