RIP Pepe Ozan (1939-2013)

Pepe all the way. Intense, convinced, he died the way he lived. He was in charge. Great man, great passions. I wish I had visited him while he was in Argentina. Long live Pepe Ozan!

Dean Mermell announced the sad news this morning: Pepe Ozan has died. He took his life yesterday. He was a huge person who will be remembered for creating so many incredible things and for his uncompromising way of life. He will be missed. I’m sure more will come to light in the coming days, but I just found out and felt this was the best way to get the word out. Yes, wow. Pepe. Farewell, old friend.

Pepe indeed took his life. A few people who visited him in the past year, talked about his obsession with death. He was making Art that talked about death. Christine Kristen (Ladybee) said: “He had an obscure form of leukemia that he picked up in India, but it was in remission. He also had emphysema, from a lifetime of smoking. So when he got an additional diagnosis – diverticulitis – and surgery, I believe it pushed him over the edge. He had always been such a vital, energetic man – I’m sure being ill was not an option for him… I know he struggled with the move from San Francisco – right before he left, he told me he feared he would sink into obscurity and that his creativelife was over. He seemed pretty content when I visited him – his land is beautiful, he was making art and showing it, and he was still filming in India with his brother, who lived next door to him, working on their film about HInduism. He was in SF recently with his lovely girlfriend, a history professor from MEndoza, and seemed happy. Outwardly, his life seemed great – but we never know what inner demons others struggle with.”

A really great post by John Law about Pepe that speaks well for who the man was: http://johnwlaw.com/2013/04/15/pepe-ozan-was-here/

His fascination with India led him there on several occasions culminating in unique and insightful films about that strange and kaleidoscopic land. His other world travels, undertaken before I met him included sailing across entire seas in small vessels, trekking remote sectors of the planet and living amidst and coming to know obscure cultures. He never did anything half-assed.

It seems silly in a way, that one of my most cherished memories of Pepe was merely hearing his voice on my answering machine one day when I was really depressed. “HALLOOO JOAANN!! THIS IS PAEPE!!!!” Just hearing that coruscating, deeply alive voice on a machine was enough to completely change my mood, sending me out into the world on an important day, a day I needed to be on my game. That’s what Pepe did for me, every time I saw him, which sadly in later years was not often. He reminded me how vital and vibrant life was if you chose to live it.

A great tribute to Pepe Ozan was posted on the Burning Blog by Will Chase. With great pictures of his art.

Laughing Squid has a little note as well.

The following pictures show Pepe at Desert Siteworks in 1993, where Pepe Ozan was invited to the Black Rock Desert by William Binzen for an intense 3 weeks camp out building art and performing for themselves.

Pepe Ozan recounts the Operas from Madnomad Films on Vimeo.

Another video putting Pepe Ozan’s Opera of 1996 into an interesting perspective, watch it here, you should love it:

700 Club & Sentinel Group visits Burning Man 1996 from Madnomad Films on Vimeo.

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Desert Sitewroks 1993 Tape1-2

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Desert Sitewroks 1993 Tape9

Desert Sitewroks 1993 Tape3

Desert Sitewroks 1993 Tape3-2

Desert Sitewroks 1993 Tape1

Photos of Pepe and his art at his home in Argentina back in April 2011 (Photo by Ladybee)
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A month before he left us back in Argentina (Photo by his daughter Julieta Ozan):
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Pepe all the way. Intense, convinced, he died the way he lived. He was in charge. Great man, great passions. I wish I had visited him while he was in Argentina. Long live Pepe Ozan!

Dean Mermell announced the sad news this morning: Pepe Ozan has died. He took his life yesterday. He was a huge person who will be remembered for creating so many incredible things and for his uncompromising way of life. He will be missed. I’m sure more will come to light in the coming days, but I just found out and felt this was the best way to get the word out. Yes, wow. Pepe. Farewell, old friend.Pepe all the way. Intense, convinced, he died the way he lived. He was in charge. Great man, great passions. I wish I had visited him while he was in Argentina. Long live Pepe Ozan!

Dean Mermell announced the sad news this morning: Pepe Ozan has died. He took his life yesterday. He was a huge person who will be remembered for creating so many incredible things and for his uncompromising way of life. He will be missed. I’m sure more will come to light in the coming days, but I just found out and felt this was the best way to get the word out. Yes, wow. Pepe. Farewell, old friend.

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