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FauxAmi Interview
Stefan "Gomes" Marx

by Manuel Triviño 2005 for Staf Magazine

Stefan Marx is an artist and designer from Hamburg, Germany. From there he runs "The Lousy Livin Company, designing and producing limited-edition T-Shirts. Stefan has also created T-shits and board graphics for Hessenmob and Cleptomanix Skateboards and has contributed artwork for exhibitions in London and all over europe. He recently was a fetured artist at he "SKATEBOARDFEVER - Exhibition in Barcelona.

More about Stefans work you will find here:



For the interview in spanish just click on the flag:



Hi Stefan, here Manolo from Staf Magazine. Well, please introduce to yourself and The Lousy Livin Company ?

Do a brief history of Lousy Livin co...

I started the Lousy Livincompany when i painted my first shirt by myself. It was a white Shirt with a red rose on it. I was kind in love. I wrote livin' under it cause it was a good feeling, as everybody know. From then i started to airbrush some shirts for me and my friends. The best was to do a shirt fitting only for me, similar to my feelings. I could react really fast. From then i do some tshirts time to time, for me and my friends. Basically.


How did you ever come up with the name Lousy Livin Company?

I have choosen the word LOUSY for taking me not too serious. And Livin' was out of my life. The Company thing was funny, a seventeen year old teenager who loves tshirts has a company, it was a joke basically.

I've read your name is Stefan "Hoernchen" Marx... what "Hoernchen" means?

Hörnchen is the short word for German Eichhörnchen, the squirrel...



I want to know who your idols/heroes are and why in the following categories: skateboarding, art making of any sort, friends and family.

I have many heroes in every parts, I look up to many people, a lot of them are my friends.


What made you start skating and why? 

The time i spend on my board stoked me from day to day, I could do it by myown and infront of our house. When I realised the universe on a board I hardly fell in love…


And painting?

I paint and draw my whole short life, really, there is no starting point. Drawing is the best thing to do, its like skateboarding, its an universe you have for your own, its making me happy every moment I do it. Its very basic and simple, it’s a way to learn, to see, to communicate, to show, to feel.


How long have you been skating?

I touched skateboarding and the universe behind it around 1991.
Its not that I skated all the time, and the last years less than more, but in some kind it touches me in different ways every day.




And painting?

As I said, I cannot remember a starting point, but in the last years it changed abit, I do it more intensive.

Who has inspired you the most in skateboarding, and why?

There are so many skaters and friends, boardgraphics and music which inspired me in skateboarding. I want to tell you about Timo Kranz, he is still a friend and was a great skater at the beginning, he smashed his knees but he was the inspiration in person. Big up Timo!
Actally my little Livincompany Skateboard Team, my boys, inspire me. Jan Kliewer, Armin Löwenstein, Willow, Danny Sommerfeld and Benjamin Deberdt are friends and really creative skaters, they support me and the lousy livincompany at their best.

What inspired you to start making artwork? Did any other artists influence you?

I don’t know. It comes out daily. All things I feel, see, take part in. All friends and people I meet, all things happen. Books I read, conversations I have music I hear.
Yes, there are many artists which work I like, there is, for example, Raymond Pettibon, he published amazing zines in his young years, I’m really impressed by the way of publish things he did. I publish small copied zines by myown, every livincompany catalog is like a small zine where you can see new drawings and news and photos from my skateteam, then I publish from then to then small zines with drawings and thoughts from myself.



Do you ever just start drawing without ideas, and then it just kind of "happens"?

Sometimes. Mostly I start with a thought and I cannot do it fast enough, triing to hold the thought or the feeling on the paper.

Who, when you were growing up, did you look up to?

When I was growing up I had every week another hero…

You did deck-designs for Cleptomanicx skateboards, Hessenmob and Ayume skateboards between others, what is your best canvas to put your art?

The best canvas is a canvas, a wall or a piece of paper. But of course I like when my artwork is in an edition on a board or a tshirt.


Do you think the same amount of creativity will come out of skating today as in the past?

No. Skateboarding changed. Money took it apart.


Are there any creative skaters or companies you see keeping this creativity alive? Which ones?

Hardly. Only the small, independent skatecompanies did exactly the things they want to do for skateboarding. They do it for skateboarding because they love it. Here in Germany we have Cleptomanicx from my friend Pitt Feil, Hessenmob from Christian Roth, Morphium from Karl Knoop, Minus Skateboards from Pool Legend Matt Grabowski and Radio Skateboards from Berlin.
In England you have Heroin and Landscape, both from my friend, skater and artist Mark Foster.
Support the small companies, they keep skateboarding alive!


Do you think the only thing skaters care about is skateboarding?




How was the last exhibition of Skateboard Fieber in Berlin the last October? What did you do there?

Skateboardfieber was fun, the collective FauxAmi did an incredible exhibition. They invited me showing some work, I showed two big canvases, and two boards. Additionally I painted the huge wallride at the amazing miniramp they built. It was so much fun!

We (Staf Magazine) are planning to do the exhibition of Skateboard Fieber in Barcelona, in October 2005. Will you come Spain for this?

Wow, yes, if you do it I would love to come over to show my work in spain. I’m stoked, looking forwart to this! The exhibition is great!

Talk about the re-editions of your t-shirts: JOYWOOD, HORNSHIRT#5 and SMILE HORNSHIRT. Are they limited editions? Tell us a bit more about your independent tee-manufactorers …

The best is to do a shirt fitting only for me, similar to my feelings. I can react really fast. I could do my own favourite tee over night, and i would love it for years. Its hard to find a shirt which you really love. Everybody knows that. It was a kind of expression. And a kind of don't speak and have a message on my shirt. That is what i love on T-shirts.
The other thing starting the Lousy Livincompany was that all the kids around me had cool shit on their shirts, they paid fucking allot for some fashion graphics without any message. Without a personal thing on it.
Yes of course i loved my skate shirts, but around 1994 and later the good graphic shirts got rare, big company logos don't fit in my personal wear.
I couldn't find any reason... only this wow i'm up to date thing, i know the coolest brand. And i have a shirt from that. And in this time in every new issue of Monster Skateboard Magazine and Thrasher was an ad from a company nobody had ever heard the name of. Companies were born and died. I didn't know which company fits my own thinking of aesthetic and when i getting into it maybe the company was dead and my local skateshop never heard about that label.
I was only a young skate kid from a small village from Germany, light years from the creative source of contemporary skateboarding which i only consumed via magazines and videos. I loved it to see the graphic evolution in skateboarding, but i had more fun to do my own teeshirts then buying only American stuff, and hey, all was so expensive that is was better to have a new board under my feed then a new shirt on my body.


From this point i started making tshirt editions in limited quantity, i don’t want to reprint, i ‘m more into doing a new drawing or design as printing the top seller many times.

For Spain i did a reedition for my favorite acid shirt, the Hornsmile. And my interpretation of the famous Joydivision design from Peter Saville. I hope you like them.

Talk us about your t-shirts distribution in Spain. What about Monkey Hat?

Ignacio from Monkey Hat rocks, I hope you understand the Lousy Livincompany, glad to cooperate with Spain. I really love to have the livincompany in Europe, Europe is strong!


What inspires you to wear the clothes you do?

Can you tell us about your contribution to Nieves Books? Is it a small zine with limited edition?

Nieves Books from Swizerland is really smart, Benjamin, the founder and director invired me to do a zine for them. Nives printed it for an edition of 100 books. Its called:
“andere Mütter haben auch schöne Töchter” that means like: other mothers have also beautiful daughters. Drawings and stuff from me


What do you look for when choosing an artist to work with?

I work with my friends together, I work a lot with Alexone from Paris, Dave the Chimp from London, Flying Fortress from Munich…its easy, I don’t choose, it simply happens.

You do a small zine about your homevillage Todenhausen and another one called OUR magazine. What's your favorite part about making and producing a 'zine? What is the most rewarding part of that?

Publishing small zines is one of the best things. I love books, making small books by yourown is simple and good. Its like spreading your work without advertisments. You can publish your own drawings, thoughts, photos. You don’t need a puplisher, you are the publisher. I founded the Lousy Livin’ Press. Its me, working together with my friends from the copyshop around the corner. Its also very cheap, you can make people a present with your books.

What do you think about the internet as a medium and fans' ability to get their thoughts and creativity out for the world to see? So how important do you think the internet is for artists in terms of promotion?

I like it. I run two sites, have a look:
www.livincompany.de and www.livincompany.com
The first is my tshirt site, the .com is a site where I show different works.
The internet will become the most important medium of all times. Sad but true. It moves the world more together. Take care.



Is there one piece of work that you're particularly proud of? I mean, which piece of art that you have done are you most proud of?

At the moment I’m really proud of my first house object, it’s a house figure, almost 2,30 meters high, you can skate it, it’s a wallride house figure. Willow rode it so amazing.

Have you ever thought of opening an art gallery of your own?

No. Doing a gallery is a big responsibility.

What other stuff are you doing right now? 

Drawing. I just finished a board series for Landscape Skateboards, then I work on different projects. I work on a small book about my thoughts and drawings in my sketchbooks.
I plan to do a bigger show next year here in Hamburg, therefore I have to work really hard. I hope I can travel this year as much as I can also I hope I can visit Spain again.

Thanks a lot, and close this interview with your last words. Thanks again

Never give up.
Thanks to you and the reader, Monkey Hat and my Livincompany Team. I hope to see you very soon. Thank you!


Stefan and Jeremy Fish in Barcelona 2005


The Lousy Livin Co
Camisetas que hablan

Pero no de esas en las que aprietas un botón y sale alguien diciendo una chorrada. No. Esas pesan un quintal, y son un coñazo. Las camisetas de The Lousy Livin Company hablan de Stefan Marx. Habla él, y hablan de él. De su amor por el skate, el fanzine, la integridad y el underground. De sus dibujos espontáneos. De sus días malos, y de los buenos también. Pero no se me asusten, que es sólo una metáfora.

Explícanos un poco cómo empezó The Lousy Livin Co…

Empezó cuando pinté mi primera camiseta. Era blanca, y le pinté una rosa roja. Estaba un poco enamorado. Escribí “Livin” debajo de la rosa porque esa palabra transmite buenas sensaciones, como todo el mundo sabe. Desde entonces empecé a pintar algunas camisetas para mis amigos y también para mí. Lo mejor fue hacer camisetas a mi gusto, especialmente pensadas para mí y mis amigos, reflejando mis sentimientos.

¿Y cómo pasaste de aquello a The Lousy Livin Company?

Elegí la palabra “Lousy” para no tomarme a mí mismo demasiado en serio. Lo de “Company” era divertido. Un chaval de 17 años al que le flipan las camisetas tiene una compañía (risas). Es básicamente una broma.
He leído que tu nombre completo es Stefan “Hörnchen” Marx.

¿Qué significa Hörnchen?

Hörnchen es la abreviatura de la palabra alemana “Eichhörnchen”, que significa “ardilla”.
¿Cuáles son tus ídolos/héroes?
Tengo muchos héroes en cada uno de los aspectos, como el skateboarding, el arte, etc. Admiro a mucha gente, y entre ellos hay muchos amigos.

¿Y a quién admirabas cuando eras niño?

Cuando era niño tenía un héroe distinto casa semana….
¿Qué te indujo a empezar a patinar y por qué?
Las ganas de estar encima de un skate fueron aumentando día a día, ya que era algo que podía hacer por mí mismo, sin necesidad de nadie, y encima delante de mi casa. Cuando me dí cuenta del universo que había alrededor del skate casi ya estaba enamorado de él.

¿Y a pintar?

LLevo pintando y dibujando toda mi vida, así que no existe un punto de partida. En estos últimos años se ha convertido en algo más intenso. Dibujar es lo mejor del mundo, es como el skate, es un universo que tienes para ti sólo… Hace que me sienta feliz cada vez que lo hago. Es muy básico y simple, es una manera de aprender, ver, mostrar, sentir…

¿Y qué hay de la distribución de tus camisetas en España?

Háblanos de Monkey Hat
Ignacio de Monkey Hat es increíble. Es un placer poder colaborar con España. Realmente me encanta poder tener The Lousy Livincompany en Europa. ¡Europa es fuerte!

¿Quién ha sido tu mayor inspiración en el mundo del skateboard?

Hay muchos skaters y amigos, diseñadores de tablas, artistas gráficos y músicos que me han inspirado. Por ejemplo Timo Kranz, él sigue siendo un buen amigo y fue un gran skater en sus comienzos. Se rompió las rodillas, pero para mí fue la inspiración en persona. ¡Viva Timo! Hoy en día, mi pequeño Livin Company Skateboard Team, mis chicos, me inspiran día a día. Jan Kliewer, Armin Löwenstein, Willow, Danny Sommerfeld y Benjamin Deberdt son amigos y skaters muy creativos. Ellos son un gran apoyo para mí y para The Lousy Livin Company.

¿Y en el mundo del arte quién o qué te ha marcado?

Pues la verdad es que no lo sé. Supongo que fue saliendo poco a poco. Todas las cosas que siento o veo acaban tomando parte en ello… Todos mis amigos y la gente nueva que conozco, todo lo que me ocurre, los libros que leo, las conversaciones que tengo, la música que escucho… Me encanta el trabajo de un montón de artistas, como Raymond Pettibon. Los fanzines que publicó en sus años de juventud eran increíbles. Yo también publico un fanzine pequeño, totalmente autoproducido. Cada catálogo de Livin Company es como un pequeño fanzine donde puedes ver nuevos dibujos, noticias y fotos de mi pequeño skateteam. También saco de vez en cuando pequeños libros con dibujos y pensamientos míos.
Has hecho los gráficos para tablas de compañías como Cleptomanicx, Hessenmob y Ayume entre otros.

¿Cuál es para ti el mejor lienzo o soporte para plasmar tus ideas?

El mejor soporte es un lienzo, una pared o un trozo de papel. Pero desde luego que también me encanta cuando mi trabajo acaba sobre una tabla o una camiseta.

¿Crées que el nivel de creatividad en el skate hoy en día es el mismo que en el pasado?

No. El skateboarding cambió. El dinero lo ha desbaratado todo.

¿Hay muchos skaters o compañías en los que tú ves ese interés por mantener viva esa creatividad de la que hablamos? ¿Quiénes?

Raramente. Sólo las compañías pequeñas o independientes hacen exactamente lo que quieren. Ellos lo hacen por el skate, porque aman el skate. Aquí en Alemania tenemos a Cleptomanicx, Hessenmob, Morphium, Minus Skateboards y Radio Skateboards. En Inglaterra tienes a Heroin y Landscape, ambas de mi amigo, skater y artista Mark Foster. ¡Apoya a las pequeñas compañías! ¡Ellas mantienen el skate vivo!
¿Crées que lo único que le interesa a los skaters de hoy en día es patinar?

¿Cómo fue la última exposición del SkateboardFieber en Berlín en Octubre de 2004?

SkateboardFieber fue divertido, el colectivo FauxAmi hizo una exposición increíble. Ellos me invitaron a exponer mi trabajo, así que les llevé dos lienzos grandes y dos tablas. Aparte, pinté el enorme “wallride” de la brutal miniramp que ellos construyeron. Fue muy, muy divertido.

¿Qué es lo que buscas en un artista a la hora de hacer una colaboración?

Trabajo con mis amigos. Trabajo mucho con Alexone de París, Dave “The Chimp” de Londres, Flying Fortress de Munich… Es fácil, no elijo, simplemente ocurre.

¿En qué otras cosas estás metido ahora?

Dibujando. Acabo de terminar una serie de tablas para Landscape Skateboards. También trabajo en diferentes proyectos, como un pequeño libro acerca de mis pensamientos y dibujos sacados de mi libro de bocetos. Planeo hacer un espectáculo brutal el año que viene aquí en Hamburgo, así que tengo que trabajar realmente duro. Espero poder viajar este año tanto como pueda y espero poder visitar España otra vez.
Muchas gracias tío.

¿Alguna gran frase para cerrar?

Nunca dejes de luchar.
Sí señor. Ésa es buena.

Entrevista_ Manuel Treviño 2005 for Staf Magazine
Fotos_ Archivo

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