For those of you too hip to be square, Mondo is a little (big) company based out of Austin, that specializes in alternative screen printed movie posters, vinyl soundtrack releases, and most recently, toys. This is the second MondoCon, and the event took place in Austin from October 3-4.
Chris and myself (Zach) went down to Texas to both cover the event, and take part in the con as fans.We were able to meet so many great people and even ran into a few Modern Vinyl fans (Editor’s note: They exist! I promise!). This re-cap hopes to hit some of the highlights of the convention, with a gigantic gallery of all the photos I took at the end of this article. There will also be a contest detailed at the end!
We arrived at the con Friday evening and already a line of eager fans circled around the Holiday Inn we were staying at. This is where “Annie Hall” was located (they got creative with the Hall names). Annie Hall was home to the Mondo Store, and many various artist/vendor booths for the weekend.
Some booths at Annie Hall included: Hi-Def Ninja, Light In The Attic, The Mondo/Deathwaltz Record Booth (which I stupidly did not get a great photo of), Waxwork Records, Industry Live Screen Printing, Mike Mitchell & his photo booth, Daniel Danger, The VACVVM, Rob Jones, and Grave Face Records.
The other event location was the Marchesa Hall and Theater, which was located right across the street from the Holiday Inn. A line started forming there as well. This is where “Anthony Michael Hall,” “Arsenio Hall” and the theater for the panels and screenings were located. There were too many booths/vendors to list them all, but some highlights included: William Stout, Jock, Scott C., We Buy Your Kids, The Dude Designs, Francesco Francavilla, Middle of Beyond, Jason Edmiston, Phantom City Creative, Gary Pullin, Randy Ortiz, Richey Beckett, Florian Bertmer, Kevin Tong, Landland, Stan and Vince, and Rockin Jelly Bean.
Once the doors opened, tons of people headed straight for the Mondo poster store, creating a new line inside the building that sat at a solid two hour wait for almost the entire first day. Thankfully it slowed down on the second day, and surprisingly only a few things were sold out.
It was pretty crazy at both locations, but thankfully there were some helpful people (with really cool t-shirts) to direct fans to correct locations. They even saved us a couple times, that’s for sure. They were the true MVPs of the event.
The Record Booths
We immediately started exploring the venues once we could get through the doors. It was pretty overwhelming, there was a bunch of cool stuff to see. I’m fairly certain we missed a lot by the time the weekend ended just because of how much there was. Here is a shot from the Mondo Store.
Waxwork Records had one of the coolest booth set-ups at the Con. Loved all the Halloween decorations. Waxwork had most all of their previous releases, and several new ones, including Tourist Trap, C.H.U.D, and Herzog’s Nosferatu The Vampyre. If you purchased a record, you got a tote bag (included in a giveaway at the end of this article) and were entered into a contest to win one of their infamous Blood Filled Friday the 13th records. Can’t wait to dig deep into Nosferatu, keep your eyes peeled for that soon.
And here are some of the records Mondo had at their vinyl booth. In that test pressing bunch was releases like Hannibal, The Last of Us, Jurassic World (not even released yet), Aliens and a couple mystery items, which ended up being Back To The Future (Editor’s note: I’ve actually read they were for different movies in the trilogy? Not confirmed).
For this write up, we’re going to be focusing on panels that dealt with vinyl records, ether as the topic itself, or in just a roundabout way. Other panels included The Art of Toys and Collectibles, The Art of Jock, The VACVVM Artist Panel, and a William Stout Career Retrospective. We’ve highlighted both Jock and Stout in other MondoCon 2015 articles on the site.
Underscore: A Soundtrack Panel (Moderated by Modern Vinyl owner and operator, Chris Lantinen) was the second panel of day 1. The panel members included Spencer Hickman & Mo Shafeek (Mondo/Death Waltz), Josh Wright (Light In The Attic), Kevin Bergeron (Waxwork Records), and Chris Scofield (A to Z Media). Underscore provided vinyl fans with an informative and intimate look into the vinyl curation possess. One of the most informative panels of the weekend (and hopefully Chris will let me say he did a great job moderating! (Editor’s note: I wasn’t the worst. I think that’s a grand victory)).
The big surprise event of the panel was Spencer Hickman letting the audience approve a secret test pressing live at the event. He walked over to a turntable and lowered the needle. As soon as the music started, the crowd cheered. It was a test pressing for the long awaited Twin Peaks soundtrack. Spencer revealed that the artwork had recently been approved by David Lynch himself, and that this had been the hardest part of the release. Unfortunately the soundtrack won’t come out till 2016, but it is still coming! We got a video of the moment right here.
Another panel that had some cool vinyl topics was Mondo Talk, a panel featuring Mondo Creative Directors Mitch Putnam, Rob Jones, Jay Shaw, & Head of Creative Production Eric Garza. Throughout this panel fans got an intimate look at past Mondo projects that did not make the cut for whatever reason, and a look at a few future projects.
Highlights included: A look at what could have been an amazing “Skyfall” vinyl release which we reported on here, a screen printed poster for Cronenberg’s The Fly by artist Johnny Dombrowski that Mondo had forgotten about and released after the panel, and a “Choose Your Own Adventure” segment where fans got to have some input into a future poster release. It was a lot of fun, Rob Jones (in the yellow tux) is a character.
Food, Food, and More Food!
Did I mention food? Holy guacamole! No amount of descriptions could prepare me for just how good all these Austin food trucks would be! My personal favorite was Kebabilicious, which featured some delicious (and huge) Turkish style wraps. Both times I went I got the “Spoiled Brat Kebab,” which had the following description: “Beef or Lamb and Chicken, falafel and humus and feta cheese with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, tzatziki sauce, spicy red sauce in pita bread.” Wish I got a picture. Can I have one mailed to me right now in NC? Check out Kebabilicious here.
Chris really dug Level Up, which featured some excellent smoothies and juice drinks. They also had the coolest looking food truck I have ever seen. His tasty beverage of choice was the “Bruce Bananner Smoothie,” with the description: “Banana, coconut water, greens, and peanut butter.” Mmm I might try to make one myself. Find Level Up here.
We also took two different trips out to Torchy’s Damn Good Tacos (we didn’t get enough on the first go-round), but we won’t dive too deep into that since it was not at the Con. Just know it was amazing, and if you go to Austin, you have to find one…be sure you get some “Nookies,” and a “Dirty Sanchez” for us.
MondoCon also had some delicious Alamo Pale Ale available at the event and some MondoCon 2015 pint glasses for sale, designed by various artists at the event. Other food trucks included: Therapy Coffee, Arlo’s Austin, Stony’s Pizza, Frank, and Micklethwait Craft Meats. Just wish there were more meals in the day!
Artists Being Artists
One of the coolest things about being a print/vinyl collector at MondoCon is walking around and getting to meet all your favorite artists in person, but what really is the icing on the cake is getting to walk around and watch them actually creating art live right in front of you. For example: I was blown away watching Stan and Vince (a super art duo) and their creative process unfold right in front of me. I’ve always wondered how the two work together, and it was cool to see how that proceeded.
Here is Aaron Horkey creating some sure to be masterpiece. Just check out his work here and prepare to be blown away.
Industry Print Shop had live T-shirt screen printing going on all weekend at the Con. You pick your shirt color, you pick your design, and they print it, and then cure it. Comes out hot! Find Industry Print Shop here.
Free tattoos! The Graveface Records & Curiosities booth had visual/tattoo artist Chloe Pinnock there giving out free tattoos. I got my first one from her and she did a great job. Find her on Instagram and her website.
Mondo loves screenings. So here is how it works: You buy a ticket for the price of a poster, you go to the screening and get a wrist band, you watch the movie, and then after they unveil the poster and you turn in your wrist band and get the print. The two screenings we got to see were the 1989 Tim Burton Batman and The Goonies. Both screenings were a lot of fun, with audience members really getting into the films. We will have individual write ups for each, but for now check out the posters below. Other screenings that took place were the Toy Masters Documentary (Free), Black Swan (Free), Halloween — featuring an amazing poster by Jason Edmiston — and Pieces (live score) featuring a copy of the music on vinyl.
I’ve anticipated MondoCon2015 for the last year and the long wait was well worth it. Thanks to all the nice people we got to meet, thanks to fans of the site, and thanks to all the vendors and artists who let us talk with and photograph them.
I got a little contest I’m running on my personal Instagram for those who could not attend the con. The contest features a bunch of free swag, as well as a mini screen print from LandLand,and VACVVM artist Jessica Seamans (who we hope to do an interview with soon, find her on Instagram). Jessica Seamans recently did the artwork for Waxwork’s Nosferatu The Vampyre vinyl release and the mini-print is of her center label design. The print is signed and numbered 11/100, and was only available with the purchase of her new print that was released at the VACVVM booth. All you have to do is be sure you are following my Instagram here, and re-gram the image with the hashtag #AQUAMONDO15. Have fun! Please only enter if you did not go to the event!