On the way to meet Javier Peres I stop into a Turkish deli to buy a juice, the first ounce of nourishment I had in 4 days since arriving to Berlin. The epic comedown on speed, ecstasy and ketamine left me buckled over with nausea and a feeling of despair, like the first time I saw a dead body, or maybe how it feels after giving birth. I fought as long as I could, and three stations into my train ride I jumped off at Hermanplatz to redecorate the platform floor with the putrid texture and color of my puke. Here in New York, I would have been pushed onto the tracks for it, shot, or taken to jail, but in Berlin the curious but reserved Germans watched on quietly, or didn’t look at all. I would describe the German personality like walking into a room knowing you were just being talked about, but nobody is saying anything. The best part about this is fare inspectors where checking train tickets and handing out citations to nearly everybody they could grab, because like San Francisco, who the fuck ever pays for public transit. The cops looked embarrassed for me, and somehow passed me by as I wipe my face with the inside of my jacket. It’s 10am.
Javier Peres closed Peres Projects Los Angeles three years ago and moved all operations to Berlin. He arrived to the interview slightly late as well, drinking the very Berliner Club-Mate, a sugary tea drink packed with caffeine. I joked later he should add some vodka, as I had done the night before, and he responded he was now sober. This came as a surprise because that morning I had read an interview Butt Magazine did with him in 2007 and the whole thing is about doing blow, getting blown and drinking liters of Jack Daniels every day. What a doll, I thought.
If blacking out on the train were a sport I would make the all-star championships. I did this epic interview with Javier, talking about sex parties, drugs and, umm, oh yeah art, but due to my booze enthusiasm and refusing to go home before sunrise I was mugged in my sleep riding back to my residency in Munich, the 5th richest city in Europe. Here is the real tragedy; my fancy phone, which contained the recorded interview with Javier, was also stolen. The event was so embarrassing, especially when being woken up at the airport by police and realizing my earphones dangled from my head unplugged. A month later it showed up on Find My iPhone map in BULGARIA. Anyway the point is I’m a mess, and the irony of it all is a lot of our conversation was about his new life not drinking, or doing dope, because it was fucking up his life. “Sucks for you” I thought to myself, but maybe I should straighten up too…nah.
Javier started his gallery in San Francisco before moving to LA (the Mexican food really is better in LA, people), saying “The U.S. is a two art city town, and that’s LA and New York” (which doesn’t have good Mexican food). And having lived and studied in San Francisco, he’s kinda right. Why? Look around genius. But cheer up San Fag, you do have the whole public sex and burritos thing going on.
Peres Projects has managed to gather an extremely impressive roaster of artists with successes that far eclipse this Greyhound I’m drinking in this shit hole Chinatown apartment. These include assume vivid astro focus (who I write about in my forthcoming interview with the very freaky Viva Ruiz in Issue 12), the late Dash Snow, the all-white wielding Terrance Koh, the fabulously perverted Bruce LaBruce and my all-time fav Mark Flood. I feel like there are 3 kinds of gallerists: the whores, the pimps and the hustlers, and Javier Peres is the latter. He quit practicing law after seeing an Eva Hesse show at SFMoMA and realized he needed more beauty in his life and became a catalyst for contemporary art. He opened a gallery and moved it and moved it and moved it again, and has one motive with his artists: lengthening the longevity of their careers. And he delivers.
Keep an eye on this exhibition program this year – I have two words for you: James Franco.
And what else? He likes to party. Javier host’s orgies in this Kreutzberg showroom and other deviant happenings that give his galleries the uncanny chlorine smell of semen (shut up, you know the smell). At one such rendezvous he told me a guy shot a load so long and far it hit an artwork, and the next day the maid had to clean off the encrusted goo. “I think she’s used to it by now” he said. We also talked about the strange, kinky nature of Germans, the fisting, piss and weird bondage shit that I confess, gives me a chubby.
Ok whatever, my point is it was an amazing interview and you’ll just have to put your mind back in the gutter and fill in the blanks. Meanwhile I need to stop losing shit – just this past Saturday I got in a barroom scuffle, lost yet another fancy phone, woke up with a massive lump on the backside of my head and broken glass in my collar. The last thing I remember saying was, “Girls, girls, you’re both pretty.”
Anyway, this bump is for you, Javy.
Contributed by Dean Dempsey