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On the last day of January from the main highway that goes past the front of our place; it looks like this so for the upcoming WORLD COMMUNITY ARTS DAY.
I keep telling Ruth if it is beautiful at the conclusion of the LOVE SOLSTICE / FREEFORALLARTWALL I am directing between Feb 14 and Feb 21, we will keep it on the wall until the next WCAD 2010.
It may not be beautiful as it will evolve in free-form graffiti-style.
No telling what baboons may show up to put their imprint on the space, but I can always take it down...
7:18 PM I saw on television this morning the anniversary (?) of the Beatles playing on top of Apple Records, remember that "Joe Joe..." before they got busted by the Bobbies on film, and it put me off in a circle of thought...but that is another story as once was said..
CAMPAIGN TO HIRE ARTISTS TO WORK IN SCHOOLS & COMMUNITIES
ORGANIZE * CREATE * SERVE
!SI, SE PUEDE!
Come to the Founding Meeting of the Tucson Chapter of the newly-formed and blossoming
NATIONAL CAMPAIGN TO HIRE ARTISTS TO WORK IN SCHOOLS & COMMUNITIES
PLAY - www.playarts.org
276 E Congress, Tucson, AZ
bring dish to share and own dishware
Artists are Smart, Hard-Working, "Shovel-Ready", always putting Service to the Community and to The Muse above personal economic gain. Let's join forces and flex our political muscle for the recognition, remuneration and public service employment we deserve and our community so desperately needs.
On Facebook: http://www.new.facebook.com/group.php?gid=36483884735
World Community Arts Day drawing near - posted 30.1.2009
dates: Tuesday 17 February 2009
The 3rd annual World Community Arts Day is almost upon us. If you're
not already involved, visit
to find out how
you can take part. All the organizers ask is that on 17th February you
do an arts project, however small or big. Be creative about an issue
that you believe promotes 'caring and sharing'.
It could be a song, dance, theatre show, drawing, painting, piece of
writing, photograph, lecture, walk, tour, talk, art class - anything
that you feel is creative! It could even be an ongoing project you
wish to highlight. Put your event on a website, mark it 'World
Community Arts day 2009', then send the link to them so they can add
it to their webpage.
The latest email from Rowan and Geno in Senegal:
"so, we are in a tiny town called Tambacouda in south eastern Senegal,
tomorrow we go into the bush to hike and stay in traditional villages. I
will be out of touch for maybe as long as two weeks. but don't worry.....it
is peaceful and safe compared to Dakar
the closest town to where we are going is Kezdoglou....look it up if you get a chance. the people we will be staying with are the Bassarai tribe.
it is sweltering here....African sun is scorching
lots of love....in a month we'll be home...Rowan"
I've been a little sick but I'm better now. Dakar was a trip. More about that later. As you know the trip through Mauritania was long uncomfortable good and bad. Since we arrived in Senegal we've heard credible rumors that the police presence was likely the result of the recent coup and that as of a week ago Mauritania is no longer giving visas at the border. If this is true we were very lucky with our timing.
Were now in Tambacouda the largest town in Senegal's interior. Africa is not for the faint of heart. We arrived here a day ago from Dakar after a nightmarish 14 and a half hour trip by minibus (think minivan with a bleating goat strapped to the storage rack, its piss running down one of the rear windows) The bundle of living chickens made ok fellow passengers but I worried about stepping on their heads. Our top speed was maybe 25MPH. Most of the road was deeply rutted dirt. We've been having some long emotional conversations about having to curtail some of our more ambitious travel plans. It takes so long and takes so much energy to get anywhere here. Tomorrow we ride to kadougou in the south east of the country to visit the Bassarai country. Were hoping to hike through traditional villages and see chimps and other wildlife. I'm dying for some nature and exercise. More later,
Hmmm....in these days I am getting our little escape house ready for excursions. Sometimes when I look at all the old equipment that is parked on our property I fantasize about taking off on great expeditions to nowhere...
I just remembered, that is a habit of mine ever since I was about 9 or 10. Too bad my daughter caught the disease...
1. Gypsy wagons. 2. Painting the interior. 3. A mess for awhile. 4. Rear view. 5. Fantasy travels. 6. Places to go.
For some reason I began thinking about a report on the Mylai massacre I wrote at University of Arizona, and if you are curious link here.
No idea what the connection of previous thought was which led to next. I call those patterns, MIND FARTS.
For anyone who read the entry for Jan. 23, about John Bolton who wants to do international busking, you can get in touch with him: firstname.lastname@example.org
As much as I feel compelled to put something on this page everyday, a habit descended from writing in journals for over forty years, now I sit down at the computer and a great sense of nothing comes over me---something that rarely happened when I was just scribbling in my journal.
The obvious reason being I was not self conscious in doing that form---after all, no one would ever look at the uttering of my individual muttering.
But here, on this open web who knows who or why a few people want to see what I am thinking or doing?
Now, when I write on this page, I drop most of what my free-form thinking used to do, that is, babble like a bird in the tree with no concern whether it was meaningful or not...
Hence that is why often I sit at this page and my brain is blank.
Apparently I am more talented in babbling than being profound.
The latest email from Rowan in Dakar, Senegal:
"Well, Geno and I are definitely going to be hardened world travelers after Africa. Much like New York, if you can survive Africa, you can survive ANYWHERE on the planet. it is hard to put into words how complex, corrupt, fucked up, vibrant and beautiful this country is, I don't think I will ever truly understand the complexity, too much for my brain. Dakar is a trip. We thought we had a handle on the street vendor harassment in Morocco, but Dakar brings it to a whole new level, you have to walk the streets with hard ass armor on, or you get eaten alive, scary at first, but you eventually learn how to roll with it. It has been a wild and weird trip so far, very different from our South American voyage, this one seems so much more difficult and scary...but we are being careful and learning to enjoy the chaos that is Afrique. I feel as though my heart cannot hold anymore sorrow for this crazy place but I also feel myself growing with wisdom and compassion witnessing absolute poverty, hopelessness and suffering. What a world we live in. If I bring anything back from this, it is how fucking fortunate we are to live in the United States, and to live in New Mexico, there is no other place I would rather live at this point. Tomorrow we head 9 hours into southern Senegal on the Guinea border to stay at a wildlife reserve, filled with monkeys, lions and elephants. It will be good for Geno and I to be in nature. from there we maybe go into tribal lands. Bassarai country to hike and stay in small villages. w will see. Will email where I can..."
As for what I am up to...hmmm, several things, and trying to juggle priorities...
The big push at the moment is getting our little camper fixed up for a journey to Tucson. We will visit my sister Ruby and oldest brother Red. In between that , the Gem Show and a trip to Nogales, Mexico so Ruth can get a few things for her shop.
Meanwhile I am still puttering with the FREEFORALLARTWALL which at the moment still looks like an ART-JUNK-PILE.
1. The gate section. 2. Fence on highway. 3. Detail. 4. Whole front area to be developed. 5. WCAD part so far.
I had an amazing day.
But best of all was an email from old colleague and friend, John Bolton, as follows:
Dear Friends and Colleagues.
As you know, I donít do group emails but hereís the exception.
I wanted to tell you two things and ask you one thing.
First, Iím going
to be incommunicado from 7th Feb. - 11th April
inclusive. Iím off to Green Gulch Farm,
Next, I have been dreaming of a story-telling show since 1975 and taking active steps to write it down and collect songs and stories since 1992. Recently I did some work on it with Merophie Carr and finally performed in Rosemary Forbesí house late last year. She wrote; ďMagical. Such a beautiful, intimate and very special experience.Ē
I loved doing it so hereís the question; would any of you be interested in hosting a night of wonderful stories from around the world with songs and bits of trivia thrown in? I would come to your place (in any countryÖ) and take an audience of between 8 and 12 on an hourís adventure around the house or flat and tell stories as we go. In the spirit of our straightened economic times I would busk it. In other words, the host would organize the people to come, I would give them an envelope and the audience or host would make what contribution they saw fit. (Iím thinking of mid May- mid July for Australia).
So, let me know what you think, but if you donít get back to me before early February donít expect an early reply.
With all good wishes,
Of which I replied:
Okay John, your song is too sweet
I can not resist
of course you're coming back
to New Mexico
By the way
You made me laugh
because I remembered
how crazy we are
1. Inauguration at home with pals. 2. Birthday present. 3.BD present. 4. New Sculpture material. 5. Material. 6.FREEFORARTWALL.7.FREEFO again. 8. Again. 9. Full area. 10. Another view.
Wow, what a day, watching the inauguration, getting breakfast ready for trusted old friends, an email from Rowan and Geno...
"we have made it safely to saint louis, senegal, a little island north of
dakar.our trip through western sahara and mauritania was strange,scary and
complicated,more about that later, we are absolutely exhausted from
traveling for 6 days. internet is hard to find here, so i might not be in
touch quite so often. senegal is incredible, we are definatly in black
africa filled with beautiful colorful people.
aaahhh africa, what a complicated,intense and fascinating land. our rough plan is to spend some time in dakar,then head to mali, then back through southern senegal,through huge nature parks. we come home in 6 weeks, iam looking forward to getting back to normal.
lots of love, I will email when i can.
ps look up st.louis, it is beautiful."
Its been tough journey to get here. weve been in saint louis on th senegalese coast for just a day. Were allowing ourselves some mellow time to shake off the fatigue and stress of the last several days traveling through Western Sahara and Mauritania. Were adjusting to the subsaharan french colonial vibe. I find this change as refreshing as the cool breeze that comes off the water here. Aside from the obvious ethnic difeerences rowan and i are both enjoying the mellowness of the islam here. I enjoy seeing women that are openly sexy naked men washing themselves in the river and little kids peeing in the traffic median. I dont feel disrespectful wearing a t shirt.
to get here we caught a 7 hour bus from oarzazate to agadir on the coast. We then waited 4 hours to catch the 11 hour night bus south to layoune where upon we discovered we had just missed the morning bus to dakhla. The next bus was scheduled for 8.30 that evening. We decided to wait. We wanted to wander around but the bus station was closed so we had sit around with our bags all day. The bus was a couple of hours late when it arrived with its pissed off passengers. we found seats only to discover that we had mistakenly taken a guys seat. We appologized and assumed hed just find another but the bus was overbooked. The guy had a fit cursing us as americans and talking trash to the other passengers. after a day and a night on a bus and another day waiting for one I was ready to demonstrate some excessive american aggression abroad when another passengers faux ticket was discovered. The false ticket holder was booted off the bus and we finally headed out onto a road so bumpy Rowan and I struggled get more than a few hours sleep. I was shaken awake at 7am and taken to a police office where delirious with sleep deprivation I answered questions about my journey. We arrived in dahkla that morning and were dropped off infront of the hotel safari where we were planning to arrange a ride into mauritania. We discovered there was a car leaving in less than an hour and after getting an eyefull the military outpost that is dahkla we agreed to go hoping that our transport was legit. It was six hours to the border. Along the way we saw clusters of euro camper vans on the beach passed road signs warning drivers to stay on the road due to land mines. Despite this we saw lots of euro travel vans parked in clusters along the beaches. This gave way to comletely empty territory with skull and crossboned signs warning drivers to stay on the road due to landmines. at the border we were made to switch into a different car. this new vehicle proceeded through a police checkpoint and on into the roadless and mined no mans land between the two borders. after paying for our visas we head back onto the road south. What followed was a very uncomfortable ride to noukchatt involving no less than 15 police stops unnecessary delay baggage searches and harrasment. we were running very late. We got to the capital at 1 in morning discovering that our driver had no knowledge of the place. after over an hour of searching for an open hotel that didnýt cost 100 dollars a night and being harrassed by ever drunker police we all gave up. One of the passengers invited us to stay with his family. Despite being a local he then proceeded to get lost. eventually we found his place and stayed the night on his couch. The next day he refused to allow us to find a hotel. We decided to accept his hospitality. we visited his extended family and ate with his cousins and aunts. the next day we were fleeced changing money and took three taxis and a ferry to the senegalese boarder and then two more taxis to our hotel in saint louis. More later
I told Ruth this morning I was worried about tomorrow.
The obvious. Inauguration ring any bells?
In fact I don't even want to mention my worst paranoia.
So that is why I am focusing all of my creative energy into what has turned out by complete serendipity,
I call it as I found it on my workshop fence,
which was simply said a part of the logos of another festival.
So there it is and here it is.
There are four more words:
BELIEVE GROK BURN PURGE
I hesitate to put them on the fence.
8:37 PM Well, hmmm, it is late and I feel good.
1. LOVE SOLSTICE is announced. 2. Yes, Love Solstice. 3. It is here. 4. Yes, the very first.
5. Announcing. 6. LOVE SOLSTICE begins.
1. Getting spare tire ready. 2. Where the Spare tire. 3. Beginning WCAD Sculpture/Paint/Mural. 4. Painting. 5. More Painting.
6. More. 7. And more. 8. First section in place. 9.The whole area. 10. Detail. 11. The WCAD area where event will be staged.
While my daughter loves to rough it out in the desert Ruth and I rough it in our spa, with just enough bath bubbles.
My daughter Rowan's latest email:
"so we have returned safely from the great Sahara, such a powerful and
magical place, I have such respect for the Bedouins and Touregs who live in
this land, what tough people. it was a full moon there. so we had moonlit
walks by ourselves in the dunes, very special. got caught in a sand storm on
our camels. and the first night we slept in the desert got completely
covered and blasted by sand. what an experience0 the area is called Erg
Chigaga and Draa valley if you want to look it up.
we have decided we are going to rough it and go by bus to Senegal. it seems like it is doable. but I am not looking forward to spending the next four days on a bus. I will email where I can. but if you don't hear from me in the next four or five days. means we are on the road. don't worry....next stop....West Africa, I am very excited."
I went to a web site to see where they were and found lots of photos, of which two are above...and they got me thinking about a funny kind of thing. First, from the beginning I tried my best to dissuade Rowan from going off to Africa and for the life of me, could not fathom what her fascination with a bunch of big sand-hills jeleba-robed-camel-herders was about.
Then when I saw the picture of the camels going through the dunes, a vivid memory came back to me I had completely forgotten.
From the 1st grade to probably the 5th grade in school, or when I was between 7 and 10 years old, one picture I drew over and over was a jeleba-robed-camel-herder sitting on a camel some where in the sand-hills of nowhere. I was completely fascinated with the pure beauty of such a thing. I have no idea why and as far as I can remember had no one telling me about the intrigues of a distant desert...perhaps it came from an Abbot and Costello or Hope and Crosby comedy about jeleba-robed-camel-herders.
Funny how things manifest themselves...
I'm not exactly sure which way this is going at the moment but the FREEFO-ALLAR-TWALL out in the front of our house is going through daily deposits of different ideas and old art work that has been rotting around the studio...it is an experiment in visual chaos but maybe something will transpire and hopefully other people will begin to participate...
A photo from a friend with the caption, "HOW TO KNOW IF YOU ARE IN A GAY BAR"...and no, that is not Ruth.
I have not mentioned my daughter Rowan for a few days.
I just emailed back to her, "You never cease to amaze me."
This is what made me respond such:
"so tomorrow we go into the sahara by camel and 4x4. we are going with a
safe and reputable travel agency. we will spend 2 to 3 nights in the desert
exploring the great sand dunes;kasbas, and oasis of the south., five hours
on a camel....whew....we should get back by tues or wed. just on case the
agency is called desert dreams based out of ourzazat. today we explored the
famous kasba of ait benadou where gladiator and lawrence of arabia were
shot. lots of love
so far I think we have decided to get to mali and senegal by bus.we have asked around and although there is little info...it seems to be safe enough. I will let you know for sure
Too tired...will explain later. Oh Gee, it is easier just to go to FREEFORALLARTWALL
I have started the preparation for WCAD 2009
1. The whole front area where the FREEFORALLARTWALL will happen between Feb. 14-21
The fourth and last event will be the actual WCAD event DURING THE WEEK OF February 17, 2009 in which we will have bon fires, flea markets, music and art actions on the wall taking place.
All of the pieces created on the wall will be auctioned, if not sold already, and a percentage of the proceeds will be put in a special account for future WCAD events in our area.
eee-GADS....I just re-applied as a substitute teacher...yurg!
Oh well, two or three days a week is not so bad, and when I am in class normally I can get on with my famous novel...
In a way, I am curious to see if the high school kids are any worse/better than a couple years ago.
I stopped subbing in the elementary levels because they drove me totally nuts.
Some illustrations for THE CRYSTAL TIGHT ROPE
Aside from that, I wonder daily how my daughter and her beau are doing in Marrakesh.
I spent the last three days "organizing" my junk pile out in the little shack behind my studio. The shack I have always used as my place to do large sculptures, but for some time now it has served as a "temporary" refuge site.
Being the kind of mind I have, the more cluttered my work area gets, (as it does during every project) the more cluttered my thinking becomes...so there is a certain point where thoughts suddenly jam up like a log-pile in the river and nothing goes nowhere.
Last week I decided for this new year, I am going to seriously produce sculpture again.
I had to make my work-space more functional.
1. Front Gate and Xmas display. 2. Studio proper in chaos too. 3. Moving wood. 4. Scattered junk. 5. More scattered junk.
6. More 7. Junk shelved. 8. More shelved junk. 9. More. 10. And more...
Rowan will be on her way to Marrakech Monday, which above is one image...hey looks like a shopping mall parking lot in Phoenix...
I got an email from her this morning. The news from North Africa is warning tourists to avoid , western Sahara, Mali and Timbuktu...where Rowan and Geno want to go to next...I wrote back and told her to take the advice seriously.
The mess in the Gaza Strip is spilling all over the world. I don't know what anyone can do about it...
HAPPY NEW YEAR TO YOU
My resolution has been in the making for some time...
For at least two years now my studio has been just a storage unit for all the junk and scrap wood I could collect with the idea some day it would be "sculpture" or some form of art...well, hmmm, somehow it has just remained junk. So New Years day, I actually began the resurrection of that idea and began the process of moving my "art pieces" into more organized position.