Thursday, September 30, 2010

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Monday, September 27, 2010

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Friday, September 24, 2010

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I've been working on a commission for a couple in Noe Valley-- the premise is this: a box was filled with ephemera, objects that were broken, that were not particularly useful, that were relics of other livelihoods. Now I am in the process of re-contextualizing these small things by uniting them into a library of drawings-- in the end there will probably be around a hundred. You see the first ten finished in the picture above, as well as a picture of objects yet to be rendered. It's been nice to be working on so many small drawings after a series of colossally slow and long-winded projects this past spring.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

for eachother

I often find myselt conflicted over whether certain pictures in my collection should be grouped with the ones of their same origin/narrative or if it's okay to regroup them according to my own ordering. The real dilemma is the question of ownership. Do these two photographs belong to one another or do they belong to me?

Friday, September 17, 2010

don't chase them (waterfalls)

There's a certain kind of hopeless hopfulness (or hopeful hopelessness?) that comes with finishing an MFA and trying to figure out what to do with it. It has been strange. It is wonderful to have so little structure above me but difficult to not have much underneath-- I've been trying to figure out how to cut some wood panels for the past week and the options are limited-- pay $1 a cut at the hardware store around the corner (which racks up fast when you're cutting small panels) or try to get a current CCA student to cut my wood for me in the school's woodshop. There's also just a general lack of information flow-- I keep hearing about missed opportunities a minute too late!

I like these small pictures of colossal waterfalls-- the actual photographs easily fit in the palm of my hand. When the conflict between actual size and representation is mediated it opens up some truly spectacular cosmic deviations. I usually draw objects exactly the size that they are, but I think it's interesting when other artists play with their representation of scale, making big things small and small things big.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

gray and grey face

Working on some new projects in my studio, a commission for a home in Noe Valley and breathing some old ideas which just keep floating around in the air here. I've been thinking about asking some peers from CCA to put together a crit group-- it's be nice to be held accountable for what I'm making. It'd also just be nice to have my things get seen.

I like this picture because of her gray face, all but for the tip of her small bright nose.

Monday, September 13, 2010

This is a motor boat

This is a motor boat in which a man rides who gathers up golf balls floating on the water. People stand on shore and see how far they can drive a ball-- then the boat chases them.
-Worlds Fair, Chicago, Ill.
Sat. Aug. 12, 1933
In the distance are the fair exhibit buildings!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Fri. Sept 1, 1933
While on the top deck snapping 'Quyiyama', - this plane came along so I got hold of it- it seemed to be a Jap army plane.
How do you like the clouds in the picture- look a bit stormy but they were just a gathering of dark ones.
Off now to Kobe, Japan!

return to what you know

The first few photographs I purchased from a flea market, years ago, were old cabinet cards of uncomfortable-looking babies. I like how awkward and embarrassing babies are. I've never gotten a picture of a baby who is sensibly cute-- there's something kind of uninteresting about that kind of cuteness.

evolution of twins

Monday, September 6, 2010


Today was labor day and I drove up to Sebastopol with some people to pick apples, drink roadside milkshakes, eat some felafel and go antiquing. We went to two antique barns and the difference between them, though just 500 feet apart on the same road, seemed deliberate. The first barn was admirable enough-- a dapper man with bushy graying hair followed us around everywhere. Honestly, it sort of seemed to me like he thought we were going to rob him left and right if he didn't let us know that his bespectacled eyes were watching our every mood with acute discrepancy. The place had beautiful objects with blush-inducing price tags, and many many signs begging that you ask for assistance before handling things.

We drove down the road and pulled into the second 'antique barn,' quotations because most of the things to look at were outside, strewn about over a half acre of lawn. Boxes full of mildewing vinyl records, ceramic plates of all shapes and sizes, organizational wooden shelves filled with a chaos of once-hardware-now-rust, lamp-less lampshades, a disarray of amputated furniture and content-exploding cardboard boxes. I bought these things for eight dollars:

two old cabinet cards, one of twins, one of a family
a small wooden sewing box full of thread
two hand carved wooden collies with a metal chain connecting their collars
a ceramic dachshund and doe
a large white platter
a plastic shelf with about 50 teeny drawers, each with a metal charm glued to the front
a handmade piece of lace

The woman selling all this stuff was actually really sad about it-- apparently the strewn yard was a staged intervention by her daughter, who had emptied several storage containers of her hoarded belongings onto the yard for an impromptu weekend sale. The hoarder told us that the county of Sonoma was coming to pick up whatever wasn't taken by tomorrow morning. It was a weird kind of interaction, to buy something from someone who had no desire to sell it. But it made me think about desire and how the desire to preserve something is so easy to be compromised. The first gentleman had a barn full of cherished object for sale but the prices were too high for most people to be able to purchase them-- this preserves the barn as a museum but does not preserve the sustainability of a small business. The woman at the second barn was preserving objects by keeping them close, a keeping that failed to preserve them from mold, rot and rust. I'm wrapping up today wondering about my own sense of keeping and preservation and how I can sustain these practices without failing them. How will I keep? And what will I preserve?

Sunday, September 5, 2010


I took the morning to take myself to the Alameda Flea Market this morning to see what the fuss was all about. This event happens the first Sunday of every month, attracting around 800 vendors and over 10,000 people. Today was no exception-- I drove across the bridge around 8:30am and found myself in a line of cars backed up a mile or so from the actual market. I parked my car on the side of the road and walked in the distance.

Alameda is actually an island on the east side of the bay, just south of Oakland. The flea market takes place, as you may imagine, upon an enormous expanse of concrete-- I'm not sure what was once there, but perhaps a shipping yard? On the walk I saw huge dormant cranes next to enormous barges stacked high with shipping containers, mostly imports from Japan and China (you could tell from the company labels on the side). I thought it was interesting how this kind of product distribution, at least for this twelve days a year, shying in the shadow of an event cherishing things from the past. There's actually a rule posted at the front gate that nothing less than twenty years old is to be sold at the Alameda Flea Market-- followed by "NO EXCEPTIONS" in a large bold font. They're serious.

But after all the hype I found myself a little nonplussed by the whole thing-- the maze of stands was dizzying, true, but it was hard to feel like I had intimately discovered and made a connection with any object there when it was laid out on a table and three people were waiting behind me to see what I was looking at. No privacy! No intimacy! But other patrons were totally unfazed by the crowds and performing grotesque public displays of affection, showing off their newest 'score' to whoever would listen.

I purchased a few photographs, and had some lucky finds-- photographs of twins, of waterfalls, small wallet pictures of handsome soldiers, photographs of a small sepia plane in the sky and a boat fetching golf balls out of Lake Erie. To be posted on a later date, promise.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

doing dishes

I started working on this new project a couple of days ago, taking random dishware and unifying them into a single set of china with a pattern from my parents wedding set. The first few that I acquired were just from free piles around San Francisco, but now I have my eyes on certain types so that I can eventually have a perfect set for a family of four.

First I take the dishes and cover them with paper mache, and then after I apply a coat of gesso, I sand them down, and apply a second coat of paint. When I'm all done drawing the pattern I bought this special clear varnish to make them waterproof and shiny-- you know, like plates again.