Underground film-maker Larry Wessel is back with a four-hour documentary about the life, career and personal obsessions of the notorious Boyd Rice. Wessel calls Iconoclast, which was six years in the making, “a rollercoaster ride through the fevered mindscape of one of the most controversial and unique artists of the modern age.”
Boyd Rice may well be the only person alive who’s been on a first name basis with both Charlie Manson and Marilyn Manson. His career has spanned more than three decades, during which time he has remained at the epicenter of underground culture and controversy. Rice first came to prominence in the 70’s as one of the founders of the genre known as Industrial Music, and soon gained a reputation for live shows that were deemed the most abrasive, minimalist and loudest concerts ever staged (his shows regularly clocked in at 130 decibels, whereas a jet plane taking off was a mere 113 decibels). As early as 1980, he was already hailed as The Godfather of Noise Music. Since then, Rice has extended his creative pursuits to numerous fields, even lecturing at The Massachusetts Institute of Technology, despite being a high-school dropout.
“My life”, says Rice, “is a testament to the idea that you can achieve whatever the hell you want if you possess a modicum of creativity, and a certain amount of naïveté concerning what is and isn’t possible in this world. I’ve had one-man shows of my paintings in New York, but I’m not a painter. I’ve authored several books, but I’m not a writer. I’ve made a living as a recording artist for the last 30 years, but I can’t read a note of music or play any instrument. I’ve somehow managed to make a career out of doing a great number of things I’m in no way qualified to do”.
Along the way, Rice worked as a celebrity bodyguard (protecting the likes of Julie Newmar and Maureen McCormack), owned a Tiki Bar (Tiki Boyd’s), starred in an exploitation movie (Pearls Before Swine), co-edited an influential book on low budget cult films (Incredibly Strange Films), and forged close personal friendships with such diverse Pop Icons as Tiny Tim and Anton LaVey.
Order the 3-disc set of Iconoclast at www.iconoclastmovie.com
A collection of Boyd Rice’s essays: Standing In Two Circles: The Collected Works of Boyd Rice, edited by Brian M. Clark is available at Amazon