Tag Archives: coffee

Oh, the Artists we go…

I’m about to go out and search for a little foot stool or something chic and transportable to set my laptop on at either urban outfitters or world market. Two stores a block from my house with an assortment of colorful, half-unique looking home decor options straight from Taiwan and less expensive then the nob hill furniture boutique ran by middle-aged fruity men. But anyway, the purpose of this message is to really express my long-felt disgruntlement over the excruciatingly high number of “artists” in Portland, (and from my experiences Eugene and other nearby towns, not to mention the west coast, Austin, NY, etc.), who are known for being the artists in their community but really just a bunch of babbling finger-painting butt wipes. They are good networkers and portfolio-making winos. Many edit a good collage, understand printmaking, buy vintage outfits from Buffalo, and cut their hair lopsided with long side burns. They smell like coffee and cigarettes, or yerba mate and marijuana. They say things like “groovy” and “tight” because these old phrases disappeared off the radar and reintroducing them is appealing to historical connotations of hipness as well as innovative reintroductions of indelible phrases in new linguistic contexts. Yet these collages, reinventions, basic nostaligias are morphed with eager needs to please, and a swamp of character is lost in a blase mixture of gaudy egos, all bright colors and loud spirits regurgitated into a fad of ideas, long mustaches, and big bangs all pickled together in a package of controllable, quotable, calculable, marketable, and consumable widgets and wits. I see widgets because people are further morphing into one-click wonders, their personalities exposed in online portfolios and profiles, their entire character summed up in a paragraph of theories throw-up from a senior course in the philosophy of art, and a handful of photographs of their best friend dressed in a tutu and leather jacket, playing the fashion model of a make-believe cinema still. I am only coarsely judging these neighboring hipster fashionistas, designers, photographers, painters, printmakers, and artists of mixed media, because I too have expressed my share of magazine wall collage torn from Vogue, and scattered costume garments worn to work under a work shirt to express, as immutably as possible, the expression of a character that is at once vivid, youthful, and alive, and also extremely confused, complicated, and immersed in a capitalist world amidst critical parents, eager-to-please businessmen and egomaniacal entrepreneurs. I am merely trying to survive, and in recent months have mentally detached from my job of retail and socially detached from nocturnal outings with fellow creatives and networkers, in order to return to the roots of my inspiration devoid of bad credit and crimped spirits. I am returning to what made me tick at five, and love at twelve, fight at fourteen, and run madly away into the unknown at eighteen. I am reading, and bathing, and staring into the space of everything have yet to understand and can only feel when I’m in my world separated from histories and expectations. The lone artists, and naturists, the hermits and quiet types intrigue me. What is a loud voice but a need to be heard over the quality of your words. I want to hear the silent fellow who returns to his room to make art for himself, and hear what the natural world says apart from urban industries and profit. Profit in the quiet contentment of a product made for a feeling in yourself. Well, that is a big bundle of words I’ve again spitted out with my first cup of “morning” coffee. And now I’ll contradict my own stream of thoughts by going out and finding a foot stool, (one in mind, actually, a purple one at Urban, would complete the complete lack of color scheme in my room). And also time for more coffee…

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my list of potential future landholding destinations…

Like Chess, I fear it is my turn to make a portentous move, and I’m not sure what to do! Do I move the knight? the bishop? the castle? the pawn? Do I protect the white Queen or send her forth to offend the black knight? and if I do send her forth will she crush or be crushed? The clock is ticking away and a decision must be made. So Chess references aside, Portland doesn’t like me. I have had unemployment, bad break ups, a string of careless discrepancies and chaotic occurrances. SAD. And a lot of feelings of just being lost and ill at ease. So as lovely as this town can be in its finer moments, and as good as the coffee is in the finer shops, and of course as yummy as the Voodoo donuts, and new seasons, etcetera…I need to move.
I’m not pregnant or in a serious relationship, but like the recent film “Away We Go”, I too require a cozy home in the homiest part of the country I can find, and Portland, in so many words, isn’t all there is… So I’ve narrowed my list of potential future landholding destinations to…
New Orleans (jazz, mardi gras, cajun food, old french architecture), D.C.(smithsonian, pentagon, lincoln, white house), L.A.(hollywood, movie production, orange groves…there still there arent they?), NY(theater, woody allen), San Francisco/East Bay(sourdough, little italy, mt. diablo), Seattle(good music, coffee like portland, yum), chicago(hotdogs and stuff) and boston(paul revere’s tomb, tea parties?). I’ve named about every cool town in the country except for a few in the South, sorry Austin, Texas stole my childhood, I am preserving what is left. Now opinionators, throw forth! To work in film or theater? To freeze or roast? To swim or hole up in a museum eyeballing old first ladys’ corsets? To eat sourdough or jambalaya? These are all important questions. I will preface the deliberation with one of my favorite monologues about another important, ongoing debate, which basically encapsulates it all:

“To be or not to be – that is the question:
Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And, by opposing, end them…”

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Art, losers, distractions, love

First a quote from the man of the hour: “Hatred paralyzes life; love releases it. Hatred confuses life; love harmonizes it. Hatred darkens life; love illuminates it.” (martin luther king jr) MLK was a force to be reckoned with, with fierce love. He deserves this week of tribute.

Recently rewatched a good film…In the Hustler (a film starring Paul Newman, Jackie Gleason, and Piper Laurie), Paul is a “born loser”. He is talented but always sets things up in his life to fuck up. If his pool is my love life I am him in this film. Or I am unlucky and lost. I think I am 26 and it’s no big deal and I should not worry an stew so. I’m like Piper’s character, Sara. She is lost her imagination and dreams, stories from books, and her little room with little vices. Her ending was the inevitable turning point for fast eddie’s growth to cut out his pattern and win.

Distraction. Sitting in a McMennamins cafe by campus I eavesdrop on two white- haired men. They’re talking about “fucking idiots” and craigslist. Tha craigslist talk is basically you can’t hire on craigslist. That’s where you find and age pool of 19 to 23. Cheap hire. The only consolation is that it’s heap day labor. The things you learn eavesdropping over a cup of lukewarm coffee, (they don’t refill often enough). Ooh con ersation moves to my specialty of he moment- architecture a Portland state… They are both drunk like ugly portland mad men…businessmen, paranoid, red-faced and stodgy. I could tune them out.

The HW reading: on drawing. “dessine moi un mouton”. Dreams too can be drawn. And here and now. We create art especially drawing and sculpture to understand in touch, feeling and gesture (communication beyond words), Where We Are…not a geographical detail but an existential age old question. What kind of place? What us the set-up of thus place we happen to have fallen into? And through art become familiar, tame, master this place or thing that makes us. So the accidental doesn’t invade our imagination. So we can form what we feel somewhere tangible. Each drawing place has the particularity and local knowledge of a here and at the same time a promise of an elsewhere. Necessity and freedom. And dreams. “Dessine moi un mouton” (le petite prince)

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