Josh Santospirito is an “artist” – Facebook artist page
Joshua Santospirito is a visual artist, an illustrator, a musician and a writer.
Josh grew up in suburban Melbourne, has lived in Sydney, Alice Springs. He now lives in a veggie patch in Hobart. He brews beers, ciders, perries, fruit-wines and preserves apricots … he also eats them. He has worked in mental health as a nurse for a number of years, working in Central Australian Aboriginal communities and in Hobart, Tasmania. In 2013 he started San Kessto Publications together with Nadine Kessler. He is the creator and organiser of Her Majesty’s Favourite Really Great Graphical Festival; a comics and illustrator’s festival in Hobart, Tasmania, which had its first year in June 2014 on the Queen’s birthday weekend.
Josh’s short-form comics have been published widely throughout Australia, most notably in Meanjin and Island. His first graphic novel, The Long Weekend in Alice Springs was published in 2013 and can be bought from San Kessto Publications. This book was adapted from the 2004 essay of the same name by Craig San Roque about the psychology of cultural group behaviours. It was awarded the Chief Minister’s Northern Territory Non Fictions Book Award, the ComicOz Award for 2013 and was shortlisted at the 2014 Ledger Awards. Josh is currently working on his next graphic novel.
Music and Sound Art
Santospirito has performed his strange and beautiful music since 2005 under the name Drive West Today. This has included playing at various Australian festivals, including MONA FOMA, Dark MOFO, Wide Open Space, the Forest Festival and played concerts all over Australia. DWT has also had three European tours – travelling to Berlin (2008, 2012), Switzerland and Spain (2012) and Finland/Turkey in 2014. More information.
Josh has been active in promoting the experimental music scene in Australia and hosted a radio show focusing on experimental and innovative music on Edge Radio called The Musical Dissidents for 2 years, and he has also been involved in organising and curating Sound Art and experimental music events through Sound Klub in Hobart.
The most reliable way to contact Josh is e-mail – disco_jeans (at) yahoo (dot) com (dot) au
You could also follow Josh on Twitter Follow @Drivewesttoday
2014, August – Top Gallery, Salamanca, Hobart – The Long Weekend in Alice Springs. Santospirito and San Roque present the original art from the graphic novel.
2014, April – Sawtooth ARI, Launceston. Sleuth: the Delegation.
2013, May – The Long Weekend in Alice Springs. Santospirito and San Roque present the original art of Josh’s at Watch This Space in Alice Springs, with a book-launch at the opening on the 10th of May.
2012, November – Sleuth: The Origin – Inflight Art Gallery (Hobart). Comprising numerous series of comics intersecting across the walls of the Paddy Lyn memorial space detailing an animistic reinvigoration of the Australian landscape.
2012, April Its my party and I’ll die how I want to, social engagement artwork with Sara Wright, Nadine Kessler, Dr Bruce Wilson at MoMa.
2010, December – Dog, with Dan Murphy and Craig San Roque at Araluen Arts Centre, Alice Springs as part of Watching this place organised by Watch This Space Artist Run Initiative.
2008, December – Respond with Nadine Kessler as part of the Container Project, Taste Festival Tasmania, organised by 6a and Inflight ARI.
Awards / Grants / Major Reviews
2013 – Assistance to Individuals Grant from Arts Tasmania
2013 – Review in The Australian Newspaper
2014 – ComicOz Award for Best Australian Original Comic Book for 2013 – for The Long Weekend in Alice Springs
2014 – NT Read Non Fiction Book Award \ ($2000) – for The Long Weekend in Alice Springs
Selected Festivals – Writing, sound-art, music and visual art
2009, 2010, 2013 – Wide Open Space
2010, 2013, 2014 – MONA FOMA
2012 – Forest Festival
2013 – Tasmanian Writers Festival
2013 – Dark MOFO
2014 – Director of Her Majesty’s Favourite Really Great Graphical Festival
2014 – Wordstorm – NT Writers Festival
Selected Publication History
The Long Weekend in Alice – Sankessto Publications, 2013
Fluid Prejudice – Glass Flag Press, 2014
Oi Oi Oi #1, 2014
Island Magazine #137, 2014
Meanjin September 2014, 2014
Albums released under the project name of Drive West Today.
- 2003 – the child & the tractor
- 2004 – The balloon
- 2005 – feather
- 2006 – Is this a desert? (reviewed in Cyclic Defrost Magazine)
- 2011 – A shitload less understanding than what is required
- 2012 – Acousmatic Ecology part 1 – a query
- 2012 – pardon? Acousmatic Ecology part 2
A non-exhaustive list of other fellow artists that I reckon are worth their spit