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Friday, September 16, 2011

ART!...or "um, wanna see my etchings?"

A few years back, Hurricane Allison came barreling into Houston and caused extensive flooding. Some of the damage was devastating and took out servers at the Medical Center. Some of it was maybe not so devastating, but I suspect there are a lot of homeowners who would disagree with me. Lastly, for me, I lost my portfolio of art that I'd made over the previous thirty years or so (Allison hit in June of 2001) and by that time, I had come to terms with the truth of the impermanence of things, even things that I had made and often with a great deal of love.

When I got the call from the friend of mine who had the caretaker of all this, I was more grateful that he and his wife were okay than anything else. I had kept some stuff on me over the years and I hadn't been entirely idle in drawing every now and again. Still, I had to admit that I was tickled pink when my sister found this among some of the items she had in storage (make sure to click on these - as well as other photos in this blog) to see them in greater detail):

This was one of a fair amount of etchings I pulled at Hoo Doo Press with John O'Fiel in the mid-80s. This one in particular was a knock-off; I was just messing about with using spray paint for aquatint and playing around with extremely loose uses of ground and foul-biting. Looks like some dry-point in there, too. I think this was one of the last I did around that time because I was starting to feel kind of anal about intaglio. A short time after that, we started doing a bunch of monoprints and what's funny about that is that we'd pretty much thought we were the only people in town doing them. Until we found out that Dick Wray had been churning them out (enough for a one man show at Moody Gallery, if I recall correctly) and I'm pretty sure Dave Folkman's Little Egypt collective had been doing a bunch, too.

I remember Frank Davis coming over and just whipping a bunch out and I wish I had some pics of those. Really cool stuff. But back to etchings. Here's another one:
This is called "Small World" from around 1984 and as I recall, this was entered in a show of miniature prints that we took part in every year at Marie Laterme's Atelier on Times Boulevard in the Village in Houston. This took its origin in walking around the corner to my apartment on Richton late at night and looking up at the cyprus trees planted on top of Parvizian Rugs on Kirby at Richton. A lot of the images I was goofing with at the time incorporated geometric form like tetrahedra and rhomboids and maps of the solar system and references to the very, very big and the very, very tiny.

I went to Honduras twice in 2001 to hang out with my dear, dear friend Julie Leonard who had a wonderful townhouse in Tegucigalpa with a wonderful garden and three wonderful cats. In this drawing/watercolor, is Moosh, short for Moo-Shi. La Moosh was one of the coolest cats I've ever met, one of those types of cats that you might just be certain is just a human in feline guise. Oh, and there were a couple of branches or roots or something I was drawing, as well.

Last, for now anyway, is a drawing of an orange. I was asking myself one day what it would look like if you could stretch out a particle or decompose an object into component units, something not unlike pixels, but more like if they weren't rectilinear and you could stretch them out a bit. I wanted to do that, but I also wanted to let the object maintain its integrity as a readable something.

Oh, the things kids come up with these days...I've got more images rolled up that I'll unroll and put up later.

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