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Le Temps Perdu

2 Feb

When I was invited to send two small pieces to the StolenSpace Love/Hate show on somewhat tight timeline, I thought it would be a good challenge. I don’t believe that I’ve painted anything under 4 feet in height in many, many years, nor have I often tried to respond to an assigned theme.

Luckily I was told I could respond to that theme in as loose and abstract a manner as I wanted. For both 18″x18″ pieces (tiny, fergodssake!) I’ve painted mockingbirds engaged in the more ambiguous stages of the mating ritual. Love? Hate? A feathery fluster.

I was interested in further pursuing my recent practice of combining wildlife with images of the most human landscapes, overbuilt environments, decadent interiors, symbols of status and civilization. In searching about for some imagery of bars and taverns (where better to engage in ambiguous mating battles?) I came across some very interesting, poetic neon signs, and thought I should give it a shot: maybe I could paint neon.

My response to “Love” features the amorously engaged mockingbirds, double-exposed with the neon sign for Le Temps Perdu in Paris. The bar’s name translates to “The Lost Time”.

My response to “Hate” features another tussle, and the sign for a Belgian bar called A La Mort Subite… “To the Sudden Death”.

Then again, you might well switch which painting is associated with which emotion and find something more in these. Who am I to say?

I am not sure about small paintings, but I might try one again.

As for the neon, I think I can paint it! It bears another attempt.

In fact, I think I’ll go work on one right now.

Starships

31 Jan

Well, here is a new process option that has my eyes wide!

Invited to make a print for the upcoming StolenSpace “Love and Hate” show, I immediately thought to create an elaborate, hand-lettered piece.

Granted, I very often think of – and indeed follow though on – creating elaborate, hand-lettered pieces. However, it had never before occurred to me that I might scan such pieces, and have them printed on luscious, thick stock in interesting and colorful inks. But here we are.

Here is a sneak preview of my print, silkscreened right around the corner at The Headlight Hotel.

Here’s a detail showing the flip of the gold ink. This midnight blue and gold colorway will be exclusive to StolenSpace in an edition of 50. Stay tuned for future print releases though, dig?

The quote I’ve used here is by Jeanette Winterson, an author who has endured as one of my very favorite for her elaborate and evocative wordplay. I’d love to send her one of these prints but she’s kind of a big deal; her website seems to imply that I’d need to, you know, send a starship in order to make contact with here. Still… if you know her… tell her to drop me a line. Hopefully not of the “cease and desist” variety.

“Two things significantly distinguish human beings from the other animals; an interest in the past and the possibility of language. Brought together they make a third: Art. The invisible city not calculated to exist. Beyond the lofty pretensions of the merely ceremonial, long after the dramatic connivings of plitical life, like it or not, it remains. Time past eternally present and undestroyed.” 
-Jeanette Winterson, Art and Lies

“Know thyself,’ said Socrates.
Know thyself,’ said Sappho, ‘and make sure that the Church never finds out.”
-Jeanette Winterson, Art and Lies