Tag Archives: art

Seen on the Street

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One of the best features about my new (new-ish) apartment is the gym right next door.  Not that I use it for working out.  Eeks, no.  But it does pretty much guarantee a steady stream of really cute, well built guys streaming past my front door.  I would consider joining it just to go and ogle the boys changing, but all of them look like they come in their gym clothes already.  While that improves the streetscape, it does cut down on the ogling chances.

I’d prefer something like this:

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Also, while we’re down here on the street, I’ve recently seen a return of a graffiti (I believe there is a different noun for a single piece of graffiti, but I’m too lazy to look it up. You can if you’d like to.) I’m very fond of; the street koi.

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These have been around for years, sort of on and off.  I like them because they’re unusual, being on the street, and the play with a sense of perspective, as if you’re looking down into a koi pond.   And now, apparently, the artist has been commissioned to cover up temporary construction walls, so good for him.

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As I said, the koi come and go.  Imagine my surprise when I was in New Orleans once and stumbled upon a bunch of them there.  My friend Stephen said he was acquainted with the artist, but not fond of him.  He said the local theory of the random appearance of the art was that the artist would inevitably wind up with enough restraining orders against him that he would leave town until they built up in his new environs at which time he would strike out for new horizons.  I don’t know, I’m just going on Stephen’s possibly biased deductions.

I’m a fan of graffiti.  I think it can be charming and amusing and even beautiful.   Well, not when people jus splatter their tag up and call it day.  That has all the appeal of a car alarm going off.  But when it’s funny and makes you think, isn’t that art?

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Merry Xmas, with Extra Bits

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My christmas present showed up today.  Yay!  Totally not sarcastic for once!  Genuine yay!

When I was in Austin earlier this month, the charming Diane von Austinburg led me to a small gallery we both like called Yard Dog.  Totally cool.  If you’re in Austin, you should drop in there on South Congress.  I was very struck by, and then bought,  a constructed piece called Who Breaks a Butterfly on a Wheel?  Photo below:

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As we stood there arranging for it be shipped halfway across the country, Diane remarked that it was never going to make it all the way out here in one piece.  Or words to that effect.  Diane is never snarkey and I can never imitate her measured tones.

Proof of Diane’s prescience:

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I think the frame holding the components might have started out life as a really big wall clock (although it seems too shallow for that) or possibly a whatnot shelf.  It’s mahogany and the little feet allowed us to stand it up in the gallery since I was thinking of displaying it that way rather than hanging it.   All those little bits ‘n bobs there on the left are the pieces I found in the bottom of the shipping box.  I only found the legs that had busted off by sifting through the peanuts. All of these pieces seem like what you could have found in the back of any good grandfather’s garage when I was a kid.  Even the eight ball.  Now it’s art.

God knows, the very nice guy who owns Yard Dog did the best he could in packing it.  There was enough styrofoam peanuts to account for a small slip in global warming.  The padding also included some scraps of bubble wrap taped together in a way that suspiciously implied they may have at one point provided the basis for a wacky Halloween costume.

Still, in the end, it was not enough.  Looking it over closely now, I am pretty sure no human effort would have sufficed.  I’m not convinced this baby could have made it from the gallery to the car without at least one piece falling off.

The artist’s attitude towards construction seems to have leaned towards the lassiez faire, with a fair amount of glue and possibly spit.  He also seems to have depended on gravity with somethings apparently just resting on top of others.  “It’s art,” it implies “How much are you really going to be moving this around?”  Good point.

And to be honest, this brings up the interesting idea of how closely do I have to hew to the artist’s original when reassembling all this?  In the picture of the piece before its shipping trauma, you can see a big semi-petrified handball on the top right corner.  I thought at the time that it threw the proportion off and didn’t really work.  And now it’s fallen off!  Do I have to put dutifully back in place?  If you think the answer is yes, you just don’t know me well enough.  My theory is, if I have to put it back, I get to put it where I please.

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Art.  Plein air art, in fact

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My theory is, if I have to put it back, I get to put it where I please.

Always, Always, Listen to Cher

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Allright bitches. It’s been a week. Unless you are planning a coup (and if you are, I ask, please don’t) it’s time to move on. We’ve all been through the stages of grief now: anger, denial, bargaining. whatever the other one is, and now it’s time for acceptance.

Unless of course, you are Secret Agent Fred, in which case the stages are Valium, cheap beer, Vicodin, cheap beer, and cheap beer. Also, Fred has used his art as therapy to “work through his issues.” Personally, I don’t think Fred could get through all his issues with a GPS and a machete, but, you go, girl.

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President Trump.  Snap out of it.  But also, here, just to make us all feel a little better on this cold gray day

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Fredtastic

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A few years ago, Secret Agent Fred decided he didn’t want to paint anymore.  The muse had deserted him.  He continued with graphic design and working in sketchbooks (see below for one of his gold leaf smut pieces)

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but he was through with his larger scale canvases.  I was disappointed, I like his work very much.  So I was delighted when he announced this evening that he had decided to take the brush back up.  His inspiration?  An airing last night on TCM of Dr. Goldfoot and the Bikini Machine, one of the worst movies ever to see the light of day, but also starring Susan Hart.  It turns out he had started a painting featuring Miss Hart a while ago and had never finished it.  Actually, I had seen the canvas and had always thought it was finished, but he’s the artist, he gets to say when something is complete and when it needs something.  In this case, what it needed, according to Fred’s tiny little brain, was a raven spitting up blood.  I think it best not to ask why.

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I also always thought this was Diana Rigg, but I see now I was incorrect.  Also, I’m not sure why Fred is working on this lying on the garage floor (the painting, not Fred, or at least, not Fred the last time I looked,) but again he’s the artist.

Go see more of Fred’s work at Its Fredtatstic