The centerpiece of our LA store since the doors opened in 2015, the Haroshi Middle Finger has always stood as a symbol of “fuck you”. A “fuck you” to oppressors, to injustice, to violence, to racism, to authority, to inequality, and to anyone or anything working to divide or abuse our community.
A beautiful disaster left the sculpture without its infamous finger, transforming its silhouette into that of a raised fist – a symbol of unity and justice – more relevant and powerful now than ever.
Too strong a symbol to ignore, we decided to release the HUF x Haroshi Justice Tee to immortalize the fist motif alongside a short PSA. Together we raised over $100,000 in tee sales with 100% of proceeds being donated to @blmlosangeles to continue the fight for the change our community needs and deserves.
In addition to the HUF x Haroshi Tee, we auctioned off a 1 of 1 HUF x Haroshi Middle Finger skate deck customized, signed, and dated by Haroshi himself.
Using the original HUF x Haroshi Middle Finger deck as the base, Haroshi covered the finger with a matte black paint to mirror the raised fist motif that the original sculpture now bares. Originally on display alongside the actual sculpture at the HUF LA store grand opening in 2015, the gloss version of the skate deck was never made available to the public. The bidding ended at $25,100 with 100% of those proceeds also being donated to @blmlosangeles.
Thank you to @haroshi and everyone who purchased a tee or contributed to the cause in one way or another.
Earlier this year – before the COVID-19 shit hit the fan – we took a trip to Puerto Rico to officially welcome Mason Silva to the team. Here’s the extended rough cut from that trip full of more roll ups, roll aways, island vibes and good times.
PREME: When I was first introduced to you, a lot was going on in Atlanta. You had the Migos, Future, Youth Thug, and Rich Homie Quan; then, on the other side, there were Awful Records. You all were different. The first time I heard your music, I couldn’t understand it, but it was dope, and learning about the various members, Ethereal, Carti, and Slug, it felt an introduction to a cast of characters, that I couldn’t fathom were real. It was all super cool, but very confusing, it was trap, but it wasn’t mainstream. The flows and production, the vocals, it was like how does one do this? What was his listening to, and how did he find so many people that like the same thing? How did all this happen…how did the look and music that become synonymous with Awful come to fruition?
FATHER: It’s hard to say truly but I’ll try my best to synopsize what I think it was. We all enjoyed different types of music alternative to Atlanta rap, but were all still joined by a common thread and that thread was our love for our city’s music. While our influences and origin stories may have all varied we were very much Atlanta. When I was younger I mainly listened to electronica, house and techno. Likely from playing a bunch of Rockstar’s Midnight Club. When I got into rap and started to develop a style of my own I started initially by mimicking artist like Nas and members of Wu-Tang. Once Awful started forming that hodgepodge of influences naturally became more southern. I think many members of the crew have similar stories and that similarity linked us.
PREME: Ethereal was one of the first people I took a liking too. Honestly, being from the suburbs of Connecticut, we don’t see too many Ethereal’s, let alone hear them. For me, he’s not just a beatmaker; he created a sound. He’s a composer, an artist, and curator, how did you meet, if I walked into a studio session, what would the room look like, I feel like y’all are a whole other level.
FATHER: We met through Keith Charles, they’d been making music together for some time already. At the time I was just sort of a support guy, making visual art, branding and etc. Really since that initial meeting and now ain’t much changed in terms of how a session would look, a bunch of us cramped in a low lit smoked out room. None of us really liked being in professional studios and still don’t, so you’ll find us in the back room of one of our houses that’s been fashioned into a studio. Everyone having different conversations loud as hell, it can start to sound like a psych ward.
PREME: Man, I have to ask about the Carti situation because from my viewpoint, everything is fine then one day he’s no longer in Atlanta; he’s in New York with Asap Rocky, and I’m beyond lost. What you all had with him is forever; those records, Beef, YungXanhoe, Come Here, Broke Boi, Faster, 4 The People, are classics for the “SoundCloud, underground” era.
FATHER: Life just lifes honestly, A$AP provided something at the time that we couldn’t so naturally he went that way when they reached out. Things change, people move on, nothings permanent. There was the odd press release or two trying to omit us from the story, but I don’t put that on him. People bring up Carti often but fail to realize that there’s many members of Awful that I haven’t seen in years. It’s no hard feelings, we’re adults and got our own shit to deal with.
PREME: Speaking of that, I’ve always wanted to ask, do you ever stop and realize you created something that will stand the test of time? Awful’s sound opened the door, for what I’d call “weird Atlanta” or merely, “Avant-Garde Atlanta?
FATHER: True but there’s others that did it before us in Atlanta too, we were just the first of the major streaming age and reached a higher level of popularity on the different digital service platforms. I could say Outkast and Goodie Mob opened that door, or a Kilo Ali. We really just bumrushed it.
PREME: Something that stood out about Awful was along with rappers you showcased your other talent, Alex Russell & Zach Fox. How did you come in contact with Alex, I remember him from his writings, and is Zach Fox ever dead serious?
FATHER: Zack is deadass. People find it difficult to take a lot of us serious because of the humor but don’t let that fool you. We just all use humor to talk about real shit. As for Alex, we met at a restaurant in NYC, he was doing an article on us for Complex I believe. That turned into him letting us crash at his loft for like two weeks during a snow storm. We got him turnt on the lifestyle and philosophies, we were heavy on our ego death, hedonistic shit back then. Next thing you know he said fuck all that regular shit and became clique.
PREME: As a de-facto leader of a crew, do you ever have alone time. I’d find it challenging to balance mental peace, mainly when y’all lived together. When the Boiler Room doc was recorded, what was happening, w what was the group’s energy like, and how is it today?
FATHER: I didn’t balance mental peace back then, I was constantly irate and the energy was real off at that particular time. Mind you, it was lit and I wouldn’t take shit back. We were all over the place at that time, trying to organize but heavily unorganized and dysfunctional. Today, were all a bit more in our right minds, calmer, less in the mix, a bit separated. We’re like your uncle from the 70s that dropped way too much acid and is kinda permatripping but still got his shit together.
PREME: Favorite food to eat while on tour, and when you’re in New York, what is your bodega order?
FATHER: Sunflower seeds and Taco Bell. As for bodega orders, I usually ask if they got a beef patty but lately I been turnt on them chopped cheeses.
PREME: Collaboration with HUF, could you speak on how this came about?
FATHER: They’ve always shown love, since the beginning. Geared me out on some of my first trips to LA before most people even knew who the fuck I was.
PREME: And please, in regard to new music, what do the fans need to know, and who are a couple of artists you’d like to collaborate with?
FATHER: It’s nothing like the old shit, I haven’t changed as a person but sonically I’m not the drugged out, deadpan guy I used to be so I hope they can accept that. As for collaborations, it’s few and far between now, but if I could I’d put Drake and Drakeo the Ruler on the same song. When I was working on Young Hot Ebony I was only listening to Nothing Was the Same and PJ Harvey. And Drakeo the Ruler is one of the few artist I’ve heard in the last few years that once I heard them I had to listen to their entire discography. FREE THE RULER.
Check out the complete Issue 14 of Preme Mag here.
HUF is proud to announce Mason Silva as the newly added pro to the HUF apparel team. From Manhattan Beach, California, Mason has the rare combination of raw power and style that makes him a natural fit for the HUF squad.
“Mason is a powerhouse. Skates fast, big spots, great style,” said HUF-founder Keith Hufnagel. “Another addition we’re stoked to have on the team.”
Watch Mason’s official “Welcome To HUF” part out now – which includes footage from a recent team trip to Puerto Rico – and stay tuned for more Mason later this year.
This Valentine’s Day, HUF is pleased to partner with Los Angeles-based artist Meegan Barnes on a collaborative edition of her renowned Booty Vase ceramic sculptures.
Meegan sat down to discuss how she turned her appreciation for Brazilian butts into works of art.
Tell me a little bit about your background and inspo as artist. And what is your connection to HUF?
I grew up in the Bay Area and went to art school in SF I the late 90s. I lived in a floor through of an old Victorian house with a bunch of roommates including Chris “Dune” Pastras. So there were always skateboarders over and that’s when I first became friends with Keith.
After art school I moved to NYC to be a designer and illustrator at PAPER and VIBE Magazines. I then Co-Founded and was Creative Director of Femme Arsenal, which started as a cosmetics brand (think a hip-hop Urban Decay) and turned into a streetwear/lifestyle brand. Everything was kinda badass tomboy style which I designed and did most of the graphics for.
I got burned out on the whole fashion scene and knew it wasn’t what I truly wanted to do so we sold the company and I went to Brazil for 4 months to surf and paint and recharge. I was super inspired by the body positivity there, I mean butts of all shapes and sizes were flaunted and appreciated. After Brazil, I moved back to SF and that’s when I started making ceramic butts. Also, I lived around the corner from the HUF store when it was on Hayes so Keith and I would hang sometimes after work and talk about streetwear and the good old days.
What was the first booty you ever sculpted?
The first thing I ever made out of clay was a butt. I went big out the gate but had no idea what I was doing so the bikini bottom cracked off.
And how was that first piece received? Serious, jokingly?
People loved it. Everyone cracked up when they saw it. That’s how I knew I was on to something.
Not just a “big ass”. Do you have a favorite adjective to describe a nice booty? Round, plump, buoyant, bodacious, juicy, thiccc?
I’ve always been partial to “Bandunkadunk”. It’s pretty fun to say.
What are three things that make a great butt for you?
Haha! I seriously love all butts. They’re like faces, everyone has its own expression and personality.
Butts vs boobs – thoughts on the debate?
Boobs are cool too but they had their moment. It’s all about that booty now.
First serious attention you received from your booty work?
I had been in a bunch of group shows but when New Image Gallery gave me a solo show two summers ago that was nice.
Is each butt unique or do you have a general mold you like stick to for your work?
I use a mold for the small ones, like the HUF Booty’s. But the bigger ones that are in galleries are all hand built and totally unique.
Talking large format — tell me about your most sizeable butt installation to date.
Just made a five-foot tall chrome booty. It’s not installed yet but when it is you’ll be the first to know (hint hint)
How many butts in a given week or month do you move?
On a good month I’m moving like 60/70 butts. But it really varies and obviously is way better around the holidays.
How do you see the progression of your work evolving… Where do you see it in 5, 10, 20 years?
I recently started painting again and am so happy. I majored in illustration so it feels like I’m going back to my roots. Ideally it evolves into me doing fine art full time and have a team to handle the booty vase business.
What advice would you have for any aspiring sculptors, artists or anyone looking to dive deeper into the art medium of choice?
There’s a great quote by Ira Glass… “All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit…” The quote continues but my advice is: Don’t Quit.
Limited to just 25 pieces, the HUF x Meegan Barnes Booty Vase is now available exclusively at HUF stores and online shop.
Interview by Jenn Felins // Photos by Razy Faouri