December 29, 2009
December 26, 2009
December 25, 2009
December 22, 2009
December 18, 2009
December 17, 2009
I uploaded the top image at the end of the day today. Not much of a change, but better. I work in oils and rather wet, I might add, so the paint has to dry, or the linseed oil has to set, or the turp has to evaporate before I can continue. I'd like to fashion some tiny palette knives. It's moments like these when I miss Chicago. I discovered a factory in Chicago that made Bissel® type sweepers. I'm not sure if it was the Bissel® plant itself, but my point is that I knew exactly where I could go to find quality scrap metal available for the picking- the kind that would be perfect for making teensy tiny palette knives. I'll figure something out.
I'm trying to figure if I want to keep updating this post every time I make some changes to the flower painting. That seems more arduous than taking pics at the end of every day.
Now back to this morning's post....
There will definitely be some big changes today, but I thought I would attempt to honor my previous post where I stated I would upload this particular painting as it progresses, regresses, and flails for dear life. (I'm still shooting hand-held for these in progress shots, so be forewarned.)
You can well imagine that my flowers are dead by now and that I am trying to find a substantial reason to continue my quest to paint a bouquet of dead flowers. We have a small problem, no pun intended. Working abstractly on a small scale was interesting because of the scale change and for reasons having to do with abstract painting. Painting flowers at this scale is like baking a cake and watching my cake fall because I keep opening the oven door to check on how the cake is doing. For the record, I loathe metaphors, but it's all I've got.
December 14, 2009
December 12, 2009
December 11, 2009
Again, these are works in progress. (Taken hand-held at night with no flash, just for quickie upload purpose.)
I rarely, if ever, post or even photograph a painting after one session in the studio, but the bottom painting is after two sessions, close enough. The top painting underwent a few changes as well.
The pool paintings are on hold until I go to Nashville in a couple of weeks and take more reference photos.
I need to work on titles and write.
December 10, 2009
Not that you would have known I made a promise, because I deleted it this morning, due to the mysterious rant about my STBX that made it's way into my post via some kind of trance I must have been in while writing. I allotted way more time than I should have wondering if I had spent the entire last year ranting about my divorce in public. In a quick search I only came across maybe three posts that used the word directly. Four, if you count the fact that I referenced my first divorce. Not bad.
Nonetheless, here you have a day of working on flowers. It's quite a bit more than a day, because underneath, and behind the flower, is an abstract painting formerly known as The Last Abstract Painting, a painting that for all practical purposes was finished, but needed a higher purpose.
My covenant was to start a flower painting and document it at the end of every day.
Since I don't know how many days I worked on it as TLAP, we'll roll over the time clock and mark its reincarnation, (sorry, can't help it) as day one.
Today I googled Manet's last flowers. Again.
Most of them seem to be at the Musee de Orsay.
There is a book titled The Last Flowers of Manet. It is available used. I have not ordered it. Yet.
I almost gave up on wanting to paint flowers, but I didn't.
I can't or don't want to start a painting by flowers directly- I need or want to have time to play on the canvas even if I am taking on a destination.
I am slightly intimidated by the history of painters who have painted flowers.
Flowers have a loaded history. So do landscapes, but flowers are so pedestrian and yet, there is something compelling about painting such an ordinary still life.
I feel slightly constrained by the thought of painting flowers, yet I want to.
I am going to document the painting and the process
The flowers I painted were not really the flowers in my studio. You might have figured that out.
December 08, 2009
December 07, 2009
December 05, 2009
December 03, 2009
The studio sale is in about one week. Lo and behold, I've never done one before. It's at my friend Meg's house, so I won't be carting over everything I'd be tempted to offer up in a studio sale if it were at my studio. Meg and I both are hesitant to be enthused about having a holiday studio sale. The very name conjures up patchwork and straw wreaths if you ask me, but I am taking my works on paper and... drum roll please.... grab bags. Yes, grab bags. I am excited about the grab bags. They are priced at $50 and $100. Not to sound like I'm the greatest thing since sliced bread, but I can promise that it's one of those incredible deals you really shouldn't miss. At least one drawing in every bag is worth the suspense. And, I might add, the bonus of owning two art pieces in one: for unopened, the grab bag becomes it's own little artwork hermetically sealed for future generations. Brilliant, aren't I? Definitely something for the savvy collector to consider. I've been working on them today and tonight. The fun part is going back through the pile of need-to-be-reworked drawings and finally doctoring them up. It's like collaborating with myself. You can't tell from the scan, but I went back with this one and painted the disco ball squares with silver gouache.
December 02, 2009
Who do you think you are?!!! Are you even remotely aware that all those years I spent with Abstract Painting was because I didn’t think you and I had any thing in common? Yes, of course, I glanced at you in museums, art history books and other people's work, but it’s not like I ever egged you on, or invited you over to hang out by the pool. Oh wait. That’s exactly what I did. What was I thinking? Like maybe you’d be there for a weekend or two, tucked away in the guest house. I didn’t realize you were going to bring with you local color and your photo album, and set up shop. And how clever of you to leave John Ruskin’s Modern Painters, Volume IV, Part V, Of Mountain Beauty lying around. Nice touch book-marking page 336 and 337 so that I would stumble across such phrases as, “absolute joy in ugliness,” or the “love of terror,” or “Perpetual tampering with death.” You knew my weakness for Ruskin. You knew you could use him as bait. Curse you, Representational Painting.
It's rather inconvenient, R.P., for now I have to basically splay open my life and make myself even more vulnerable. (As if this blog wasn’t enough.) Abstract Painting was expansive and evasive enough to hide behind. I'm not terribly upset with you, just slightly shocked. You caught me by surprise. It's cool. After all, you and I are still creating a universe out of pigment and marks, but still, how do I know you’re for real? What kind of commitment do we have with each other? Are you planning on leaving after the pool paintings run their course? Do I need to know that now? I recently saw a Baldessari posted over at Sharon Butler's blog that reminded me why you chose such impeccable timing, and maybe that’s why A.P. disappeared. It’s okay; we’ll adjust to each other, but let’s take it slow. You’re even enticing me to work large again, not huge, just larger. Should I trust you? Shouldn't we get to know each other on an intimate level for a few months? I'm really into intimacy now. Abstract Painting might have mentioned that to you. In fact, it brought me closer to Painting. Well, literally, of course, but intellectually and um, yes, I'll say spiritually, though I don't toss that term out in public much. It gets a bad rap.
But back to us- what will the neighbors think? What if we fail? What if people don’t like us or compare us to what they think they know? A.P. and I thought it a preposterous assumption that people thought they knew what something should look like, but now that I’m with you, people might have different expectations. Conversely, what happens if we hit it off? I was committed to Abstract Painting, but I'm wondering if I'll get bored with you. I know A.P. wasn't exactly a spring chicken, but you? You were on friggin caves. I worry about our May December relationship. What if we find out we’re not meant for each other? Would we have wasted each other's time? Would I be reminded of our failed relationship every time I looked at you stacked in a corner, or would I look at you as another component to my sleeping army?
I'm being honest here-I had a good relationship with Abstract Painting. We had a lot in common until you swaggered in with that palette knife in your holster and started showing me photographs you took. I might need a little time to get used to us, and I hope you’ll understand if I need to see A.P. every now and then. Old habits are hard to break. Meanwhile I promise to keep showing up in the studio and see what happens. I will trust both you and A.P. have my back covered.
December 01, 2009
November 30, 2009
Holiday Open House, Open Studio
Painting, Photography, Jewelry, Mixed Media & Textile Art.
Sunday Dec 13th
11am to 5pm
461 N. Citrus Ave, Los Angeles
(Corner of Rosewood Ave, South of Melrose, West of Highland)
November 29, 2009
November 28, 2009
November 27, 2009
November 26, 2009
It's Thanksgiving eve. I have already prepped my dish for the potluck tomorrow. Pan-seared grits with braised red cabbage. Yum-yum.
I recently applied for a residency at the last minute, desperately hoping to take a break and work at the same time. I received my notice today. Anytime a letter starts off with, thank you for applying....I'm certain my eyes glaze over, and yet, I still love the mail. I was offered the residency, but did not receive a full fellowship, plus, the slot I applied for was full. I'm on the waiting list, with the possibility of some merit based grant money, but winter would have probably killed me anyway. I was encouraged to reapply for a full fellowship at the next DL, which I may do. I'm unable to do a residency without a full fellowship. That's a simple fact of life right now.
Which has got me rethinking where I'm at with the small paintings, the pool paintings, abstraction etc. My solo with KE gallery is not until next fall, I have a 4-person show in the spring, and another opportunity knocked but I'm not sure I can schedule that or talk about it right now. I'm suddenly feeling the need to paint larger again, and simultaneously, not sure if I want to, but feeling like I need to, in order to build up some gravitas. My never-ending battle of Id vs. Ego vs. Super-ego.
I am grateful and thankful tonight. As I heard this evening, "Figuring it out is not one of the slogans."
November 24, 2009
My goal is to actually use disposable palettes, but no, I just keep piling out paint on my glass palette, even as I am trying to scrape it clean.
These are four more oil paintings on canvas board that will find there way over to the smaller work blog soon. They're still wet. I am also trying to not work infinitely on one painting until there is no more room for a single brushstroke. You may also notice I have limited my palette to colors found in nature.
I was at a brunch meeting yesterday with a passel of artists (okay, maybe 20 artists.) We've been invited to participate in a curatorial project over in Italy. The first part of the exhibition was held this past summer. One of my smaller abstract paintings went over for that exhibition. It took place in the archaeological museum in Ameila, Italy. Roughly and in a nutshell, the premise of the exhibition is part cultural exchange, part contextual exchange. There are two more exhibitions within the framework of the project. Next year, a show here in L.A., and next summer, a response exhibition in Italy again.
Which is all to say that as I was talking to John, the curator of the exhibition, about my new empty pool paintings, he mentioned the landscape artists from 17th century Italy that depicted romanticized ruins. He later sent me several links for research. I have a minor in art history, so it registered in my image databank, but it's been awhile since I've looked in that direction.
Among the exponents of this »romantic« approach to the landscape were the artists of »Rovinismo«, in whose paintings images of grottoes and ruins played a significant role. These painters emphasised the gloomy, bizarre aspects of crumbling, overgrown architecture and grottoes, integrating them into richly suggestive scenes veiled in mystery. With their picturesque appeal, such images call to mind pagan mystery plays or the cult activities of forbidden secret sects. http://www.staatsgalerie.de/malereiundplastik_e/nl_intro.phpSounds perfect!
It's lame to leave them Untitled. I know that.
Titles are important to me and I have not been able to access the time and space needed for that just yet. I'm merely staving off the inevitable.
November 23, 2009
It does require effort to look at art. I have to schedule it on my calendar. I'm not so great with openings. I go to openings to say hello to people and I am notoriously remiss at attending more than 2 or 3 openings in an evening. Sometimes I'm notoriously remiss at attending one opening in an evening.
I'll post some new work later on. The Furry One is demanding my attention right now.
November 22, 2009
While you're there, check out other works from the exhibit and other events going down in LALA. Nice camera work, too.
Day 3 of reminding you that I have works on paper and canvas board for sale over at smaller works.
Wish List: For Christmas, I'd like the gift of Time. Just in case you're wondering.
November 21, 2009
November 18, 2009
First off, The folks behind Blogger are amazingly f'n dimwitted. The new updated post editor does not- get this, DOES NOT, have a spell checker! WTF? I mean, sure, I think we should spell things all proper and look words up in the dictionary. Builds character. But to NOT have a spellchecker in an UPDATED version is like mind-bogglingly mind-boggling. Okay. it's useless to rant about it. I went back to the old post editor.
Tracy took action and prompted everyone on The Fine Art Department website to update their info, upload new works, etc etc. Part of the etc etc was asking everyone for their facebook fanpage. Ugh. The dreaded fanpage. Sure, Fang can have his own fanpage cuz he's a dogstar, (The real deal, not Keanu Reeves' band.) but moi? I tried to have followers on this blog and after only 4 people were following me, I removed it. I am self-conscious, even in cyberspace.
So, in case you weren't listening on facebook and missed my opening this weekend, here's a decent pic of Mike Vegas and I in our space. We had never met before, so it was fun to meet someone new. That's Mike in front of his photograph. I will take liberty here and assume it's titled, Super. That's me in front of SOSSOL. I love that painting. It will find a good home one day.
November 16, 2009
The house and studio were hit by a hurricane last week. Not literally of course, but I like the analogy. I now have to clean and straighten, and put like with like.
The ARTRA exhibit was fun. I met some artists I hadn’t met before and of course, The Public. The Public was nice too, though some people in the public were a little too attached to their public persona. I noticed. With my Quiet Observational Skills. She said.
Now that it’s after the fact I will confess a couple of things. My mailing list is in need of updating and streamlining. I was unable to email everyone on my ML about the exhibit this past weekend. I had to prioritize tasks and the ML merge did not get accomplished. Instead, random invites were sent. If your first name started with an A, B, C, D, E, or F, I think you got an invite. I also sent the mass FB invite, which is the social networking equivalent of leaving flyers on parked cars. Today I began the delete phase of my ML- cutting places no longer in business and people whose emails bounce back or who I can no longer recollect how I got their name. Phase two is adding all the names and emails I have collected over the past couple of years, but have not entered. Phase three will be uploading the emails to a ML subscriber service like MailChimp.
My other confession is that I did not feel compelled to rent a truck and bring any of the big paintings. The unit was a 1BR loft, and after working in a cramped 2-car studio garage, it was nice to see some wall space around the pieces. I showed some of the smaller works and they got a good response. I was appreciative at the end of the second day when a painter whose work I like, but who I had not previously met, complimented the small paintings and commented how small paintings were difficult. I like when people notice that I work hard and that my hard work is successful. I am partial to the small paintings for a myriad of reasons, which I will address more in depth after the intermission.
All the hipster artdogs were out with their hipster artdog owners. I considered bringing Fang on the second day. I entertained that thought for about 30 seconds. Then I entertained the thought of someone dropping a pretzel on the floor and trying to pick it up before Fang got to it.
November 15, 2009
Yesterday's event was pleasant. I forgot a sweater. Nine years in LA and I still imagine California to be a tropical climate. Foot traffic was good. The automated espresso machine in the courtyard was a lifesaver.
November 14, 2009
November 12, 2009
November 11, 2009
November 09, 2009
ARTRA at T-Lofts
Nov 14th, Nov 15th, 12-5pm
11500 Tennessee Avenue
Los Angeles, 90064
*I'm pretty sure it's 332, but if not, it's a variation of that number such as 322 or 329. Based on my memory and the floorplan, I'm going with 332.
I'm back from installing paintings. It looks good. I'm showing with Mike Vegas, an artist who I had not previously met, but we have mutual friends.
It's an event-food, drinks, music, DJ's somewhere. I'm tempted to set up a print corner and pass the time by making sketches of my paintings using Brushes and then print them out as 4" x 6" prints.
Speaking of which...
I think this is obvious-but in case you need to buy a vowel, those are German Shepherd ears silhouetted against the bedroom window.
Clock Radio coming up. I'm being prolific again.
November 06, 2009
The grant was deceptively simple, yet unnecessarily complex. TWENTY-SIX pages to wade through. For real. And— AND, there was conflicting information about what to include and how to include it. I mean, if it was a 1-page grant app, sure, I can think outside the box and wing it, but I'm thinking with 26 pages and explicit directions, perhaps a little proofreading might have been a good idea.
The good news is that I'm set to whip it out in no time at all next year. I'm also really pleased about my project proposal and how it ties back in to some work I did about 15 years ago. Unfortunately it's not exactly big happy art-it deals with my mom's memory loss and um, you know, that inevitable thing other than taxes, but I'm hoping my wicked sense of inappropriate humor will lighten it up.
My next scheduled administrative task MUST be completed this weekend and then I swear I'm going to do nothing but paint.
Stay tuned for affordable prints!
November 03, 2009
The artworks on view will be sold for $108 except for works by Steve Roden, Lecia Dole-Recio, Joanne Greenbaum, and Laura Owens which will be auctioned with bids starting at $108 and increasing in increments of $50.
November 02, 2009
-excerpt from interview with Julie Mehretu, page 135, Inside the Painter's Studio, by Joe Fig
October 31, 2009
I was going to bail on Halloween this year. I'm not a costume person. Go figure. Nor am I a witty pumpkin carver person either. My artistic skulls end at bad puns, painting, making stuff out of nothing and a ghost of other things. Being the Martha Stewart of pumpkin carving is not on the list.
It might help if I were to design a pumpkin, working up some sort of blueprint in advance. It might also help if I were to use my woodcarving tools instead of a jackknife. And perhaps the slasher approach is a bit hasty. Nonetheless, a pumpkin is on the front porch, and there is too much candy in the house.
October 30, 2009
October 28, 2009
October 26, 2009
October 24, 2009
The views expressed in this section are the views of the ranter and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of Process or its author, MAH. Process does not guarantee the accuracy of the data included in this comment section and accepts no responsibility for any consequence of the rant.
I've been so focused on the crap-ish stuff this year, that all I've done is work in the studio painting away like a troll while rehashing my day in word documents as therapy, and facebooking and blogging in lieu of recreational drug use.
And now, end of OCTOBER, (like when did that happen?) I'm suddenly aware of all the good stuff in the works and the momentum needed to adequately prep for these things. I'm good with time management. My friend Meg thinks so. Other people think so too, though they haven't seen my venetian blinds or the protective layer of dust and dog hair around my water heater. For God's sake, I was drinking moldy soy milk on my cereal and didn't even know it. I smelled like bleach all day after that discovery. Not to imply that I drank bleach, but that I scrubbed the inside of the Tupperware jug until it sparkled. Sparkled. Time management comes at a price.
First up, is to finish my grant app for the Los Angeles Dept. of Cultural Affairs. I have noticed a pattern this year- whining about stuff, reckless procrastination and finally, determination and action. It takes what it takes.
Next up is a benefit auction for the Dharma Zen Center, November 7th from 6-9. I think the works will be available for purchase online. (Not sure about this yet) All proceeds go toward the Zen Center. I thought the image below was very zen like. It's from 2007.
The following week, November 14th and 15th is a group exhibit, ARTRALA. There will be a catalog available of the exhibit.This should be fun. I would love to haul my flatfiles over there or at least have a table available for works on paper. I need to start thinking about this. This could be the best idea I've had all year.
Between now and mid-November, I've been asked to submit some images and a statement of the work I created during a residency at Kaus Australis (Rotterdam, Netherlands) in 2004. Carl Berg is putting together a catalog of artists he selected for the residency. I'll repost when it becomes available.
And last, but definitely not least, I need to stretch some 11" x 14"s and probably order some more 5" x 7"s and maybe some 16" x 20"s before the end of the year.
There could be more, but that's all for tonight.
October 21, 2009
30" x 24"
mixed media on canvas
An assistant would be nice. Today, for instance, I could have wasted even more time making Brushes sketches. Instead, I slogged through real work. I had to pick an image for a catalog for an upcoming exhibition and was procrastinating. I really like the image I selected, but it's not very pretty in the traditional sense and it falls under the category of, Odd Paintings I Make. It's not exactly a one-off, it's more like a deviation. At the last minute though, I chose to add an additional image, a prettier one. Choices are so hard.
mixed media on linen
14" x 16"
I was playing favorites with SOSSOL. Why? Because I was feeling super contrary and SOSSOL appealed to my super-contrarian outlook yesterday. Trying to be objective, aka second-guessing myself, I began rationalizing that SOSSOL might not appeal to as many people as Speed Trap and if there's a chance to sell some art, as opposed to pretending I live on air and am satisfied with merely exhibiting my work for the greater humanitarian good, maybe I should promote peaches, not potatoes. I included the bottom image, Speed Trap, as a back-up in case I had lost my senses. I have no idea which image they picked, but that's another story.
Okay. Now for the punch line- Today I received a call from an art consultant* I recently began working with and she wanted to send out an email blast with- you guessed it, SOSSOL. (She picked a few other images, but I was terribly excited that she picked that one and another one from that body of work.)
Today, I feel very brilliant. For some reason, I love it when people like my schizoid paintings. (Mwahahahaahhaha)
* I was trying to play this down, but since it's L.A., what the hey. I thought having my foot in the door with a consultant that rents to film production companies might be an interesting way to spice things up. I once rented a couple of paintings to a set designer for the production of Blink when it was filming in Chicago. It's a little weird to think about art contextualized this way, but probably no more so than any other contextualization.
I shall talk about practicalities versus ideals another time.
October 20, 2009
A huge part of my oeuvre is works on paper. Oddly enough I haven't exhibited them much and the flat files are stuffed to the gills. Unless it's being held for an exhibit, most everything in the drawers is for sale. Don't be shy. The photos are all iPhone, so forgive the crappy resolution.
First of all, everything in my studio is on casters. I like to move things around. One day, maybe it will all be just so. Until then- casters. Currently the flat files are by my sink with an old dropcloth protecting a piece of white laminate I had cut to size. The white laminate makes a nice top for the files just in case I ever want a clean, unobstructed surface. After I wash my brushes, I lay them on the top to dry. I also have several bottles of water stored on top. Most of the water is flat and one bottle specifically serves as a place to hang my studio keys.
Part of my rock collection is in a tray on top of a small table on top of the flat files. I recently acquired a large paper cutter, so it lives on top of the flat files for now. There's also some crap I need to put away. My seller's permit is framed and displayed conspicuously on the wall above the files. I can't even remember the last time I wore those rubber gloves. Rubber gloves give me the creeps.
The 2009 paintings are small. Most of them are on linen and they live in the top drawer now. I think I can fit one more inside. The rest are on the wall or on a bench. They look gawdawful squished next to each other like that. Talk about a visual cacophony. Jeesh.
The second drawer used to be the first drawer. It contains the smaller watercolors and gouaches on museum board and paper. My scatological drawings on paper live here as well.
The third drawer is where the unframed Tornado Face Drawings hang out, along with miscellaneous works on paper.
The fourth drawer is where the large watercolors live including watercolors from the late 1980's. Some even larger ones live at my storage unit.
But wait there's more! Still in the fourth drawer, we have even more watercolors and works on paper of all sizes. It's a veritable watercolor bonanza in there.
The bottom drawer is where my stockpile of blank paper is. In case all hell breaks loose, my goal is to have enough paper to last through Armageddon so that I don't have to dash to the store in the middle of it. God, I would hate that. Traffic would be a bitch here in L.A. and I'm sure there would be a run on art supplies with people trying to record the end of time and all.
I bought my flat files from a second hand office supply store. I left the former owner's labels on them. By the looks of the handwriting and the contents, I'm guessing NOT a painter. I can't remember if the arrow magnets were already there or if they were an impulse buy I couldn't live without.
And what recent post would be complete without my new obsession, a Brushes animation?
October 19, 2009
OK, I figure when I see three references to the Brushes app within a week, it's time to download it and give it a whirl. I love being able to see my decision-making process looking so stream-lined. I'm hazarding a guess that in the studio, it's quite a bit messier. I'll do an abstract later on.