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Showing posts from May, 2008

mpg on encouragement/interest

How far do you go on encouragement or interest? Does it depend on who gives it? When you get it? How often? I've noticed that the encouragement/interest thing has changed in these 3+ years I've been making art. When I first started I only knew two people in Vermont. I had just met them. Just landed here. Didn't know what I would be doing in the art scene.

I naturally went towards working on railroad tie platesthat were discarded half a block away from my studio apartment. Tried to get the yocal local art association interested in my four pieces and drew a blank look from the lady running it. She let me put up a photograph in the city hall show but no plates. It fit boringly well into the usual oil paintings and photographs.

I got encouragement from the two people I knew though and kept going. It was nice that someone give me a reality check about whether this was interesting or crap. I was paying more attention to my excitement and love of it though and just kept collecting …

Sunday Scribblings: Quitting #112

I like this weeks sunday scribbling because just seeing or hearing the word quitting brings up waves of emotions. Freedom. Peace. Stress. Strain. Pain. Giving in. Giving up. Movement.

I've quit my share of jobs. I've walked out during breaks. I've given notice. I've just not shown up. This being all during my teens and twenties. When in the mid 80's I started my massage business and worked for no one but me, I stayed with it for almost two decades. It was the pain of repetitive motion that finally pushed me to quit. How odd that it didn't seem at the time like something I would have done [quitting] without being forced to but in retrospect I see how ready, how overdue I was for quitting.

And then dear readers, most of you know I then quit my life in Arizona, hit the road and camped, travelled around. I worked a bit more at massage but always quit, pain being a big reason but I was done giving. I finally felt I had given enough. I was tired of trying to make other…

I never thought....

I never thought I would want to do this but I do. And I can't quite believe it. That being, I want to do an art installation. I finally found something that excites me and that I envision being on some wall in some fancy ass gallery. It would be one of those installations that I personally DO NOT GET. And I want to do one. It would be one of those installations that few would probably understand and in fact there is nothing to understand. How the hell do you make that happen? Jesus I can't even get a gallery outside of Vermont to say BOO. I've noticed the last month or so that I am living in a more grandoise place in my mind as far as my art is concerned. I have to. I have to believe that what I'm doing is the shits. It feels great to feel great about making art. I'm so tired of feeling meek and inferior. I keep looking at art in all the best places and thinking what is the difference between their work and mine? I think at some point you have to put yourself in sh…

Camouflage #67

Camouflage #67/100

I went back for the Wonder Horse

Another week or so and I would not be able to get in there to get him. The weeds and brush are growing like wild and soon it will be a mini forest of plant life. I got more pictures and this time grabbed the horse and ran. A huge nasty spindly legged spider crawled out of one of his holes. Dirt and ants filled my car as more of his innards fell out. He is mine now. I'm not going to clean him up, I'm not bringing him in just yet. I want to take the wonder horse with me for photo shoots in different areas.
Imagination is more important than knowledge. Albert Einstein


saw this bug flying when i went outside to see if my paint sponges had dried. ran to the camera and zoomed in on the little bugger. such unbelievable metallic greenblue coloring (better than any bird or flower i've ever seen)


Sometimes when I watch a documentary on artists I later find myself brewing and stewing over what they said. Not that I actually retain it verbatim, but the general gist of art speak floats around like a cloud all puffed up and is unavoidably present in my mind. Today I had one thought enter my head about art, this after watching a doc last night on Ovation TV about Robert Rauschenberg who died this week, and that is: why I think I make art. Because nothing else makes much sense. Art makes about as much sense to do as anything else does. Most of the time I have no idea why I am doing it. It has been said over and over that art is an expression~ of what, really doesn't matter to me. Just as when you hear bad news you might laugh instead of cry or viceversa I believe it [art] is a reaction that we then later give meaning to. I know art can be created under the guise of making social and global statements but I personally find it hard to be moved by such art. Maybe that will change, …

NY Times Puzzle Redo



Lighter, simpler. Less bulk and more satisfying, much like a paper thin wafer. YES. More blurry, badly lit photos because we live in a cave with horrid lighting both from the one side of windows and electrically speaking. No patience to fuss.

Tox Clock #66

Tox Clock, 2008 #66/100
A small yet delightful find at that old dump we went to on Monday. I see several heads and faces in the scrap. One of few clocks that has a second hand. It appears a bit more blue in real life. For the life of me I can't get the color 100% be it indoor/outdoor. *Tod promptly bought this so it's already off the market! I get to keep looking at it yay!
Stowe ______ this is ____ how may I help you?
(me) uh, yeah I'm wondering if you have a drill bit, I need a cobalt pilot 5/16"
hold on let me check
hello, no, sorry we have every other size but that one.
(me) uh, how bout one size up what is that?
hold on
that would be blah blah blah ....
(me) I need it to be 5/16" and not much more, how much bigger is that?
that's a bit bigger
(me) do you know when you might get some in?
(me) okay. thanks

next call:

_____ Hardware, ________ speaking
(me) hi, yeah, I need a drill bit, cobalt. pilot. 5/16" you got any?
whats a pilot
(me) you know, it has a tip on the end
let me check
nope, no pilots

(me) thanks

next place.....same thing
next place same thing
next place same thing
this is what it is like to live in a tiny town
god love it

toxic fun and the wonder horse

today tod and i got to rummage around and old abandoned dump. it was hidden away at the bottom of a ravine, quite old and forgotten and full of completely rusted out cans, scads of broken bottles, rusty appliances and tires. towards the end of the ravine i saw this horse and stopped dead in my tracks. i KNEW. this was going to be the coolest thing i've taken a picture of in a long long time. i cannot wait to have these pictures blown up and printed! i want to go back and take more shots, it was hard since i was on an incline and the horse is upside down on the incline. the tripod was resting at different levels on a pipe and in all kinds of crap. i scooted some stuff away and went at it. i am THRILLED with this and might even nab the horse next time i go there and use him in some bizarro assemblage. tod and i were able to find a trunk full of delicious dump scrap. yee haa!

cord cover

I still haven't made a tv stand. I did however bring home a long black plastic accordian tube from today's hike, I saw it last night in the woods and knew I would be back to get it. Last night while watching a movie I realized I wanted to cover the tv cord with a pipe. Incredibly Tod also had a thought of covering the cord during the movie. We were watching Running with Scissorsand I don't think anything in the movie triggered the thoughts ~ it was more just staring at the tv for two hours and being subjected to the dark cord against the white wall. [Augusten has another new book out btw, A Wolf at the Table and bravo to him for another can't put down book.]

The living area has been undergoing radical changes. As I mentioned earlier we got rid of the pre-furnished house rug, got rid of Tod's ugly old desk and the bland coffee table. We never had a real tv stand so I've set out to make a coffee table and a tv stand to go with our other growing collection of foun…

god dont let me become bitter

When I see that other artists get to have their own new york exhibition with works such as these, it is truly challenging for me to remain calm. I switch the browser to my page, diligently stare at it and feel frustration to the point of wanting to give up. I go into comparison mode. Is his work better somehow? More thought out? More time consuming? Is it somehow more pleasant and less raw? Is it because he is already 'somebody' that he gets to do these puzzle things and show them in a chunk? It is sometimes dangerous and sometimes empowering to look at what is out there in the gallery world. It can give me hope but it can also deflate me. Mostly it sends me into a fury while imagining myself scurrying into the basement studio never to be seen or heard from again.

Element 65

Element 65 #65/100

Another clock hot off the artist hands. The sheen on the right is glare. I love how chunky and virile it is. The hands have a hint of a reddish umber line that give the appearance of heat emanating from them. I believe this is a base for some sort of heating device. I could be wrong, but thats what I want it to be.

better angles

Just wanted to show a few more pictures of this. I'm not feeling like this is out of proportion as much as I took lousy angle shots. I'm liking this, put it next to my bed and it is a perfect night stand. Ready to put together a coffee table idea that also uses this kind of base.

more freedom, less fear

In keeping with the new found spirit of the Icelandic people (bliss post) I am finding more freedom when it comes to my own relationship with art. Not a lot, but more. The last few days have been spent eyeing pieces that were never as good as they could get in my mind. The Warrior is one. You have no idea how exciting and difficult and scary that piece was to make. It was even exhibited briefly at the gallery. When I look at it I see a piece that says much about my journey with puzzle pieces, yet I also see what could have been. What was for a brief moment. I had painted a black eye mask, trying to replicate some sort of tribal warrior and it instead looked as if he had been scorched by fire. It traumatized me when I thought I had ruined three months of gluing puzzle pieces to make him. I also see he needs more done on the mouth area. Something in me no longer cares if I ruin it. Freedom I hope.

Another piece, Cocoon, has been dismantled for a touch up. The learning curve is a steep on…

something new

You may or may not recall last month I posted the table idea (pic above). Well I have finished the table, at least I think I have. This is my first piece of functional art furniture from Found Objects. The base and the round part are Forms used in Foundry work (base for RR Scales and Round thing from a Mill). I used 1/2" MDF board for the table top and cut two puzzle like pop outs so you can store things inside the table.

I almost hesitate to post this as I have been staring at this piece for so long, looking intently at it very myopically and when I see the final result it isn't quite what I thought it would be. Tod isn't liking the handles, he thinks they don't match. I'm thinking I could paint them a black matt, but I personally love the silver rustiness of them, they are dull not shiny and I am drawn to them. Tod has had this issue before with some of my pieces that I LOVED and they sold.

This brings up an interesting conundrum, that being, there are people tha…

The Geography of Bliss

I'm a third of the way through this book, 'The Geography of Bliss'by Eric Weiner . I love his writing which is chock full of his grumpiness and sardonic humor. He has a chapter on Iceland, particularly focusing for a bit on artists. It appears there are scads of artists in Iceland. Here is a quote:

How can it be that this flyspeck of a nation produces more artists and writers per capita than any other?

"It's because of failure,' says Larus (i'm deleting some so excuse my poor editing)


"Yes, failure doesn't carry a stigma in Iceland. In fact, in a way, we admire failures."

The author found this insight from psychologist MihalyCsikszentmihalyi who wrote in his book FLOW (and I'm quoting all of this from Eric), 'it is not the skills we actually have that determine how we feel but the ones we think we have'

I leave you with that to ponder. Go get the book from your local library, you wont be disappointed.