Monday, July 27, 2015

Summer Thighs

This screen print is bound for the Hardy Gallery where it will be assembled with bodily segments from other Wisconsin printmakers into an Exquisite Corpse. Green Bay printmaker and UWGB Professor Chris Style organized the show and I can't wait to see the bodies assembled. The opening reception is Friday, September 4th from 5:30 - 7 PM.

The Exquisite Corpse as we're practicing here dates back to the Surrealists who, according to Wikipedia, put their spin on an existing parlor game. It's one of my favorites. I used it in bars when I first moved to Knoxville, TN and didn't know anyone. The lack of control over the entire figure as well as the absurdity built in to the final result make it a great teaching tool and a nice thing to do with people who "can't draw."

For the exhibit at the Hardy the figure was divided into four sections. Each artist was assigned one of the four and given a template that indicated where the "figure" should pick up and end. My image is very literal; some of the best exquisite corpses I've seen or made depart more radically from the recognizable figure. Again, it will be great to see the prints assembled. I'm especially looking forward to seeing the portions created by Don Krumpos, Johanna Winters, Berel Lutsky, and Ben Rinehart, all area printmakers who I know and whose work I admire.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

most this amazing day

For a week or so recently, I woke to the first stantza of this poem by e.e. cummings in my head. 

i thank You God for most this amazing
day: for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun's birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any—lifted from the no
of all nothing—human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

The tone and mystical grammar of cummings mirrors how I feel about our summer in Wisconsin now. It is a beautiful, sweet, and fleeting time. The garden is in, boats are out on the lake, it's as warm as it's getting here, and I get to work in the studio on prints and drawings without interruption. Not to mention the sweet "human merely being" we anticipate meeting in the fall. 

i thank You God for most this amazing day