This month's work: A concise Description

In preparation for my exhibition which opens on May 11th, a two-man show with Niall McClelland at le gallery in Toronto, I have been spending the past number of months, and this month in earnest, producing work for this exhibition. The work isn't being shown on this blog, but here is one page out of roughly 650 that I have painted of specific groups of people who have died in specific conflicts over a specified period of time. For the coming show, I have painted portraits of Iraqi Civilians who died violently during the month of October, 2006; coalition casualties between the onset of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003 and the end of 2006, and Canadian soldiers who perished in Afghanistan since our forces arrived a few years ago to help out. The first two volumes have been compiled into books and will be for sale shortly. The above image is from the books; the real life ghosts are painted on craft paper, so the paper is brown.


Poem: Pan Fry 'Em

This poem contains my arguments for waking up at a reasonable hour
and for eating relatively healthy. You could consider it an aphorism, but
you would do better to consider it a joke:

Pan Fry ‘Em

Dreaded Chefs of Breakfast foods
Cook a heartfelt disaster
For less than you’d expect.
And it goes down easy,
But it doesn’t all come out,
And if you wake up late
Too often,
The last little bits won’t ever leave,
And you’ll be up to your tits
In little bits of breakfast.
And you’ll never get hungry,
But you’ll never be full of anything
But little bits of
Eggs n’ Bacon,
And lunch
Will never come.


Art at Receiver Gallery, SF

San Francisco's Receiver Gallery, located at 1415 Valencia st. and open from 10-6 during the week, is showing work by a number of artists that collaborate with Vancouver-based Lifetime Collective. Among these artists are myself, Niall McClelland, Ben Tour, Humanfive, Joseph Hart and Ryan Wallace. Above is one of the pieces the I have in the show (it's similar to a work I had posted a while ago, and is a theme I plan on exploring in the future). I pretty much just framed and sent away some of the ink drawings I've done over the past while, and I hope they don't come back. Also, Kurt Vonnegut is no longer with us, so that's a shame, although I don't think he cares all that much anymore. If I were, for some unimaginably akward and unfitting reason, to speak at his funeral, I would say: "Well, I never met him, but I liked his books".


Africa Bike

This is a bit of a strange one - it's Africa, separated into its politically defined pieces and colored to look fun! I'm not sure why this was the only way I could think of drawing a map of Africa, and why I've ended up drawing two maps in as many months, when I've never before been required to employ my previously dormant preternaturally savvy cartographic skills (that's pushing it a bit, huh?). The bike is there beside/below the map because people in Africa - Senegal specifically - can now get a bike from Kona through an organization Kona has set up that takes donations and manufactures bikes, not-for-profit, made special for African village conditions , and Niall McClelland and I get to do a shirt to celebrate the effort. This is not the completed shirt, but it is the graphic element I put together to which Niall will add his whimsied Irish flair.

I just realized after first publishing this post that I definately chose the colors in this map because they were successful in my food pyramid illustration. I did not realize the similarity in their palette until seeing them near one another. This sort of undersight can lead to some disastrously redundant choices if not discovered quickly. Thank goodness for our ability to recognise patterns.


Food Pyramid Cont'd

Yes, here is the still-life photograph of my food pyramid, accompanied by a completed illustration of said pyramid, and process scans of the food groups piling atop one another as they are inked. The food in the photograph is real; once the shoot was complete, four of us (Jeremy, who brought the lights and equipment, was accompanied by his girlfriend Sarah, and my roomate Keith Jones, squared the group) dismantled the posed comestibles and ate them in a fashion attributed to homeric or Baroque times - as gluttons starving of manner but making ourselves full nonetheless; hands covered in sauce, eyes bigger than saucers. If you are ever interested in an interactive feast that's not normal and a castle of fun, prepare a meal that's got good representation from all food groups and lay it out a la nu, without plates or decorative elements, and eat with blatant disregard to inhibition. I found it to be more exotic than pickled squid and beetles in a lot of ways.