Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Summer Vacation Has Arrived!

Looking forward to learning more about our neighbor to the north.

Back to Idaho for the first time since ... 2008. I have a residency at Surel's Place in which I will discover what my new series is truly all about (water as autobiography).


Purchased specimen bottles because I need to fill this box at some point in the near future.

More from the road!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Road Ends in Water

Very soon the search for the end of the road (preferably at water) will begin. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

I Need a Stamp

Every time I see a Weegee photograph, I think of his stamp and how much I want one. Imagining everything I could do with it, is half the fun. When Hannah designed this one a year and half ago for Echo of the Object, it made an appearance on all flat surfaces within our grasp.

Over the past three years of contemplating this purchase, I haven't thought of anything that I would like it to say. It is the tattoo I will never get for fear of its permanent branding (it isn't inked on my skin - yet it could be (!) - but it does stop me from crossing that bridge each and every time).

Perhaps if I announce this desire on this blog, it will be the impetus to design one for photographs, Postcard Collective submissions (better get on that task too) and so on. Yes... I need a stamp ... Ready, Set, Appear.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Alec Soth: Steve Jobs' Family Garage

Alec Soth, Los Altos, Califoria, 2013, 2066 Crist Drive, Garage of Steve Jobs' Family Home

Ever since Alec Soth showed the above photograph during his lecture at Photolucida last year, I have thought about it in relationship to the Artist Stalking Series. It is documented in the manner of Robert Adams but in broad daylight. We do not see the shadows of the neighborhood trees overlapping the geometry like we would in an Adams' photograph, yet it, nevertheless, reminds me of the Summer Nights Walking series. The high noon light makes it less conspicuous, yet the proximity to the house suggests Soth is standing in the driveway. It is a straightforward image concentrating on the formal qualities until one reads "Garage of Steve Jobs' Family Home."

I am thinking about titles (as Soth is wont to do) and how they can force my viewers into other realizations (because photographs of houses from the street are indeed, rather dull). My title Stalking Artists: In Pursuit of Home might already contain too much information. More to ponder in the Rust Belt on the brink of summer vacation...

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Easter = Egg Posts (the tradition around here)

In pairs we follow...

Carole Itter, Raw Egg Costume 1974

Carole Itter, Chicken Box #9, 1974

Urs Fischer, Innocent Problem, 2013

Urs Fischer, Half a Problem, 2013

Jonathan Blaustein, One Dollar's Worth of Chicken Eggs from a Factory Farm in Texas

Jonathan Blaustein, One Dollar's Worth of Local Duck Egg from the Farmer's Market

Josef Sudek, Composition Glass Egg Still Life, 1950-54


Josef Sudek, Eggshells on Plate, 1950s

Friday, April 11, 2014

"Devoted" by Randy Twaddle

For the past several months, Randy Twaddle's Daily Devotionals appeared in my Instagram feed. Today, all 71 of them can be found on a tumblr account. I truly admire artists that start their day in the studio with a repetitive practice.

Randy states: "I came to think of these simple, uni-ball pen drawings in a domestic context, akin to other "busywork" like needlepoint or crochet. Those Victorian alphabet samplers one sees at flea markets were on my mind a lot, as was the realization that traditionally, almost all of that work was done by women. So here I was at the kitchen table spending significant parts of my days and nights doing an equivalent of needlepoint. And happily so."

All images are from Randy Twaddle's Devoted, 2014

I am especially fond of the last one as Randy reassesses the most overused phrase (AKA my least favorite one) that makes me cringe each and every time I hear it. I may have quoted this devotional to the last person I heard say it. I may have considered this as my first tattoo. I may have wished this was available as a t-shirt.

Be sure to check out the rest!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Hate-Hate Relationships with the Rubik's Cube

I knew 2014 marked the 40th anniversary of the Rubik's Cube (due to last year's visit to Hungary, home of the inventor, Ernő Rubik), yet I unintentionally overlooked the exact day (28 March). I was first inspired to post this when discovering the photograph below a couple year's ago.

Andrew B. Myers, Buyer's Remorse

Nothing is perfect: the off center presentation, the chipped paint on the pedestal, and the inability to solve each side. The hint of red fingernail polish and blue sleeve mimic the color on the right of the puzzle. Thank you, Andrew B. Myers, for making the best photograph of a Rubik's Cube, simultaneously summing up my hate-hate relationship with the object, yet infusing humor into the situation.

David Gibson, London, 2003

Somehow Gibson's depiction of the object is palatable because it is photographed in black-and-white and I spend more time comparing patterns in the tie than looking at the game.

Scilla Klenyanszki, From A Mug's Game

Klenyanszki's cube looks nightmarish but I rest easily because of the deformity in the bottom right (relishing any opportunity to bash the color orange). The brown square draws attention to the studio set-up, allowing me to believe nothing is what it seems, despite showing the viewer a hint of the process of taking the photograph.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Portrait of Javy Russell 1992 - 1996

I created my latest self-published book to remember a small box of cassette tapes that I threw away one month ago. In addition, it was a gift for my brother's birthday in January (three parts: this book, a gift card to Everyday Music, and a mixed CD = nearly obsolete). The action of photographing the objects before they were thrown away fits the series, Autobiography, but in reality, this project is about someone else (therefore it is not my personal history).

From the text above:

In 2004, while living in a Portland, Oregon rental, the basement flooded. I lost several of the mixed tapes Javy made me from the mid 1990s. They revealed his ingenuity in titling and compiling songs - one reason why they were saved long past having the means to play them. Here are the twenty-five that remain. They are not only a document of an era but the life of a 16-20 year old growing up in Boise, Idaho.

Side note: my brother hates cucumbers.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Magnets Visited

It occurred to me the other day after writing the Washington, D.C. post that I have visited all the places represented on my refrigerator magnets (travel accomplishment #912 - 9999 more to go).

I am still annoyed that my favorite one featuring Crater Lake was stolen during a party in Houston, Texas. Its ghost is represented above.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

29 Reasons Why Everyone Should Participate in the Postcard Collective

I received some of the best postcards from the Winter 2014 round. Here they are (though two arrived within the last week and are not pictured):

Two of my favorite parts were the introduction to Judith Baumann's artwork and my reacquaintance with Jon Feinstein's photographs. Their websites are highly worth perusing.

"Migration" by Jacqueline Suskin

A few months ago, I struggled with how much money one gives Poem Store's Jacqueline Suskin when she states, "your subject your price." I agonized over this for weeks despite the best intention of requesting a poem quickly. One Sunday afternoon, I devised a plan: empty my wallet of all paper money (no matter what it is) and send it with the accompanying (inarticulate) text:

"This is something I think about all the time and would love to know what you would write: That intense longing and sadness that comes from seeing birds migrate through, knowing you can't follow them to the warm in the winter and the cool in the summer (but someday you will die trying)."

Last week, Jacqueline sent the far more eloquent poem below:

It now resides in my wallet next to the found $2 from Clemson, South Carolina, a Metro card with Nick Cave's Sound Suits, and a "ticket out of Indiana" from my father.