Thursday, August 30, 2007

The Art of Eating

"I believe that one of the most dignified ways we are capable of, to assert and then reassert our dignity in the face of poverty and war's fears and pains, is to nourish ourselves with all possible skill, delicacy, and ever increasing enjoyment."- MFK Fisher

I feel better! I've been layin' around feeling grumpy for the past three days. Summer colds are the worst, standing around in hundred degree heat trying to figure out if I'm sweating from the weather or a fever.

I took advantage of this time to reread The Art of Eating by MFK Fisher a book I've been meaning to get to for the past few months. When I was researching food blogs for MM I noticed that a number of the female bloggers I was investigating had been compared to MFK Fisher. At first I took this to mean that said bloggers were super talented writers. I have since decided that the Fisher brush is one that blog critics like to paint most any female food blogger with.

This is a rather unfortunate trend. Fisher's prose is so absolutely beautiful and succinct that I would be wary to compare her to almost anyone. Though her self-confidence comes through in her writing she also knows when to alert her reader to her own naivete concerning a food item or geographic region. In this way Fisher presents herself as both a gourmand and an average Joe. While, she was clearly particular about how food should be consumed and prepared, she never purports to know it all.

The Art of Eating also serves as an important historical document. Throughout her tales she mentions details about both World Wars and how they affected and shaped the European regions she called home. How to Cook a Wolf provides tips for eating and entertaining during blackouts, air raids, and fuel rationing. The Gastronomical Me chronicles the author's culinary development from childhood through middle age describing her loves, travels, and meals.

A truly important work whether it be art, literature, or music usually exists in this way. Whether it challenges cultural norms or simply serves its time in a particularly perfect way, work of great importance often finds its place in history fairly snugly. More importantly, if the work is very strong it will transcend it's time and The Art of Eating has done just that.

Fisher's greatest work found its way onto many a top 100 list at the close of the 20th century for good reason, a detail that the critics from Time and various other publications might want to take into account next time they decide to throw her name around.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

It's up!

It's up! It's up!! It's up!!! It's Up!!!!

Monday, August 27, 2007

I think I have a cold

Ah, the internet... what can't you do? I think I have a summer cold and as such I've been chatting on the phone and wandering around in a less than productive manner all day. To top this day off I've been aimlessly surfing the internet and came across museumr. Now you too can view your work in a gallery setting before you're famous.

Farty pants

Why oh why didn't I think of this?!?!?!?!?

Thrill ride

The show at Thrillhouse records was indeed thrilling. The quarters were cramped as you can see from this incredibly blurry photo but fun, fun, fun, never the less!

My self inflicted urgency to use the restroom all night was the only pisser... shall we say(?) as the toity line grew longer and longer as the night when on. After a while I started taking pictures in the bathroom line in order to entertain and distract myself.

I gotta say I will be delighted when the ironic fascination with Miller Chill wears itself out. I spotted it three times this weekend. It tastes like a nasty cross between Miller and margarita mix. Yuck! Now Budweiser Chelada with Clamato on the other hand...

Smoked it!

After all my worrying about the heat and my own athletic abilities I rolled that race up and smoked it. Now I didn't hit it as hard as those who ran it in under 20 minutes, but I was more than happy to make it in, in less than 40. I was skeptical about running at 6:30pm in August but it was actually quite nice. I was sweaty, sweaty, sweaty, when it was over, which made the delta breezes that much sweeter. The photo is a little blurry because of how fast I was moving. 4 real!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Give us this day,

our daily puppy

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Everyone's a critic

Grandma Planet, David Lane

David Lane killed it again this year in the State Fair's Fine Art Exhibition taking Best of Show for the second year in a row. I always wonder what his studio must look like considering how enormous his work is.

Summertime III, Hei Fok

I think my favorite piece in the show was by Hei Fok. This photo really doesn't do it justice, you have to be there. Using an insanely thin, neon pink ink pen, Fok made all of these tiny spidery lines. The result creates these dense areas that almost appear three dimensional.

There were a few other works worth pointing out, although I feel like a churl for not having the artists names and titles for all of them. I'll post them anyway and then perhaps you'll be extra encouraged to go check them out.

I think that this was actually in the Youth Exhibit which also had some interesting work this year. I took a bunch of photos of some crocheted works that I thought were pretty great too but they were all too blurry.

As usual the show had a few dingers that make you wonder if some of the work from the youth exhibits got slipped in by mistake.

I originally saw this piece of searing political commentary at the Elliot Fouts Gallery. I still think Cheney looks more like a pig then a pug.

Num, num

The Fair last night was great! This tiny troll that loved pizza sold us corndogs and then Muggs bought a deep fried coke for the low, low price of $7. From the picture one would think that the deep fried coke had a liquid component but instead it was a giant cup of greasy deep fryer crumbs with whip cream on top.

Skipper took one for the team and decided to finish it after the rest of us deemed it too nasty to touch.

Monday, August 20, 2007

I shot the wad

Shooting the wad was an enormous pain in the ass as well as a lesson on how I can better utilize my studio. As I move into my new space one of the first things I'm gonna do is set up a slide area and buy a couple more lights. Taking pictures of a piece that is various shades of white on a white wall was brutal. Too much light and it had no shape, too little light created a dark shitty image that I can't show anyone. At least wad was made as a sort of study with the idea that I could install it larger in a show at some point. It is my hope that I will have a bigger better wad to photograph in the future. After scraping it off the wall for an hour and a half I also learned how not to construct it next time.

Fortunately my images of the flamingo made up for my earlier frustrations...

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Check me out!

I'm in the latest issue of Creative Quarterly!!! I can now say that I was both in a magazine and put out a magazine this summer. The cover price is a little steep - $10 - but in addition to seeing yours truly in a national publication you also get a sweet interview with Rachel Whiteread. It's a win, win. You can find Creative Quarterly at The Avid Reader on Broadway.


Friday, August 17, 2007

She did it!

My Ma is now an official, bonafide, %100 architect! Congratulations Ma!!!!

Thursday, August 16, 2007


I was going through old family photos and discovered one of my mom's first cars.

Stay tuned...

I spent the better part of my morning with my sis and her surprisingly well endowed little dog today. She's been kind enough to let me use her generic - architecturally speaking - late sixties apartment to do some filming in. I was going to post a pic of what I'm working on but I think I'll hang onto it until the project reaches its completion.

Stay tuned...

See my show, see my show, see my show!

I made it into the Axis Gallery's annual juried show. This years line up was chosen by Renny Pritikin of the Nelson Gallery in Davis. The reception was last weekend but the work will continue to be up through the end of the month.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

And now I wait

I'm all packed and ready to move into my new studio. Now that it's fairly empty and spanky clean I can finally shoot a few slides of some work that's been waiting for documentation before I huck it in the dumpster.

I sat down and spent a bunch of time going through old studio logs while I was cleaning the other day and found this conversation I had with my friend "Big" Chuck about what art is. I think this was about five years ago:

Me: I was in Rio Linda and there was a house with a moving sale sign nailed to the fence and next to it there was another crappy spray painted sign that read "lawsuit pending on house." Further down from these two signs on the gate for the fence were two other signs one read, "no trespass" and the other said "dog mean" with a giant swastika. These last two were painted on cardboard with a brush. I got out of my car to photograph the signs and noticed that a rough looking woman and her "mean" dog were alerted to my presence.

Chuck: Was she like some real haggard looking bitch?

M: Yeah.

C: Shit, you should have talked to her and convinced her you were with the newspapers so you could've photographed her n' shit.

M: And said what? "We've heard about the wrongs being done to you concerning your home and want to expose the story?"

C: No, you could have said "So, we know that the Jews are trying to take your house, you wanna talk about it?" See, that's how the good artists do it. They make up some story so they can get pictures of haggard people n' shit.

M: I don't know if that would have flown although I guess you can't be too unfriendly if you got a moving sale in your front yard.

Needless to say I didn't pursue the world of candid street photography...

So long bub


After kicking the tires, an exchange of cash, extra parts, and a handshake the Valiant is gone...

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

This is how it happens

I was driving around the other day and fell in love with this:


For some years now I have fantasized about owning two things... a travel trailer and a burro. I thought perhaps my prayers had been answered until I rushed home and discovered that the Burro is a fairly new product with a steep sticker price. So, immediatlely following my initial disappointment I began searching travel trailers on craig's list.

This is how it happens...

Greater Hernandez


Jaime is favorite my Hernandez. I say this after spending nearly every free moment I've had for the past two weeks with my nose buried in "Locas: The Maggie and Hopey Stories." Maggie and Hopey's exploits made me long for my late teens when my primary objectives in life were drinking and going to punk rock shows. Spanning a little over a decade Hernandez set the melodramatic exploits of his two heroines against a backdrop of the period's evolving punk scene. He even throws a Shonen Knife t-shirt on Hopey for a few panels. Aside from all of the raucousness represented in the stories there is a sensitivity involved in his representations of both female characters that makes you forget that these tales are being told by a man.

Hernandez's simple narratives possess the same economy he employs in his use of lights and darks in the art itself. Even during the cliff hanging disappearance of Maggie - which wasn't all that cliff hanging seeing as how I didn't have to wait several months for each issue to come out - I kept myself from flipping ahead so that I could take my time and enjoy the art. The work is so sparse in some places that you know that every mark Herrnandez makes is intentional. This totally made my summer and my only disappointment came when it was over.