Saturday, May 31, 2008

I'm not alone

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This painting was made with a broom as a brush.

Anyone who knows me knows I'm a frustrated son of a bitch. No, not sexually. Creatively. I love to paint but I hate the struggle a lot of the time. I am not prolific. I sometimes wonder if I am more prolific than I think because I paint over so many things or destroy them; I'm eliminating evidence—my tracks. I don't think this is inherently bad because I never regret it. Even still, the process, especially for the past year, feels like I'm being skinned alive.

The ultimate elixir is to hear other wise ones talk about this struggle. It's like a big hand patting my head oh-so-gently. Then I forget this all happened and work myself into a tizzy again. Again time passes, more wise words pass through and the cycle of renewal restarts. The new sage is Chris Martin. No, not the same guy from Coldplay. I only recently became familiar with his paintings via random net-cruising. I tend not to respond to 'abstract' work too strongly but Martin's tickles me because it is so unabashedly goofy and inventive. Read an interview with Mr. Martin here. My favorite quote from the interview:
"The act of painting on the bread was weird. It felt like I was a stranger working my own painting."
This is how I feel 98% of the time when I work. Maybe it isn't such a bad thing?

P.S. He makes some of his paintings with Wonderbread. I unfortch could not find any pics of them online but you can see them in James Kalm's video on YouTube.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Thoughts Regarding The Sun City Girls

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Pants, The Gentle Giant, and myself recently went to see the remaining members of The Sun City Girls play live in L.A. I had a great time and it made me realize how special this band was and how sad it is that they will never shine on the scene as they once did. You could say unto me, "Don't cry, bub, you still have the Bishop Bros' solo projects and releases from their awesome Sublime Frequencies label—not to mention scores of unreleased SCG material in the works". But I would counter by saying that the 'third' brother, SCG drummer Charles Goucher, is no longer with us, having died from cancer last year and that we've truly lost a key ingredient to this band's brilliance.
Why is their awesomeness so awesome? They managed to blend the absurd and the profound, theater and concert, East and West all into the same bowl with amazing ease. Seeing them play live always seems to provoke laughter, confusion and peaceful reverence in the audience. I've yet to see any other band evoke such a pot-pourri of feelings. They truly transcended any description you could throw at them.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

MYSTERY MEATp3s: Summer / Pt. 3

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In this issue of mystery meat the theme is summer. Either the songs are about summer or are just summery.
And now: some thoughts on summer:
beaches, burns, dub reggae, T-Rex, cold showers, flies, zinc oxide, hormones, sweat, uprisings, Shakespeare in the Park, watermelon, and BBQ.

DOWNLOAD HERE

Monday, May 26, 2008

10 new option ideas for voicemail

press 1 if you would like to order a sandwich.
press 2 if you would like to hear Dane Cook die slowly
press 3 if you would like to hear a puppy whimper
press 4 if you would like to hear your messages in tongues
press 5 if you would like fruit cake
press 6 if you would like to a hear a Jew joke.
press 7 if you would like to talk to Katrina who wants to make party with you
press 8 if you would like to kill a mosquito
press 9 if you would like to be sent a telegram version of your voice message.
press 10 if you would like to this FUCKING voicemail service to stop being so wordy.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Underrated Expressions

1. Surprise: "Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle!"

2. Excitement: "We're going absolutely bananas!"

3. Telling someone to step off: "Hold your biscuits!"

4. Anger: "Get out of my shit!"

5. Advice: "Take a chill pill."

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Mystery Meatp3s / Part 2

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This "bag" of mp3s are all under the vague file name (theme), "female crooners".
CLICK HERE TO PICK HER UP
Nice songs sung from mankind's better half.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

A FAIRE VICTORY OVER THE PENNY-PINCH

Good day! Pants and I, after much deliberation, decided to attend what was to be the last day of the Renaissance Pleasure Faire. It was between this and a hike in the woods. Either choice we would encounter 97 degree heat while walking for miles. In such circumstances, we decided we'd rather browse for goblets and ringbelts while eating ice cream. As a result we made the pilgrimage to the Faire in Irwindale (a perfect name for the town hosting the fair—a dork's name.) with all the necessary accoutrements to fight off the scorching heat. The pictures say more than any anything. CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL EXPOSEE! Fare thee well; I must away!

Nancy with Gigantic turkey Leg
Nancy with Giant Turkey Leg

Maiden
Fuckin' Maiden

What you get for....

Nobleman with ice cream
Nobleman with ice cream

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These Wenches were singing "I would walk 500 Miles" by The Proclaimers. The chorus was sung hand-up church style

Friday, May 16, 2008

GAY IT UP, YO!

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The Knotty Nautilus formally gives props to the judges of California's Supreme Court for banning the ban on gay marriage.
Last night I was picturing hundreds—if not thousands—of gay couples sipping champagne (or a nice cocktail?) and calling ordained ministers. Boystown in L.A. looked festive on the news. I saw men running out of the gym still in bath towels high-fiving. It's definitely Jaeger-tini time! Smoke 'em if you got 'em.

The "DON'T SEE THIS FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT!" Series

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Some of you may admonish your humble blog-ater for even bothering to see any Sean Penn film, yet alone his latest, Into The Wild (2007). Your humble blog-ater will retort by stating that he was drawn into seeing said Sean Penn film for the sole purpose of seeing Zach Galifiankis in a supporting role while keeping an open mind about the rest. After all, your humble blog-ater kind of enjoyed Penn's first effort Indian Runner(1991) and had hoped he could repeat some of the graces that made this film watchable.
Y.H.B.'s growing adoration for Zach has its snares he supposes. But love really IS blind. In this case blind to the fact that Y.H.B. walked out of Penn's Crossing Guard(1995) MORE THAN TEN YEARS AGO, after seeing the film's improbable denouement, which entailed one adversary pursuing another with deadly force until they both arrived at a grave site, (the deceased being the cause of hostility), held hands, and watched a sunset. The TRITE-O-METER had reached new heights, causing Y.H.B. to swear off Sean Penn for eternity and to only remember Jeff Spicoli.

Of course 13 years, along with ulterior motives involving Zach G., will soften any bitter memory or stone heart.

First off Y.H.B. was affronted by the croon of Eddie Vedder throughout the film. The narrator's "about to cry" tone pushed Y.H.B's annoyance into bitterness. Bitterness than became indignation as insufferable lines like "When he was four he was caught going through a neighbor's cupboards for candy. I wonder what kind of candy he's got himself into now?" (cut to shot of him jumping into glistening river) arrived in droves. Then after an hour or more of blathering bromide, the stupid guy* finally dies because he eats the wrong potato root in the middle of nowhere, Alaska. Yay.

*Y.H.B. later read that some Alaskan Park Ranger said that the real guy died only a few miles from the nearest wilderness station, and that he could have been alive if he knew how to read a fucking compass.

P.S. Zach G. was the ONLY good thing about this film. He played a North Dakotan hick with a strange accent who dipped.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

DAY TO NIGHT: MAX

And now for a rare moment of self-aggrandizement, the WORLD PREMIER of Day to Night: Max by artist/musician Robin Dicker. Her Day to Night Series features a new person every episode. You have seen it here FIRST, only on Knotty-TV:

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

ANDREA FRASER COMES ALIVE AT THE HAMMER

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Pictures are of Andrea F. from the nosebleed seats. My camera needs glasses.

UCLA Hammer Museum, Los Angeles:

To a 3/4 full house, Andrea Fraser nervously talked about her life's work. I thought that was interesting in contrast to her very confident, fluidly realized docent personas she's known for. She got emotional on us, but I guess it was a loaded situation in that many of her students and colleagues were in attendance. Since the infamous sex-with-collector piece in 2004 she explained how she had taken a two year break from production, preoccupied with her "new job" as a professor. But she also discussed how she needed to reevaluate the whole enchilada, why she does what she does. The last and latest piece she presented dealt with this specifically: a two-channel video re-enacted from 500 pages of transcripts taken from sessions with a shrink. It was refreshing to see an artist put all her shit out here in such an honest fashion. The rest of it was kind of a blur like the photos above.
I always get drowsy at lectures. It's the darkened room, the temperature controlled environs, the unwavering pedagogical lullaby from the lectern that sends me to nap time. I've been like this since I was 5, when I pulled off the impressive feat of falling asleep ON the shoulder of the teacher as the lesson was in progress. I also always have to pee when I go into book stores. But that's another story.....

Monday, May 12, 2008

RENAISSANCE FARE

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Pants, myself, La Beautiful, Max "The Gentle Giant" Warsh, and Julie "I love the OC" Lequin, all were counting on going to the Renaissance Fair this weekend until we found that the entry fee was a whopping $25. O c'mon! Surely folk jacked up on Dr. Pepper pretending to speak Middle English couldn't have cost that much to employ! This fee would have been only the beginning. We probably would have had to convert our dollars to "shillings" and spend more money on mutton or something. I was planning on dressing like I was from the 'future' but I guess my antics will have to wait when fatter checks come in the mail. Those of us who are L.A. natives spent the afternoon with our mothers instead. Just as well. The Mothers would have been offended knowing that we ditched them for Jello Shots with King Arthur. You don't think it's just wine in those goblets do you?

Friday, May 9, 2008

NIGHT STUDIO

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I've recently been ensorcelled by the book Night Studio (1988) by Philip Guston's lone offspring, Musa Mayer. It's basically a memoir dealing with her experiences with this complex personality and artist. I originally bought it because I'm fascinated about other painter's processes and the shit they go through, psychological or otherwise, in finding a process. The book details these things (Guston was a drama queen!) in poignant detail, which resonated with me deeply because I am also a drama queen when it comes to my work. But it mostly deals with her feelings of neglect and her complex relationship with her father. Her parents, while warm and loving, also were remote and self-absorbed which is an experience, ahem, I can relate to.

"Usually I am on a work for a long stretch, until a moment arrives when the air of the arbitrary vanishes, and the paint falls into positions that feel destined."

"I never feel myself to be more than a trusting accomplice"

"Art is the axe that breaks the frozen sea within us"
—Philip Guston

"When you start working, everybody is in your studio—the past, your friends, enemies, the art world, and, above all, your own ideas—all are there. But as you continue painting, they start leaving, one by one, and you are left completely alone. Then, if you're lucky, even you leave."
—John Cage

Thursday, May 8, 2008

HUMMINGBIRDELIER

Sometimes the Universe or whatever mystic power that be extends its proverbial hand and says "HERE YOU GO!". I felt this way upon finding an outdoor chandelier in North Hollywood that housed two hummingbird nests! I've been painting chandeliers lately. And who doesn't love hummingbirds? It was too much.
I found said chandelier while walking back to my car after getting some very painful acupuncture from my "shaman", Rohanna. She was trying to expunge some 'demons'. I think of the Hummingbirdelier as my post-acupunctural lollipop.

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Judy Garland Drunk

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Yes, it's that good. I originally heard this on my clock radio one morning as I was readying myself for another day of grad school. It was recorded shortly before Howard Stern went subscriber only.

"Everyone belongs at the bottom of this place they call the La Brea Tarpits!"

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

31 FLAVORS HE WILL NEVER TASTE AGAIN

Irvine Robbins

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Irvine Robbins, the co-founder of Baskin-Robbins, sadly, has met his maker today. He was 90 years old. What the fuck: if you dedicate your LIFE to making ice cream, God should give you a free pass to live to AT LEAST 120 years old. The same goes for the people who invented the potato chip. I just had some and man they were good. Anyway, I hope Mr. Robbins was seeing Pink and Brown all the way to heaven. He deserves it.

On a related topic, The Baskin-Robbins chain reminds me of a very interesting artist, writer, and director, David Robbins. He paid a visit to CALARTS while I was there and made quite an impression on me. He started doing these 'gatherings' at the said ice cream parlors and spun this out into a variety of projects worth looking into. He has peculiar, but interesting views on art-making in general. One zinger I remember from his visit to my class was that "Art is not good at tragedy". He also believes that the future of mass entertainment is going to be based on fun and the pursuit of fun. It sounds obvious, but I don't remember anyone phrasing it quite like that. I hope the recently passed Mr. Robbins would have been sympathetic to the other Mr. Robbins' gospel.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Zach Galifiankis

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Anyone seen this motherfucker perform? I think he's the funniest man in the universe right now. He used to have a show on VH1 in the early 2000s called Late World with Zach. It was cancelled after 11 episodes. It was atypical of talk shows in that he made fun of the format itself. For instance, one episode (the only one I could find online) was taped in front of empty bleachers with baby babbles for a laugh track. The usual top 40 band on the guest list played only one note. One other clip of the show, which you can find online, shows him him doing stand-up in front of preschoolers. Before you dismiss the source of my funny-bones with a fey wipe of the hand, you should see this:



Pants and I went down to San Diego to see this guy perform so you can imagine the dedication. We went to the S.D. Zoo beforehand and walked in 98 degree heat all day, dutifully seeing every animal on display. I walked around in a stupid hat, hoping, praying, that all this was WORTH the effort to see Zach. I especially felt this way as I was dizzy and nauseous from sun stroke, bending over a garbage can in front of the hippo enclosure. Because if I was going to pass out and turn blue, worry Pants, code red the zoo police, wake up the slumbering hippo, AND possibly die, Zach had better be funny. But I didn't pass out and Zach WAS funny. It all worked out.