BLOG PAGE JANUARY 2010
Blog entries: Jan.2 Jan.4 Jan.6 Jan.10 Jan.11 Jan.13 Jan.14 Jan.15 Jan.16 Jan.19 Jan.20 Jan.22 Jan.24 Jan.25 Jan.28
HOME it's greenBelow is the second list of titles I put together a few years ago. So far, doing the first 27 in Nov. 09 .
Starting with the title, I give it a one sentence leader, then try my best to get to the point in 300 words..
mindlessness over matterlessness
Okay, if I am so smart, how come it's taken me so long to come to this moment to try to say how I would do it differently. Yes, it is life that I refer to---past---present---future.
There is no question...only to act as if I know, as if I have always known and accept this gracious gift of living for what it is.
So what, if Van Gogh lost control of his poetry---so what if humanity made a mockery of his pain in a San Francisco art museum---it doesn't matter.
I am alive.
I am fighting.
I am learning to give and to give in.
Van Gogh was then yet as you are with us this moment.
Vincent still lives, still feels.
That is the difference of what matters. Spirits don't evaporate like farts in the wind.
Van Gogh you stupid shit! Why did you do that? Could you not see the sun?
"Who are you my friend to say these things to me? Such impertinent questions!"
I know, I know! I'm hardly anybody at all. I know, yeah? I've got a long way to go. Listen! I don't mean to put you down. you really tried hard. I guess I might have murdered myself if I'd been you---but that was your mistake. I don't equate it any other way. Sure it's a pain in the ass to be an artist---you, me, and John Lennon know all about that. But you know what?
You gave up!
"I gave up! You fool! You do not know the first thing of giving up! What suffering have you had?"
Oh for Chrise sake! What makes you think you are the only one who has suffered? If you're gonna talk to me don't get so high and mighty indignant---you think I'm insensitive to suffering? Get off your fuck'n high horse. You're not the only one who did something important and nobody noticed.
Listen. I'm not just say'n nasty things about you, Vincent, cause I'm jealous. For one, you probably disserve a lot more---really I'm on your side. Look! I'm trying to help you, as well as myself. But you! You got yourself in this crazy limbo because you bumped your self off.
Part of me helping you and myself is to know why you did it. Now come on---tell me why?
Silence. There is only silence in the room now. The spirit is removed. Shadows fall from the candlelight and the fireplace squeaks popping sparks, but not a word from Van Gogh. Honestly, I wonder if that man will ever grow up.
I know he is here, only he does not to play anyone's game but his own. Crap. What a bad sport!
"Have you only foul names to call me?"
So. You came back heh? Well, how about it? Do you want to answer my question or do you just want to talk? Really though, I 'm not interested in idle cit-chat. I would like it if you told me why you had to kill yourself.
"You would not understand if I told you."
That's a possibility all right.
"I find it ridiculous to speak to such a man as you to begin with...but...I suppose it may do you a bit of good."
Oh brother! You're so damned righteous Vincent! Why can't you face the fact that maybe my life has not been any easier than yours? For that matter there have been a whole lot of people that gave all they had and know one knows about them. There's probably a lot of those people that didn't even get a smile for all they gave.
"You are such an idealistic fool."
All right. Get back at me and call me names, but it's true, people have given a lot of things...you are not alone.
"Trifling trash. The lot of humanity has been nothing but greed infested vermin. Mankind has never had an ounce of benevolence in it's twisted existence except to save it's own rotted heart."
Vincent, you know you are just fucking unbelievable. After all this time you are still so bitter.
"Bitter! You imbecile! You have no idea of the essence of my passion. You are misguided in the depths of buffoonery. What you think of life is nothing but a juvenile dream of romance."
Boy, you like to hit back don't you? Okay, so I'm a romantic. Big deal. I admit it. At least I still have both my ears.
Vincent? Vincent, where are you? What's the matter, I strike a nerve? Holy mackerel, this is nuts. Look. I don't want to get into a name calling game with you. I want to understand you. I just want to be friends so we both can be better...come on, Vincent?
Okay, I just said that because I thought cutting off your ear and sending it to your girlfriend was a terribly romantic thing to do. I'm not making fun of you, honest...
Oh for crying out loud! What a kid. I say one thing and off you go into a silent pout. Okay. I'm sorry. I apologize. That was mean and unjustified.
"What do you want of me?"
Oh, back again? Thanks Vincent. I thought you'd gone for good. Really, I'm sorry, but I already told you what I want to know---why did you commit suicide?
"I do not want to talk about it."
Okay...what do you want to talk about?
Come on, I know you want to talk of otherwise you wouldn't have stuck around. Hey, you want to talk art?
"Please, do not say a word of painting nonsense, I never want to think of it again."
Yeah, well, I can understand that, especially after seeing that exhibit your descendents were showing all over the states. I mean, not because it was not good or anything like that. You know I love your stuff. I just thought all of those fat heads that came to ogle your work were jerks. It was one of the biggest crimes I ever saw.
"And you were not involved I suppose?"
Vincent you know I am one of your biggest fans. You were the first artist that ever inspired me. Sure, I have more to learn about it, but I wasn't like the rest of those bird brains.
"What makes you so positive of that? Were you not goggle-eyed and blabbing your foolish mind just as much as they? No one has ever understood my work except for Theo. You and the lot are fools of the worst kind."
"Hey I don't get it. How can you say such stupid shit? I cried the day I saw your exhibit. I felt so much pain for you, for your work, your life. It was all a crime---and damn you. You know I felt for you. But no, you act the idiot and a cold hearted one at that. Fuck you. Why should I even think about you? You don't give a damn for anyone but old persecuted Van Gogh. Yeah, none understand you. You disserve to be crucified...
Silence. Again with the silence. I guess we're having an argument. The fucker finally pissed me off. Yeah, I lost my compassion. God, what a dope he is. Now I don't want to talk to him. I can't think straight about what's going on. We are just making each other sicker. This is what lovers fight about. Bullshit. Friends don't do this crap to each other. The son-of-a-bitch. Who does he think he is? Yeah, lovers leap and friends find. I feel better just saying it like it is. Anyway...it's a fucked up curse to identify with such a jerk. I should bury him again. He never disserved resurrection, or a friend or compassion or anything. Come on man, get yourself together and stop talking to the wind...
Cool down to sifted moments and let time pass. Let it go...remembering when you hurt more than you want to remember...
San Francisco, July 1968. The weather had been that off and on cold morning fog that fades into warm afternoons. There was the nut house in Presidio, my buddy Pete, sweet little Angel and her apartment on Pine and Jones street full of day trippers, night creatures, shattered lovers, lost children, running freaks popping in, pulling out...all of us crazy crazies. Inside eyes pull back layers, glimpses of madmen screaming tears in the middle of the night. It was a cold shiver slithering up my back into the soft moist warm dreams of friends lost and found...
Where am I this moment. Always this moment. Surfaces. So many surfaces laced together into one body, one time.
The nut house. The army. Van Gogh.
How do they fit together?
Pete in the Presidio nut house. Little Angel scratching my back yowling like a tomcat while the lights went on the high rise apartments around the roof top. The Stripper in Portland. Vietnam. My Lai. All of that, a thousand years ago. All of it a fast connection of kinked knots. An embezzlement of the mind. Yeah, what a profitable relationship of madness exchanging bank account numbers...
The lock-up of Presidio. Am I still insane? Was I ever sane? Tide pool. Reflections of time eternal.
Was it 1968 or 1970? I can't remember. The Van Gogh exhibition. The rotating exhibition old Charley Van Gogh had. Maybe that wasn't his name. It doesn't matter. Golden Gate Park. Yes, yes, it was there. The Museum of Art. The line of people. Pull my friend, pull. To remember that is important. How was it?
We got up early. We didn't want to stand in line. That's right. Three hours before the museum opened its doors. It was a beautiful San Francisco morning. One of those mornings when the fog burns off and the sun stabs golden blades through the park's trees.
People fuse into the green and mist. Down the shafts of light the sun glitters like lint in a dusty room.
It was a day of invitation and Zen balance. The faces blur. Who was with me?
I remember the feeling of being alone, and yet I know there was somebody cruising with me. Yes oh yes, cruising for burgers. Lally-gagging into the mood of seeing serious art. Art done by the madman genius, Vincent Van Gogh. Vincent the maligned, Vincent the misunderstood.
It was a special day for me. I had only seen one original years before, in Oregon. I was about to see more mirrors of reflected misery. Van Gogh in depth. Van Gogh in honor and glory. Van Gogh the magnificent displayed for the public.
I was prepared to have my head cracked open and filled with divine measurement. After all, he was my hero. On top of that, I even resembled Van Gogh. All of my friends told me so, sooner or later.
Moving past the Japanese Gardens, out of the shadows, sun gold leafed sidewalks lead to the museum. I see the crowd. Three hours before opening, already a crowd four abreast and a block long. I don't want to wait. That is what I think. The army. Lines. Crowds. No, no, no.
I start to walk away. No, I can't. The little white dog chases the black one and the magnets join tail to tail. The line is full of talk and clumsy anticipation. One hour, two hours, three. The crowd has grown to four or five blocks long. How is this possible?
Yes, Van Gogh, they want to see you. Factory workers, taxi cab drivers, suburbanites, teachers, students, whores, evangelists---they are here to see Van Gogh, the loser of losers.
The doors open and the crowd like sand at the top of the hour clock begins to fall into the museum, past the relics of time, past the refined art of old masters, past rich art for rich people.
Fall, fall, down to the savage art of the wretched one; the one who painted for the poor.
My God, at last I was surrounded by him, the Vincent. I stand amazed.
Yes, of course the paintings are beautiful.
What is that noise?
People. So many people the room is a sardine can.
There is a red velvet rope around the perimeter. The curators answer questions of how come, when, where, why, who and whatever. "Yes, Van Gogh was very miserable at this point in his life..."and blah, blah, blah. "He was so despondent at this place that he..." blah, blah and blahed... "Vincent was progressively more...." yet blah de blah blahed.... "Of course his brother Theo was very aware that..."blah, blah and wambam blayhehah...
The room was shrinking. It was getting difficult to walk. Still the sand poured in. Where were all of those people coming from? More. Yet more. The museum officials had not anticipated such a crush. The guards and curators began to see an emergency situation was occurring in front of their eyes. Noise rippled through the echoic salon. Guards demand lines formed. Hop, one two three, march people, eyes right and see your Van Gogh. Click, see, move. Tromp, tromp tromp. Eyes right, Yes Starry Starry Night. Move on people.
The middle of the gallery is full of people anxious to form a new line. Insect lines close to the velvet rope 6 feet from the walls of hung Van Gogh joyful miseries.
The insects continue to march, Tromp, tromp, tromp. Such big bugs, they block the view to anyone not exactly in front of a painting. If you are not in the bug line, tough luck. You can watch the ceiling.
There they go. I stand in the center and watch unbelieving of what is happening this day to poor, poor Van Gogh, who no one but his brother, in his own time, thought he was any kind of an artist.
Oh, Vincent, the poor pitiful son-of-a-bitch. You see what they are doing?
Tromp, tromp, tromp, eyes right, and you have exactly three, point five seconds to see genius in front of you. Ho. people march! Tromp, tromp, tromp, eyes right.
Oh the multitudes, they are so merciless.
Van Gogh, you are spinning out there, aren't you? I can hear you groaning. You didn't want it this way did you? Look at them Vincent. Blessed are the meek. Look. They are an army of ants. peering, sputtering for a few seconds at a time at each piece of your pain.
They are wasting no time. They make quick work of you my friend. That's real gratitude for you.
Abundantly rewarded. So many of them Vincent. At last your art is beheld by mankind. Blessed abundantly. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Oh Vincent, I feel like crying. Poor, poor Van Gogh. Van Gogh, you stupid shit!
PAINTINGS for sale
Good Bye January...can you believe how time rolls away?
A short story...
Snow is all that is happening, so it looks like I will not be down at the river for a while. The woodpile dwindles...about the same rate as my addition of words to this daily log/blog.
One way to get over being bored, depressed and feeling sorry for yourself is go make completely crazy sculpture that only you and the woods understand...
The day is gray and slushy snow falls straight down. The Cerrillos hills just as gray, somehow look elegant, hesitant but satisfied it is winter ongoing...
Being in the rut I am, I spent some time recently working on my lifetime work (it appears) The Harlequin Moon Trilogy, and even more of a dubious energy expenditure by applying to 5 separate public art competitions...I may even begin to believe in a God or Gods if any of this futility of creative projectionism occurs.
But still...I do not live in Haiti...where it makes me wonder how anyone can believe in any kind of God when their whole world is dead and may get deadlier...
For anyone out there who is reading my UNFINISHED third book, THE CRYSTAL TIGHT ROPE in the International famous HARLEQUIN MOON TRILOGY, follow here for latest paragraphs....
Watching the tube became more than grievous with ordeal in Haiti. I turned to local news to discover New Mexico is not much joy to watch either, although on a lower scale of murder, rape robbery and pillage with the occasional high school teacher plunking juvenile sex queens in the hallway storage closets...all in all, this whole planet (if one follows the digital frenzy) seems to be an insufferable mess of sadness.
It would do me just fine to drop off this spinning wheel of broadcast ugly binge and keep my eye on the very fine white line that runs through the center of my own back yard...at least for awhile until I feel like the human race is not a cursed idea by cosmic jokers.
Okay, here is the last of the "Angel" series for maybe until next Xmas...
I may be depressed, but I am not in Haiti, nor anyone I know...of course it is ugly what people must endure now on that island.
On the other hand of abstract pain...
I was thinking about my response to tragedy in other parts of the world, and felt guilty because I have no grief ...so I went back to something that weird rabbi said...
background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but we are
responsible for who we become. "
Probably it is just the effects of coming down after a huge adrenalin rush needed to get through the calamity of existence, or it is just my bi-polar manic being, or it is because this world seems more insane every day, or because all of the above and more than I even know....but even though the weather has been great for the first time in weeks, I am in a vacant/lost mode, like the sensation one has being in a train station in a foreign country, having very little money, no available friends or family and in all consciousness, the UNIVERSE does not give one wink of concern of whether you exist or not...
Hmmm, possibly many people have never been in that train station...I seem to keep returning to it year after year, both literally and metaphorically.
...still....having been here many times, the one thing I know is NOTHING is permanent and this tide presently caught in the Sargasso of nowhere will eventually dissipate and some unruly wind will blow again...how's that for mixed metaphors?
Life is slowly returning to a normal pace, or as normal as it will ever get around here with 3 cats, 2 dogs, 2 peahens, 3 chickens, 3 ducks, 2 dead parents, one crazy artist and 1 nutty wonder woman...Ruth's grief for her father and mother is taking perspective and life goes on.
Meanwhile Gina gets marginally better every day, but still only has use of 3 legs, which is bad because she will never be the unbelievable swift cheetah-like runner again, but is good because that certainly stops her from leaping over the fence into the perils beyond...
New stuff is slow in coming but how about a table snake?
I gotta think of something fun for this year, as this no fun business is nuts...
It seems like the tsunami of life is flowing back out to the sea, and now we are standing in a flushed existence with the feeling it will be beautiful again...but not right away...
This is from a Rabbi's Yom Kippur Speech. It is worth putting on my page again to remind me of how fragile, complex and precious this life is...
that you can do something in an instant that will give you heartache for life.
that it is taking me a long time to become the person I want to be.
that you should always leave loved ones with loving words. It may be the last time you see them.
that you can keep going long after you can't.
that we are responsible for what we do, no matter how we feel.
that either you control your attitude or it controls you.
that regardless of how hot and steamy a relationship is at first, the passion fades and there had better be something else to take its place.
that heroes are the people who do what has to be done when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences.
that money is a lousy way of keeping score.
that my best friend and I can do anything or nothing and have the best time.
that sometimes the people you expect to kick you when you're down will be the ones to help you get back up.
that sometimes when I'm angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn't give me the right to be cruel.
that true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance. Same goes for true love.
that just because someone doesn't love you the way you want them to doesn't mean they don't love you with all they have.
that maturity has more to do with what types of experiences you've had and what you've learned from them and less to do with how many birthdays you've celebrated.
that your family won't always be there for you. It may seem funny, but people you aren't related to can take care of you and love you and teach you to trust people again. Families aren't biological.
that no matter how good a friend is, they're going to hurt you every once in a while and you must forgive them for that.
that it isn't always enough to be forgiven by others. Sometimes you have to learn to forgive yourself.
that no matter how badly your heart is broken the world doesn't stop for your grief.
that our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but we are responsible for who we become.
that just because two people argue, it doesn't mean they don't love each other. And just because they don't argue, it doesn't mean they do.
that we don't have to change friends if we understand that friends change.
that you shouldn't be so eager to find out a secret. It could change your life forever.
that two people can look at the exact same thing and see something totally different.
that your life can be changed in a matter of hours by people who don't even know you.
that even when you think you have no more to give, when a friend cries out to you, you will find the strength to help.
that credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.
that the people you care about most in life are taken from you too soon.
PHOTOS AND RANDOM
Discovered there is another artist doing similar stuff to me...
Three of my brothers and me on 1950. 1986, and 1996.
Yesterday I met with four of Madrid's most talented artists. We discussed future collaborative projects.
I brought up the WCAD Feb.17th event and invited them to take part in any way they could...
Left to right: Al, James, Richard and David
We did not come to any firm decision other than agreeing to meet again at some near date.
PRELIMANARY IDEA EVOLVED
Many years ago I lived in Eureka, California. Ferndale, a small town nearby had an annual festival called the DOWNHILL MOBILE MUSICAL JUNK SCULPTURE RACE. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2003/05/11/TR295518.DTL
...anyway, In 1976 I directed my version of the race in Edinburgh, Scotland for the summer "PLAYSCHEMES" involving nearly a 1,000 children and adults,
It was great fun. I have thought of doing the idea again but there is no comparable social networks in our local village to share the burden of such an endeavor, so at this point I am trying to convince a small group of creative individuals to do it in another way...
What I am proposing this coming Monday, January 11, is that on WCAD we take my converted van through the village, where it will be painted, sculpted, with performers and documenters doing a kind Ken Kesey Merry Pranksters show.
My van after the LOVE-IN of October 2009 in Madrid
...and the van recycled...
At the moment I am calling it the
MOBILE MUSICAL MURAL SCULPTURE THEATER...
Now to see the interest of others to help me get it together...
One idea for fun is to participate in this year's WORLD COMMUNITY ARTS DAY, which official date is February 17th. My idea (at the moment) is to create a giant
PSYCHODELIC WEINER MOBILE...
This is a quote from the Christmas letter my friends Neil and Faridah send from Tasmania every year...
"Useful word/concept from Japan:
Wabi-Sabi: an intuitive appreciation of a transient beauty in the physical world that reflects the irreversible flow of life in the spiritual world. It is an understated beauty that exists in the modest, rustic, imperfect, or even decayed , an aesthetic sensibility that finds a melancholic beauty in the impermanence of all things."
Last night Gina was whimpering, mostly because she is so used to sleeping with us, that Ruth got up and joined her in the dog house...hmmm, I wonder if I am next?
So...here we go for another year, and I hope all of the elements of Murphy's Law which have banged around for the last three months have come to an end. Whatever...Gina is home and seems to be getting strength back each day, although, her left rear leg is not working, we can only hope it will come back to some extent.