Thursday, September 30, 2010

the results

The Art History exam  was a disaster. Not unexpected. 23 students.. 1 A , 4 B, 1 C, 1 D and 14 F.
He went over the test and  again explained how to study... he emphasized the material that might be on the test, but did not announce that "this will be on the test." He believes that students in high school are taught the test, not to think independently.
Today's lecture was the first of 4 about Greek art, the foundation of all Western art.  A few asked questions and even participated. One got up in the middle of class and left. Is that not rude? Could he not wait? The Professor is astonished at such behavior. Not that it is the first time it has happened.
Yesterday was good; his design class was full as was his painting class and a student from a few years ago stopped by. She went on to California and got an art  degree and is in a show in Dallas. It is nice  to see students from the past return and share their experiences.
The Professor is working on a painting whose subject is his painter's apron.
In 1971 he did a painting in which he embedded his paint apron in a dirt mixed with acrylic medium encrusted canvas. That year The MFAH decided that they would invest in some local artists and they bought it. They actually exhibited it for a while.
Apron 1 1971 48x48 mixed media (very poor image)
 He saw the show in the San Antonio Art League  of Marilyn Lanfear's work. The show is wonderful. She had some work pertaining among other things to aprons.This provoked memories of his 1971 work and he pursued the idea. Always use what ever you can in your own way.
Painter's Apron 2 42x44 first stage
Painter's Apron 2 42x44 2nd stage 09-29-2010
Painter's Apron 2 42x44 3rd stage 09-30-2010

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Misc. Stuff

The Professor be Bloggin
Nice to sit outside and smoke and have a bit to drink and talk at Jay's house. The weather has cooled just a bit. This is the first day of Fall and  a full moon.  No wonder so much craziness is going on. The Professor washed his cell phone again and has a new one to be activated at the cell phone store tomorrow..
The Professor is never surprised after 18 plus years teaching at the college. 3 weeks of classes and his attendance is diminishing. Drawing 1 was down 10 this afternoon, an important class, beginning perspective. One Point perspective is basic knowledge for drawing just  like shading. The next class is 2 point perspective and he wonders how many will be there. Next week is devoted to free hand perspective and those that come back will be clueless.  There will be the usual excuses.
He is always amazed with those who take his Drawing 2 class who have taken Drawing I from other schools who have no idea to how draw...What were they taught?
His Design I class at 8 am is holding and doing very well. Painting class? there are those that are always there and some come once in a while. He has one person who he has failed before, back again and doing the same....not being there. Survey of Art History I has it's first test tomorrow over Prehistoric and Mesopotamian and Egyptian Art, always a sobering moment. Art Appreciation class which was bursting without enough room to sit now has plenty of room; Only one class a week at 7 PM, a ten question test over the previous material that is in the book and covered in the lecture, is down by over 10 students. One person told  the Professor that he just got the text, therefore did not pass any of the tests and  thought it was a drawing class.  He was having trouble... meaning flunking the tests. I could barely understand him, his speech was so poor. As teachers we cannot make them come to class, read the text , take notes or study. How did they get out of High school? The Professor answers " by showing up". It happens every semester.
                                                                           The Professor paints.
Stage 2... fermenting for a while

Here is a 48x60 : Stage 1

Stage 2
The Professor read on Facebook James Surls comment about art critics.  Where are they? Or what is their importance? What the Professor reads are Fluff pieces. Don't offend. He remembers one critic who said of his work that it was "beyond the pale". He liked that, a real opinion, a criticism and a complement. That was in New York. The critics that he liked such as James McKeverly or David Hickey were good as long as they stuck to general theory. He saw a show that Mr. Hickey curated in Santa Fe a few years ago which was to say the least shallow and trendy. One artist was so out of place, Kermit Oliver from Texas a realist. The Professor likes his work. It is very personal and knowledgeable. Ah Santa Fe the self pronounced 3rd largest art market in the USA. A three month market in which to make a profit before the tourists leave and winter sets in. Anyone with enough money and social ambition to open a gallery without any knowledge of art history can open a gallery. They will have 1000s of Artists panting, nose pressed against the door to show their work. The Professor watched  a  tourist market selling feel good "art" with plenty of Knock-Offs of Knock-offs of  supposedly sellable "art". Is it art if it is shown in an art gallery? The Professor likes the anonymous Houston art market where it is part of the general economics.
Keep it personal. Use yourself for source material. Know your art history. Do not follow trends. Celebrate who you are.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Back at school

School starts and then stops for Labor Day. The professor went to Seattle to meet Mary Margaret's. family.

Here are photos of his trip to Seattle. First at Discovery Park.

We took a walk on the beach at low tide in the morning.

Driftwood is always cool

The family picnic in Discovery park.

The Professor and Mary Margaret's parents

The Professor plays

Flying kites