30 June 2007

Monsters....

It was about 3:30 am when I awoke to a very soft "Daddy, Daddy, Daddy, save me Daddy".

"What's up Mr. Man?"

"Monsters Daddy, save me." He was standing just outside of our bedroom door. Afraid to go back to his room, afraid to come into ours.

We spent the next hour hiding under his covers until he went back to sleep. Me holding him close to keep the monsters away. I knew exactly how he felt.

I still have trouble sleeping most of the time. I often have horrible nightmares that stay with me for days. They started when I was young. They can be terrifying. So real at times it's hard to convince myself that it was only a dream.

When I was 6 years old I started have a reoccurring nightmare about a giant that would stomp on houses and snatch up the people trying to get away. When he got to our house he would duck down and peek through the window at me. I would run outside and hide behind the big oak tree. Just as I would look to see if he was still there I would wake.

I had that dream for years. It would play in my mind as if on a loop. Over and over and over. I can still see it as clearly today as could then. It has been some time since I had the dream but in a way, it still frightens me because I have never forgotten about it.

I felt helpless holding Mr. Man. Telling him (and myself) that monsters were not real was of little comfort. Because in your mind, they are real.

The world can be such a truly ugly place. I want to shield him from the violence and hate that surround us. Those things have no place in the mind of a child. Or even in the mind of an adult. There is no place in our world for such things. Where do such things even come from?

28 June 2007

A Banner Day for Blogging...

How to tell you are going to have a wacky day.

I have had the gallery open for 12 minutes so far today and already I have had two complete loony tunes in here.

What the Hell? Is the Circus in town? The Special Hospital having another field trip?

*****

ATTENTION ALL WANNA BE ARTISTS!

Before you go around to galleries telling them you're an artist and wanting them to show your work...GET A FUCKING CLUE!

Pardon my language.

You people are making me crazy. How can you call yourself an artist when you know absolutely nothing about art. The fact that you slop some form of pigment on a surface for a few minutes every once in a while does not an artist make.

Something that almost always tips me off that you are a nut job, is that you come into the gallery and the first thing you say is that you are an artist. 95% of the time you're wrong. Heres how I know you're wrong.

1) An artist doesn't try to tell me that a work is more valuable than another just because of the medium. An oil is not necessarily worth more than an acrylic or vice versa. It has to do with the quality of the work and the artists reputation.

2) An artist doesn't try to tell me that prints have no value or that real artists would never make prints. Artists from the dawn of time have made prints in one form or another. Need I remind you about the Warhol that just sold for $71 million. It was a print.

3) An artist will not ask me how long it took to create a work. It takes a life time. No one wakes up and thinks, "I'm going to be a painter today..." and starts cranking out masterpieces. It takes years of practice and dedication to get to the where they are. Yes it may only take them a few hour now but it was decades of practice to get to that point.

4) An artist will not ask me for "The Price Book". Meaning, they think that there is a volume of every artist and every work ever created that lists the price of said work. As much as some people think it may be, the art world is not SEARS. There is no catalog or Price Book. OMG, it would be a mile thick and have to be updated every ten minutes.

And just in case you were wondering, I have heard all four of these things this morning . Oh it's going to be a good day for art, I can tell.




27 June 2007

Today In The Gallery...

Some days I just can't believe how thick people are. Ok, not necessarily thick, they just don't pay attention or listen or bother to look around before they speak.

Lady: Can you tell me about these Birds?

Me: Absolutely, they are by Frank Gonzales...blah blah blah.

Lady: (wondering around they gallery still talking about Frank's work) I really like these too. Are these by Gonzales also?

Me: No. Those were painted by Dr Seuss.

Lady: So did Gonzales have to get permission to paint these.

Me: No. They were painted by Dr Seuss. Not Gonzales.( As I point to the sign that says, "The Secret Art Of Dr Seuss")

Lady: If I didn't know better I say these were actually done by the same guy that wrote the Dr Seuss books.

Me: They were. It was the same man that wrote the books that painted these. ( I hand her the book called, "The Secret Art Of Dr Seuss")

Lady: So they weren't done by Gonzales?

24 June 2007

Give Some Love!

I saw this on Blogography. I had never been to this site or even heard of this person, but it broke my heart. I can't begin to imaging what he is going through and I pray to God I never find out.

Whether you have a child or not, go to Avitable and buy one or more of these badges. Give something, anything.


Godspeed Watchdog!

23 June 2007

The Joy Of Good Domestic Help...

It was a happy day in the Mad William home today. The nanny's back. I had 4 1/2 hours of 'me time'. It was so exciting. Mr. Man loves her and she's great with him. Then when she's done, Mr. Man goes down for a nap, so it's really like getting 6 1/2 hours of me time. Happy happy joy joy!

She goes to college so we are without her during the school year. But school's out. Precious and I each get two days a week with the nanny. Oh the joy of good domestic help. I adore spending time with Mr. Man, but a little personal time is quite refreshing and key to my mental health.

I have been thinking about this for days. What was I going to do with my free time?
A good long nap came to mind but the thought of wasting my nanny time seemed like, well, a waste. Plenty of time to sleep when I'm dead.

Not wanting to get too carried away with myself I decided to ease into my time. Painting was a must.
This one is for a fellow blogger. "Birch No 2" 18 x 24 inches.
It's not quite right yet. Been working on it for a few weeks now. Almost ready.

This is a little 8 x 10 inch work for the gallery. All the texture you see is from 6 other paintings on this canvas. I think this one is keeper.

I started two others I am calling, "The Fog". They're paintings of...Fog. I'm still working on the BS factor for these.

Then I went to work on a special project for Mr. Man. I drew the image on the canvas about 6 months ago. It's going to hang in his room. It's 48 x 60 inches. Acrylic on canvas.

We're going on a trip in our favorite rocket ship, zooming through the sky...Little Einstein's!

A break for a little lunch. A bike ride. I got in a good hard 10 miles on my mountain bike. Wow that felt good. Now it's Mr. Man's nap time and I get to play on line with all of you. If you could see the smile on my face right now.

21 June 2007

9 Hours in the car, for 3 hours of bliss...

Yesterday Precious, Mr. Man and I loaded ourselves into the vehicular and set off for adventure. We rarely get to go anywhere as a family unit anymore. We closed the gallery and took off. Actually we needed to deliver a large bronze dog to a client but any excuse to get away, and we go. The delivery was dangerously close to one of my favorite cities (Seattle) so we all went.

Living on the coast like we do, one would think we could get a decent piece of fish around here. You would be wrong. Which is why one of our first stops was Elliot's. Fresh raw Ahi and a variety of oysters on the half shell. They have about 30 different oysters. D'Lish!


For those of you that don't know, Precious and I met in Seattle. It's where she picked up the nick name. It's a special place for us. It has also been ten years since we were last there.




Pike's place market is mostly a tourist hangout anymore, but it's still a lot of fun. Mr. Man loved the place. The sights, smells, sounds, flying fish. It was all new for him. I had a great time watching him explore. We ate smoked salmon at the fish markets, apple caramel nut bread from the bakery, 2 year aged cheese from the cheese shop. The little man was a trooper and tried it all. I was so proud.

Having been away so long we were tourists. Having only a few hours to spend before the drive back , we did the tourist things. From Pike's Place we walked down to the Monorail. Mr. Man loves trains. We sat up front with the driver in the bubble. He got a bit spooked, but still enjoyed it. If you haven't done it, it's a fun ride. The dog hated it.


I took a few dozen more photos of the Space Needle to add to my collection of the shots I took from living there. Time flew by. We drove by our old houses and dug through the vault of memories. Giggled at a few, cringed at a few. It was about 10:30 pm by the time we finally got back on the road. It's about a four and a half hour drive home. We ended up stopping just outside of Portland, around 1am, to get a few hours of sleep. Had to be back by 9am this morning.

All in all it was a wonderful trip. We will be making it back soon. Next time we're staying for the weekend. Without the kids.

17 June 2007

Loud And Clear...

There are times when I stand at the edge of the abyss. I scream for someone to hear me. Not really anyone. A specific someone. Almost always I get silence in return. No matter how I plead for a voice to show me the way. Nothing...

I have always know that one day, after I cry for help and get silence in return, I would take that one step further...over the edge. If they wont come to me...I'll go to them.

Well not this time my friends. This time I was answered. Loud and clear.

My problem Is that when I scream and cry for help. I very seldom stop to listen for an answer. As if I expect to hear a clear voice telling me what I need to do. You see, the universe speaks a different language. At times it is very subtle. You have to be very quiet and listen close.

First of all, thank you to all of you that sent your support. You 're great. I adore you people.
I was listening.

As nice as it was to hear from you, something else slapped me up side the head and said, "Hello. Listen up!" Well universe, I heard this one. I felt this one. This one changed me.

Let me share it with you all.

Yesterday I was at the gallery. Clients of ours came in to look around and say hello. A month or so ago, Precious had sold them one of my paintings for their home. They wanted to meet me. I love to hear people like my work, who wouldn't.

The couple have a daughter. About 7 to 9 years old I would guess. When they introduced her, she ducked her head behind her dad and said "Oh...wow..."

It was very cute. I figured she was shy, like most kids that age are when meeting an adult.

They were going to buy souvenirs and then go to lunch. Hours later when they returned. The little girl shyly walked over to me. Her parents assured her it was alright. She handed me a drawing.



"This is beautiful" I said to her. "Keep practicing and someday we will show your work here." Then I tried to hand the drawing back. She dropped her head again a turned red.

"It's for you." she told me softly.

I looked up at her parents with a puzzled expression.

They told me that she was very moved by my painting they had bought. When they came to town she spent her souvenir money on a pad and crayons. When they went to lunch she sat and drew me this picture.

Then I turned red. In all of my years of selling my work, I have never been so moved. I can honestly say that it was better then thing my work has brought me.

My work has touched this child in some way. What I heard was the universe telling me not to give up. My works mean something. Even if I never sell another work. One of my paintings meant something to this child.

That is why I paint. That is why I will continue to paint.

There is not enough money in the world to make me feel the way this young girl did.

I'm so glad I stopped feeling sorry for myself and listened.

15 June 2007

Holding My Breath...

I just read that Heather Anne has retired. Bye Heather, I'll miss you. Another great site down. Every time I find one I love it goes away. If I give you another painting will you stay?

She seemed to be in a better place. I'm glad. She had started blogging to figure things out and apparently she has.

I started blogging to figure things out. It has been a few weeks short of a year ago that I started this. I know less today than I did then. If anything I'm much more confused. I feel like I have lost sight of what I wanted for this site. It has become one post after another of me griping about my boring days and trivial problems. Who wants to hear that?

In the beginning I wanted to use this site to educate the world about art. The art world has made me question my life's dream. It's making me bitter and angry. I've begun to take it out on everyone around me. I've lost the desire to paint. After twenty plus years of spending every waking hour devoted to art it has left me empty.

The gallery that I always wanted and dreamed about has turned into one nightmare after another. I have started to question every decision I make. Each choice for the gallery seems like the wrong one. Each one drags me further under. I wonder how long I can hold my breath before I implode.

Like I said, boring days and trivial problems.

I have always gone through these funks from time to time. Some how this one feels different. I wonder if I will be able to shake it or if I've finally had enough.

12 June 2007

Into A foreign Land...

Our trip to the Apple store in Portland made for a very long day.

No mew Mac.....Yet.

The Apple guy spent about two hours working on the gallery machine. I am sad to report that he fixed it. Sort of. It at least is back among the living, but I still can't get into our email, contacts, inventory. All of the things I really need. Apparently all of the files are still there. Some kind of corruption is keeping the software from opening. I get to erase all of the affected software and re-install it. I'm told, that should fix our problems.

If it still doesn't work after that, then I get my new toy.

While we were there(Mr.Man went with)I did get the upgrade for my iBook. But the only reason I got it was to run the new iPhoto6. Which I have since found is not compatible with my iBook. So I bought the upgraded OSX for nothing. Of course I have already installed it so it can't be returned. I can send back the iLife stuff though. I'm so disappointed. I really wanted the new iPhoto. It holds 250,000 photos.

It was the first time in years that I have been inside of a mall. These mall people are of a different sort than I. Strange and foreign. I don't speak shopping mall lingo. I felt very out of place.

08 June 2007

Sometimes Life Is Good...

After three day and more than five hours on the phone with Apple Care, we have determined that I now own a big fat Apple Powermac G4 paper weight. If I'm luck I will be able to take it to the nearest Apple store and they can save everything that's on the hard drives.

Daddy gets a new computer for the gallery!

*****



I came home today to find three very lovely and very naked women in my backyard. It's good to be the king.

Actually David is over using my studio and backyard again to work on a couple of new paintings. Donny came with to document the event. They are making a documentary type thing to go along with the group of works. Collectors love that sort of thing.

In case you have never come home to three lovely naked women, it's pretty cool.

Sorry no picture. (for now)

07 June 2007

Paris Hilton...Role Model

I am so disgusted to be an American I want to puke. And then move to Canada or Europe or anywhere I can fake an accent and hide my origin.

Someone just asked me if I had heard about Paris. Silly me, I thought, city of light, cultural mecca. No such luck. They meant the heir-head "Paris I'm a worthless human being Hilton".

Once again the justice system of this country has failed us all. Paris has been released after only five days in jail because of an 'unspecified medical condition'. Ya, she's allergic to not getting her own way. She was sick of having to follow the law of the land like regular people.

We should all be very sad and fearful for the future of this country. Day after day we are told that justice is blind, no one get special treatment in the eyes of the law. WRONG!

What we are shown instead, is that justice is not blind but checking us out to see who is the most attractive and has the most money. If you are a celebrity, socialite or just stinking rich, you can get what ever the hell you want regardless of the law. The rest of us have to pay for our actions. Like the poor kid (honor student mind you) in Atlanta that is serving a 10 year mandatory sentence for consensual oral sex. Justice sure saved us all there.

The LA county sheriff should be fired. Is this the kind of lesson we want our kids to learn? All you need is money, a good lawyer, and like to spend as much time as you can in front of cameras with little to no clothes on, and you can get away with anything from drunk driving to murder. Remember OJ? Oh the joys of being a celebrity in the United States.

Those of us not lucky enough to have a grandparent make a fortune that we could inherit, have to tow the line. For we are second class citizens, mere servants to the rich and famous. Our health and well being are of little importance when things like Paris' well being are concerned. Far be it for us to make her pay for her wanton disregard of the laws of this country. Her snubbing her plastic nose at the rest of us who don't have a personal manager, PR person and assistants to blame our mistakes on. The rest of us have to make decisions on our own, using our own brain. The rest of us have to live with the consequences of our actions.

Oh, to be a celebrity in the US where you can be a mindless, racist, with no regard for anyone or anything other than your own greedy personal satisfaction and the rest of us will still worship you no matter how pathetic and unworthy you are.

06 June 2007

The Best Of Low Brow...

Last week I went to an art opening at Yummy wine bar and bistro. Yummy is new to the area. It opened about two months ago. We have been there about a half a dozen time already. This area was so lacking anything like this before. This place is something you see in places like southern California, Soho, places with...oh, how do I put this?...With taste. Needless to say we were surprised when it opened here.

The owner, Corey, did a fantastic job putting this place together. It makes you feel at home. Corey says it is, "...a magnet for the grooviest people in town. Lively and smart, it hits the right note with artfully prepared dishes, luscious flavored wines, and for your purchase we display eye candy low brow art to challenge your imagination."

I love that. Although there are maybe 20 people in this area that even know what groovy means.

The food is fantastic! It is everything this area was missing. The Duck mousse is my personal favorite on the menu. It melts in your mouth. I have it every time we go in, which has been about once a week since they opened. They have a scallop dish that is divine. The chef has out done himself. The next time I go I will grab a menu and take some note so I can give you a better review than this.

Furnished it retro 60's, 70's, lava lamps, glass fruit. It reminded me of Samantha's swinging sister Serena from Bewitched.

Anywho...The art opening was for Corey's partner, Jimmy Pickering

I instantly fell in love with his work. There is something about the kids that went to Cal Arts. You can almost always spot them. Think Tim Burton. Precious and I recognized Jimmy's work right away. He had done the illustrations for a book we just got for Mr. Man, "Sloop John B", based on the Beach Boys song of the same title.

The art is fun, futuristic, surreal and whimsical. They sort of fall into what some people are calling the "Low brow, Pop Surrealist Movement". I not in favor of labeling artists that are still alive and producing work, but hey, it's not my label.

I had almost forgotten how far out of the art world loop we are, now that we live in Oregon. This is another planet.

After talking with Jimmy about his work and exploring his website I have re-discovered a few other artists that I adore. All of these people make me feel like a complete and utter hack. As well as remind me that I need to change my web site. Their work is what I envision my Chadette portraits becoming one day.

One of Jimmy's friends, Brian Despain, along with Lori Earley, and Cassandra Barney are filling my head with ideas and inspiration. I would love to meet these people. Actually I know Jimmy and I have met Cassandra. In fact we just bought three of Cassandra's works for ourselves. I feel like a kid in a candy store. So much great work, so little money.

Check out these sites, look around. They all deserve your attention.

05 June 2007

Don't Rock The Boat...

The art Gods must have heard me and now they're pissed.

The day after my last post the computer at the gallery had a system failure and wont restart.
I have spent an hour on the phone with Apple Care, tried to reload the system disk. Nothing.
They suggested that I take it to the nearest Apple store. Sure it's only 90 bloody miles from here.

Have you ever had a system failure? This sucks. Everything gallery related is on the stupid machine. Inventory, contacts, invoices, bank register, photos, email...EVERYTHING!

We have come to a complete stand still. I miss the days when we kept our records on paper. No need to back up info. We kept a Polaroid camera in case someone wanted a photo. We used snail mail and stamps to send things to clients. Ah the good old days.

The Apple guy asked me if we had the system backed up. Sure we do. I can't get to that either. Something about the back up not being compatible with my computer at home. Great.
I clearly do not know enough about computers.

02 June 2007

ARTnews...Let The Shoveling Begin...

Do any of you read ARTnews magazine?

I have been reading it for years now. Along with a stack of other art magazines. None of them upset me more than ARTnews. It is everything I despise about the art world.

If it's not in New York the magazine ignores it. Like New York is the center of the universe. From reading this magazine you may never know that the US has a west coast, or that outside of Manhattan is a little thing called...The rest of the world!

After reading it for as long as I have I have become convinced of several universal truths about the world of art.

1) Talent has very little or nothing to do with popularity.
2) To make it to a world class level you need to be a world class BS artist.
3) You need to know a few people with more money than sense.

For example:

In this months ARTTALK.
Felix Gonzales-Torres, "Untitled (Public Opinion) consists of 700 pounds of black licorice candies, individually wrapped in cellophane and piled on the floor. It is concerned with loss--as well as capitalism, minimalism, and the body--

I had to read this several times. 700 pounds of candy piled on the floor...loss? Capitalism? Minimalism? The body?
Roll up your pants, it's getting deep in here.

Matvey Levenstein describes his paintings as "interiors that are interior". "Being a realist painter, you're in dialogue with all sorts of images, you have to liberate yourself from your context."

This is one of my favorites. "Gormley's work emphasizes the routine but extraordinary fact that human beings consist of consciousness contained in a three-dimensional object."

Last but not least, "David Hammons is a celebrated conceptualist whose actions have included selling snowballs in Harlem"

Yes, you read that right, selling snowballs in Harlem.

I have been going about my art all wrong. Before I am ever going to make it as a painter I need a blurb of BS. So here it is. The first draft of my soon to be released Bio.


Mad William...
Art isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity...


When asked about his work, William often says, “I paint inner beauty…or whatever strikes my fancy. It’s usually the same thing.”

It is an openness toward the world that allows William’s works to come to life. Whether it be urban cafĂ©’s, portraits or seascapes, each work has a life of it’s own. It’s what William refers to as the “soul” of the work.

Each painting is a collaboration, between the artist and his medium, usually oil on canvas. “The canvas speaks to me…much the way Michelangelo could see and feel the figures within the stone from which he would carve.” William tries to connect with the soul of the canvas to discover the life within.

Many of William’s paintings have several previous works under them. “If I’m painting a portrait, and I discover that the canvas is really a seascape…I have to paint over the portrait. Sometimes I can have the work finished before I realize that I was wrong. At times I paint over very nice works. If it’s not right I have to change it. The soul can not be ignored.”

A very private person, William rarely makes personal appearances. “The art should speak for me, and for itself. I wont always be around to explain myself. Hopefully I shouldn’t have to. Take your time with my work. With any work. Open yourself to it. Talk to it. Listen to it. From up close and from far away.”

“Art is about relationships. Like falling in love. There is neither rhyme nor reason to it, it just happens. When it does, hold on to it. It’s a great journey. The greatest!”


01 June 2007

Stuff, Stuff And More Stuff...

It must be something in the air. I'm in the mood to get rid of almost everything I own. I started going through our garage and my studio boxing things up. I found things that I have not seen for years. Most of them I had no memory of. I must have bought them at one point. I just don't know why. Any meaning or attachment has long faded.

The older I get the less I want or need. As often as we move, I'm tired of hauling this crap-ola across country. I want simple, uncomplicated, clutter free. All of this stuff clouds my brain. When I'm in a room full of "stuff" it make me claustrophobic. Antique stores freak me out.

So what do I do with the still expanding, stack of boxes and plastic bins full of my past? Yard sale? eBay? Craigslist? Goodwill? Charity? Bonfire? Maybe I could bury it all. A time capsule of junk. What would future archaeologists think when the found that stash? Most likely that they had found a land fill.

*****

Many months ago I tried to start my own Non profit organization to help promote arts in public schools. Well, after months of paper work, lawyer fees and more bureaucrats than I could beat with a stick, I have been denied status.

So in order to fulfill my need to give, I have started a list of my favorite charities. Every time I sell one of my paintings I will give a portion of the profit to one of the charities. Up first is the "Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America".

If there are charities you like, please let me know. I will add them to my list. If you don't want to buy a painting but still want to help you can donate on your own or contribute here, in my side bar under "Art Saves Lives". Everything helps.