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SCOTT EWALT
ARTIST

  • Opener, Scott Ewalt for Ponyboy Magazine in New York City.
  • Image from Scott Ewalt exhibition
  • Phillipe Blond by artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Images from Scott Ewalt exhibition
  • Images of Joey Arias from
  • Scott Ewalt's solo exhibition
  • Images of Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black performer Kembra Pfahler by New York artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Margaret Doll Rod cover art by digital artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • The amazing Amanda Lepore
  • Amanda Lepore images by NYC digital artist and dj Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Images from
  • Artwork by New York City artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • The Blonds by artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • The Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black, by New York City digital artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Images for Exotic World and Lady Bunny's Wigstock by New York artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Cobweb image of Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black singer Kembra Pfahler by Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Image of singer Nina Hagen by artist Scott Ewalt, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Images of Scott Ewalt's solo exhibition at Participant Gallery in New York City, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Cosmic Cavern flyer for Kenny Scharf and Scott Ewalt event, Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Poster for Scott Ewalt exhibit

SCOTT EWALT

CREATOR & COLLECTOR

Talented New York artist and collector Scott Ewalt is enamored with the seedy and campy side of life, something that we at Ponyboy thrive on as well. Ewalt is a longtime dj, spinning at many of New York City’s trendiest clubs, events and fashion shows. His exhibit, dubbed Back in The Night, which originally ran over a year ago at Participant Gallery in New York, will make it’s debut on the West Coast. This extraordinary exhibit took over 20 years in the making and was well worth the wait. The inspiration is drawn from the old male revues and topless bars of New York City’s Times Square. Back in The Night at Hinge Modern in Culver City, California opens May 31st and runs through July 6th. An exhibit not to be missed!

PONYBOY:  Scott, please tell us where you were raised and when you moved to New York City?

SCOTT EWALT:   I was raised in Santa Cruz and San Diego. I moved to New York to go to college and to swim. Luckily, my best friends from home, Perfidia, Miss Lauren, Miss Guy, Todd Tomorrow, photographer Ron Bachman and a handfull of others moved here shortly after. So, we were a gang and all supported each other and collaborated, and still do.

PONYBOY:  We remember meeting you at a Maxi Records party in the early 90’s. You told us you went to Princeton and were friends with Brooke Shields. Ha!

SCOTT EWALT:  I’m almost sure we met earlier. I did go to Princeton with Brooke. We were friendly, but she knew my friends better. She was beautiful and super nice.

PONYBOY:  Did you study art in school? When did you decide to become an artist?

SCOTT EWALT:  I’ve been making images my whole life. I had done ads and logos for companies when I was was still in middle school and even earlier. I studied painting and architecture in school, which is why my work often includes buildings within a dreamy environment. It was an uphill battle, but after graduate school I really hung my shingle and took it seriously.

PONYBOY:  You were around in the Patricia Field scene in the 90’s as well. How did you meet Pat?

SCOTT EWALT:  I met Pat when Perfidia, Guy and Lauren started working at Pat’s store on East 8th Street in the Village.

PONYBOY:  Pat has always been a supporter of young artists. Did she buy your work?

SCOTT EWALT:  I did a funny window for Pat’s with Perfidia honoring Yma Sumac’s concert series when she came to new york. Yma came to the store and was very touched. Yma was on David Letterman and we were so proud of her. That’s when Pat and I started being friends. I started collecting Times Square signage and burlesque ephemera in the 80’s. And I bought the two marquee signs from the Venus. Pat is part Greek, so I sold her the second sign. She loved it so much she named her second store Venus. And I did the promotional artwork for the store. We’ve collaborated many times and she is always complimentary of what I make.

PONYBOY:  People constantly bitch about how New York has lost it’s edge, and artists are being driven out of Manhattan, etc.  What are your thoughts on the current state of the city, culturally?

SCOTT EWALT:  Everyone moves to New York wanting it to be the ideal of what they grew up with. New York is always in flux, so I don’t think anyone gets what they came for. But it also encourages people to change it themselves. New York is great when you’re young and that will always be true. It is true that a large number of artists have been pushed off the island by rents, but I still feel it’s just as inspiring as it ever was and as vibrant as you make it.

PONYBOY:  We also remember that you’re friends with 60’s model/icon Peggy Mofitt, the muse of the late fashion designer Rudi Gernreich. How did you meet? Are you still in touch with her?

SCOTT EWALT:  I met Peggy and Bill Claxton at a gallery opening for Steven Arnold. She liked the way I looked and said ‘Rudi would have loved you’. I told her I was a true fan of her and Rudi, and I was also a big fan of Bill’s LP covers for Chet Baker and other west coast jazz artists. I think they liked that I adored both of them equally. I had her come and lecture at UCLA and show the then rarely seen Basic Black film, which is seminal. We remained friends until I moved back here.

PONYBOY:  You also have a close friendship with pop artist Kenny Scharf. How long have you known him for?

SCOTT EWALT:  We met from Joey Arias, and were immediatley like brothers. He is the nicest guy in the universe and has been a solid and constant catalyst. We are doing our last Cosmic Cavern a Go-Go party on May 3rd. It’s a dayglow psychedelic love fest, not to be missed.

PONYBOY:  Tell us about your art. What really inspires you?  What makes you get up in the morning and work till the wee hours.

SCOTT EWALT:  I’m very inspired by the history of punk from 19th century diablerie artists and goth night clubs, victorian male burlesk, the surrealists of Paris in the 20s, Berlin’s wild boys in the 30’s, burlesque/vaudeville/variety/road show culture in the 40’s, the great bondage illustrators, the Ed Wood gang, Screaming Jay Hawkins and Little Richard from the 50’s, the vox drenched punk bands like The Music Machine, The Sonics and garage bands from the 60’s, the glam culture of Lou Reed, Iggy Pop, and The New York Dolls. along with airbrush art and photorealism from the 70’s – and especially the way bands like The Cramps, Plasmatics, Soft Cell and The Misfits reintroduced it all for my generation. I like some high art but I’m equally inspired by forgotten psychotronic filmakers and artists. I’ve been lucky enough to meet many artists here that live it, and that inspires me the most.

PONYBOY:  How would you describe your art? And who would you say your typical client is?

SCOTT EWALT:  I guess the underlying element is inversion, which is not what the high art world likes right now. They reward for making the beautiful ugly and vague abstraction. I lived through some dark times culturally here, so my art makes the unsavory celebratory, and is never vague. For me, the real punk is to do something very difficult and complicated and to make my ideas clear. My typical collector likes my work for the endurance and discipline.

PONYBOY:  You recently had an amazing solo exhibition here in New York with great reviews. And now you’ll be moving this exhibition to Los Angeles?

SCOTT EWALT:  Thanks. I’m very excited about going back to California. I love the culture. I have some amazing friends there and have a good feeling about it. I’m being shown at Hinge Modern, which is the perfect place for me.

PONYBOY:  And finally, tell us about your fascination with Russ Meyer, your old sign collection, and your extensive tee shirt collection.

SCOTT EWALT:  Well, I love punk culture. I love Roger Corman, Russ Meyer and Ted V. Mikel’s films. They were the punks of Hollywood. I also love strippers and burlesque, both female and male. I especially like Russ Meyer because he united burlesque and filmaking from the beginning. I also like real people cast as they are. He and Fellini were both doing this long before Warhol. So his films are the best eye candy and I love all his women. Meyer’s paramour/muse, Kitten Natividad, is a close friend. And I have also had friendships with Tura Satana, Haji, Raven de la Croix, and Cynthia Meyers. I love burlesque signage for many reasons. They were basically discarded until very recently, which made them easy to collect. I love the way they elude to sex and subversion in a playful way, aren’t vague, and are made with great skill. I love that Times Square sexuality and its culture was microcosm. I started collecting t-shirts for a few reasons. Out of shyness, I liked how they spoke for me and they are the only thing that fit my lanky torso. But most of all, I love that they are Warhols for your body and only get better with age and wear. I have about 1000 original strip club and punk shirts. For my show I recreated 10 shirts from adult businesses that probably had them, but I’ve never found. This is a unifying theme with all my work.

KATY K
COUNTRY COUTURE

  • Collage of Katy K artwork for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Assorted old photos of Katy K and John Sex for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Photos of Katy K, Joey Arias and Kitten Natividad for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Assorted photos of Kay K and friends, including Klaus Nomi for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Old snapshots of Katy K and John Sex for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Photos of designer Katy K and Dolly Parton for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Various old photos of 80's performance artist Katy K with John Sex and Kitten Natividad for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Photos of legendary performers Katy K and John Sex for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Vintage 80's snapshots of designer Katy K for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • The beautiful designer and performance artist Katy K for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Old nightclub flyers of Katy K's performances for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Nighclub artwork from the 80's for Katy K and Joey Arias. Ponyboy Magazine.
  • 80's vintage artwork of Katy K performances for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • Old NYC nightclub flyers of Katy K and Joey Arias for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • NYC 80's vintage flyers of performances for Katy K and Joey Arias, for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • 1980's Katy K Collection for Ponyboy Magazine.
  • 80's advertisements for the Katy K collection for Ponyboy Magazine.

KATY KATTELMAN

DOWNTOWN LEGEND

Downtown Darling. Performance Artist. 80’s Rockabilly Queen of New York. Underground Designer of County Couture. Kitschy Nashville Store Proprietor. “Katy K” has worn many hats – some of which may have been cowboy hats. This 1980’s girl-about-town is legendary not just for the artists she befriended and performed with (whom happened to include Klaus Nomi, Ann Magnuson, Joey Arias and John Sex), but for her quirky outrageous country ensembles that she donned at the coolest downtown clubs. As longtime aficionados of Katy K, we were beyond belief when she agreed to an interview with us. All photos courtesy of Katy Kattelman.

PONYBOY: You’re a New York transplant that’s now settled into Nashville for 20 years with your own amazing store named “KATY K’S RANCH DRESSING”. What made you leave New York and do you ever long for it?

KATY K: I left New York back in ’94 for several reasons. Screaming Mimi’s, the store that I had my retail concession in, had to move to smaller quarters when Tower records took over the building we were renting. The new space on Lafyette was too small for me. I also was not happy with New York in the early 90’s. I started missing NYC in 2009 and got a place in Harlem where I go every month to recharge and get inspired.

PONYBOY: You were a performer back in downtown Manhattan in the 80’s nightclub scene. How did that all come about?

KATY K:  Klaus Naomi called me one night and told me to come to this great club on St. Marks Place called Club 57The B-52’s were there and it was the coolest, most original and most unpretentious place I had ever seen. I met John Sex, Kenny Scharf, Keith Haring, Ann Magnuson, and so many more talented people.  We all started doing shows.  Ann was really the catalyst for all this. I remember doing an Elvis tribute, a Trucker’s Ball, and a Night at the Opry.  John Sex did a lot of the posters.  We even did a burlesque show when I bought my first pasties. Things were so open and accessible then.  I started doing shows everywhere like Mudd Club, Danceteria, Palladium, Webster Hall, The Ritz, etc. John and I were a team in the beginning but I later teamed up with three girls who later became The Bodacious Ta-Ta’s.

PONYBOY:  Being a big part of this exclusive community must have been exhilarating and wild. Please tell us your most surreal moment back then.

KATY K:  There were so many moments, like meeting Barry White in an elevator, being pushed by a drunken Bianca Jagger at Studio 54, being on Andy Warhol’s TV show, having to walk home barefoot on New Years Eve in the snow from the Mudd Club, blah blah blah got a million more…

PONYBOY: You were quite close to legendary performer John Sex and everyone sees photos of him from back then with the outrageous hair and clothing. What was it really like being his friend?

KATY K:  He was a shy boy from Long Island with a brown mullet when I first met him.  He was going to the School of Visual Arts and working in a coffee shop in the West Village. He was a talented screen printer and artist but never had the confidence. I think he may have felt eclipsed by Keith Haring and Kenny Scharf. He was like a sponge. He soaked up everything and took it nine steps further. He was a generous, truly fun loving man and I miss him dearly.

PONYBOY: And how did designing clothes come about for you?

KATY K: I was wearing vintage 40’s and 50’s clothing and started altering them. I stayed with Sebastian and Jasper Conran a bit in the late 70s in London and they encouraged me to design.  I started making clothes for my friends and myself. My first project was making raincoats out of shower curtains and jackets out of velvet Elvis paintings. I just walked into boutiques and tried selling them. Sometimes it worked. Eventually my friend Joey Arias got me a concession at Fiorucci’s which was the hottest store in it’s day.  I did a country inspired booth with petticoats, western shirts and 1950’s style clothing. By this time I had a wonderful Dominican lady named Lydia who actually did most of the sewing.

PONYBOY:  Who are Katy K’s style icons?

KATY K: My style icons were Maria Muldaur, when she was with Jim Kweskin Jug Band,as she was the first girl I saw wear fishnets.Some of my other icons were Ronnie Spector for eye make up and hair, Mamie Van Doren, early Fredericks of Hollywood, Brigette Bardot, and Sally Starr, who had a kiddie show in Philadelphia when I was growing up.  She had platinum blond hair and Nudie cowgirl outfits,. Also I would include Tempest Storm, Blaze Starr and designer Jean Louis who did a lot of Marilyn’s stuff and Nudie of Hollywood. Lastly I cannot forget Kitty Wells, Wanda Jackson, and my all time favorite, Miss Dolly Parton.

PONYBOY:  Fiorucci was this huge mecca for the downtown New York “hip” in the 80’s, even though it was located uptown. What was it like having an in-store boutique at that time?

KATY K: It was just wonderful. Everybody was there including Madonna, Elvira, Andy Warhol, Gloria Swanson, and Jackie OJoey Arias, who is one of my best friends, had a positive energy and through him I met everybody. People would come to Fiorucci just to see him as he was one of the first people in New York to have pink hair. He had a photographic memory and remembered everybody. He also is one of the funniest most imaginative humans on the planet. John Sex and I did a show in the window for Valentine’s Day. Klaus did a big show there as well. It was magical.

PONYBOY:  You’ve had some great celebrity clientele. Who was your favorite to design for and why?

KATY K:  My favorite was Kitten Natividad. She was so sweet and unassuming. We made her gorgeous VaVaVoom gowns with 20” zippers that she could easily remove on stage. Lydia and I had to build a special mannequin to accommodate her huge boobs. She stayed with me in NY for a while and I got to talk to Russ Meyer on the phone, which was a thrill.  Rufus Thomas was another great I worked with.  I made him a fake pony skin cape lined in gold satin. I also made stuff for Loretta Lynn that is in a glass case at the Ryman,  Cyndi Lauper, Whitney Houston for “I Want to Dance with Somebody.” Laura Wills who was one of the owners of Screaming Mimi’s got me tons of clients during early MTV video days.

PONYBOY:  We love Nudie of Hollywood. Are the pieces hard to find? How many Nudie suits would you say you own?

KATY K:  I personally own just two. When I first came to Nashville before the internet, ebay and etsy, I found quite a few. I had a Roy Roger’s, Webb Pierce, George Jones, Skull Schulman, Bill Anderson, Johnny Cash and other over the top pieces. Sometimes I regret having sold them, but I am not a museum.  They are very hard to find now, although I just turned up two in California that I sold immediately on etsy.

PONYBOY: Do you still own any of your Katy K archival pieces from the 80’s-90’s?

KATY K: Yes, I still have some.

PONYBOY: Are you still making clothing for clients and your store?

KATY K: I still do although the retail takes up much of my time as well as my real estate business.