Friday, February 23, 2007


Today I'm working on a copper wall piece for a show in a week and a half. The piece is a bunch of shapes cut from one sheet of 16 gage copper. They fit together with no space between like a puzzle, and form an oval shape with a hole in the middle, so it looks like a vortex or a hurricane. All of these pieces will be rivetted to another sheet of copper but raised from it to create a shadow. Right now I'm filing the corners of each piece round so they reflect the light, and I only have a few more pieces to file. I can't decide yet whether to just patina the copper pieces so they're darker or to paint the copper somehow. I like the look of oil painted copper, but it might just be a bad idea to cover up the metallic look.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Small Paintings

Yesterday morning and this morning I got up early and started painting. I didn't have a plan, I just had a size (2.5 by 3.5 inches) and some watercolors. This is standard playing card size, also standard 'Art Card' size. Over a year ago I made about 30 similar paintings within 2 months and I haven't painted another one since yesterday. Having the experience of painting like this I know whatever I come up with will be okay. I don't trust that everything I do will be great, but I know from experience that there are certain pieces that need to get done on the path to better ones. I can't plan to make only the 'best' pieces. Lately my larger pieces have been black and white abstract art pieces. They look a lot like liquids mixing under a microscope. The little watercolors are made in a similar intuitive state of mind, but they are full of imagery, most of which is domestic- beds, toilets, gardens, kitchens, and people or anthropomorphic animals inhabiting cross-sectioned interior spaces. Castles, water, boats, fireplaces, whales, food, doors and ladders show up a lot as well. The diminutive size forces me to be more delicate than if I made the same paintings bigger. In some ways I can add more detail on a smaller area than on a bigger area, which is weird.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

this is the beginning

I was thinking of posting pictures of everything in my apartment for this blog but that would be dreadfully boring. Mostly because I don't want to take pictures and do that. And if they're just things as they are, who cares? We've all seen things. Perhaps my particular combination of objects will be some sort of cultural commentary like in that book Material World. I would be the typical American artist. For some reason though, I think that if I catalogued all of my material possessions and organized them somehow, I could get a broader assessment of what is important in my life. It could also be practical, because I often misplace various objects, and it'd be nice if I could just search the database of objects in my apartment to find that phone number I wrote on a scrap of paper 3 weeks ago. I have this fantasy of having a 2d graphical inventory, like in a video game where you can open your satchel and find a shotgun and ammo and maybe a first aid kit, except my inventory would be my toothbrush, some pliers, a paintbrush, and a gallon of milk. Each object would take up a certain number of squares in my inventory. It would be interesting to me to figure out just exactly how many squares my apartment has, so that I can arrange icons of my real objects so they fit where they actually are. I'd have a rectangle for each of my dresser drawers, and these would in turn be enclosed within the larger rectangle of my bedroom. I would have to use a small object to determine the basic size of each area square. I suppose a can of soup would be a good smallest unit. If I have smaller things like pennies, or pencils, or scraps of paper, I can either bulk them all together and say 20 pencils takes up one unit square or that this scrap of paper exists but doesn't actually take up space.

Just getting to the point where I think it would be a good idea to do this is nearly impossible. I like thinking about doing it but if I started making little icons of every single sock, book, and tool I own, I'd burn out very quickly. I just like the idea of looking at everything around me simultaneously, like an overseer of my minions.