Archive for the ‘Film & TV’ category


Watching the Wheels

Let’s see, what has been going on around here? Anyone want an update? I know I need one. I need to write this just to see what I have been doing with myself, if you don’t mind. Otherwise, I feel like I’m just turning my wheels. (I sure hope that’s not what I’ve been doing!)

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Interview!

I did this interview with Angela Romeo of Colliding Worlds TV in Palm Springs back in February when I was at the 2014 Palm Spring Fine Art Fair with Shulamit Gallery.

It features fellow gallery artist David Abir, who is first up. I come in towards the end of the show at 17:59.

I’m a bit nervous, but I suppose I shouldn’t have told you that.

Enjoy! :)


Okay, More

I’m back. That only took a few days, But what cha gonna do?

So where was I? Oh yes. C, D, and E, right? That was like, what? Two weeks ago?

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Seeing my good friends, Dennis and Jean, was SO nice, I can’t even tell you. That might sound boring to you, but it’s not for me. I don’t carve time like that out for myself hardly ever. It was SO nice. They have a house in Palm Springs, and I didn’t stay there last time. I don’t usually stay at anyone’s house, unless they are like family or something, but they insisted. I took them up on it and I am so glad I did. Dennis is like, well, Dad to me in many, many ways. He is too young to be my dad, but I consider him like a father to me anyway. He’s helped me more than my own father has, mentally/emotionally that is. It was good to spend quality time with him. And Jean is probably the nicest person on the Earth. I really don’t say that flippantly either. She truly is! This woman knitted little slipper-socks for me while I was there.

Dennis is an important character in my book that I’m not supposed to talk about, which I’m not. I just want him to know, if he happens to be reading this, that if it weren’t for him, I don’t know where my head would be right now if he didn’t help me through those first couple years after I broke out of the penitentiary, so thanks. See? Read my book when it comes out and you’ll find out all about how I was on Death Row for a murder I didn’t commit!

Anyways…

I also drove out to Joshua Tree while I was there in Palm Springs, for the purpose of getting some footage for my big Kickstarter campaign – which I am going to launch very, very soon! However, when I got out to JTree (It’s about 40-45 minutes from Palm Springs), and after scouting for a location off the road that would be good enough for sound and aesthetic purposes, a bunch of problems arose.

First, I realized that I forgot the mount for my cam that goes onto the tripod. I had to do a kind of odd balancing act with the cam – and it was windy mind you (it’s the high desert after all!), and in case it fell off the base, I tied the strap to the top of the frame so it would not actually fall into the dirt. Luckily it never fell to even test my contraption.

After the first take after I did a little test to see my distance from the camera, but I got it a bit wrong. The top of my head was slightly cut off, otherwise, it was fine. A little wind noise, but, it worked anyway. I needed to do it again and back up a little. So I did, and it just felt better. I checked it for a sec and everything was good, visually. but, the more I played it, the more I listened and heard that the mic was all fucked up. It was clipping in and out, and it wasn’t because of the wind. It was because the mic was fucked up! It was broken and needed to be taken apart and fixed, and not by me. By a professional. So I was screwed. I drove out there for nothing. But it was half the reason I went out to the desert in the first place! I was so upset, I started to cry. Waaaa Waaaa waaaa.

So that was that.

The next day I was interviewed by this woman who has her own YouTube channel dedicated to art and artists. It’s kinda cool! I don’t know when she is putting it up, but you’ll be the first to know.

Okay, now we’re kinda caught up. Sorta.

I’ve been busy.

I’ve been working on that Artist book. Yes, still. I decided to make more changes, but I won’t bore you with that, because mostly, I’ve been working on my Kickstarter campaign that has to do with my Joshua Tree project that I’ve been squeaking about here and there. You probably don’t even know what I’m talking about, do you?

Well, I’ve been telling you about the path, and I’ve been starting you out on the Kabbalah, and that is where it begins. It begins there with meditations on the Hebrew letters, and the Torah, and the story of Exodus, which leads me to the desert, a lot like Moses. Hence, I wind up in Joshua Tree in a house behind a mountain I’ve been referring to as “my little Mt. Sinai.”

Don’t worry, I will make sure that it will all make sense to you once you wake up. Or was that, once I wake up? Oh, dammit! I forgot now. Where was I?

Something about a path…


From A to E

Dang IT, dang IT! I have SO MUCH to tell and so little time to tell it in. And I’ve been off of my blog for so long, I don’t even know if I can remember all the little holes I have to fill in since I’ve been away from it all.

Okay, I went to Palm Springs. That was great! I had fun, fun, fun! Why? Because:

a. The Diebenkorn show was beyond phenomenal!

b. Shulamit Gallery participated in the Palm Springs Fine Art Fair.

c. I got to see my very close friends, whom I stayed with while I was there: (Dennis and Jean).

d. I went to Joshua Tree to shoot some Kickstarter footage.

e. A surprise interview happened with Colliding Words TV, a YouTube channel for art and artists!

I think if I stick to from A to E, I will be fine. So here we go:

The Diebenkorn Show

I knew I was going to really like this exhibition, which was why I thought of it as a destination in and of itself, but something very significant happened when I got to the museum.

First of, for some reason, I dressed up. I wore a dress! I never wear dresses. It was for practice I suppose, because I was going to a dinner a couple nights afterward, and I wanted to wear a little black dress that night, so I wore a little blue dress just like it to the museum. I didn’t think I was going to run into anyone, but I ran into Mat and Leigh. That was fine because they are my friends. Even if I looked ridiculous, I would have felt half way comfortable with them, so that was good.

But when I turned the corner to see the first paintings of Richard Diebenkorn’s, oh my God! There were three beautiful abstracts hanging straight away. The one in the middle was the largest of the three, with little poles and wires on the ground so you wouldn’t come within three feet of it. The others had tape on the floor I think, for the same idea. These paintings were perfectly painted. You would not be able to know that from just a picture. You’d have to SEE this in real life.

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Then, I just kept walking through. I saw more abstracts and it just got better. I thought I’d be done at that point, as far as being impressed. I’m not one for figurative, much less still lifes. But Jesus! It kept getting even better! This guy painted EVERYTHING perfectly! I couldn’t believe how in LOVE I was with his brushstrokes, and how much permission he gave me, FOR ME to paint anything I wanted too! What an inspiration! If you missed that show, you’re just nuts!

Okay, so anyway, The Fair. The Fair was great. I was in this fair last year, as some of you might remember, with not so great results, and I’m not talking about sales here. Fuck sales. That’s not what this is about.

I was afraid to go to Palm Spring this time around, honestly. I didn’t want there to be a repeat of last year. I didn’t want a bunch of disappointments, nor did I want to have any expectations – which I didn’t. I don’t think I really had any major ones last year either to be honest. I only wanted my work in the show. That was all I really “expected,” as that’s what I was told. But bygones, and all that. So, this time, I didn’t even expect that – seriously!

When I got to the Shulamit booth, I was very pleasantly surprised. Shula, Anne, and Lauren were there, (wo)manning the booth, which was curated, might I say, superior to every other booth I walked passed on my way to theirs. It was sparse, and very well thought out, capturing subtle coloring from Jona’s photographs, to the veins of Soraya’s sculptures, my And and Not painting, and David’s interactive light piece. It was beautiful!

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I think I have to come back later to do C, D and E. I am just so busy with other crap at the moment. Hey, I tried!

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Thanksgiving Television

It’s already December 2nd! Right smack in the middle of Chanukah, and Thanksgiving flew by like, like…like some kind of bat out of hell!

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I hope your Thanksgiving was pleasant. Ours sure was. We have a tradition here: Turkey pot pies.

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No, I don’t make turkey pot pies from scratch. Wouldn’t that be quaint? How Martha Stewart of me! Can you see it? Those of you that really know me, can you see me doing that? Yeah? Well stop laughing, because I actually do bake sometimes! I even own a beautiful apron I bought from Anthropologie, one of my favorite stores, I must admit. However, I have to wait until they have extraordinary sales, which they do.

But back to baking turkey pot pies, which I did NOT do for Thanksgiving. Why would I when Marie Calendars makes frozen ones that taste amazing!?

So Chanukah, turkey pot pies, and a few episodes of my new favorite show: Orange is the New Black

I am in love with this show and I am sadly almost finished with the season. I’ll be watching the last episode tonight. I hate when that happens! I hardly like television, but when I fall in love with a TV show, I really look forward to watching it every week. It gives me something to look forward to that isn’t art, and that requires absolutely nothing from me. I don’t have to leave the house or speak to anyone or “be” any way. It’s a brainless activity that keeps me engaged – fully engaged – where I can escape without using an ounce of my energy or resources.

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I mean, I’m sure that is no different than why most people watch TV, but I have to say that TV has always been a very strange radiation death box to me throughout my life. I have been, for the most part, anti-television. I’m not sure why exactly. It was never used as a punishment upon me as a child or anything like that. We were free to watch as much or as little TV as we wanted to. It was always on.  Always. And even at age 7, 8, 9, etc., that just bothered me. It made it impossible for me to focus. So maybe that’s why.

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That doesn’t mean I didn’t watch it. I did. Certain shows were like heroin. I could watch them over and over again. Anything with Snoopy in it, which only played during the holidays anyway (so it was a treat every time!), Bugs Bunny and all Warner Bros. animation, and other animated shows, such as Mighty Mouse, Tom & Jerry, The Flintstones, Popeye, and Heckle and Jeckle – if you can remember them. When I was really young, I was absolutely crazy for a cartoon called Kimba the White Lion. It’s the cartoon that that was completely ripped from the dead hands of Tezuka Osamu (the inventor of anime), stolen to create the very successful Lion King via Walt Disney. Just remember that every time you see those Disney characters with the BIG EYES.

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Of course Disney claims that all this is coincidental and blah blah blah, so I have to state that the above is purely my personal opinion and based on my “feelings,” not at all a proven fact and untrue; nobody stole anything from anyone.  They are just two very similar stories. Kimba the White Lion and The Lion King are both great though.

Besides animation, of which I am a great fan of – it probably influenced me to become an artist in fact – there were other shows I could watch over and over, like The Twilight Zone, I love Lucy, and ……………………well, everything else was shit. It made me want to drill screws into my toes or drive a nail gun into my temple, or push a staple gun into my forehead, or hammer a needle nose pliers straight up my nose. Whatever tools you happen to have lying around, I’ll use them if someone doesn’t turn off the fucking TV!

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I just didn’t get why it was on all the time, even when no one was there watching it. If you wanted to talk to someone else, there’s a television on, and it was either set to the news or on a game show, or somehow, some way, after I left home, anytime I came over, Married With Children was always on. But when I was there, it was The Jeffersons, Happy Days, One Day at a Time, The Love Boat, or some other kind of torturous bullshit.

When I moved out, I lived at Tracey’s and we didn’t watch much TV, and when I hopped around from place to place, I missed a few more years of TV there too, and then when I got my own place, my parents gave me their old TV, which was really nice of them. I just didn’t know what I would do with it. I didn’t plug it in for a couple of months, but my boyfriend at the time, Scott, brought home some “rabbit ears” for it and plugged it in. We were able to get a few channels, some more furry than others, but they were watchable. I told him that I’d like it if he would just do me the favor of not having it on if he wasn’t watching anything specific.

I watched TV with him one time. I was bored. I don’t even remember the program. Oh, actually, it was the Honeymooners. He was a big fan, but I just wasn’t my thing. You may throw tomatoes at me now if you please.

Your tomato window has now closed. Back to the story.

At the next two places I lived, I had a TV, but I didn’t plug it in until I got a VCR machine. Hmm. Maybe I had the VCR Machine when I lived with Scott. I seem to remember my mom stealing us one and Scott talking me into accepting it, which sounds reasonable, so maybe I rented movies back then. The only problem was, it was a Beta Max. That would only last me so long.

For the following 10 years after that, I just never had a TV that plugged into an antenna. Never had channels. Never watched TV. Unless I was renting a movie (I finally got a VHS machine), I was pretty cut off from popular culture. I caught glimpses on MTV when I had roommates with the band, heard things that people told me, but most of all, it was quiet, and I painted. I’d listen to my records when I lived with the band, mostly to drown out the sounds going on outside my room, but by the time I found my own place again on a quiet street, I was back listening to the birds.

But for someone who rather despises TV, there are a LOT of shows I absolutely love that have come and gone, and have recently started.

Orange is the New Black, Getting On, Masters of Sex, Ray Donovan, Enlightened, Girls, Shameless, Nurse Jackie, The Big C, Boardwalk Empire, Mad Men, Dexter, Sons of Anarchy, Big Love, Curb Your Enthusiasm, The United States of Tara, Weeds, Flight of the Conchords, the Sopranos, Deadwood, Six Feet Under, Sex and the City, and Northern Exposure. I also kind of like Pawn Stars and the Jeff Lewis shows (the house-flipper/designer guy), and a few other house remodel shows and an occasional House Hunters.

I wouldn’t have known about any of these had it not been for mjp who introduced cable to me. He was totally dialed in when I met him, and  he had every episode of Northern Exposure recorded already, and many other shows that I just couldn’t get into, but that one became a religion for me.

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When it comes to TV and even movies, I’m extremely fickle. I either like it or I really don’t, and if it can’t keep me fully engaged, my mind goes elsewhere and I am not really watching. I tend to disassociate, and that’s never good.

Well, that’s a LONG leeway announcing that I’m finally on the Shulamit website!

Hope ya’ll had a great Thanksgiving.


What Are the Updates, You Ask?

No you di-int. You didn’t ask me shit. You don’t care. I often wonder who I am talking to, but it’s not like I mind if it’s anybody at all, or rather, nobody at all. I don’t mind one iota. I just like to type. I just like to hear myself talk. Type talk. Whatever it is I am doing here. Thinking out loud through my finger tips. Yeah, that’s what I’m doing. See, if you were here, you might think that was kind of cool and fancy free. Sort of inventive, or somewhat clever. At least clever for a moron.

Anyway, I’ve been working all day today. mjp has been, well he’s been up and about, but he’s supposed to be resting his fucked up hip. Instead, he’s been helping the guys from Milk get their website back up and running. Why? Because he’s a lot like me. He’s a lot like a lot of people. He can’t say “No.”

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Speaking of websites, I have been dipping my brain back into picklebird.com again. I think I’m going to buy a better WordPress template and just tinker with it from there. I really don’t want to code a whole new site from scratch, and there is actually a database running on it that all ready to go. All I need to do is snap pictures of everything I own and enter the data. Oh that won’t take any time. Buuuuut, once I get it set up, I sure would like to start selling some work. Some art and some books. At least see if I can.

Today and yesterday, it’s been all about Houses. I embroidered another one of the “Dishes” pages. I finished all the cut-outs on the covers, and today I made the blue pouches for the little Giclée prints. I also printed the Giclée prints. That wound up taking forever and you know why? Do you? Because I realized that the file I started off with on my computer sucked ass!

SO, I went into the back of my garage, right next to the dead rat that’s been rotting there for months, and I pulled out the painting that is kept in back storage, Home is Near the Sea, 2001.

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I brunged it out so I could re-shoot it, which I did. I mean, I had to unwrap it first. I was quite impressed with how well it was wrapped, I must say.

Then I pulled it into Photoshop and did a couple of tests before I was able to print up eight little 5″ Giclées. Nothin to it! I hardly wasted any paper at all. Not like before when I had a crap file to begin with. I wasted a LOT of VERY nice paper.

Let’s see what the hell else did I do? Oh, I got the gold paper from Nepal and was able to slice those up into book sheets, so those are now ready to be printed on with my crappy block prints. I’d like to try those tomorrow with mjp if he’s not too sore. I need him to assist me because he’s a block print wiz. I bet you didn’t know that about him, did you? Well, there you have it. He’s really good at it. Remember his first three chapbooks? Well those covers were all linoleum block prints that were pretty pristine – and he made 50 each – so he got pretty good at it. Plus, he had been making block prints well before that. He’s my Block Master Printer, I guess you can say.

I bet you’re wondering how I’m doing on my smoking plans, right? Well, it’s not going as planned, but better than it could be I guess.

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I used to smoke 1/2 to 3/4 of a pack a day and it’s been eight days since I “quit” and I have since smoked about a half a pack in total. …I’ll get there. My goal is to be fully and utterly a non-smoker by July 20th, which is my 45th birthday.

If you feel the need to get me something for my birthday, I mean, please don’t, but if you’re one of those people that treat adults like they are still children and celebrate their birthdays with “Happy Birthday!”s and presents and cards and balloons and shit, then you can waste a total of $1.61 on a #72 Chinese White pencil for me at Dick Blick. Or, if you’re not racist, you can get me this #2200 Ink Black Inktense pencil for $1.79.

I was also hoping to lose more weight before I was 45 years old. I got up to 177. There, I said it. Some of you have known me to be a mere 100 pounds most of my life, so that might be very shocking to read. But that’s what had happened to me over a long period of time. It happened for many reasons. Being with mjp for a long time (we like to watch movies and eat ice cream), laziness, bad diet, eating late, not exercising, medications, getting older, and genetics.

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Since January I have lost 27 pounds. I changed my diet and my meds, and I started walking a little bit. I have 15 more pounds to go to get to my goal and the rest is just bonus because I was always dangerously underweight when you knew me before. My range is supposed to be 128-148, so I picked 135 because it was in the middle and most realistic.

Anywho. I’m tired now, so I’m gonna go. Bye.

Oh wait…

Recently on Wet Canvas, there was a thread where someone asked one of those desert island questions about which 12 books would you bring… but then it got expanded to films, music and art picture books as well (because this particular island had a dvd and cd player that worked in some magical way…) And if you felt like it, you were to talk about WHY you made your particular choices.

So here were my lists of 12:

My reads:

1. The Roominghouse Madrigals: Early Selected Poems 1946-1966, Charles Bukowski, 2002
2. Ham on Rye, Charles Bukowski (Novel), 1982
3. Hollywood, Charles Bukowski (Novel), 1989 (Funniest book I’ve ever read!)
4. Erections, Ejaculations, Exhibitions, and General Tales of Ordinary Madness, Charles Bukowski (Two Volumes of Short Stories in One), 1983
5. Wait Until Spring Bandini, John Fante, 1938
6. Full of Life, John Fante, 1952
7. The Big Hunger, John Fante, Stories from 1932-1959
8. Riding Out the Dumb Silence, Michael Phillips, (Poems/Stories) 2006
9. No One Belongs Here More Than You, Miranda July, (Stories), 2008 (UNBELIEVABLY great writing!)
10. Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking, David Bayles, Ted Orland, 2001 (Changed my life!)
11. The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway, 1926
12. The Grapes of Wrath, John Ernst Steinbeck, Jr., 1939

Pretty Pictures

1. Friedensreich Hundertwasser: the Complete Graphic Work 1951-1986
2. Amy Sillman: Works on Paper by Wayne Koestenbaum and Amy Sillman (2006)
3. Amy Sillman: Suitors & Strangers by Claudia Schmuckli (2007)
4. Dana Schutz: If the Face Had Wheels by Cary Levine and Dana Schutz
5. Charlotte Salomon, Life? or Theatre? by Charlotte Salomon and Judith C. E. Belinfante (1999)
6. The Diary of Frida Kahlo
7. Vitamin D: New Perspectives in Drawing by Emma Dexter
8. Peanuts: A Golden Celebration: The Art and the Story of the World’s Best-Loved Comic Strip by Charles M. Schulz
9. The Diaries of Paul Klee, 1898-1918
10. Paul Klee (Temporis)
11. Russian Jewish Artists in a Century of Change: 1890-1990
12. Mary Ellen Mark: 25 Years by Marianne Fulton

MUSIC

The biggest collections and/or box sets available for:

1. The Beatles in Mono
2. Bob Marley: Songs of Freedom
3. Miles Davis (during the period he was actually playing concievable jazz)
4. Stevie Wonder
5. Elvis Costello
6. Mozart
7. Chopin
8. Neil Young
9. Aimee Mann
10. Steely Dan
11. Van Morrison
12. PJ Harvey
…And perhaps I could trade in a Chopin compilation in for some Sly and Robbie productions?

FILM!

1. Citizen Kane, Orson Welles, 1941 – The FIRST, the ORIGINAL and the best. The film which all other films are based on, copied from and want to be.

2. Rope, Alfred Hitchcock, 1948 – A Masterpiece of stage acting and directing. Only one camera used, but the film is so good, you would never notice this. While modern-day movies wouldn’t dream of doing this (keeping one shot going for more than mere seconds), Hitchcock sticks with the same camera the entire time and only breaks to change rolls.

3. Rear Window, Alfred Hitchcock, 1954 – Classic Hitchcock with (I think) the best of his two opposite actors with the best chemistry for tension and romantic banter.

4. The Apartment, Billy Wilder, 1960 – STILL funny! Timeless. Jack Lemon will always seem this way to me.

5. A Clockwork Orange, Stanley Kubrick, 1971 – The classic Kubrick. It had a great impact on me as a child. I saw it when I was way too young, just a few years after it premiered. I was eight! Of course again later, many times. It’s a thinking film about what is more surreal: the violence or the blantent surrealism, and it continues to pose the same questions. It’s just as difficult to watch now as it was when I was eight.

6. Barfly, Barbet Schroeder, 1987 – For observational sake, yet it has a vibe all its own. While it wasn’t exactly what Bukowski had envisioned, it did capture some of the grit and a little of the secondary world of the mind of the writer – and how the world around him, whether rich or poor seemed like a dream. Perhaps because these are all semi-fictonal stories about stints of his drinking life (he did not write much about the many years in between when he did not drink). Rourke played an “idea” of Hank, but not a good job in any sense. Hank was very displeased. Schroeder was more concerned about getting the shots done and the movie fully funded. All in all, I found Dunaway riveting.

7. Swoon, Tom Kalin, 1992 – After “Rope,” I became Leopold and Loeb obsessed, so I sought out this film and was quite surprised at how creative it was. I can watch it again and again, and even love the obvious plants of modern day gagets (new director-itus): it didn’t bother me because it’s excellent film making.

8. Pi, Darren Aronofsky, 1998 – Not only was this just a GREAT movie, when I heard about the budget, I nearly fell over. AMAZINGLY talented young man. This film had an intense impact on me, although I could have done without the ending. It had everything to do with bringing me back to my interest in Hebrew Mystisism.

9. Happiness, Todd Solondz, 1998 – One of the most hilarious films I have ever seen.

10. Tarnation, Jonathan Caouette, 2003 – Inspiring. I even bought my own DV cam and started to film my family, but realized that it was not as easy as he made it seem.

11. The Squid and the Whale, Noah Baumbach, 2005 – I wish every movie in the world was a LOT like this one. This is my kind of movie and I am always looking for this sort of dialog writing/dysfunctional, complex relationship/characters in film.

12. Science of Sleep, Michel Gondry, 2006 – Some people love Eternal Sunshine (I do too) but I liked the “handmade” quality of this one (which he started before Eternal Sunshine). There are a lot of quirky “behind the scenes” special effects that are like film school style that I like, that mix with what he brought back from doing Eternal Sunshine to then finish this film.

Now, bye!