Arlo has been with Comet since we moved to Ithaca three years ago, and he has since worked in every aspect of skateboard manufacturing. In his spare time, he holds art shows at local cafes and as an art vendor at the Ithaca Farmers Market. Meanwhile, the various nooks in our skateboard factory have mysteriously become homes to so many surreal creatures doodled on skateboard scraps and other found materials. When you buy a Comet skateboard, you might find an Arlo creation on your shipping box. Don't feed it after midnight.
Arlo's work attempts to embody the notion that creation is amusing and enriching for not only the creator, but the viewer. He sees nothing inherently special in the role of artist/designer, as the creatures and chimeras of his work are, he should hope, recognizable as being plucked from the collective imagination. His yin yang is oddity and simplicity, together in harmony. Typically, his work involves traditional surreal cartoon and illustrative elements, ideally without the traditional capitalistic/regimented notions of what our imagined worlds should be.
For the 2011 Comet line, Arlo wanted to keep it weird but simple, and in line with the storied and iconoclastic Comet steez. He tried to picture Comet as a vast city (a "shred city", if you will) that was in need of totems, idols, symbols and pagan mascots to pepper its varied, steep streets. With this creature-centric approach in mind, he tried to create cosmic beings that would jive with the reality-bending nature of skateboarding itself, ideally giving the rider the feeling of having an amoebic or many-limbed guardian angel watching out from below his or her feet. He hopes you think they look sweet, and that you feel a little faster when shredding with them.
As a child growing up in upstate NY, Arlo was exposed from a very early age to drawing and the arts. He read comics, drew comics, and generally soaked his brain in all sorts of linear representations of the world, from Crumb, to Escher, to McFarlane. He attended the University of Rochester, where he continued his interest in illustrated narrative, studying English and Studio Art. Following his completion of his BA, he began working at Comet, where he has continued his renderings, albeit more so on wood than on paper.
Arlo typically uses reclaimed wood and found materials to create artifacts from messier, stranger, more linear worlds. Lately, however, he's even been known to work in pixels. His latest show was in the local Ithaca skateboard shop 'Homegrown' and mostly featured sculptures hewn and formed from the bones and off-cut of skateboard construction. He has kept this totemic motif in his line of Comet graphics, and hopefully when the viewer looks at this lineup, he or she feels a little stranger and a little stronger.