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”
A San Francisco street corner is where I first met Joan Lazarus nearly two decades ago. She was waiting at the cross walk in tall shoes, sunglasses, auburn hair up in a twist, a dancer’s carriage. We were outside the Cowell Theater in the Marina District, where she was producing the Summerfest/WestWave Dance Festival. I’d heard a lot about her. Dancer, teacher, arts administrator and as it turned out, collector of fine art and fun. Now years later on a glorious Saturday, I’m on my way over the Golden Gate Bridge, hundreds of sailboats skipping over the bay, to talk to Joan in her Marin County home. Continue reading “Collector Profile | Joan Lazarus”
“I am considering selling a piece of artwork that I purchased.
What do I need to know?“
Last month I wrote about coherent collecting, and mentioned the continual evolution of private collections. It’s fun to talk about how artwork joins a collection, but how artwork moves out of a collection is also worth addressing. Possibilities include everything from reselling, charity auction, gifting, to (yikes!) dumping. Anticipating questions about reselling, and curious myself since selling art is part of my work, I’ve looked into the topic. Continue reading “Reselling Artwork”
Big in the news here this week is the reopening of the expanded San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Among the attractions, the Doris and Donald Fisher collection, so vast it needs a multimillion dollar museum to house it. Sort of puts art collecting into a sphere that most of us can’t relate to. Art collections are started, built and shaped one object at a time. Many people have acquired one almost unaware, or at least unlabeled as such. Whether purchased, self created, or collected passively by gifts, it reflects its owners.
Luckily I get to see this process often.
Some things stand out for me about collectors’ choices. Continue reading “Coherent Collecting”
“Illegible”. That’s how the post office labeled a whole pile of my recent mailing of postcards. Pretty shameful for someone who makes their living drawing. Or… as a friend suggested, “they don’t teach cursive anymore.” Well, it was the nudge that took me into bringing our public front a little more up to date. Continue reading “Poor Penmanship?”