Friday, May 6, 2016

If A Then B: Postcard Collective Spring 2016

Because Stalking Artists: In Pursuit of Home never dies...

With a behind the scenes photograph by Amelia Morris (and special thanks for watching my back during this ridiculous affair).

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Completing the Circle: Amarillo Ramp to Spiral Jetty

Once upon a time in 2009, I selected a part (mainly rocks and sometimes mud) of each earthwork I visited and transferred it to the next: Spiral Jetty to Sun Tunnels, Sun Tunnels to Double Negative, Double Negative to the closest I could get to Roden Crater, Roden Crater to Lightning Field, and Lightning Field to Amarillo Ramp. This presented the anticipatory return to Spiral Jetty to deposit the rock from Amarillo Ramp at an unknown point in the future. Enter a myriad of other concerns that prevented me from taking the exact piece back to Spiral Jetty, or the Amarillo Ramp rain out last May which did not facilitate selecting a new one, and we come to 2016.

Somewhere around here in January while walking Amarillo Ramp, I chose a fragment of red sandstone and it resided....

... in my car's change drawer, bouncing and rattling around over the thousands of miles I trekked across the West since then.

I did not have any intention of visiting Spiral Jetty again this year, but when I discovered I was only 1.5 hours away from it last weekend, I had to make the trip. Note: never visit Spiral Jetty on a Sunday afternoon in the spring as the parking lot was overloaded, teenagers were complaining that their parents dragged them all the way out in the middle of nowhere to see this, and I witnessed a dog peeing on the earthwork (!). None of this qualified as a contemplative experience.

Amidst the hoards, I buried this at the very center. In doing so, I completed a task overdue, I said goodbye to a collaboration long over, and I marked the end of visiting earthworks until another potential school field trip in the future (or Roden Crater miraculously opens to the public for less than a $6500 ticket price before I am dead).

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Amarillo Ramp Visit #2

Earlier this year, I visited Robert Smithson's Amarillo Ramp for the second time since 2009. The cold January sunshine and the solidly packed earth were welcome events after a failed attempt in May 2015 on the earthworks road trip with Ball State University. I learned so much about the piece through the extensive knowledge of Jon Revett that I am now able to fully understand how it was built...

evidenced by the original stakes ...

... and where the water from the lake bed was once drained ...

 ... the remains of where Robert Smithson's plane went down ...

... and the rock that serves as a memorial to the artist who was in the process of creating this earthwork.

There are still traces of LBK, the former "face" of the ramp but thankfully his signature neon green was primarily out of sight.

The most amusing remains were a giant teddy bear that resided under a tree for years until coyotes ripped it to shreds a day or two earlier. I departed wondering if the cotton stuffing will coat the cacti as long as the silver and green paint.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016


Delving into the pile of items I have long ignored, here are my new professionally designed take-aways for the Art Department and Autobiography in Water series. Thanks to Claire Thomas for transforming my boring text backgrounds into something more visually pleasing.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Food and Self-Portraits

Scott and Kim Anderson's Backyard, Hartford City, Indiana appeared in the Joyce Elaine Grant 2016 Exhibition in January. The theme? Food. The photograph? Cake. I was happy to share an award with Amelia Morris whose canned goods in the image above are making me hungry.

One of the self-portraits in this juried exhibition will be traveling to LightBox Photographic Gallery in Astoria, Oregon and the Griffin Museum of Photography in Massachusetts. Here is the text that accompanies the photograph:

I spent three weeks in the Fall of 2013 printing one page of all the fonts that featured a pound sign in Microsoft Word. During lab days when my students were working on their projects, I painstakingly cut each one apart, ending with an estimated 30,804 (my cat may have eaten a few). The goal was to draw attention to the overuse of the hashtag in social media by creating a photograph where they dominated, yet ultimately revealed nothing more than an element of disguise.

Monday, April 25, 2016

Postcard Collective Interview with Maria Daniela Quirós

At last (many months later!), my interview with Maria is on the Postcard Collective Blog. She is involved in the next exchange and I am looking forward to seeing what mail she will send next (me too for that matter).

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Crystal Bridges and Arkansas (the 45th State)

Crystal Bridges through Frederick Eversley's Big Red Lens

In my attempt to hightail it out of the Midwest for my sabbatical (beating the weather and winter in general), I dropped down into Arkansas to see Crystal Bridges and my 45th state of the union. Crystal Bridges is officially the only Walmart establishment I will ever willingly visit though it was difficult to shake the stigma despite it being a well respected art museum. Aside from the architecture and the grounds (which everyone raves about and rightfully so), I was most impressed by the sheer number of women and minorities that were represented in the collection. I could only hope that this becomes commonplace and not a detail that merits drawing attention to in the future.

Near the 20th century section (architect: Moshe Sofdie)

Nam June Paik's John Cage Robot II

Mark di Suvero's Lowell's Ocean through the window 

Gabriel Daye's Plexus 27 (featuring hundreds and hundreds of intricately placed threads in a stairwell)

Detail of Wayne Thiebaud's Supine Woman

Detail of Richard Estes' Antarctica, 2007

Arkansas from the Crystal Bridges Trail before I drove seven more hours to Amarillo, Texas reenacting my other career as a long haul truck driver.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

"Material Time" with Will Knipscher at University of Dayton

Material Time with Will Knipscher opens tomorrow at Gallery 249 at the University of Dayton. Here are some photographs of the installation.

Cape Horn, Lake Pend Oreille, Idaho, 2015

Cape Disappointment, Washington, 2015 and a piece from Where the Light Goes by Will

Two more images from Where the Light Goes and Miracle Hot Springs, Buhl, Idaho, 2014

Thunderbird Hotel, Marfa, Texas, 2013 and another work from Where the Light Goes

Kirkham Hot Springs, Idaho, 2015 on the right

Will's three dimensional origami prints showing the process of creating his photograms in the front and Cape Horn... and Hearst Castle, San Simeon, California, 2015 in the background.

The opening reception is from 5-7 PM tomorrow night with a gallery talk at 6 PM.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Arizona Inn Encore

I haven't met a location in the Autobiography in Water series that is as troublesome to resolve as the Arizona Inn in Tucson. I returned in October for a wedding and stayed there for the first time in my life. I recorded every moment I was in the pool, trying to swim multiple times a day. I made sound recordings of a very unusual bird song and swatted dozens of mosquitoes.

I even saved all the towels I used in the hotel room and documented them before returning them to the cabana laundry bin. I am hesitating on how to properly tie all of this together but on the bright side, I will be returning soon. May the answer come quickly as visiting all the locations in this series is coming to a rapid close.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Belated San Diego Post

I am slowly knocking out the last of the U.S. destinations in the Autobiography in Water series. Last August, I visited my parental homeland, floated giant photographs in La Jolla, Del Mar, and Coronado, collected water samples and buried a chunk of Camden's Rock. I spent my birthday with my cousin Mark visiting the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego to see the Nicole Eisenman exhibition and the expansive sculpture garden.

Nancy Rubins, Pleasure Point, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

Ed Ruscha, Detail of Brave Men Run in My Family, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

Detail of Nicole Eisenman's installation in the exhibition Dear Nemesis, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

Detail of Robert Irwin's installation 1º 2º 3º 4º, Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

Pre-float with my Uncle Paul and cousin Mark (I cannot thank my family enough for their assistance during this task)

 Camden's Rock was buried here at Coronado.

Water sample on top of the mound where Camden's Rock was buried, Coronado Beach

Friday, October 9, 2015

Neptune Pool, Hearst Castle, San Simeon, California

Last December, I took this photograph of the drained and dirty Neptune Pool at Hearst Castle on a drizzly, cold day. It was an ideal subject for the cyanotype process because it was anything but what I remembered it and making it blue would correspond with that memory. I spent many Fridays in February creating the digital negatives and the first "draft" above. However, it was not right.

The scale was off and I wanted more of an abstraction. After some brainstorming with Brent, the above work prints were made. Ironically, I had a little help with the texture in the reflection from the Riverside Hotel in Garden City, Idaho.

Fast forward to July and the digital negatives were made and the next round of cyanotypes, as seen drying on the racks below. The new dimension is 50" x 40".

Yet a third round was created to perfect some of the inconsistencies in exposure and a mock-up was documented in the Atrium Gallery at school. I have the highest hopes of creating a glass version of this prior to Brent's and my collaborative exhibition, Treading Water, in January.