Saturday, July 17, 2010

“What are your plans for the summer?”
The summer session is over and he is at MM’s. She has agreed to lend him her studio for 6 weeks, two of which she will not be here. This is a big occasion. This is her studio that she built for herself and now she is letting him use it. In six weeks He will be back in Tomball.  It is all a delicate balance.
Delicate Balance 36x12

"Since I have no space in which to work, her space is to be my space for a while.
Lots of art shows in Houston in the heat of the summer. Most banal. But at Wade Wilson’s there is Harold Garde . Raw figurative expressionist works of the school of painting that is forever old and forever young. Unpretentious and seemingly effortless these works refuse to decorate. They proclaim their deep raw love of art and humanity. At the Art Car Museum there is the work of Barbara Jones a Houston painter who I knew nothing about. She recently died leaving a body of work that proclaim the joy she found in her private life, her Houston neighborhood and her friends. Richly painted with no attempt at “art smart”  the paintings tell of joy in her life and also the sadness of loss and injustices. A talent now silenced that got little exposure; I only guess that that is how she wanted it. The energy it takes to self promote takes away from the creating time. I heard an artist once say that you have to spend has much of your time on business as on creation.
Talk Self Promote Talk Self Promote Talk Self Promote
 In HIGH ACADEMIA the word play goes on. Like a dog chasing it's tail. On line I discovered an artist whose thing was to question what is art. EXCUSE me but did not Duchamp do that a 100 years ago and we got it  and kept making paintings. One of  artist's acts was to have a crane  lower a junked car into Central Park, that's in NY you know. That's something at which to marvel. Context is everything; do not try that in East Texas.
I went to more galleries where the work was let’s say undeveloped or derivative or all looked alike and was the same size. One exhibition was of a ex student of mine He only took one class and moved on, but I liked him. A smart ass who did every thing I asked as outrageously as possible, but he came to every class and that got my attention. I saw him as I was 50 years ago and I discovered we share a birthday. Now he has a graduate degree and is doing work that young people do. I trust he will improve. Too much causal photo stuff right now, but they have a dark beauty.
I visited an art gallery owner who had looked at  my work and said that we would do some kind of show. Now I got the run around..."well I don't know, I can't say, I have things scheduled for  9 months"...yes I understand just say yes of no..instead of I have to think about it.
I will keep doing what I enjoy and you can Think about that."
Two Islands 16x20


  1. Nobody can take away the delicate balance you continue to indulge. Your cynicism about what is out there there is also a treasure that took years to hone. Professor, we like what you do and your dedication to enjoy it while always growing.
    HJ Bott

  2. Earl,

    The art business is, ironically, still like selling shoes while at the same time pretending to be constantly on the lookout for the next artist who appears to threaten (ever so nicely) the very idea of "retail art". Remember Tom Wolfe's description of Andy Warhol's entrance into the world of dealers and patrons in his book, "The Painted Word"? Wolfe's term for the whole thing was the "Boho Dance"? If it makes you feel any better, here's a reply I got yesterday from a dealer in the sixth arrondissement:

    Bonjour et merci pour l’intérêt que vous portez à notre galerie.

    Malheureusement, nous ne pouvons pas répondre favorablement à votre proposition.

    Bien cordialement,

    Olivier Waltman


    74 rue mazarine
    75006 paris, france

    + 33 1 43 54 76 14

    He's more comfortable with his little group of tired, decorative artists. There are dozens of galleries in Paris, and they all have their little comfort zones. They can't deal with something they haven't already seen before.

    We will keep painting no matter which way the wind blows.

  3. The gallery setting egotism and wishy-washiness cooled me off when I was taking the runway to devout my life to visual arts production in the late seventies in Mexico. The good part was receiving before I was 20 my first lesson on checking the ego at the door and forgetting to pick it back.