Thursday, August 30, 2012

Folk Art Find: Electric Pencil Drawings

I like these naive drawings that John Foster found on ebay by James Edward Deeds, Jr. View more images and read the story about them here:

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Photo of the Day

Here is a photo of Catherine Deneuve and her sister Francoise Dorleac (French actresses) when they were very young. Sadly, Francoise died at age 25 in a car crash. Catherine is still as beautiful as ever. I never knew the story of her sister, but I looked it up yesterday.
Thanks go to mardecortesbaja: LINK

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Kesey Party 1992

Ken Kesey
Hokum Scorchers (Lou Reimuller and Amy Crehore)

Okay, so Jerry Garcia got sick in August of 1992.The Grateful Dead were supposed to headline an event called "Field Trip" in Veneta, OR, but they cancelled due to illness. So, the musicians that were also supposed to play at the event headed out to Ken Kesey's property. My band, The Hokum Scorchers, played music for 20 minutes on a makeshift stage in a field next to Kesey's house. All the food was gone when we got there, so we played on an empty stomach. I think they paid us $5.
Here's my badge (front and back views above) sporting Kesey's own psychedelic artwork. I believe Gus Van Sant was there that day, too, filming the part where Kesey read his childrens' book on stage (wearing a bear costume).
Unfortunately, Kesey's outfit caught on fire as he was doing his thing. I think I heard him scream, "Turn the cameras off!!". My memory is foggy, but I know that I wore my vintage Foster Grant sunglasses like I always do when we play hokum music. I remember asking Ken Babbs if Robert Stone was there because I had just illustrated a story of his for Esquire magazine. "Nope, he's not here, but Timothy Leary is supposed to show up". I remember knocking my microphone completely off the platform. Ka-Plunk! Everyone in the audience was stoned, so it really didn't matter what anyone did on stage. We walked past an old junker on our way was "Further", the original hippie bus (photo above). Later, we would get to play music on Ken Kesey's float in the annual Eugene parade. He made us do a version of the song "Gloria". It must have been one of his favorites. There is a film of that somewhere...

P.S. I posted this story 3 years ago, but I am posting it again this morning as I head out to see the Eugene Celebration parade. I will always remember riding on that float with Ken Kesey who was dressed in his shaggy bear costume. Standing at the front of the float, he almost hit his head on a tree limb as we made our way down the streets of Eugene, OR. There is now a statue of Kesey in the middle of town. He is reading a book to children.

Friday, August 24, 2012

The Paternal Suit by F. Scott Hess

The Paternal Suit consists of over 100 paintings, prints, and objects created by artist F. Scott Hess as his own "family heirlooms" and presented as legitimate historical artifacts. It opens tonight: Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art, watch video and see more images here: LINK 
Exhibit runs: Aug 24- Oct 6, 2012
161 Calhoun Street
Charleston, SC 29401
 843.953.HICA (4422)
Wonderful idea and execution, with a good dose of humor.

The Art of Amy Crehore 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Geishas as Bathing Beauties (1900)

These geishas-as-bathing-beauties (1900) came from Okinawa Soba flickr
(featured on retronaut blog today)
 These are inspiring to me as I have been painting bathers for a while. So charming!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Royal French Ballet 1620s

Click to enlarge image
The Hazardous Perrette and a Cat, Daniel Rabel 1620s Royal French Ballet
Ballet des Fées de la forêt de Saint Germain
Music Recital for grand Ballet.
More illustrations like this at BibliOdyssey

The cat above reminds me a lot of my little pierrots that I painted from my imagination in 2004-2005.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Kusama and Cornell

 Yayoi Kusama with Cornell 1970
(he looks a little like he's choking her, but she looks happy)
Yayoi Kusama Age 10 1939
Blouin Artinfo has more photos of Kusama (that's where I got these).
Link to my recent boingboing essay on the book about Joseph Cornell, Utopia Parkway.
Kusama and her relationship with Cornell is mentioned in the book.
The photo (above) was taken in 1970, he died in 1972.

Monday, August 06, 2012

What am I up to?

Here are some details of a larger oil painting that I am working on.
These are just some quicky ipod glimpses of the unfinished work.
The temporary title is "Fig Leaf Parasol".

Sunday, August 05, 2012

Painting of the day by Ilya Repin

 I like this painting by Ilya Repin called "Dragon-fly". It is a portrait of the artist's daughter, Vera Repina (1884, oil on canvas). More about Repin here. He was born on August 5, 1844, so it's his birthday today. He was a great Russian realist painter.

Friday, August 03, 2012

My essay about Utopia Parkway (the book) for Boing Boing

I wrote an essay about one of my favorite books- Utopia Parkway, The Life and Work of Joseph Cornell by Deborah Solomon (shown above)- for Boing Boing's Enthralling Books series. It is an absolutely wonderful biography of an eccentric man who became a great American artist.
Here's the LINK to my essay.

Here is a link to the works of Joseph Cornell. (artnet)
One thing that touched me about Cornell, which I failed to mention in my essay, was how he cared about and related to children. Shortly before he died in 1972, he had a show at Cooper Union School in NYC. This show was just for children and his works were hung at the child's-eye level. He actually attended the opening and they served cherry coke and brownies (which I am sure he gladly scarfed down). Shown here are a few pictures of the event (from A Joseph Cornell Album - Viking 1974- courtesy Dore Ashton/Denise Hare). You can see more photos at: Stopping Off Place Blog

The Art of Amy Crehore

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Historic Mechanical Instruments and Figures

Watch this amazing "clown illusionist" in action - the Morris Museum website (follow the link below) has sound clips and video clips of 22 historic mechanical figures and instruments from the Murtogh D. Guinness collection. You can visit a permanent collection of these (700 objects) if you live near Morristown, NJ. (I used to live near there myself, but this collection was not available at the time.) 

Photos of the Day: Brigitte Bardot 1953

Retronaut has 12 stunning photos of Brigitte Bardot on the beach at Cannes in 1953 (from LIFE magazine archives). These really show her personality. 
I am working on paintings with swimmers/bathers lately, so it is nice to see these. Stay tuned to this blog for another new painting of mine to be posted soon.