Sunday, December 31, 2006


Here's to you- hope your next year is the best it can be. Lay off the resolutions- you have the rest of the year to get your shit straight.

Most excellent photo by Kimberly, art direction by Mr Greasy.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

The Omnivore's Delimma?

Alright humans, friends, companeros, bloggers, readers, and blurkers! Have a happy and safe few days and know that in Kimberly's world, cannibalism is all the rage.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Snap Guide for General Maintenance (or For The Sake of Normalizing Relations lll)

I'm not going to (or coming to depending where you're reading from) Frostburg for the holiday. Kim is already there and during her train ride along the Potomac she texted me to let me know that a woman sitting near her was reading The Maintenance Man, a novel by Michael Baisden. Never heard of him Churls? Well here's an enticing description from Am*zon:
The Maintenance Man is an intriguing novel about love, betrayal, and of course, sex. Michael paints a dark picture of his main character, Malcolm, who is a high-priced gigolo struggling with his morality. He is conflicted with his promiscuous lifestyle and his desire to pursue his dream as a pianist. While on an appointment with one of his wealthy clients, he meets a beautiful and gifted dancer named Antoinette, Toni for short. She recognizes his incredible talent and encourages him to go after his dream. But Toni is unaware of Malcolm's unsavory occupation. And trying to keep it undercover only adds to the drama.
Anyway, I know that I'm going to miss everyone in Frostburg but alas, not coming up feels like the right thing to do. I'm hoping to visit sometime in February when work slows down a bit and I'm not so preoccupied with the state of the dumpster. There's a batch of people I haven't seen or spent any really good time with for a few years (Allison, Rob and Kimmie, Max, Katharine, Grace, Leon...) and I may look into arranging a dinner. For the time being I was looking over a bunch of snaps procured during my most recent visit. Here are a few (realize that Frostburg is snowy now, not bright and sunny like it was in October) from that time for me as a remedy for not being there.

Looking at these pictures of Frostburg alleys and the hallway off of Mechanic Street, makes me think of when I returned to Frostbug after having spent a year travelling, living in my car with Annabelle, and in general not being in places as confined as this. When I arrived back in Frostburg after a year and an 18 hour speed-fueled drive from Manhattan, Kansas I turned right onto Water Street (I took Rt. 40 back as much as possible) and was shocked by how narrow the streets of Frostburg were. Turning onto Water Street was liking driving through a canyon compared to the 120' wide streets of where I had been living.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

The Perks of Waste Management

Being a maintenance man/ facilities manager/ janitor has its benefits. One being that I have received this holiday card. Priceless and apropos... I actually spend quite a lot of time in our dumpster rearranging all of the stuff that we throw away- I try to get the most efficient use out of the space and I often joke with my work-study slave Geoff that when I write my memoir about the years of being a facilities manager it will be titled My Life in a Dumpster. I usually say this as I bounce up and down on some trash that landed in the wrong place when we threw it in.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

(You're Standing on My) Majuscle

Brad has a new issue of Majuscle (#9) on view at it is snippets of conversations that he had during his trip to Montreal a couple months ago. It worth the clicks-- worth the read. I really like issue #8.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Holiday Plans Have Been Mapped Out

Poor Allegany County! I trimmed most of you off in my quick map. Westernport, forgive me! Pinto I'm sorry, Cresaptown- geeeez, Rawlings! Where would I be without Rawlings?

Here- here is another picture of you as the heart of Maryland:

Sunday, December 03, 2006

For the Sake of Normalizing Relations ll

I've been once again fixating on how little I've been writing here and wondering what it is that I'm thinking about and doing that I'm not sharing. Well, I'm not sure I can write 200 words in less than 3 hours these days, but I can show you what I've been doing for the past couple of weeks in only 58 seconds (plus buffering time).

This is a mazurka written by Wim Claeys, a handsome Belgian who plays both the diatonic button accordion and the bagpipes. Claeys also appears to be a major player in the Boombal movement (?) over there.

I could play this tune all day long.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

I'm Fine, and You?

I'm feeling a little like this today:

I felt a little like this Monday night:

I might feel like this tomorrow:

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

A Few Combs

I found this comb today. I scanned both sides. There is only one of these combs.

I have owned this blue sparkly comb for a few years. It makes up for my not owning a hot rod with a metal-flake paint job.

This is Kim's scary comb and it makes me think about what my Nana would say about small people- "they need big things!".

I don't know what it is about combs, but I find them very attractive.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Martin Bromirski

Art of this Century, Martin Bromirski's current show of paintings is still on view at Haigh Jamochian's Markel building here in Richmond (5310 Markel Road). It is a wonderfully weird affair and very close to Panera, The Inns of Virginia, and the soon to be disappeared Tower Records. Martin has made looking at art so easy, and so convenient (Staples is only a block away). On his blog, Martin has dubbed the Markel building the Bizarro Guggenheim and this is a keen maneuver- Martin has a large enough readership that a ton of us will never pass this crumpled mass without thinking of his coinage.

Martin continues to weasel his way in.

Martin also has great referential (not reverential) images of the building on ANABA.

Kim and I visited on an especially cold and rainy day last week and I need to go back when I can get some better pictures and when the light isn't quite so dim (or grim). Although I don't think he painted these sad little things with this Bizarro Guggenheim in mind, his installation speaks pretty directly of his awareness of the space- and of space. For example:

The floating meatballs (I think these are meatballs?) push and pull their way to the surface of the painting- making their way through the sandy atmosphere and provide perspective on the universe.

Kim is standing next to paintings, urine, and blood samples (no money). The texture of the silver painting is like the hand-hammered surface of the building. Above Kim's head is a yellow silhouette of a woman reading. At the Bizarro Guggenheim, anything is possible. More vertical pictures of Kim standing near art here.

Kim next to the largest painting in the show. It is the last one I reached the day we visited and by the time I made my way to it I wanted more planets, more moons, more meatballs! You can see more of Martin's paintings here.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


For those who don't know it, VVORK is a great artblog run by (from what I can tell) a handful of northern Europeans. I thought this was chilling:

»Van de hoge« is a temporary installation in the terrain of the Royal Military Academy in Breda/Netherlands. Three diving boards are mounted to the building in which the soldiers are housed. The boards (in national colours) face the pavement of the exercise area. By Matthijs Bosman.

Saturday, November 18, 2006


That was then...
March 15, 2006
This is now...

November 11, 2006

This graffiti was on Broad St. (between Pleasant's and 7-11, or between N. Meadow and N. Allison Streets) since early March. It seems to have been done with a super soaker or some such pump-action sprayer. I was always surprised I never heard anyone talk about it. Maybe that's because it is nearly impossible to read? Is it supposed to say "Loser" but the writer had problems with the O so it looks like Luser w/ an umlaut over the U?

Who's the new reigning Richmond tagger now that Goest is gone? Youth and Kuma seem to be on the rise and then there is the beautiful Jesper.

Thursday, November 16, 2006


I just returned from a quick art handling trip to nyc w/ Ashley to return the work that was on loan for the Garden exhibition at VACR. When dropping off, or picking up work we spend only enough time for me to glance over a show, smile at the hot artechicks behind the cast concrete art desk-monoliths, and grab a postcard or two. I generally don't take any sort of close look at the cards until I get home and I tell Kim all about the trip (except the smiling at hot artechicks part).

There were a number of good cards from this trip. I love how galleries (and artists) make such a big deal of trying to outdo their neighbors. It makes it good for us schmos who can't afford a thing. I've scanned what Kim and I decided are the highlights from the 20 (or so) that I picked up on this trip. I'll work my way from the bottom up (click on the card for link to gallery/artist)...

Sixth Place:

Kim really loves this one and if she weren't now asleep on my bed but was taking part in what was to be a co-post, this card may have had a better chance of being in a better psoition. Anyway, too subtle for me although I like the colors- they remind me of push-ups. It's just too polite and I really liked Greg Smith's work and would have liked a little picture of it.

Fifth Place:

Skulls amidst a pile of penis-bones on thick plastic-y paper that feels like it should be a decal! What's not to like? The artist is Alan Wiener, the gallery is g-module and somehow the card made it from Paris (France!) all the way to Pierogi (Brooklyn!).

How did it get there.

Makes me want to put on the Misfits but Kim is still sleeping.

Fourth Place:

This one is from Gary Simmons' installation at the Bohen Foundation's gallery, and is so nice and understated for what is such an overstated, and scary exhibition space. I liked his installation of humongous chalkboard drawings and I really like how the postcard makes me think of On Kawara's "I'm Still Alive" postcards from the '60's and 70's.

Kim just huffed and repositioned herself.

Third Place:

Awesome title, awesome postcard (looks like one you might have gotten 25 years ago at the South Rim of the Grand Canyon), awesome show by Wayne White. I like Wayne White and I think I like Clementine gallery quite a bit. They show Taylor McKimens who I like like like like like like like like like...

Second Place (Kim's first place but my choice goes first as I am still awake and t-y-p-i-n-g):

This is the postcard for the work by the woman who I posted about the other day (sex and spanking picture), and I like the postcard but I disliked the work just as much (and maybe more) than I thought I would (I had to explain to Ashley that I posted Strassheim's picture and the obnoxious quote below it b/c I was hoping that someone would start an art fight). The images? Durr-iv-a-tive, boring, cheap shots. But back to the card- sleeping beauty loves how the back of the card is the color of dark chocolate and how the dark color allows the image to remain in your mind even after you flip to the verso to read.

She's got a point.

But I am not intrigued by that girl, that dog, or that piano. Bleh.

First Place (Kim's second):

This is perfect. Look and you'll see that the card has rounded edges (I scanned it on a black piece of paper)! You never see rounded edges. It also has nice thick, semi-mat paper, and images on both sides. This is a postcard that I would describe as generous. Even the text is generous as it is addressing me! The woman with the house on her head has prepared for my departure and I've never seen her before. This is Kelie Bowman's, whom, judging by this card is a hip, so interesting she's scary artechick who loves indie rock. Unfortunately, I didn't see the show but doesn't that make it even more of a winner? This card can stand alone. In fact, it stands alone while I type alone with a heavy-breathing artechick on the bed behind me.

Kelie Bowman's Postcard!


And finally, it wouldn't be fair to go on and on about all these foreigners and not point out what greatness has been borne out of Richmond in just this past month. This is, without a doubt, one of the two smartest postcards to come out of Richmond in the years that I've lived here.

Name the show and that artist and I'll send you one of these cards.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Subconscious Art of Graffiti Removal

I'm as sick as a dog and have been since Friday. I was supposed to go to Frostburg for an opening but no can do when there are buckets of snot, weak legs, watery eyes and all of that nastiness. So, aside from using time when I'm sick to write another obituary I also try to catch up on all the movies I never get to see. When I was sick in February I got hooked on the first season of Six Feet Under and watched the entire first season in a day. Kim and I spent most of Friday watching even more SFU (season 2) and by the 9th episode I decided I was through with SFU. I like the characters, it's very well done, blah blah but I'll have to spend every waking sick moment of the rest of my life to see the entire series and there's just too much else out there. So Saturday I rented the final episode of SFU (I cried through most of it but it was very cheesy), Dogtown and Z Boys (fine, made me remember how brown I felt when I was a skater- I was never going to have hair like Stacy Peralta or Tony Hawk no matter how much peroxide I used), and Resfest vol. 3. Resfest is a short-film/video festival put together by a large media group and they have 3 volumes of videos on DVD that are worth the perusal. I rented this volume b/c I wanted to see Matt McCormick's mockumentary The Subconscious Art of Graffiti Removal. It was really good- funny, smart, lo-fi (nice considering most of the resfest stuff is super slick) and narrated by Miranda July in her psychotic bored-girl-next-door voice. You can rent Resfest from Netflix should you not live near the best video store on earth: VIDEO FAN.

Here's some subconscious art as a result of graffiti removal that I photo'ed in March of 2003 on a trip to New Orleans. I took pictures of it b/c I was shocked by the amount of pretty gray, pink, cream, and tan rectangles that were dotting most of the Quarter, Midcity and some of Uptown. When I asked, it seemed that no one knew why the city was covered with mini Rothko paintings.

Thursday, November 09, 2006


San Francisco based artist Daniel Davidson showed work at Ada Gallery this past month. As a part of he closing reception Davidson had a picture booth. For $5 you could have your picture drawn by Davidson in only 5 minutes. The gallery was outfitted w/ a cardboard booth that sported a red curtained doorway, a two-way mirror, vanity lights, slots for money and picture, and upon receipt of the drawing, the most intense smell of magic marker I've ever smelled. Kim, Michelle, and I got permission to do a group portrait. $15, 15 minutes and unlike those two I worked at keeping my smile during the entire sitting. I figured it would set me apart from them being that IN REAL LIFE they weren't smiling. Then again, in real life Kim (center) doesn't resemble a swollen school marm about to swallow her charges, Michelle (right) doesn't look anywhere near that innocent, and me- well surely I don't look like that.

Do I?

Name that Intersection

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Baby Nina and the Aeroplane

Susan sent me this picture of her niece today. Who took it? Where is it? Is Papa flying that plane?

Monday, November 06, 2006

The Lyric Fire

Stephen of the Lyric Fire at Duncan's

Our trip to Frostburg a couple of weeks ago was good. As expected, it was action packed with people making the most of their lives. Frostburg (and environs) is full of resourceful, near renaissance people. It is my impression that when you live in an area largely devoid of the trappings of mainstream affluent (as measured by access to material goods) America, you make- for yourself and your friends- the situations you want to experience. Unless they want to drive the 3 hours to a major city, the citizens of Frostburg are on their own. I think they do a damn good job of making their city an exciting place to be.

Kris, Josh, Robin (all blurry), Susan and Stephen at Duncan's

Maybe the best example of this I can come up with is the band the Lyric Fire. Formed at least 5 years ago, they are the result (in part) of the guitarist Robin's desire to create social capital (Robin went to grad school for Social Work and was deeply affected by Robert Putnam's book about the loss of social activities Bowling Alone). As such, the Lyric Fire has no designs on making it- no myspace page, they don't tour, there isn't a van (well there is/was a van but the owner uses it to schlep his pottery not music equipment). Despite not having the requisite accoutrements, The Lyric Fire is driven and they sound great. They are lead by three singers whose voices have gotten better with time, and the stamina of the entire band is pretty remarkable. Along with Richmond's Marionette, they are the one of the most well rehearsed unsigned bands I've ever seen. But most of all what is great about them is that you can tell that they are friends and do what they are doing for no other reason than wanting to spend time making something together.