Razors, Moments, Trees

Things change, move on; drift and swallow, squat and lurch.

And to be caught in the moment of despair, the one in which all hopes and dreams are perched on the ledge of that exact second well, well… , that’s akin to suicide, and to falling back in with <insert escape hatch here> (drugs, work, sex). Because those things are the supposed solution to the moment, and we don’t need to solve the moment.

We don’t need a solution at all, but rather a way to accept the present, to skate on the razor edge of time, swaying, for all of existence. And what no one can tell us is how to get there, because there is no roadmap, no why, no how. Logic cannot direct us, say to “make a right at the cow”, because logic only knows one way: logic. Concrete directions that can be given to everyone and can work for everyone, if followed.

Finding the moment, finding oneself, involves something bother bigger and smaller than logic. Something that both is contained in and contains logic – a small seed from the tree of logic that grows into a large bush of intuition with unfolding flowers that contain stamens of logic, deep in the recesses of it’s branches.

You don’t understand what power is! The furnace doesn’t turn off the thermostat! You want the heart to decide to
KILL the brain, but it can’t DECIDE to, only the brain can decide. Don’t forget though, it gets its deciding power from the heart!

– John Barth in Giles Goat Boy



Titles in Search of Homes (Part 3)

This is the third in a series of titles that came to me of art pieces that are not attached to any artworks… yet.

See Part 1 here, and Part 2 here


– Hands and Heartbeats and the Influence of Lies

– It’s Never Landed

– Remembrance of Warmth

– King and Key

– Coffee, Limes, and Boiled Eggs

– The Logic of the Basement

– Predictions from the Internal Divinity (poop)

– Held Captive By the Leftover Cheese

– For all Intents and Purposes

– The Heat of Yesterday

– That Last Crushed Feeling of a Place I’ve Never Been

– Bumbles, Hovers

– Flickers, Flutters

Do the work

They say “do the work.” That’s the answer to all questions about form, content, style – “finding your voice.” Do the work. And while I understood this concept on a logical level, it wasn’t until just recently that I experienced what it might mean.

There have been times in the past where I’ve spent several hours (or more) each day, for consecutive days, in the space of my art, and working on something. However this residency is the first time, I think ever, that it’s been such a concentrated amount of time each day, and so many consecutive days in a row. And what has seemed to happen is that this maxim of “Do the work” has become more real, more visceral, than just a thought – I can feel it in my bones.

This doesn’t mean I have all the answers, or even some of the answers, but it does mean that, after several weeks of finishing one piece a day and working on longer term works, for at least four to five to nine hours each day, I’ve had a few glimpses.

Glimpses of where I may be heading, and tools to use to get there.

Glimpses of what i enjoy working on, and what I don’t.

Glimpses of ideas and materials and form coalescing. Into what I’m not so sure, but definitely some melding.

It is difficult to put in words, and there are times when I wonder if it was a temporary mirage in the art desert, but mixed in with the questioning and doubt and second guessing and yes, even a bit of despair, is what might be called hope. There’s a quote that says, “Art is the highest form of hope.”

While I agree with that, I might change the word hope to faith.

A faith that what you are doing matters.
A faith that someone cares.
A faith that it doesn’t matter if anyone cares, except for yourself, and not even that sometimes.
A faith that things will work out.
A faith that this, here, is all you can do.

It’s these little glimpses of faith that keep us moving along, through pits of doubt and downpours of despondence, little glimpses that don’t seem to matter and yet do, so much.

Slice Some Parts (part 2)

See last week for Part 1


Lost misbegotten love

A treasure trove of riches

Lost in ditches


Return to us all

Cause the fact remains

No matter what our call

How we hem and haw

It’s all the same

From whence you came

To be

As sure as

The roots of this tree

That every last little tendril of light

Eventually runs away in fright


It’s too late

Without a cause

Or pause

No matter what he she or it

ever does

All just smoke in a barrel

Last shot fired

Up out

Into the clouds

Back into

Whatever it was.

Slice Some Parts (part 1)

Cause life ain’t a formula

it’s more than the

sum of the parts

it’s all in all

Ready for a fall

Are you?

I think not

Without a clue

We run dash and hide

Through and through

The gap grows too wide

Between vow and view

And as much as we

Hope to be

Not just another cog in the wheel


Scream and shout

Wave about

Look around for the next out

It’s all just a wisp

Of a crisp

A thing none of us will say

Well there is one way

In the dark dead of night

Gathered here, around the light


Takes their turn

Watches as the embers

Slowly burn

Tells the story of

continued in Part 2…

The Thing About Anything (In Context)

Just do it.

Yes, Nike’s slogan, and what so many successful artists say when asked how to learn something, or make good work, or find your voice, or etc. etc.

The thing not mentioned: context. Most of us are always putting ourselves in some sort of context.

Contexts of what our lives might look like from the outside. Stepping out of the water, standing on the bank with a faraway glint in our eyes, watching our phantom self sidestep and slip on stones, gazing into the horizon to a supposedly better place. It’s very hard to just jump out of this story we tell about ourselves, and into the work itself.

This is where I struggle, and some thing I hope to work a little bit on in the next 7 weeks at my artist residency at Grunewald Guild.

Yes, I want to meet people and have great discussions. Yes, already I created a context of being on a “residency” which has all sorts of connotations. And the fact is I am not (and can’t be) just in a windowless airlock box, where I wake up and make art. There are other things.

However, I have put myself in the barest possible contexts: I am here to make.  And that is enough.

Why is making art enough? Quite honestly, because there is nothing else I can do.

Titles in Search of Homes (Part 2)

The second part of the “Titles in Search of Homes” Series

– And Balance Lies

– Logical Chain of Extremes

– The Vlad Hat

– Inappropriate Pauses By the Machine

– Color and Choices and People

Pain and
Pain And
pain and

– Running Grocery List: Limes (maybe)

– Kidneys and Elevators

– Blackberry Sadness

– The Beats Between

– Margie’s Last Egg

– Hands and Heartbeats

Inspiration is…

Inspiration is for amateurs. Professionals just get to work.

-Chuck Close

I’ve been thinking about this idea a lot lately.  There are all sorts of variations on it, from Elizabeth Gilbert‘s (paraphrased cause I can’t find the exact quote:) “the muse doesn’t just come to you, you need to start working to show you’re worth a visit,” to recent research showing that, while we sometimes believe we need to “feel like” doing something before action, the opposite is true: the doing comes first, then the desire.

All of these are great to get you going, but this leads to further questions, one of which pertains to doing art: what keeps you in the making space, if it just so happens to be one of those days the muse is on vacation, and your brain isn’t quite following the rules of science?


dollhouse stuff

Titles In Search of a Home

Ever think of artwork names, without the artwork?

As I go about my life, making art, going to the supermarket, walking in the dog park (probably my three top activities), certain words, phrases, and combinations will impress themselves upon me as perfect titles for an art work.

When this happens, and I happen to have a pen and paper or my phone available, I note them down. So far, I have not actually used any of them (although I have lent them out to a photographer in Brooklyn who had a particularly hard time coming up with names for his photo creations), but I find them in and of themselves pretty intriguing.

Following, in no particular order (except perhaps sequentially) is the first third of the list:

– If Wishes Were Willpower

– Change of Subject from Silence

– A Carpet of Calm in the Obvious (A Cabin of Calm in the Obvious)

– Small Soft Available Spaces

– Cats, Cats, Cats, Cats, Cats, Cats; Owls

– Asceticism in the Service of its Opposite

– The End of Long Beginnings; the Start of Something New… And Short?

– London Particulars
A London Particular

– The Perpetual Sadness of the Eventual Ends

– The Authority Of the Disaster And Master (TAODAM) [This one actually is a working title of a piece in progress]

– Random Generosity (That Thing in the Basement)

– What Makes Me Feel Like a Grape?

– Accurate Elevator

Well, that wraps up today’s episode of Titles Without Homes, but stay tuned…