“In March I released a new series that I’ve been working on for the last year,” Bill Pierce tells the Reader. “It’s pretty focused on musicians right now. I started with the most iconic images: Mick, Aretha, and Ray Charles.” He says he later branched out to include other music celebs, such as Johnny Rotten, Lou Reed, and Jack White, all done in a string of stylized portraits.
You may not know who Bill Pierce is, but it’s likely you’ve seen his work. Pierce creates and maintains websites for area venues such as Brick by Brick.
“That was my first introduction into the music scene. Eventually, I started making the [online] show posters for their site.” He has also created such posters for Hillcrest’s Ruby Room (now the Merrow) and the Jumping Turtle in San Marcos. “I’ve made over 200 rock posters. Music is very important to me, and it’s a big inspiration. When I’m working on a particular show or design, I play that artist’s music exclusively.”
The short list: Pierce has executed gig posters for such acts as TSOL, Voodoo Glow Skulls, Fear, and Sprung Monkey.
Pierce lives and works in Vista. In the art world, he is known as Pierce Williams, and his series of pop and rock music icons, released in limited runs of 400 each, is now on display at the Jumping Turtle and Iacon Sound, a recording studio in Golden Hill. Through the end of May, Pierce art likewise hangs on the walls of the Normal Heights venue formerly known as Art Lab (now Java Joes).
“I’m using a new process I’ve never heard of other artists using.” He describes a course of action not unlike that of silk screening but without the screen part. “I’m printing directly onto paper. I came up with this stencil idea that I do in my home studio.” He says that so far, response has been good. “I’d like to do as many exhibitions as possible. I’m trying to keep the ball rolling....”
When asked, Pierce admits that his taste in music is eclectic. “I don’t do artists whose music I don’t like. There are enough that I like that I could have a lifetime of doing this.”
On June 1, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Pierce will display his prints at Artwalk, on Restaurant Row in San Marcos.