dumb luck and the going postal olympics
Right around this time of year, I can usually be found gearing up for the annual Winter Art Mart at the Bath House Cultural Center. The show is one of my favorites of the year, and I always look forward to reconnecting with my Dallas friends after a long summer of being locked in the studio.
While I've put in the long summer sessions, and the show is right around the corner, I'm sorry to report that you won't find The Morpheus Company in attendance this season.
Each year, when The Bath House sends out its call for applications, I have it mailed back to them inside of forty-eight hours. It's become something of a running joke between us, as they know that my "big black envelope" is always at the top of the stack.
This year, the United States Postal Service decided to throw a monkey wrench into our historically smooth routine. Rather than delivering my application as expected, they routed it through a thirty-day long time warp before unceremoniously and inexplicably returning my envelope as undeliverable.
At the moment I received this schedule-blasting news, I was standing in a mailing center. Not one to miss an opportunity to react in theme, I went briefly but thoroughly postal.*
*It's been a good and long while since I last seriously lost my cool. Had someone had the foresight to create an Olympic event out of correspondence-related emotional meltdowns, I would have easily brought the gold home for America. Go team.
After my adrenal tsunami died down, I shifted to damage control mode. I called, texted and emailed each member of the Bath House staff. When I finally got a hold of one of them the following morning, it was no surprise that every single highly-sought after space in the event had been booked.
To their credit, my friends at the Bath House felt terrible. They even offered to inconvenience a number of artists by rearranging the show's floor plan to wedge me into a corner.
I strongly considered taking their kind offer. However, it occurred to me that I was one of the original champions of the Art Mart's decision not to overcrowd the space or their artists. It seemed hypocritical to backpedal on what I consider a good decision just because I've suffered a streak of dumb luck.
On that point, I want to clarify a few things before the rumor mill gets chugging up to full speed on this announcement:
First and foremost, there's no animosity here. Except possibly towards the morons at the US Mail. Me and my friends by the lake still are artsy BFF's, and plans are already in place for my return to the Spring Art Mart.*
*I'll be hand-delivering my application to that one.
Secondly, despite my accidental non-involvement, I think that everyone should go and support the event. I believe in what the Bath House does, and I think they put on a terrific show. Some of my favorite artists will be there, and I suspect my absence will provide a spot for at least one or two new faces.
Thirdly, this is lousy but not catastrophic news. Mostly I'm bummed out about not getting a chance to reconnect with my Dallas art-world friends.
Of course, my artist's ego would also love a chance to show off my work this season. If you're reading this, and you've got an idea for a place to host a trunk show, I'm all ears. If you're interested in doing some shopping without the formality of an event, make an appointment to drop by the studio and see my work.
Just give me a call the studio. Seriously, call. You can't trust the mail for this sort of thing.
11 / 10 / 2010
2010 Spring Art Mart
This year's Spring Art Mart will also be the debut weekend for my newest collection of Mitsuro jewelry in silicon bronze.
Since you've been reading along, you know I've been working towards this event since the beginning of the year. Documenting the process has been an interesting experience, and I really appreciate all the feedback I've been getting about my work.
If you haven't heard about all this "behind the scenes" stuff, you may want to visit a few of these handy resources:
- the ever reliable news blog: http://www.dare2dream.com/news
- the much improved events calendar: http://www.dare2dream.com/calendar
- the shiny new facebook fan page: http://www.facebook.com/TheMorpheusCompany
More handy tools for connecting to both me personally and my artwork are available on The Morpheus Company's contact page...or you can just ask me this weekend at the Art Mart.
2010 Spring Art Mart
April 23rd - 25th, 2010
The Bath House Cultural Center
521 E Lawther Drive
Dallas, TX 75218
Friday, April 23rd: 7-9 PM
Saturday, April 24th: 12-7 PM
Sunday, April 25th: 11 AM-6 PM
Art lovers once again get a great opportunity to support local artists (and acquire some wonderful art in the process) during the Bath House Cultural Center's Spring Art Mart, April 23-25, 2010. The Art Mart has always been the place to find a special piece of art for yourself, family, and friends: paintings, sculpture, photography, pottery, ceramics, jewelry, cards and other unique creations.
The Bath House Winter Art Mart benefits the Bath House Cultural Center's year-round visual and performing arts programs. Purchases benefit everyone: The lucky owner will take home one-of-a-kind artwork, while local artists and arts lovers will be able to continue enjoying the arts at the neighborhood cultural center on White Rock Lake.
An Art Preview Reception is scheduled for Friday, April 23, from 7:00 - 9:00 pm, and will be open to the public. Art Mart visitors are invited to raise a glass of cheer to celebrate the kick off of the Art Mart weekend, have a chance to become a Friend of the Bath House, and take a first look at the artistic creations and auction items being showcased in the Art Mart.
In addition to the art sale, which continues during the weekend, Friends of the Bath House will host a silent auction. All participating artists have generously donated art for the auction. This year's auctioneer will be Artistic Eye; proceeds will go to the Bath House Cultural Center Advisory Council to support visual and performing arts at the Bath House.
04 / 19 / 2010
an art show with a 125 mile blast radius
One of my illustrations was just accepted into a juried show at the The ARTS gallery at Collin County Community College. The show, which features work by 125 local artists in a variety of media, has the interesting requirement of the artist needing to both live and work within 125 miles of the city.
I'm excited to participate, and hopeful that the event's impact far exceeds its blast radius.
125 Plano Arts Association Juried Show
Please join us as the Plano Art Association presents a collection of exciting works executed by local artists.
The juried exhibition will include work in several categories, including painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, printmaking and sculpture.
Exhibit Dates: April 12 - May 15
Reception: Wednesday, April 14th, 6 PM - 9 PM
The ARTS gallery exhibition hours:
Monday - Thursday: 9 AM - 8 PM
Friday: 9 AM - 5 PM
Saturday: 10 AM - 2 PM
For more information: The ARTS gallery
04 / 05 / 2010
16th Annual El Corazon Art Exhibition
Curated by Jose Vargas
February 6th - March 6th, 2010
Opening Reception: Saturday, February 6th (7-9 PM)
Admission is free and event is open to the public
Bath House Cultural Center
521 E Lawther Drive
Dallas, TX 75218
Last October, in between stints of "live digital doodling" on a video projector, I had an opportunity to show my illustration work to Jose Vargas. Jose is a fantastic talent in his own right*, and he also curates several art events in and around the Dallas area.
*I have one of his "cemetery angel" photographs in my home. She is as beautiful as she is unsettling.
Jose and I have known each other for years through the Bath House Cultural Center, but we've never really had a chance to work together directly. To him, I suspect I've always been that weird jewelry guy in the lobby, and he's that really quiet photographer/painter whom I wave to in the hazy, pre-caffeinated mornings while setting up my booth.
Thanks to ArtLoveMagic, we finally had a chance to converse a bit, and after seeing my new illustration work he invited me to put together a piece for El Corazon.
One of the requirements of the event was that I submit a sketch of my piece-in-progress for approval.
This presented an interesting challenge, as all of my vector illustrations are created without the benefit of paper. The "sketch", if any, continually evolves into the final piece. It's a bit more like sculpting lines than drawing them, which probably explains why I've got the temperament to do it.
In any case, in order the meet the requirement I actually sat down with a piece of note-taking software called xournal and used it to rough out something in a olde-school pen-and-paper sort of way.
The nice part of doing this electronically was that I meet the requirement of making a rough sketch, and then I could import this chicken-scratch-quality image directly into my tools-of-choice. If nothing else, I gain some geek-cred for the effort and was saved the hassle of locating my now seldom-used paper sketchbook.
I'll post the final piece after the opening reception.
01 / 27 / 2010
2009 winter art mart
Art sale and silent auction. Fall in Dallas means, among other things, that art lovers can get a head start on holiday shopping during the Bath House Cultural Center Art Mart.
11/20: Opening reception and art preview (7 p.m.)
11/21: Art sale and silent auction from 12 noon-7 p.m.
11/22: Art sale and silent auction from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m.
Art Mart has always been the place to find a special piece of art for yourself, family, and friends: paintings, sculpture, photography, pottery, ceramics, jewelry, cards and other unique creations. This year, the Art Mart will include a reception launching the Friends of the Bath House Cultural Center, a new non-profit organization supporting the Bath House.
There will also be a sneak peek of art on sale, a silent auction, and much more. The Bath House Winter Art Mart benefits the Bath House Cultural Center's year-round visual and performing arts programs. The artists participating in the 2009 Winter Art Mart are: Kim Argubright, Candy Austin, Rita Barnard, Brenda Benson, Martha Boles, George Boyd, Mary Brinson, Judy Buckner, Sharon Chaples, Dan Coppersmith, Barbara Erickson, Joney Ferguson, Brad Foster, Fred Gardner, Niki Gulley, Rebecca Guy, Carmen Kelley, Cindy Kelley, J. Lynn Kelly, Cindy Laughlin, Keith Livingston, T Lee Marshall, Jorge Martinez, Mick McGill, Sylvia Mims, Jo Moncrief, Pam Myers-Morgan, Gail Roberts, Marty Ruiz, Elisabeth Schalij, Kathy Sides, Russ Sharek, Lugina Stanley, Mily Sugranes, Regina Tanasescu, Judith Trimble, Tink, Dave and Sheilah Unger, Art Wells, and Scott Williams. The 2009 Winter Art Mart is free and open to the public. Please visit www.bathhousecultural.com for more information.
11 / 11 / 2009
mixed media muerte
Professionally speaking, I entered the world of the arts at a fairly young age. Most of my peers were older and well-established in their careers when I came swaggering into the room. Like the creative equivalent of a young alpha male, I made quite a nuisance of myself. I spent a lot of my time growling, biting throats and metaphorically peeing in corners to mark my territory.
Amazingly, I was not killed for this behavior. This proves without question that the law of the jungle is vastly different than the law of the gallery. Had I tried this sort of punk hubris in the wilds of Africa, wiser lions would likely not have heralded my misguided rebellion as innovative thinking.
At best, the pause in devouring me might have lasted long enough to allow them to reflect on the tender, juicy quality of fresh meat.
Despite the widely held belief that throwing me to the lions was in fact the correct call, I maintain that the mistake of allowing me to reach maturity has had some merit. Adulthood eventually forced me to relinquish some of the frivolity, egomania and beard-overstylings of my misspent youth.
With these formidable handicaps no longer holding me back, I was in a position to actually listen to some of those wise old lions around me. Not surprisingly, I found most of them to be "jungle survivors" as well. Just like me, they learned the secret to not ending up tomorrow's lion droppings. They let go of the fallacy of being a rock star and learned to play well, to admittedly varying degrees, with others.
Of course, in my case, I have an additional handicap. My hardened cynicism prevents me from taking more than a few meager sips from the kool-aid pitcher of community. Without a gun to my head and vocal coach at my side, odds are against me wearing the t-shirt, attending the meeting or singing Kumbaya. I side more with Henley than Cicero. Holding hands feels great, but I'm the captain of this here dinghy and I don't feel the need to have a focus group about where and how I choose to sail my soul.*
*Which sounds all sorts of wonderful and different-drum lofty, but not playing nice with the committee just gets you labeled a prima donna more often than not.
Despite my ongoing battle to avoid assimilation, I have managed to shed my loner status enough to enjoy the benefits of collaboration. While trendy buzzwords like "synergy" still make me twitch, even working with a patron on a commissioned piece will produce ideas which are bigger and better than anything I could have dreamt up on my own. Add the skills and passions of other artisans to the mix, and the possibilities are endless...provided all parties have taken the "lion's lessons" to heart.
At the Bath House's upcoming Dia de los Muertos art exhibition, I'll have the opportunity to share the fruits of a recent artistic collaboration. Photographer David Perkins, carpenter Michael Scogin and I all brought our skills together to create Le Petit Mort, a mixed media sculpture installation which will be on display in the main gallery.
Hopefully the lions will like it.
23rd Annual Dia de los Muertos Exhibition
10/17/2009 - 11/14/2009
Bath House Cultural Center
The Bath House Cultural Center presents the 23rd annual Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) art exhibition.
This exhibition includes 46 local, regional, national and international artists working in a variety of styles to celebrate, explore and honor people, things, and ideas that have passed on.
Opening reception with the artists: Sunday, October 18, 2009 from 5 to 7 p.m. Free and open to the public.
Charlotte Chambliss, Vanessa Ocampo, Chandra T. Armstead, Mary J. Baker, Dan Richard Barber, Betty Bucher, Billy Bucher, Judy Buckner, Kristine Byars, Paul Carranza, Jim Clement, Chris Cole, Angi Cure, Kathleen Donovan, Dan Dudley, Lori Dudley, Jacque Forsher, Miranda DaVolt, Frances Dezzany, Patricia Dillingham, Rosalinda Gómez, Franziska Gonzalez, Bryan Gooding, Sylvia Houghland, Alex Hulsey, Cindy Kelley, Ellie Ivanova, Sandra Lethem Yeo, Victoria Lewelling, Linda López, Darrell Madis, Antoaneta Melnikova-Hillman, Barbara Norris, Cap Pannell, Erin Nicole Parisi, Marilyn Parrish, David Perkins, Robert W. Ritchey, Brenda Robson, Meagan Robson, Kate Schatz, Michael Scogin, Russ Sharek, Terry K. Smith, Arthur Stephens, Christina L. Walker, Patricia Wass, and Kathy Windrow. Enrique Fernández Cervantes and Jose Vargas curated this exhibition.
Day of the Dead:
During the traditional Day of the Dead holiday (Nov 1 and 2), people assemble elaborate altars in their homes to commemorate those who have died, filled with objects that provided pleasure to the departed person. Because of this warm social environment, the colorful setting, and the abundance of food, drink and good company, this holiday commemorating the dead has pleasant rather than scary or sad overtones. Although this tradition has its origins in Mexico, people of many cultures, races and backgrounds embrace the celebration. Life and death are universal concepts that everyone can explore.
A few people have correctly guessed that the skull image is a sneak peek of Le Petit Mort.
A full image gallery of will be posted after the exhibition's opening reception.
As promised, photographer David Perkins ran by the Bath House Cultural center and snagged some photos of our collaborative art installation, le petit mort.
The exhibition runs unti November 14th. It's a really amazing show, so if you have a chance pop by and see it for yourself.
11 / 11 / 2009
grab your goggles and head southside
After I unapologetically "stole" one of Riki Johnson's ideas and used it in one of my own illustrations, she has decided to exact her "revenge" by inviting me to take part in an upcoming ArtLoveMagic event which she is co-producing.
For reasons I cannot fathom, she has convinced me to create digital illustrations live on a projector in the middle of an ongoing gallery exhibition.
If I manage not to completely embarass myself, it should be a heck of a lot of fun. I've never done anything like this before, so I'm as curious as anyone to see what sort of things come out of the experience.
Moreover, if you're interested in learning a little more about all that weird free software stuff I keep going on about, it's an opportunity to see it in action.
Fort Worth, TX - (October 3, 2009)
Dallas art collective ArtLoveMagic will partner with Arts Fifth Avenue to present Arts Goggle from 3:00-10:30 pm at Arts Fifth Avenue located at 1628 5th Avenue, Fort Worth, TX 76104.
Arts Fifth Avenue kicks off the event with a free gallery exhibit preview from 3:00-6:00 pm, followed by ArtLoveMagic's live entertainment beginning at 7:00 pm.
Admission for this show is $10.00 at the door, or $5.00 with a student ID. $5.00 presale tickets are available now at www.artlovemagic.com.
The Arts Goggle event accompanies a gallery exhibit which runs from September 27 - October 3 at Arts Fifth Avenue.
ArtLoveMagic's Press Release
Arts Fifth Avenue
1628 5th Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76104
3PM-6PM Gallery Exhibition, Free Admission
7PM-10PM Live Entertainment, presale tickets now available
09 / 21 / 2009
I love it when total strangers not only take photos of you at an event, but are kind enough to email them over cropped, cleaned up and with full permission to post and share.
Our hosts, the fashion industry gallery.
There are no ninja hiding behind this wall.
The now famous back of my head.
My expansive hand gestures almost killed a woman during this event.
They like it! They really like it!
This is as close as I get to a facial expression after a month without sleep.
06 / 09 / 2009
d art slam
D Art Slam at f.i.g.
May 29-31, 2009
Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
My new collection of digital illustrations will be debuted during the event, alongside the work of 150 emerging local artists.
For ticket information, please visit www.d-artslam.com
05 / 18 / 2009
the spring-time mart chock full of art
Come get a bit of wonderful art for yourself and your friends at the Bath House's Spring Art Mart. Paintings, sculpture, photography, pottery, ceramics, jewelry, soap, prints, cards, and other unique creations will be featured along with food, wonderful music, a silent auction and much more.
The Art Mart benefits the Bath House Cultural Center's year-round visual and performing arts programs - so it's a purchase that we all benefit from!
It's no secret that I love this event. I always have, and I always will. No question.
That said, the fact that these oh-so wonderful people have decided to feature my work prominently on their marketing materials in no way sullies the veracity and depth of my affection.
Nope, not one bit. No bias at'all. ;-)
Friday, April 24th, 7-9 PM (Preview Reception)
Saturday, April 25th, 12-7 PM
Sunday, April 26th, 11 AM - 6 PM
Bath House Cultural Center
521 E. Lawther Drive
Dallas, TX 75218
The folks over at the Bath House Cultural Center have released a link to this electronic postcard.
04 / 14 / 2009