Who is Bozo Texino?
by Bill Daniel
56 min. black and white, experimental/documentary
Who is Bozo Texino? chronicles the search for the source of a ubiquitous and mythic rail graffiti-- a simple sketch of a character with an infinity-shaped hat and the scrawled moniker, "Bozo Texino"-- a drawing seen on railcars for over 80 years. Daniel's gritty black and white film uncovers a secret society and it's underground universe of hobo and railworker graffiti, and includes interviews with legendary boxcar artists, Coaltrain, Herby, Colossus of Roads, and The Rambler. Shooting over a 16-year period, Daniel rode freights across the West carrying a Super-8 sound camera and a 16mm Bolex. During his quest he discovered the roots of a folkloric tradition that has gone mostly unnoticed for a century. Taking inspiration from Beat artists Robert Frank and Jack Kerouac, the film functions as both a sub-cultural documentary and a stylized fable on wanderlust and outsider identity.
"I was drawn to the subject by the universal graffiti impulse and the classic, corny notion of freight train blues escape." - BD