slightly wonky

Devlish lattes in Seattle
July 17, 2012, 2:44 pm
Filed under: Fleeting thoughts..., travel | Tags:

YES!  We are back from Seattle…and we had a GREAT time.  So much fun.  As I have done no artwork this week, I’m going to dazzle you instead with images from the trip.  Scroll down to get to some actual art…keep reading from here if you want the unabridged version.  It’s kind of like a “choose your own adventure” book, and yet not even close to that interesting.

Still here?  Wonderful!  This was a sublime latte that I had:

I know.  Isn’t that ridiculous???  Can foam be an art medium?  Yummy.  It came from El Diablo in Queen Anne.

The locals in Seattle thought that the weather was warm.  Pshaw.  It was maaaaybe 85 degrees with no humidity.  Mere child’s play compared to our 98 degrees with 75% humidity.  BALMY.  That’s just jealousy on my part.  I think that it’s the coffee drinking capital because it never gets hot there…

Can you believe that they painted the top of the Space Needle orange?  I’m told that it’s called “Galaxy Gold”.  I think that they had some extra spraypaint from a construction site and just thought that they’d “jazz” up ye olde needle.  Not a fan.  (But that’s just the grouchy, Bostonian side of me talking…)

This is that crazy fountain that shoots water a bajillion feet in the air.  Boston desperately needs one of these (did I mention that it’s hot here?)…I was too chicken to run up and try to touch the fountain without getting drenched.  I should try to live more dangerously.  But who wants greywater falling into his/her devil latte, thus ruining both the beverage and the foam art?  Not me, thankyouverymuch.

This stuff just grows on the street!  (yes, I know those are cherries) I kid you not.  I think that we only have crabgrass growing out of our sidewalks.  Did I mention that there are also no mosquitoes there???  NO MOSQUITOES.  I am a mosquito magnet, so that is particularly charming to me.

This is for sale, in case you are interested in a Pacific Northwest hacienda.  I hope that it has a courtyard inside.  I missed the open house.  It’s close to the devil latte place…score!  (how do you say “score” in Spanish?…the almighty internet says: “puntuacion”…is that right????)

So, not to be completely devoid of content, I am going to post some images of art that I saw at the Seattle Art Museum.  NOW, you can feel that you haven’t wasted five minutes on inane minutiae (actually, someone else’s inane minutiae).   How lucky you are!  I think that this qualifies me to create a Bravo TV show, but, I digress…

Kalipinya Rockhole by Elizabeth Marks Nakamarra

There was a show of Aboriginal art at the museum.  I really loved the bold patterning, and it looks so three dimensional!  So simple, yet so mesmerizing.  It almost looks like a textile, right?

Loser & Clark by Brad Kahlhamer 

and a detail:

This is an enormous painting.  I remember seeing it last year.  I love the mix of washes and loose drawing.  It is an oil painting, so I guess it’s not a drawing at all…but it almost looks like it could be a work on paper with the transparent color and calligraphic markings.  I love the depth in this…the layers…the beautiful lines. 


Agate World by Mark Tobey

This is actually a TINY painting.  It’s gouache on board.  Again, I love those lovely lines.  Detail:

I really love that.  I feel like it’s vibrating with energy, but in a static way.  Kind of like when you see a video of something tiny seen through a powerful microscope…and you realize the hum of energy in a living thing…

The Garden of Earthly Delights V by Raquib Shaw

Now, this is not something that I would normally like.  It’s almost like cloisonne…so it has a “decorative” quality to it.  But, look how fascinating it is up close:

I’m not sure if you can see, but the substrate is the olive green board.  The painted creatures and flora are actually sitting on the surface…almost like raised blobs of enamel and metallic paint.  This, I loved.  It becomes a drawn jewel, in a way.  From afar, I found it busy…but from close it was really lovely.  Is this some kind of traditional technique that I’m just not familiar with?  If so…please let me know!  (I’m still sticking to pencil drawing…fyi)

Manuscript by Robert Rauschenberg

I know.  What museum visit would be complete without a little Rauschenberg?  LOVE THIS.  I would be honored and thrilled to have this in my living room.  Perhaps I just need to ask.  Actually,  I don’t have a wall this big in my living room. 


So great.  I love the mix of drips with the precision of either silkscreen or photographic transfer (?).  I just love it.  I could eat it, I love it so much.  Sigh.  Here is the “piece de resistance”:

Cardbird by Robert Rauschenberg

This is actually one in the series of eight.  I foolishly forgot to note which one this is.  I really like this series.  Brilliant!

How could I end a post without adding in some of my four-year old’s artistic work?

This is a skeleton.  I don’t know which I am more thrilled with…the spiky hands or the toothy underbite.  At least he isn’t drawing mommy in a cage anymore!  Not sure what that meant, but I’m sure that his shrink will help him work through it when he’s 30.



I’ll gladly take runner up, thankyouverymuch!
May 4, 2012, 9:32 am
Filed under: Drawing, Fleeting thoughts..., printmaking | Tags: , , , ,

Another dreary, cold day here.  My husband tells me that this is what Seattle is like.  Really?  You mean I can have bad hair ALL YEAR, and not just occasionally?  Maybe only people with shiny, straight hair that I envy live in Seattle.  I’d have a whole new identity out there…someone would say, “You know…Elizabeth…the one with the crazy, wacked out hair…”  Awesome.  I’d have to wear a green cap, like the lady below…

So, I went to the MFA to see the Alex Katz exhibit.  I hate to admit it, as it shows my ignorance, but I didn’t really like it.  Actually, if I was worried about showing my ignorance, I wouldn’t have started this blog.  So, I’ll throw caution and good sense out the window…and just continue with my ramblings.  Here’s one of the prints:

Alex Katz

So, this is a woodcut print.  I’m just not into it.  It’s so flat.  I feel that I have to keep looking at it, though, to understand why I don’t like it.  It actually BOTHERS me to look at it.  Sometimes, he would take the same image, and repeat it as a woodblock print, a screenprint, a lithograpth, which was an interesting exercise in understanding the particularities of the print medium.  I didn’t like the image in any medium, unfortunately.  For example, whoever printed that image above must have been a MASTER printer.  Seriously.  Those huge expanses of flat color in a woodblock print are NOT EASY.  I keep wondering if I don’t like these because this type of imagery has been used and reused by the advertising/fashion/illustration world a million times over?  But, perhaps when it first came out…it looked more original/interesting?  Can anyone help me out here to like these more than I do?  I see their artistic merit…I just don’t want to look at one for more than a minute.  The part of my brain that should like this must be feeble and undernourshed…I think maybe that it’s too CLEAN and STERILE for my taste.  I like art to be more dirty and messy. (For those of you who have visited my house, try to act surprised)

This is the kind of stuff I like:

Cy Twombly


Love. it.

SPEAKING OF LOOKING AT ART…guess who got one of her drawings into a show at THE DANFORTH???    Yup.  MARGERY HAMLEN!!!  Ha ha…just kidding…I actually have no idea who that person is. I’m sure that she’s famous, though…unlike me.  What I really mean to say is… ME!!!!  I kid you not.  Now, don’t be too impressed.  There are actually TWO shows held concurrently at the Danforth.  The prestigious show is called “Off the Wall”, and it is curated by Cody Hartley of the MFA.  He chose 80 works of art.  Sadly, mine was not one of them. (sniff..sniff..)

THEN,  the director of the Danforth, Katherine French…chose from the remaining (i.e. leftover) pieces, to create the second show…called “Community of Artists.”  I made it into THAT show.  Ok…so Cody didn’t like my stuff….there’s always next year.  Did I mention that there were over 1,400 entries, and that my show has only 136?  Here’s the drawing that made it in:

Okay.  I know what you’re thinking…”THAT made it in???? *YAWWWWN*”  Why, yes it did…graphite on mylar, and it took me a long time, thankyouverymuch.  Here’s my one concern: there is this tiny, elevator vestibule waaaay back in the first floor galleries.  They put art back there.  I am seriously concerned that my work will be in that vestibule.  Why, you ask?  Because it’s small….it’s black and white…it’s just PENCIL, for Lord’s sake.   If I ask people to visit the show to see my drawing, they may miss it and think that I’m just totally delusional…or, just more so than usual.

Hmm.  Did you notice that I am already whining, and this hasn’t even happened yet?  I know.  I’ll stop before I irritate myself further.  Aren’t you glad that you’re not married to me?  (Thanks honeeeey!!! xoxo)

So, I got some of my recent work photographed.  Here is the large drawing:

But, I originally had it oriented vertically…with the pear at the bottom:

Or, does that look odd?  Two of my artist friends gave me a critique.  Needless to say…I’m taking their comments and trying to do a better job on the next drawing.  Sheesh.  I feel that I need a team of monkeys to help me with setting up these still lifes.  Actually, that would be bad, as they’d probably just eat the fruit, thus ruining my composition. 

Okay, I’ll stop droning on.  Please go watch this video (btw…it has sound).  MESMERIZING!!!

See?  Black and white art CAN be arresting!  Mine is just tiny, static, and silent, in comparison.  I know.  Not even remotely in the same ballpark…don’t remind me…


Trip to Seattle!
July 11, 2011, 8:07 pm
Filed under: printmaking, travel | Tags: , , , , , ,

I just got back from a great trip to Seattle!  It’s such a fun city.  My brother, his wife and their two kids live out there.  We had a great time visiting with them.  We spent the 4th of July at the beach on Bainbridge Island.  I’m used to the weather being so hot that you HAVE to go swimming to survive.  Not so in Seattle…the weather was clear and warm, and the water was icy.  As a result, vegging out on the beach while the kids created general chaos was just fine for me.  Here’s the view we had at the beach:

Yes, that’s Mount Rainier.  I’m not used to being at the beach and seeing mountains in the distance.  Heck, I’m not used to seeing mountains at all.  Did I also mention that they don’t have mosquitoes?  I kid you not.

I have the usual array of tourist photos to show:



That’s a chocolate brioche from Fuji Bakery.  You must go if you’re in Seattle.  So divine.  I was directed to go there from the owner of Cullom Gallery.  I have wanted to see this gallery for ages, as it focuses on woodblock printmaking, especially Moku Hanga.  Moku Hanga is traditional Japanese woodblock printing.  Please go visit this gallery if you can.  The owner was so kind.  She took out all sorts of beautiful prints for me to look at.  I was thrilled!  In May, I took a Moku Hanga course with Annie Bissett.  Annie’s work is at Cullom Gallery, so it was great to see her work again.  If you can’t make it out to visit the gallery, definitely check out the website.

I have my own woodblock printing class tomorrow evening, which I have not prepared for.  I had dreams of working on carving one of my blocks in the evenings in Seattle, but no way.  I was completely beat by the end of the day.

Before I left on my trip, I did this collagraph print:

I’m really happy with how it turned out.  I plan on doing more like this.  Comments?

While it was a great trip, I’m happy to be home!

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