Thursday, December 09, 2004

Jonathan Padget discusses Linda Hesh's Art Ads Project in today's Washington Post's Arts Beat column.

There was no "Galleries" column. Get used to it. There were, however, four music reviews on the day that the Style section is supposed to focus on Galleries and Arts News.

The Last Few AOM Top 10 Lists

Angela Kleis was one of the participating artists in this year's AOM and is the President of the Centreville Regional Art Guild. She says that "these are the artists whose work I searched out and spent a lot of time at, as much as I could."

1. Colin Winterbottom - Photography; his is my absolute favorite!
2. Kathryn Cornelius - Installation, before it was shut down. I LOVED it! I'm glad I had the opportunity to experience it before it was closed. Very powerful.
3. Robert Weiner - Glass. Beautiful!
4. M. Rion Hoffman - Lightboxes. So much to see inside those little lighted boxes.
5. Kay Lane - Abstract painting.
6. Gregory Ferrand - Painting. Faces with Desperation. They made me very uncomfortable, and it was great!
7. Haya Alhossain - Photography; Cities-Paris. The only foreign city I've ever visited, and these photographs captured it perfectly.
8. Meghan Taylor - Drawing/painting
9. Scott Davis - Photography
10. Ruza Spak - Painting; very simple, very powerful, very large.

Matt Hollis is DC area artist, who also exhibited at AOM and submits the following list:

1. The lips on the boys painted by Rob Van der Zee.
2. The richness of Richard Kightlinger's coilor pallet.
3. Scott Davis' River Tower photo.
4. Christine Cardellino's Tower of Babel paintings.
5. The pictures of Beth Hinners as a child at the Children's Museum she had next to her collage.
6. The swirling masses of debris and color by Inga McCaslin Frank.
7. The subtle beauty of the plants in Aaron Flemming's drawings.
8. The personalization of another culture's craft in Mark Jenkins' pubic hair quilts.
9. The flashbacks of being at the Children's Museum as a child.
10. The opportunity to meet and share with other DC artists.

Just returned from a few days in San Diego. On the flight over I read Mario Vargas Llosa's erotic novel In Praise of the Stepmother, nicely illustrated by Jacob Jordaens, Francois Boucher, Titian, Francis Bacon and Fernando de Szyszlo (one of the lesser recognized but certainly a key and influential Latin American abstract artist - Peruvian like the author).

On the flight back today I read Mea Cuba by Guillermo Cabrera Infante, a spectacular book that documents (from the perspective of perhaps the greatest living Cuban writer) what Castro has done to Cuban artists, writers and poets, and Cuba.

I had an interesting experience on this flight back.

I had originally planned to fly back on Friday, but I finished my business early and thus changed my flights so that I departed from San Diego early this morning. So I called Moe, who is a taxi driver that I've been using for years to pick me up to and from the airport. I called him and told him that I had taken care of everything a day early, so he needed to pick me up tonight at BWI.

From San Diego I flew to Phoenix, and I was sitting there, waiting for my connecting flight to BWI, reading Mea Cuba , when this very large, cop approached me and asked me:

"Excuse me sir, are you Lenny?"

"Yes," I answered, wondering how this very large cop knew my name and why was he asking me for it.

"Can I speak to you for a minute?"
he said.

"Sure," I answered getting up and walking with him, while a few dozen Baltimore-bound passengers looked at us in alarm and my mind was running several algorithms trying to figure out what was going on.

We walked a few feet away, and I looked at his name (Officer Contreras - a very large, shaved-head, imposing cop).

He was very nice and professional, and it turns out that someone in San Diego, a fellow passenger at the terminal, had overheard me talking to Moe, and somehow deduced from my conversation with my taxi driver that I was a Mafia hitman, so this alarmed citizen, as soon as the plane landed in Phoenix, went to the airport police and demanded that they investigate.

"How did you know my name and what I looked like?" I asked Officer Contreras, intrigued and impressed at the efficiency of the whole event (and after showing him some ID, which he dutifully recorded in his notebook). He explained that this concerned citizen had listened to my conversation (where I mentioned my name to Moe) and then taken a snapshot of me with his cell phone, which he had then shown the Phoenix Airport cops and demanded that they arrest me before I completed my next Mafia job in Baltimore.

Now, I sort of feel like Dan Rather with the whole "What's the frequency Kenneth?" episode.

I'm expecting black helicopers to fly over my house tonight.