Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Books and Shelves

I have new bookshelves thanks to Matt Compton. For the first time since I was a kid, I am now able to alphabetically organize books both tall and short next to one another. I have so many shelves that can fit large books, I don't have to worry about saving them strictly for oversized editions. I've been thinking a lot about cataloging and organizing them lately and artists that deal with this as subject matter.

Buzz Spector's My Ruscha from 2001 first comes to mind (particularly because I love the "brick" which is now depicted as another shape altogether and I own two of the ones featured below):



Nina Katchadourian's series Sorted Books is also an inspiration. Shark Journal from 2001:



Organizing books by color has always been an option I like to imagine but would never do.

I felt like my old organization system was quickly approaching The Basement Stacks by Wary Meyers:



Thankfully it did not reach the point of "The World's Most Dangerous Bookstore:"



"You Never Know What You'll Find in a Book," a NY Times essay from 2008 outlines several collections found in book pages:
"Sherman Alexie figured out a way around botched safekeeping during his hard-drinking college days at Gonzaga and Washington State Universities in the 1980s. Fearful that he would spend all his money during a bender, he would “slide tens and twenties into random books in my apartment.” Months later, having forgotten about the money, he’d find it again. “It was like winning little jackpots,” he wrote in an e-mail message, adding, 'I’m sober now, have been sober for many years, and I keep my money in banks.'”

I am also completely enamored with Penelope Umbrico's Embarrassing Books. From her website:

"Embarrassing Books are re-photographed details of bookcases in home-improvement and d├ęcor websites and magazines that have their books turned spine in. Only someone who is deeply embarrassed by the content of his or her books would turn them around this way – or, perhaps, these books have turned themselves this way because they are embarrassed by their owners. In the never-ending variety of perfectly appointed, vapidly flawless rooms in these virtual spaces, this refusal of content actually makes sense. Subservient to the decorative, these books have become nutrition-less, emptied of purpose and content, and erased of meaning - a sedated empty exchange which produces a valueless object from the apparition of an object of value."



The New York Times "10 Best Books of 2011" is out too. Uh oh. I am looking forward to more end of the year art book lists. Extra room on the shelves = Hello Christmas!

Snow Part 2


Rune Guneriussen, Evolution, 2005 (Thanks Laura for the link!)


Paula McCartney, On Thin Ice in a Blizzard


Mike Rebholz


Alec Soth, Untitled, 1995


Joseph Cornell, Untitled, 1967


Doug and Mike Starn


Deborah Parkin, September is the Cruelest Month


Daniel Marchand


Justin James Reed, The Real Unknown

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Cheryl Shurtleff: A Collection of Cat Hair and Real Fur Postcards

Cheryl Shurtleff: "I have collected cat hair for years. The hair comes from my own pets and from cats owned by my friends. The texture of cat hair varies from one animal to another, but overall the hair's fineness and softness is attractive to me as an art medium. I use specific brushes to collect the hair so that it can be hand shaped into interesting forms that when combined with other found elements, produce anthropomorphic structures such as the ones seen here. As an advocate for the humane treatment of animals, I have proposed a project which will involve brushing (and petting) cats at a local animal shelter. The result of this project will be an archive of cat hair structures lovingly harvested from incarcerated cats, together with additional documentation explaining the eventual fate of each animal."



Cat Hair Doll, 2011 from the series Cat Hair


Twist


Cat Hair Pendant, 2011



Also on Cheryl's blog, check out this link to "real fur postcards" from her collection. It includes the above image of "Bear Going to Church."

Friday, November 25, 2011

Springfield, Ohio

One of my favorite James Luckett photographs on his bookshelf:



A blurry photo of James's typewriter:



Potatoes and a dead bird in James's AMAZING studio:



Francis (always within reach) & Marguerite (always just out of reach) with the Food issue of the New Yorker (the annual cover by Wayne Thiebaud):



Crabill Homestead:



View from the Crabill Homestead:


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

All the food I won't be eating but it is fun to examine as artwork:


Claes Oldenburg, Assorted Food on Stove, 1962


Lisa Milroy, Fast Food, 1999


Robert Heinecken, TV Dinner, 1971


David Welch, Burger Totem, 2011


Robert Watts, TV Dinner, 1965 (pre-Robert Heinecken)

Women with Tattoos


Imogen Cunningham, Irene Bobby Libarry, 1976


Amelia Morris, The Day After My First Faux-Tattoo, 2011


Olya Ivanova, Mari Stamina


Olya Ivanova, Mari Stamina


Sheila Newbery, At the Mausoleum, 2011


Rachel Barrett, Nile from Bolinas, NC


Lise Sarfati, From The New Life


Ann Marshall, Sunshine and Molasses


Image via.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Montana Part 2

Alexis via email: "You should come float some clear waters in the summer under the big sky -- or do a project on earthworks that occur in Yellowstone that you made and got arrested for by the feds." Sounds like a plan (other than the arrested part).


Alexis in Chris's office, Montana State University


Hanging out with Chris Anderson


A beautiful print that reminds me all too well of summer by Chris Anderson.


An image from Halli Bischoff's senior thesis.

I had individual critiques with 22 students over a two day period. In addition to Halli's work also see John Schlepp, Heather McKenney, Mark A. Lee, Sam Reinsel, and Collin Avery's "Here nor There" which was featured in Lenscratch in July 2011.


Bulletin Board at MSU




A minute or two before Alexis gave the best introduction to my lecture ever in Studio B (a cavern)


While wandering through the MSU hallways...


... nothing like an i-Phone photo of cookies at Rosauers (not so great food photography).


Another odd (and horribly reflective) photograph of Marilyn Monroe in the School of Film and Photography Building.


... about that snow...


The next day... the view from Alexis's office window at MSU


A Bozeman mailbox in 10 degree weather (that nearly resembles the photograph above).


A drive around town (en route to the Bridger Bowl) before heading to the airport.


Reading material on the flight to Indianapolis provided by Sage Lewis (thanks!).