Friday, August 29, 2014


Somedays like todays. well you wake up its 3:17 and you just want to admit, I am no artist.  But more than that or is it less than that, I am simply not really alive.  I am simply the doppelganger of this guy.  I slink along like a strange week elongated shadow creeping up and down walls and sidewalks.  When he smiles I grin a great wide grimace like someone who has realized he has just eaten a load of sulfur and will be grinning at the beginning of deep endless pain...

...and this thin pale shadow appears and disappears during the day, for sometimes I reside inside him and comfort myself in his thought and memories...I stumble through them and search for something, though I am not sure what...

Once in a while, every so often, he accidentally creates something I think is of value, no not money...but some other thing, a kind of document that is a substitute for reality itself, something that future would be glad to look at and reflect on, a thing that is covered in grease and grime, an image of something occurring now that needs to be seen then, or maybe even now...

...I often think that I could cover the street with sheets of paper and later, after a couple of months I could go outside and collect the greatest work I have ever done...maybe only two or three sheets out of the hundred I put there...after a couple of months of being run over rained on and trashed, kids riding their bikes over them cars speeding past, hopefully some sort of oil spill or gasoline from the yard workers, and dozens of handouts, pleas for money of invitations to join, footprints, spit...and then I would be happy.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

liquid evolution

At one moment this was my favorite, at the moment I first saw it lying there, drying or almost completely dry, just before I moved it in order to make another one, which I liked better then at the moment it almost dried.

Sometimes I think the biggest difference between men and women is that men need to seek out some terrible lurking thing in existence and hurl themselves upon it,  Women know where it lives but they can let it alone. -Russell Hoban

I like Russell Hoban.  I loved reading Pilgermann, The Mouse and His Child, and Ridley Walker, and now that I look, I see he has written many more I knew nothing about, and they have republished many I had heard of but could never find.  In fact I read everyone who I quote, all of them.

Not that I am bragging, nor is this some sort of literary journal...though I would like to do that Slickman A4 Quotation Event, that would be fun.  Of course many of these writers were also artists like Russell Hoban and Henry Miller.  And much of what they say seems to be pertinent to the act of painting...

An idea is an eye given by by God for the seeing of God.  Some of these eyes we cannot bear to look out of; we blind them as quickly as possible. -Hoban

palimpsestic evolution

Language is an archaeological vehicle...the language we speak is a whole palimpsest of human effort and history. -Russell Hoban

We will look backward for a couple of blogs so I can demonstrate how I create a sort of evolution in this work...if that is what it can be called.  Yet the first one is last as we see them.  And as with all evolution there is one that is the best, but evolution cannot help itself, it will keep creating iterations and the will go up and then they will go down.  It just keeps making them, and if they get ugly so be it, it just continues, it spins in circles, it destroys its own creations...

After all, when you come right down to it, how many people speak the same language even when they speak the same language? -Hoban

This last one, I mean this first one, which is not really the first one but only one in a string, well this is my personal favorite, though I don't exactly know why or even if that is really true, it just is.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


The world is all gates, all opportunities, strings of tension waiting to be struck. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunsets are so beautiful that they almost seem as if we were looking through the gates of heaven. -John Lubbock

My paintings always feature trails that dissolve into mysterious areas, patches of light that lead the eye around corners, pathways, open gates, etc. -Thomas Kinkade

Railway termini are our gates to the glorious and the unknown.  Through them we pass out into adventure and sunshine, to them, alas! we return. -E.M. Forster

Hateful to me as are the gates of hell, Is he he who, hiding one thing in his heart, Utters another. -Homer

The enemy is within the gates; it is with our own folly, our own criminality that we have to contend. -Marcus Tullius Cicero

Wednesday, August 13, 2014


I always thought this was charming but you tell me:  I've always thought of being in love as being willing to do anything for the other person -starve to buy them bread and not mind living in Siberia with them -and I've always thought that every minute away from them would be hell -so looking at it that way I guess I'm not in love with you.  Jacqueline Lee Bouvier

She apparently sent that to someone she knew in high school or college.  What does that have to do with art?  I'm not sure.  Maybe it has to do with pluriphility.  But what does that have to do with art?  

It seems apparent to me, at least in the market we have now, which is not a market at all really.  And I always go -ah okay who cares?  You just gotta keep working.  That's true of course. Though the sad thing is  that there is no one to share your art with, no one to discuss art with, the museums seem empty and the art scene seems hollow and trite.

Maybe I'm wrong, though I don't think so.  Oh well I'll just keep talking to you.  How are you?  Great. Know of any interesting art anywhere?  Oh that's to bad.  Well no, I can't say that I do.  I just keep making this deliberately clumsy work

Oh I don't have any idea.  I guess I think that it looks like me, like the things I've seen, the things I've done.  Really, I don't know any answers to those questions.  And I ask them, I do.  And no, I actually think they seem a little to complicated for my taste.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

the tail wagging the dog

I woke up the other day and I was thinking about the word yearn.  And while I was thinking about it, I tried to think of its opposite.  And still being still asleep or something I thought of nraey, which I thought odd.  A sort Chaucerian word it seems to me, out of The Pardoner or maybe The Miller.

And not waking properly I thought oh my god, I promised myself I would read the original in Chaucer's native tounge with all its quaint misspellings and such, and I had to laugh at that idiocy, and that helped a tiny bit, nudging me toward wakefulness.  At least I could see light at the end of the tunnel somewhere off in the distance.

And I remembered that I did read Chaucer in the original, except that I couldn't remember how it felt while I was reading it.  And speaking of that the opposite of a word is not the word spelled backward.
Why did I do that and what is yearn as a word?  Certainly it is too thin to be able to pick it up, it'd just fall apart in your hands, and why don't I use that word every day?

These thoughts as I like to call them were firing away in my head in a real uptempo, and there were zillions of them coming toward me fast, and I was amazed I could remember any of this at all, carefully laying words out on a cloth to dry, looking at them to find its antonym.

Nowhere so busy a man as he than he, and yet he seemed busier than he was.  Geoffrey Chaucer

Monday, August 4, 2014


This piece I remember, and just found again after 40 years.  I don't understand a word of it, not a word, yet maybe I will after I write it out here:

I used to believe in change and the power of movement.  Dynamics are dead, a thing of the past.  One's senses are frozen to the ice and endlessly assaulted by noise.  Silence, the musician's dream.  Chained and bound, empathy an empty tomb a castrated child.  Whimpering, crying out for a place to rest and a body to climb in it.  Take me Poseidon and bless me.

Chained to a rock, each day the vultures come to eat out my heart and liver.  Friends, lovers, companions.  You desire one and must have more, constantly more.  Your body, where the heart used to pump precious life -now become an abyss to soak in more and more, the tiny things are mountains ripping apart your small body struggling to get inside.  I am chosen, god has called, and it is done.  He calls not from power or from change no he whispers in my ear -My son, it is done.  The change is done in only one action, one futile act.  Giving myself fully to the moment, the great work of eternity, a non-movement.  All music comes from death, all music is death Poseisdon. 

I am weak and my body trembles.  Can a man, myself waiting slowly toward the sound and tone.  Undulations that are a sustained note, a one color symphony.  I can understand her getting upset, but gee, I get nervous not having people to talk to...laughter.   Fast and ludicrous!  A foot step the one foot shuffle.

Well, it just goes on and on.  I have no idea exactly what it is or what it means.  I only know it was precious to me, a secret letter.  I guess at some point, each of us contains that passion to create something, to explain something not even understood.