Saturday, October 11, 2008

Tim Tate opens in LA today

My Love Life Thus Far, Blown & Cast Glass,electronics, original video - by Tim TateTim Tate: A Look Into a Video Mind opens at Billy Shire Fine Arts with an opening reception on Saturday, October 11th, from 7-10 pm.

This will be Tate's solo debut in Los Angeles. You can see some of the videos online here.

Lecturing today

As I noted before, last week I juried the current show at the Capitol Hill Arts Workshop in DC, where I looked at about 100 works of art and selected 35 for exhibition and handed out six awards (three honorable mentions).

The opening is today, Saturday, Oct. 11 from 5-7PM.

I'll be there giving out the awards and also doing a talk with tips to artists on how to improve their chances of getting accepted into juried competitions. The opening and my talk is free and open to the public, so come by and say hi.

The Capitol Hill Arts Workshop is located at 545 7th Street, S.E. Washington DC, 20003 (the corner of 7th and G Streets, SE). If you take the Metro, they are two blocks south of the Eastern Market metro plaza, which is on the orange and blue lines. After exiting the metro stop, walk down 7th Street (there’s a CVS on the corner) two blocks, away from Pennsylvania Ave. The Arts Workshop is located at the corners of 7th and G Streets, SE, entrance on 7th Street.

Driving directions here.

The power of art

Powerful art elicits powerful emotions, and when those emotions are tied to strong political sentiment, it is even more powerful and sometimes dangerous.

Sarah Palin as Miss Congeniality by Dana EllynHeather Goss over at DCist relates the story of DC area artist Dana Ellyn and what happened when some of her anti Sarah Palin artwork got exposed to political sentiment in a DC area store. Read it here.

Winston Churchill once said that "any man who is under 30, and is not a liberal, has no heart; and any man who is over 30, and is not a conservative, has no brains."

Having been both a very dangerous leftwing nut in my young years, and a complacent conservative in my middle years, I am now very happy in my current incarnation as a happy independent, and I am now always puzzled by people who (on both sides of the political spectrum) try to muzzle or interrupt the other side's opinion, such as the idiots in this DCist story or the jerks who crash the other party's convention, or heckle the other politician's rallies, etc.

Nations where only one side of the political spectrum is allowed to express their views are called dictatorships: Cuba, North Korea, China, Iran, etc. and more and more Russia and Venezuela.

Artists: keep painting all the anti-Palin, and anti-McCain, and anti-Obama (is Joe Biden even in the news?) art that you want, for art is a powerful tool of political expression. And never forget that an anti-Castro painting in Cuba gets you 20 years in the Isle of Youth, and you'd probably get whacked in North Korea if you did an anti-Elvis painting there...

Alden Mason, the movie

Seattle's Regina Hackett is always one of my favorite reads and she brings up a new movie about one of my old art school professors. Read it here.

In my senior year at Washington, I worked with a lady named Dianne Berge and helped to organize a new art gallery just for student artwork. As I recall it opened in either late 1980 or early 1981, and was located on the street behind and underneath the Pike Place Market. It was called the Arts Northwest Student Gallery, and right about the same time Mason moved into the then new condo complex across the street and often came to the gallery's openings and poetry readings.

I recall once doing a poetry reading myself and forcing people to listen to the below harsh poem by Robert E. Howard:

The Song Of A Mad Minstrel
by Robert E. Howard

I am the thorn in the foot, I am the blur in the sight;
I am the worm at the root, I am the thief in the night.
I am the rat in the wall, the leper that leers at the gate;
I am the ghost in the hall, herald of horror and hate.

I am the rust on the corn, I am the smut on the wheat,
Laughing man's labor to scorn, weaving a web for his feet.
I am canker and mildew and blight, danger and death and decay;
The rot of the rain by night, the blast of the sun by day.

I warp and wither with drouth, I work in the swamp's foul yeast;
I bring the black plague from the south and the leprosy in from the east.
I rend from the hemlock boughs wine steeped in the petals of dooms;
Where the fat black serpents drowse I gather the Upas' blooms.

I have plumbed the northern ice for a spell like frozen lead;
In lost grey fields of rice, I learned from Mongol dead.
Where a bleak black mountain stands I have looted grisly caves;
I have digged in the desert sands to plunder terrible graves.

Never the sun goes forth, never the moon glows red,
But out of the south or the north, I come with the slavering dead.
I come with hideous spells, black charms and ghastly tunes;
I have looted the hidden hells and plundered the lost black moons.

There was never a king or priest to cheer me by word or look,
There was never a man or beast in the blood-black ways I took.
There were crimson gulfs unplumbed, there were black wings over a sea;
There were pits where mad things drummed, and foaming blasphemy.

There were vast ungodly tombs where slimy monsters dreamed,
There were clouds like blood-drenched plumes where unborn demons screamed.
There were ages dead to Time, and lands lost out of Space;
There were adders in the slime, and a dim unholy Face.

Oh, the heart in my breast turned stone, and the brain froze in my skull-
But I won through, I alone, and I poured my chalice full
Of horrors and dooms and spells, black buds and bitter roots-
From the hells beneath the hells, I bring you my deathly fruits.
Somewhere in my studio's flat files I have one or two of his paintings, still unstretched from my moves in the 80s.