Introduction: Ash Catcher
Hey, I am Ash, and I am an artist, not really much of a writer but for anyone who knows me knows I’ll try anything once…. Or twice.
I am originally from New York, raised in New Jersey, and had the pleasure of the great state of PA housing my gross ass teenage, and awkward college body. I am a tristate queen. I travel, and take pictures, of mostly nature and a few bands, I love music, I am always playing something. I also paint, and recently I’ve been back on that gym grind. I run about 30 miles a week. Catch me if you can.
Why did I choose art as my primary focus? That's pretty damn easy, as a kid I was terrified of making mistakes, ( I still am I guess....) I had an amazing art teacher in 7th grade that I model most of my art classes to this day. Her philosophy is that you should split class time in 2 different segments: an art history lesson, and then class time to work on a related project. She also told me there are no mistakes in art, unless you wanna get technical, and a bomb ass lesson in color theory. That really stuck with me as a kid, and I really took to art
My art mostly stems from abstract artists, and I love DADA as well as Surrealism art movements. My inspiration really depends on the day. Currently its been a weird combination of Salvador Dali, Cold War Propaganda, and Squirrels. I am addicted to tea, and chocolate bars that save elephant shrews.
I am fluent in 5 languages, and I currently attend Drexel University for grad school. I am studying Art Therapy, something that has helped me immensely with my own mental health issues.When I am not doing school, or shooting some abandoned buildings in Philly, I can be found at the Abington Art Center, running their day school, and adult night studio classes. I also Teach, I feel like you never stop teaching, and I have plans to pick back up bartending in the summer time. I do not trust anyone with one job, let alone a 9 to 5er. Get on that grind, and lets have a good time.
We cannot stress the importance enough of the relationship between the artist and the critic (often, the line between the two is very thin), moreover, the relationship of a performer and an audience. Satisfying readers, viewers, listeners is a huge part of what we do, possibly neck-and-neck with catharsis as the biggest priority that many of us have. Our goal with everything we do is to make fans of art happy. After all, we're fans, too. When someone goes above and beyond to review or recommend an artist we work with, it's just about the highest compliment, especially when the praise is as awesome as Ash's for Lexi Spino. We believe the artists we publish deserve the praise; that's why we publish them. It's awesome to see people share the enthusiasm that we have for Lexi's work. It's a bit strange of a publishing house to publish a review of a book that very publishing house released but we're not a traditional publisher. Ash's write-up we're sharing below is that good. We really appreciate it and are glad that she agreed for us to feature it on our site. So, thank you to Ash, and as always, thank you to Lexi for getting us in contact with her. Links to Ash's instagram and Lexi's book are below. Please do yourself a favor and check both out. If you're interested in reviewing The Electra Complex, please shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
The first time I met Lexi Spino, was at a Philly basement show in Manayunk, Pa in the Fall of 2018. I knew maybe like 6 people there that night, and I walked away with a weird misfits family who I still talk to this day, meet for most holidays, and stalk my Instagram stories religiously. I guess that makes us digital pals? Who knew something so rad could come swinging out of a Philly basement, and from York no less.
Lexi, was opener of the show that night, and in my opinion she should have been the headliner, I actually enjoyed her unapologetic performance, almost if not more than the band I was going to see originally at the time. Not many people can poetically pull off the word cunt in poetry, but Lexi did, and has been pulling it off ever since.
Her use of words to paint an imagery of things all women deal with rape, abuse, bad dates, body dysmorphia. My personal favorite, and something that most women can relate to my age the chronicles of romantic conquests and the whirlwind shit storm that is the post mortum of a precarious abusive relationship. I mean for fuck sakes, like being a chick isn’t hard enough. Lexi spills her guts, her words, and drags her lady balls into telling a journey for mental health advocacy. Its refreshing to say the very least. Especially with an over saturation of male performers. Lexi has, and always will stand out to me as a constantly great artist, and act. She is a force to be reckoned with and has a wicked way with words.
On Sunday March 16, 2020 , almost 2 years later, I snagged a copy of her book, The Electra Complex, My first post Covid-19 Virus show, at the Wooden Shoe, off of South Street Philadelphia. It's prob one of my favorite bookstores, and anyone who knows me, knows I can’t say no to another book, and I got probably the weirdest fucking shit on my bookshelves ranging from the reptilian conspiracy works of David Updike, to the closest thing I will go to a romance novel- some gargantuan Russian piece of litature, that is still on my nightstand, a just in case of emergency kinda book. I bought a book about the concept how working is obsolete, devoured that fucker in one night. Shit could never read more true. We basically could have worked home all this time and still have the gall to complain about our shortcomings.
I recommend reading it, “Instead of Work, written by Bob Black.
Lexi’s kick off for her book tour couldn’t have been in a more perfect spot! I, and about 12 others were blessed to check our problems at the door for about 2hrs, and simply just be in the moment. It was everything we needed, and more to break up this shitty time. We even had our own hand sanitizer, and Lysol wipes, and everyone of the performers washed their hands before sharing instruments, and such. Talk about the supporting arts! The finest Philly tap water was had, and enjoyed by all, we were all very hydrated, and high off of Lexi’s candid words that she seemed to spout off her tongue, a huge shout out to the support chair who aided everyone in these trying times. Therapeutic furniture should really be more of a thing. York, I see you, ya got some dope ass musicians, and poets. It just shows you the human resilience cannot be over shadowed, especially now. I have always said that heartache, tough times, and high levels of stress make for the best art!
Now more than ever is the time to support your local, and fellow artists during this pretty fucked up time. I mean I hate fucking working too guys but you know what I hate more? Uneducated people. Read a fucking book. Wash your damn hands with soap. Stop selling your half used Bath and Body works hand sanitizers from the early 90’s for 7.99 on Amazon.
I like the fact that as creatives, when it comes to getting consistent content without a face to face interaction, something I have truthfully struggled with. If you ever run into me at a local show in Philly, and I got mad RBF, I swear I just get crazy tunnel vision, and best be sure I am checking out your guitar and gear, It’s also the lack of health insurance has deterred me from going into mosh pits lately for the past few years. Poetry readings, author signings, and art galleries have been a huge saving grace to many. Like most fellow creatives, sometimes you got to get crafty.
The surge of artists taking to Instagram TV, Twitch Live, and other Streaming services to preform concerts broadcasted to people around the worlds, really says something about the worlds artist community. When you boil down to it we are here to entertain. It doesn’t matter if you’re a musician, and artist, a comedian, or a sick ass poet like Lexi we have a message and an agenda.
And, just a moment, ( I guess in my case about 2 hrs at an anarchists bookstore in Philly) made all the difference. Worth the fear that has been sweeping the media. I mean did anyone see that rave in Italy that was held off someones balcony? I don’t know about you, but I am ready to see some live streaming concerts in the comfort of my home ,and on computer for the next 1000 years.
Buy Lexi's book, buy a t shirt or two because you’re gonna wanna look punk as fuck during this post apocalyptic world, ya know while you’re typing on your MacBook Air, and drinking your take out latte from Starbucks. Shop locally, and if anyone still has My Chemical Romance Tickets for September 16th, Ill trade you a U-Haul full of Charm-in 2ply for one ticket. Until then support your local restaurants, and fellow artists.
Follow Ash on Instagram at:
Buy a copy of The Electra Complex by Lexi Spino on Amazon: