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Madison East and Kris Kirk Shoot Photos of Their Stupid Punk Lives in LA

Unlike Most Los Angeles-Based Photographers, they don't put makeup on babies.

Photos courtesy of Madison East and Kris Kirk 

Everyone thinks Los Angeles is a dirty, trash bag land full of dirty, trash bag whores and annoying people who put makeup on their babies. The city is a piece of garbage, but it’s also not. Lots of people live in LA without eating batteries for breakfast or throwing up yogurt at lunch. Although photographers Kris Kirk and Madison East eat batteries for breakfast, they also sip champagne during dinner. When Kirk isn’t making noise in his band DOSES, he’s collaborating with East, shooting images of their stupid punk lives in LA.


On the 2nd of August, Nighted Life in LA presents the opening of Play On: Madison East & Kris Kirk. The exhibit features portraits, moments, and installations representing Kirk and East’s lives in Los Angeles. During the opening night, a video installation will also play, showing “a decadent day in Los Angeles with Madison, Kris, and friends,” according to Kirk. In anticipation of the show, I decided to quiz Kirk and East about a few very important things, like if ghosts exist and how to become ugly.

VICE: What does hell look like?
Kris Kirk: A Clash Concert.

On the back of the bus in the toilet someone is…
Hopefully setting explosives up to send the bus into oblivion.

When do you feel the sexiest?
On Fridays of course. It’s by far the sexiest day of the week. Flirty Friday forever.

What are your thoughts on excuses?
I don't like excuses. People shouldn't make excuses—it's either one way or another. It's not that difficult.

Do you believe in ghosts? 
I don't know, but I used to get sleep paralysis a lot and that was cool.

What makes the perfect photograph?
This is a very hard question that has a lot of answers and sides to it. To me, a perfect photograph is a photo that captures some sort of energy and emotion—composition, subject matter, and lighting also contribute to a great photo.

When was the first time you really got in trouble?
I never really got in trouble as a kid, but I remember I got yelled at and a pink slip—which is a piece of paper that goes in your school file—in elementary school because i shattered a kid's lunch box into a million pieces on the playground.


What is your most disgusting habit?
Madison East: Talking shit.

What photographs are on the walls of your own home?
We have a collection of generic dog eight-by-tens (dachshund, lab, etc.), a stolen Dames n' Games now-hiring poster, a Take Me To Your Dealer poster, and a collection of past show fliers. Our walls are a bit curated and tend to change every seven to 12 months.

How does one become ugly?

What are some books you wish you had never shown to the public because they were so horrible?
In junior high my girlfriends and I made these collage/scrapbook/notes notebooks with pages of magazine cut-outs of Josh Hartnett and celebrities, love letters to our crushes, and embarrassing photos of each other. I almost burned them in high school after all my love interests leaked. I still have them, and I plan on using them in my upcoming book.

Empty out your purse and take a photograph of everything inside it.

What is the one thing your parents always told you that you hated hearing?
Be patient.

If you had your own show, what would the theme song be?
Doja Cat “Cali Bitch Mentality.”

Do you like having your own photo taken? 
I don't like having my photo taken because I get flustered and I can never figure out how to smile or else I just look angry. My photos are a representation of myself through everything outside of myself and that is enough for me.

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