Most of the dance forms I worked in involved the spoken word. My own words appeared in my own work and the work of others. When my career as a dancer began to wind down, I spent more and more time writing. Out of dance in the late nineties with injuries I wrote a screenplay and actually got paid for it. Boy, did that put the hook in. Continue reading “John – on writing and “Apparitions””
A beautiful whale bone was lent to me by an artist/collector who wondered if I’d like to use it for a painting. Yes! How could I pass this up? Bones are a subject I love to explore. It turned out to be a bone of multiple personalities, and it presented me with challenges. This is the story of the painting and the bone. Continue reading “A Whale Tale”
On a recent trip to the mountains, I took my pastels with me. First time on the road. They’re messy and bulky. And visceral. I get my hands dirty. It turned out to be the right thing.
Using good pastels feels like drawing with butter on sandpaper. Continue reading “Pastels”
Working with people to find the right place for a piece, or the right piece for a place, often involves lighting considerations. Here are some ways to think about light as you place and rotate the art you own, as well as make new art selections. Continue reading “Lighting Art”
Four years ago, ghosts began appearing in John’s poems. Tromping through a Houston house of jazz. Inhabiting a deserted New Mexico homestead. In the person of a promiscuous eighty-year-old Bowery tenement super. The Fantods.
Inanimate objects were taking on life in my paintings. Bones. Gloves. Chairs. Sharp things.
We decided to embark on a loosely defined, multiple art form project, Apparitions at an Exhibition, to explore the phenomena. Continue reading “Apparitions – new art & poetry book”
Several years ago during a visit to Santa Fe, I saw one of the most interesting presentations of fine art I’d seen in a museum gallery.* It left a big impression. Next to each painting, there was a display of relevant documentation by the artist. Field notes, sketches, photographs. Paste-ups with drawings and photos combined. It gave me a sense of something being worked out for that specific painting, not just appearing fully formed onto a canvas. I couldn’t get enough. Continue reading “Studio Records | the trail of a painting”
This year I displayed the following essay in the studio and it turned out to capture people’s attention:
I’ve been doing Open Studios since 2007, spring and fall. I set it up like a gallery. I’m aware that some people are expecting to see an “artistic” mess. Continue reading “Where’s the Mess? | open studios”
The story behind the straitjacket paintings is important, because every fold & crease has its history. These garments got their knocks in the institution of performing arts. My friend Bob Taxin, magician & performer, owns three, which he let me use for my series of still lifes. That’s him in the photo, escaping (successfully) from a straitjacket while hanging from Continue reading “The Story Behind “The Knot”, a straitjacket painting”
A river or an ocean. Puddle, pond, pool.
Do they hold your fascination as they do mine?
Staring at water is something I really get into.
Looking back, I’m surprised to find so much water in my paintings. It was not a calculated theme. Continue reading “Why is Water So Compelling?”
The impossible happened late last month. Two paintings, puloined from the collector’s home in a burglary three years ago, resurfaced and have been returned to their owner. Finally reunited at a police station, the officer on duty said “this never happens”. The moment of recovery was ecstatic. The paintings are in my care now, getting cleaned up and repaired. Soon they’ll be home where they belong. The story illustrates the often avoided subject of misadventure; here are 7 tips for starters: Continue reading “The Purloined Paintings – 7 tips”