Friday, January 06, 2017

Notes on X

The masks and figures I have been making are mostly, but not entirely, related to reflections on images of a certain archetype I refer to as X, and my misreadings of sayings attributed to X and to letters written by a certain revolutionary mystic whose own encounter with X came by way of an altered state experience.
A few years ago I made some paper masks and Fred Valentine asked me if I ever considered using another, more durable, material. As it happened I had been thinking of using coffee cans, cut, flattened, and folded, with eyeholes poked and jaggedly cut. Right away I saw these masks as representations of X. 
The figures are made of scrap wood and the image is derived from drawings of an Everyman character — whose gender is obviously signified — conflated with a familiar archetype of an executed revolutionary or sacrificed deity, depending on one’s projection, and resulting in an image that was startling, but which seemed perfectly truthful to me.
X could be read as a martyred bodhisattva and victim of state violence, but he is also an iconoclastic revision of an iconic image whose representation has historically been regulated by the authority of a patriarchy that I believe is in its last daze.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

six ceremonial masks for the new year

figure weave

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Show at Valentine opens January 6, 2017

This assembled painting is one of the pieces in the show I'm in with Mary-Ann Monforton at  Valentine Gallery in January.

and this is another

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

waiting for X

mask of X

                                                                       waiting for X

opened eye

double mask

I am waiting for X.
The waning supermoon hangs on the sky, a crumbling white disk
in the daylight, 
a pretty day in an invisible war, 
in the Eye of an invisible storm.   
It is early in the morning and I am waiting for X

I perform a mass for X, and contemplate X,
and wait for X to speak from the whirlwind

 X marks Here or There in my unreliable maps.
Here You Are and There is where your treasure is.
Your treasure is buried in the abyss.

X holds the fire of creator destroyer
X beats the drum of existence
X says Fear Not, I am unarmed
X indicates the revolutionary situation
X crushes the ideology of power and possession
X blows the horn that blasts down the walls
X dances in the temple
X takes a Giant Step into the unlimited

I am watching for X, and I am waiting for X within me.
X stands at the Door.

Friday, November 11, 2016

dream drawing

I dreamed I suggested to Lori that we do a drawing together, that she start it and I'll finish it. She handed me a sheet of paper that was partly filled on the right side and the left side was blank. In the middle of the blank side I drew an eye.
A few days later I looked through her archives and made a photocopy of the first unfinished drawing I found, a a notebook page of aphorisms. I turned it on its side and drew the same kind of eye I drew in the dream.


While I was looking for a drawing to use I came upon this diary she kept when she was eleven.

Friday, October 14, 2016

figure on a post

scrap wood, tin cans. clothesline, nails, and galvanized wire

Monday, October 03, 2016

Stay Awake, Stay Alive

Stay awake, stay alive go to sleep, you will die. Stay awake, arrive alive watch out for the other guy Here he comes now - a dot in your rearview mirror grows into a Colossus of the highway, a brazen giant, with his head in flames, and he's gotta win, he's gotta win Stay awake, stay alive go to sleep, you will die. Stay awake, arrive alive watch out for the other guy He plunges his car head first into the metallic flood, chasing his need to get ahead of the herd. He's gotta win this race of robot zombie rats. He's gotta win, he's gotta win Stay awake, stay alive go to sleep, you will die. Stay awake, arrive alive watch out for the other guy Let the losers go with the flow no use for social contracts or turn signals. Let the losers fend for themselves The troll with the unbelievable hair trashes the rules of the road. He's gotta win, he's gotta win Stay awake, stay alive go to sleep, you will die. Stay awake, arrive alive watch out for the other guy He has the Rage of the Road and he crowds every lane and passes on the right and tailgates like a motherfucker And accelerates his phallic extension against the poor pilgrims of our interstates, and drives his speeding idol of capitalism, the brazen giant, the cosmic destroyer All that matters is that he gets ahead and stays ahead and fuck the rest of the losers He's gotta win, he's gotta win. Stay awake, stay alive go to sleep, you will die. Stay awake, arrive alive watch out for the other guy He mows down the huddled homeless masses He is the storm that sweeps away the tired, poor, wretched refugees He burns infernal fuels, burns the prehistoric dead, burns down the planet, burns up the air. He’s gotta win, he’s gotta win. “I’m a hungry ghost! And Hell is a hoax!” screams the troll with the hair. But he’s already lost, he’s already there.

The Pit And The Time Machine

A bottomless pit appears in the middle of your home. In the very center of your living room, a bottomless pit. A bottomless pit in the middle of your home is an unacceptable hazard, but you can't afford to move now, plus your place is rent-stabilized, so you build a wall around the bottomless pit and on this wall you paint pictures of what used to be where the hole is, and what was lost from the center of your life. And these pictures replace your memory of what is lost and this wall protects you from the bottomless pit, except when it doesn't, Because the Pit is like a malevolent ghost that can pass through the wall and appear beneath your feet and you fall. Have you taken your medication? OR has your medication taken YOU? WHERE does your medication take you? Where in your brain is your mind? Give us this day our daily dread. Walking is a dangerous business. You are always off balance and have to keep moving forward. It is much safer to crawl. If you crawl, you cannot fall. So you live a hypothetical life, and your lost mind follows an outdated cognitive map, and where can you go from there? How can you find your soul's true home, in a forgotten free zone, and remember you are already here? On this Prison Planet the collective guilt is an effect of systematic alienation. Instead of treating people like numbers, we treat numbers like people. Every integer is integral and even a zero like you counts in the big equation we are trying to solve. And even a drip like you can infect the cosmopolitan horde, so, wash your hands with antibacterial soap and cover your mouth when you cough and If you don't have a tissue cough into the bend in your arm, and If you see something, say something If you hear something, text something if you smell something, tweet a video If you taste something, go ahead and swallow it, and then contact the police. Please step away from the platform as trains enter and leave the station. Do not hold doors Do not lean on doors the doors will be torn off their hinges Anything can happen and already has by the time YOU will hear about it. In the Future we will have prosthetic brains to replace our lost minds and prosthetic people to replace the dead. In the Future I have invented a time machine that scans the cellular moments of the timespace membrane, searching for the perfect moment on which to concentrate attention to slip through one portal that opens to no where or somewhere in the Future. in the Future, a time machine has already been invented, so the Future has already and always visited you and left you in your past, and Time has come to an end, because if time has a beginning, it probably has an end, and that end has ended already and always in the past, and you are no where, or anywhere, already and always, but here and now and you are infinite and cannot be lost because infinite evolution created this perfect moment now suspended in the eternal flow. The laboratory rat pushes buttons that activate electrodes that send signals directly to pleasure centers in his brain and he pushes this button over and over to keep the unfiltered nirvana jolts coming until he drops dead. In the Future humanity will be capable of attaining the six hundred year orgasms of Paradise.
You are fighting a battle on the wrong battleground and you're not sure what the reason for the war is, let alone the strategy. How will you know if you've won this war? What if everyone loses? You are fighting your battle on the wrong ground, because there is no ground. The ground you believed in is gone, and never was, and there is no up or down. You fly or fall in a pit with no sides, as far as you know, but you dread a sudden impact. Give us this day our daily dread. In the endless day in the endless night you fight your shadows in a groundless war beyond reason and beyond belief. You are a lost refugee of a groundless war Since everything collapsed you'd been living in an ad hoc shanty made from scraps scavenged from the ruins, but its all space debris now, endlessly falling and endlessly frozen in the infinite I found some words and arranged them on paper and now I'm reading them to you but they are just sounds coming from my head and its all just space debris falling endlessly, frozen eternally, and there you are, as always, already here.