Dexter Fletcher and Jarvis Cocker feature prodigiously in the works of zine-creators Dexter Fletcher. Both Fletcher and Cocker are teen pop-icons of post-Thatcher era England. They are neither obvious nor glamorous choices for protagonists of any kind; they are not even particularly cringe-worthy. They are however, Blu-tack worthy. Demi- James Deans of the 90s perhaps. Not great, or revolutionary but both youth-charged and world-weary: the kind that would never change the world.
Jarvis did get political once. The lead singer of pop-band Pulp, stormed the stage at the Brit awards in the pre-Kanye era of ‘96, humorously interrupting a particularly theatrical and righteous performance by Michael Jackson who Jarvis felt was intimating Christ-like qualities. Fletcher is a B-grade cult figure cast as a junior gazette journalist, loner and love-interest, in the television series ‘The Press Gang’. He was the heart connection to those who would later develop literary aspirations – inspiration too, to young feminists making do with masculine role models.
And then we have the mysterious entity of Dexter Fletcher. Art-gang of two (whoever they are), pop-anarchists, socialist-fluxists, they have produced a series of zines including ‘Huffin Textas’ and ‘Careers in Retail’ and film-collages ‘This Magical Group Spirit’ and ‘Friday Night Theory’. Dexter Fletcher hosted a gallery take-over at Verge Gallery in April this year. They corresponded with me here, in full Dexter voice.
Upasana: How and when did you both meet and how is it that this creative partnership came about? What were the initial experiments in working together?
Dexter Fletcher: Dexter Fletcher has always existed. Dexter Fletcher is a single, omniscient entity who transcends space and time. The initial experiments were successful.
U: Is there a sense of a Dexter voice taking over?
DF: Yes, indeed. Dexter Fletcher is taking over. Dexter Fletcher plans to bring about worldwide fully automated luxury communism.
U: I was one of those who used to run home to watch Press Gang, starring a then, very young Dexter Fletcher. You have been creating under his name for quite some time now, have you ever regretted your choice of nom de plume? Does it become limiting?
DF: We are glad that you enjoyed our youthful presence on your television screen — we have been creating under this name for quite some time. Dexter Fletcher has no regrets and no limits.
U: Other than your work with Verge Gallery this year, where do you find an audience for your work?
DF: There is no audience. There are no spectators. We are all Dexter Fletcher, and Dexter Fletcher is all of us.
U: Could you tell us what projects you have been involved in this year?
DF: Only working towards the ruthless critique of all that exists. Dexter Fletcher has also undertaken rigorous research into the history and social function of Blu-tack.
U: Who would you both say are the important cultural icons of recent years? Who are your own heroes right now?
DF: Jarvis Cocker. Dexter Fletcher.
U: What can Dexter Fletcher projects do that none of your other creative pursuits can achieve?
DF: Dexter Fletcher’s transcendence of time and space gives us a clear advantage over history. Dexter Fletcher is also able to create a merchandising empire built upon likenesses of Jarvis Cocker.
U: I am writing to you, of course, days after the demise of Tony Abbott (who has since withdrawn from public attention), but just before the continuance of the Liberal government’s term. The present cultural and political era seems an especially important one to the underground or alternate press. Does this level of political detail make its way into Dexter Fletcher’s work?
DF: Dexter Fletcher do not concern ourselves with the minutiae of liberal democracy in its death throes. Tony Abbott is forgotten, as will be that rich c### Malcolm Turnbull. Only Jarvis Cocker and Dexter Fletcher will remain.
U: What is Dexter Fletcher’s next project?
DF: Dexter Fletcher’s next temporal project is the commercial manufacture of Jarvis Cocker wallpaper. Dexter Fletcher’s overarching project is eternal.