What Dreams May Come

This phrase sounds most benign, almost cozy, removed from the context of Hamlet’s soliloquy.  But within the context, it alludes to a huge fear that indeed there may be “something after death” that will not be pleasant!

This fear is surely closely tied to the fact that none of us can conceive of the “nothingness” that so many of us believe will be our ending.  It is that inability to imagine nonexistence that creates the stories that many religions perpetrate.

And of course this fear of what comes after death goes hand in hand with our fear of what we will experience leading into our deaths.  Most of us wish for what may be a contradiction:  we hope to be well prepared for our death (somehow), but also that death will come quickly, painlessly, too suddenly to even surprise us!

We are only able to speculate on what might constitute a “good death”.  So best not dwell on these thoughts for too long :-), but it is difficult when friends or family die.

Burials the Drawing, framed


Q. & A.

Q.   Is there room for public art in a consensus based community?

A.   Possibly.

But only with much persistence from one or more enthusiasts!
And only for artists outside the community, dead, or with very thick skins!
It is very unlikely that there will be unanimous enthusiasm for any one artwork. And while the consensus process does not require unanimity, there does need to be agreement first that any artwork is desirable for long term display, and then there needs to be agreement on the specific piece of art.
So an artist in the community must be willing to persevere in the face of a clear lack of enthusiasm, or even clear dislike of the work. This may be especially difficult when these people are the neighbors & community members you spend time with, and have committed to socialize & work with regularly.
Note that it is statistically very unlikely that there will be a champion for an “in house” artist also within the cohousing community: a cohousing artist will probably need to be her own promoter.

Public art is always difficult, and selection by committee often comes to a majority vote.  Achieving consensus for public art will generally take even longer, and may never happen at all :-)!


Two Days

Two days “off” from concrete & sculpture  =  Two days of printmaking.  At the very last minute I decided to honor my commitment to produce a set of prints for the Corvidae 2016 Print Exchange.  Only 13 prints required this year, 8″ x 10″ or smaller plates, using two passes / two processes (any processes but each artists should use the same two processes for all prints, but the prints need not be identical).

So the printing is done, the prints are almost dry, and now I need to sign, number, and select 13 from the edition of 15 to put in the Exchange.

I was wildly enamored of them at first, now I am at the fault finding stage, and find them sloppy, crude, and inadequate.  I think I may like them again tomorrow!

And NOT in the Print Exchange:


Attention to Art

Art is peripheral or unnecessary most of the time to most people. But that does not mean it is not valuable.

People do need to make art, and have done so for so many many centuries.

And yes, some people do want/need the art other people make.  But the attention is generally given to art after basic needs are met:  food, clothing, shelter (so in our era jobs, transportation to & from, etc. which takes up most of our days).


The Art of Traveling

I have been out of town & traveling via the Dolphin RV, and doing no drawing, painting or sculpture for almost two weeks!  I took suitable paper, pencils, watercolors, etc. but just never sat down in comfort & good light to do a lick of work! I did take many photos, and received many positive comments on the RV paint job, however.


BrightenUp yard art project

The purpose of Yard Art, for me, is primarily to divert & amuse. If it goes a little deeper, to make you think a bit, or has some beauty at the right angle… that is a bonus, perhaps.  Here I want to add a touch of color in a very dull spot, and to entertain passers by, without spending money or using much in the way of new material: just a little paint!

I painted squares of scrap wood leftover from building, along with a few other shapes … At right is the “Doors Project” destined for the same location, made up of extra door hardware along with a few keys.

I have a definite location in mind, but that is a surprise.


Drawing on wood & new prints (w/colored pencil)

The drawing is done with water soluble graphite pencils, “painted” with water, on a piece of MDF (medium density fiberboard) primed with two coats of white Golden Absorbent Ground. I like this ground, and being able to use water media directly on a board, no paper!
The collagraph plate is built up on matboard with paper, vinyl spackle, & elmers glue, all coated with shellac when dry. I stamped into the wet spackle & glue mix to make the impressions…