Art World Horror Stories Vol. 1: Virgin Nightmares

Art World Horror Stories Vol. 1: Virgin Nightmares

Today we are starting a new segment, something terrifying, something horrifying; introducing Art World Horror Stories!

Over the last couple of weeks, we have been collecting stories from our larger network of artists and creators, intended as cautionary tales, or reminders about how wrong things can go in the world of art and beyond.

“You may want to sleep with the lights on tonight, because art world horror stories are very real.” — Sourdough [0:06:42]

Click the play button above to hear this real life scary story!

Sometimes all the hard work and love you put into projects pays off, but sometimes the best-laid plans come to nothing, and the ship sinks in front of your eyes.

“I thought it appropriate to kick off this new segment with a personal story. Something that happened to me, that I will share with you, as a warning to watch your back. As a warning to expect the unexpected, as a warning to always be on your toes, and not let down your guard. Because just when you think everything is looking rosy, shit can happen, the worst can happen.” — Sourdough [0:10:01.2]

Today's episode is the first of these and Sourdough kicks things off by talking about the events of 2014 when his company, Crewest Studio, almost saw through an amazing project to oversee the painting of a Virgin Atlantic Boeing 747.

Right before the plan really kicked into motion, an unexpected tragedy shook the whole of Virgin to its foundations, and unfortunately resulted in many initiatives being shelved or forgotten.

To hear all about this, and a clear reminder of the lack of guarantees in life, listen in with us today for this segment of Art World Horror Stories!

Concept Rendering #1 circa 2014

“We had always dreamed of painting a jumbo jet, a transatlantic jetliner, if you will. We always felt like the best company to partner with on this particular endeavor, would be Virgin Atlantic Airlines. If we could only get to Richard Branson, somehow, some way, we just knew that he would love this idea that we had. And boy, oh boy, did we get close.” — Sourdough [0:11:42.7]

Key Points From This Episode:

  • The kinds of bad things that can happen to anyone: a lesson from 2020 and the pandemic.
  • Dreams at Crewest Studio of painting a Boeing 747
  • Connecting with Virgin Atlantic and pitching the idea to them
  • How the competition was going to work; voting for designs across different continents.
  • The great reception that the idea initially received at Virgin.
  • The scheduled meeting with the Virgin Atlantic CEO and the rising tide of excitement.
  • How tragedy struck on October 31st, 2014 with the crash of the VSS Enterprise.
  • The resultant shelving of the global art project that Crewest had envisaged.
  • Accidents happen and circumstances change; best-laid plans can be devastated.
  • A reminder about counting blessings too soon, and staying focused on what really matters.

“I have sweaty palms right now, my heart rate is elevated.” — Sourdough [0:07:40]

Concept Rendering #2 circa 2014
Concept Rendering #2 circa 2014

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Concept Rendering #3
Concept Rendering #3 circa 2014

Scott "Sourdough" Power

Scott “Sourdough” Power is the the creator and executive producer of NotRealArt.com. He is also the co-founder of Crewest Studio a digital media company in Los Angeles dedicated to creative culture and the $2T creative economy.