Friday, August 31, 2007

Ring Them Bells

I'm done with Latin for now. Sic semper tyrannis. I am, however, immersed in the blues, having just finished my first slide guitar class. To facilitate this journey along the Mississippi, I gave myself a treat--a new (actually used) guitar.

Every guitar I've ever owned has amply repaid my purchase price in terms of cost/hour enjoyment. I have no doubt this one will do so as well.

You should see it. Its skin glows like Maria Sharipova's.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Pornus Graficus

Wasn't he, like, the Roman Emperor who followed Caligula?

Anyway, a friend asked me if the Cheerleader With Banana series was pornographic. Fair question...although what she thought might happen to the banana and what I plan to do with the banana (or bourbon bottle) are two completely different things. And she should be ashamed of herself. When's Yom Kippur? Because she obviously has much for which to atone. If I've got my holidays right.

The actual answer to the question is a resounding no. The photos we take will certainly border on what some might call inappropriate...titillating...tasteless. The words vile, filthy and despicable jump to mind as well. But none of it will rate beyond PG 13. I mean, the uniforms are totally staying on.

The briefest disclaimer: Of course, should the models, of their own volition, begin tearing the cloze from their bodies, I will continue shooting--if for no other reason than the responsibility I, the painter, feel for you, the consumer of the paintings. But this, I must tell you, in all the years I've been shooting stuff like this, has never happened even once.

But that's not what matters. What matters is that the translation of one of those photos into "Cheerleader With Banana I (I don't care! I'd rather sink than ask Brad for help!)" embodies everything we talk about so tirelessly here at The Year Of... The miracle of art is in the changing of one thing into another. Ditto, the Catholic Church--but let's stick to the matter at hand.

Here's an experiment for you. Go to a porn site on the internet and open up a picture. Save it to your desktop, then open it in your photo browser. See if you can find one of Jessica Biel. I mean, honestly, how hot is she? Or use the one I've attached for your convenience.

Then start clicking the zoom key. Larger...larger...larger (wow--this sounds a little pornographic!). When it's hitting about twice the size of your full screen, you will notice that the image is coming apart. Pixilating, if that's the right word. Losing the sharpness, all the anatomical detail, the edge that makes it pornography.

Shit, before you know it, it's an impressionistic painting. And I, dear reader, am nothing if not an impressionist.

And if you keep clicking, so that each pixel resolves into a blurry square, you can have your very own Chuck Close tutorial.

What? You don't know any pornography sites? Try I've never seen it personally, but I'm told it's a pip.

Postus Interruptus

For those of you who've been paying attention, two things are obvious:

a--Our current inclination to translate post titles into Latin.
b--The fact that we are going out of town for several days.

Remain calm. There will be much to cover when we get back.

Shoutus Obligatus

Plus the obligatory birthday shoutout to my Tent.

Have I mentioned that I'm learning to play the blues? "Dust my broom," by whoever that famous blues guy is, is my first song. Always remember that the pain is found between the frets.

Vinnie, Vidi, Vici

This is roughly the plan for the weekend, to paraphrase Jets savior Vinnie Testeverde, as a select cohort of the Mammoth World Celebrity Bike Tour journeys to Wyoming to watch the Virginia road opener. That would be Dave and me.

We will be joined by non-team-member Earl, as one who follows these things closely might expect.

Lost in this is the agony of the realization that Mets savior Pedro Martinez will be throwing his last rehab start for the Brooklyn Cyclones at Keyspan park in Coney Island. Now THAT would be something to see!

Nonetheless, loyalty lies with the Amazing Cavaliers. So we go.

This, by the way, marks the first time I've been on an airplane since perhaps two years ago. Perhaps three. It literally couldn't be long enough.

I remember when flying was fun.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Portrait of the Artist Blogging

This would, of course, be that:

Sunday, August 26, 2007


For those of you who pay close attention, then complain, I am herewith announcing that Muffy on Monday has been rescheduled. The reasons are too complicated to explain here.

Saturday, August 25, 2007


The word might be "redacted."

I can't think about it anymore. I'm on my way to Moma to see Richard Serra, then later, through the syrupy August air, to find the best lobster roll in Manhattan.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Truth in Blogging

Sheesh, those guys are fast. I just got an email from the "Truth in Blogging" section of the Federal Trade Commission contesting the phrase "a colossal amount of money!" in reference to my recent commission.

Okay, first of all, if I'd known I had to tell the truth, I'd never have started this damned thing in the first place. Where's the first amendment in all this?

Second, because who wants the FTC after them, I am hereby quantifying the phrase "a colossal amount of money." Discretion prevents me from just throwing out a dollar figure, but suffice it so say the amount offered was more than I paid for my first car, but significantly less than my highest annualized car insurance premium from State Farm when I was living in New Jersey, owned two cars, and had a teen-aged daughter listed as the primary driver of one of them.

It may also not, in fact, be enough money to "take" Manhattan. Or Berlin.

There. Is that clear enough?

Would You Like To See An Example of the Best Type of Email in the World?

Well? Would you?

Okay, but first just the briefest bit of stage setting:

You know how you come home from the gym and your arm is hurting, and you walk in the door and see that because of your ill-conceived idea of unpacking all the boxes in the basement ("just to see what the hell's in there"), there is literally shit everywhere? And you're tired and you don't really want to deal with it, except that you are shooting Muffy on Monday (which sounds like one of those morning shows on Fox).
Quick timeout for the briefest of asides! That really isn't such a bad idea--a morning talk-show that slots a different host for each day. "Muffy on Monday" is followed by "Tristin on Tuesday," etc. This is a free idea that I am giving to you. It is not inconceivable that you could make millions from it.

(Word to the wise: consider making them strippers. Tristin is a stripper's name, if ever there was one.)

Me? I'd do it but I'm just a painter. But if I did do it, I'd make Muffy a sports expert; Tristin a health/medical/science person; Whitney a cook...

Do you see where I'm going with this? This is why they used to pay me what they called the big bucks, but which I always realized was only big bucks for normal people, not big bucks for Wall Street or Hollywood people.

I'm not even sure I'd use the word "big." "Goodish--for normal people" might serve better. As in: "This is why they used to pay me what they called goodish--for normal people--bucks."
Anyway, it's depressing to realize that you've got to get all this shit back together so that you can shoot Muffy on Monday without her being too freaked out.

Not depressing like the way, say, clinical depression is. Although sitting on the sofa, surveying the load of shit while sipping Jack Daniels does--alarmingly, a mental health care professional might add--make you feel a little better. And that's never a good sign.

But what REALLY makes you feel better is when, as just one more thing to do to waste time before facing the inevitable, you open your email and find the following:
Hi Geoffrey, hope you're well. Now that XX XXXX XX XXXX XXXXX, I was curious to know how much you would charge for a commissioned work similar in style and of the same size as XXX XXXXX. Would you be prepared to accept XXXXX*? I would love to be able to XXX XXXX XXXX XX XXXXXXX. Is it in the realm of possibility both in time and compensation?
Let me know your thoughts,
Kindest regards,

In the interest of discretion I've didacted the missive--if that's the right word. "Didacted," by the way. Not "missive." I don't think it is, but you get the gist, yes?

Fuck Muffy. I'm going to pour myself a couple of fingers of expensive whiskey (I have to drink the whole thing so I can replace it with iced tea for the shoot), put my feet up, put some Leah Siegel (who Eric and I saw live the other night at Joe's Pub) on the stereo, and reflect that, in small increments, the Evil Empire is, in fact, growing.

This must be how Darth Vader's dad felt in the early days.

The Mammoth World Celebrity Bike Tour riders have a slogan we borrowed from Leonard Cohen. It goes:
First we take Manhattan...Then we take Berlin.
That's how I'm feeling. First I'm gonna take Manhattan. Then I'm gonna take something else--although possibly not Berlin. At least not right after Manhattan.

* indicates a colossal amount of money!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

My Favorite Beatle

My favorite Beatle has always been George Harrison. I never liked how John and Paul muscled him out of the publishing side of things.

So I spent a moment or two trying to think of the appropriate George Harrison song to illustrate my latest medical adventure. I've always been a sucker for While My Guitar Gently Weeps. Although maybe something from The Concert for Bangla-Desh might be more appropriate. Maybe a duet with Ravi Shankar. Instead, I came up with something by The Searchers:
I saw her today, I saw her face
It was the face I love, and I knew
I had to run away
And get down on my knees and pray, that they go away
And still it begins, needles and pins
Because of all my pride, the tears I gotta hide
Oh I thought I was smart, I stole her heart
I didn't think I'd do, but now I see
She's worse to him than me, let her go ahead
Take his love instead, and one day she will see
Just how to say please, and get down on her knees
Oh that's how it begins, she'll feel those needle and pins
Hurtin' her, hurtin' her
Why can't I stop, and tell myself I'm wrong, I'm wrong, so wrong
Why can't I stand up, and tell myself I'm strong
Because, saw her today, I saw her face
It was the face I love, and I knew
I had to run away
And get down on my knees and pray, that they go away
And still it begins, needles and pins
Because of all my pride, the tears I gotta hide
Needles and pins, needles and pins, needles and pins
All of this comes by way of announcing that yesterday, between the hours of eleven and twelve ayem, I lay, face down on one of those weird massage tables where you put your face into kind of a padded donut, and allowed a woman I've never met to stick me with, by my count, thirty tiny needles.

When she was done with that, and the subsequent fire cupping (She puts a flaming cotton ball inside a small glass globe, which is then pressed against the skin of my shoulder. The loss of oxygen causes the skin to be sucked into the globe, thus providing therapeutic effect of an Eastern nature), I swear to God I was ready to do fifty push-ups.

And I would have, too, except that I can no more do fifty push-ups than fly to the moon.

But that doesn't minimize the amazing effects of all those needles. I'm a new man.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

So here's the list

So here's the list:

--Fix Lilah
--While I was transferring files from one computer to another I spent a good bit of time looking at the selects from her photo shoot and I just might paint another one of her as well
--Fix Big Maria I (Plane Too Many)
--Shoot Muffy
--Write stinging letter to HBO regarding the cancellation of "John From Cincinnati."

Man, what am I doing talking to you?

And Just To Beat The Damned Thing To Death...

What always bothered me about this painting... well, let me make a list:

1. I hate how flat the whole thing seems
2. I wish I'd put the ashy cross on her
3. There's something very screwed up about her nose
--This includes the shape of the shadow above her nostril
--This also includes the lack of definition on the right side of the painting--specifically the lack of a crease between her left cheek and the side of her nose (which speaks to complaint #1 as well)
4. The strands of hair on the side of her face are a disaster.
5. The rest of her hair is also a disaster. I painted this picture when I didn't understand how to paint straight hair with a drip technique.
6. And why does a Puerto Rican girl look Asian?

Remember a few posts ago, when I suggested that the big swells were approaching shore--symbolizing that the creative juices were starting to flow again? Well, by gum, I'm gonna drag Lilah's ass (or at least her painting) back into the studio and set things right, once and for all.

Then, like the New York Rangers fan's sign said after they had won the Stanley Cup, I can die in peace.

Back, for a moment, to things that bother me about this painting:

7. Her lips look a bit surreal.

On a positive note, you should disregard the glow in the lower left of the painting. Some of the blacks used to create the shadow were gloss, rather than matte, and the don't react well to the photographer's strobe. Actually the lower left quadrant of the painting is the only thing I like about it.

More on Lilah

This, for the record, is the original picture of Lilah from which I painted what you can see below:

I shoot wide, then crop... if you're curious.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

The Photographer Within

People have been asking me lately what kind of a photographer I am.

The answer...

Of course....

is fabulous.

I mean, who wouldn't want to look like her?

Be still my heart. Honestly. No, honestly! But isn't it odd that the painting I created from what was a very productive photo shoot is one of my least favorites? The painting is this:

It's called Lilah S. (Ash Wednesday) because I finished it on Ash Wednesday. When I asked Lilah if she minded if I put a ashy cross on her forehead she made a really big face. So I didn't.

To hell with Lilah. I think I may just do it anyway, although it certainly speaks to the question of "whose face is this, anyway?" I mean, how much control does she have (none) or should she have (the question at hand) of what I do with her painted face?

I'm of two minds, but I've been wanting to put that damned ash on her forehead for three years or so and, by gum, I think I'll do it.

Or maybe I should wait until next Ash Wednesday (which is a long way away).

Monday, August 20, 2007

Codename: Muffy

We are now moving past the use of religious icons to illuminate the flaws of the contemporary electronic media (see: Big Maria I), and are focusing on a subject of far greater importance--Cheerleaders. Capital C.

This brave young woman, (codenamed for her own protection: Muffy) will soon be immortalized on canvas, sprawled across the floor, arms and legs akimbo (whatever that means), bourbon bottle clutched close, lying in a pool of her own self-loathing.

Is that too much? The whole "pool of self-loathing" business?

I mean, it's more of a mood than an actual thing. There won't actually be a pool of anything. Probably just a rug, or a piece of seamless. But "sprawled across the floor, arms and legs akimbo, bourbon bottle clutched close, lying in a pool of her own self-loathing" sounds better than "sprawled across the floor, arms and legs akimbo, bourbon bottle clutched close, lying on a sheet of seamless."

By the way, disregard the over-saturation of the color of the image. I am still just messing around with the various iPhoto editing features so that when it counts, it counts. It's like shooting jump-shots in the driveway so that when game day comes, you can put the ball in the hole.

Longtime fans may remember that my favorite move was to dribble hard to the right (I'm right-handed, for what its worth), then change hands with one strong dribble between the legs, put the brakes on so that while the defender was still moving backwards I'm sort of floating to the left--one dribble, maybe two, max--then up with the shot. I, for the record, was never one who separated my jump from my shot (some guys get to the top of their jump, then shoot). I always felt like the shot came from the balls of my feet, up through my body, out the top of my fingers--all one glorious, organic moment.

I'm reminded of Milla Jovovich in the climax of "The Fifth Element" when she rocks her head back, opens her mouth as wide as she can, and some rush of cosmic energy comes out of her mouth like water coming out of fire hose. Voila, the world is saved.

This is, of course, Ms. Jovovich, although as seen in "Ultraviolet"--a vastly underrated bit of visual tour de force--not "5th Element." I'm still wondering what exactly they did to make her look the way she did in that movie. A combination of super-short depth of field and some kind of solarized effect--just a guess.

Back to Muffy. She is practicing putting her hair in pigtails, which is important if you're a cheerleader. I can't wait until we put bright red (to match her bloomers) scrunchies--possibly more than one each--on her pigtails.
It sounds like she's gonna be the poster girl for underage binge drinking
Muffy? Naaah. Besides, it's way bigger than that. It's about understanding that even the coolest kid in class is, in reality, all fucked up. We all are, of course, each in our own way. Besides, who wants to be the coolest kid in the class? Too much pressure. They're almost always more fucked up than the norm.
How do you know?
How do I know, you ask? Fair question. Truth is, I can't speak for being the coolest kid in class. I always shot for being the third or fourth coolest in any given group. But I've spent most of my life always being the smartest guy in the room ... and let me tell you, it's a burden.

Why do you think my hair's white?

And just a final note on super-short depth of field: my boy Chuck Close was the master of it. Check this out:

It is often the case, here at the Year of Magical Painting, that the example offered up to illustrate the point doesn't actually illustrate the point.

Maybe that's part of the charm.

Anyway, if you look closely at the photos that my boy Chuck paints from, he has opened the iris of his lens so wide that the tip of the nose (in this picture, for example) is slightly out of focus. So are his ears. It's only the surface of front of his cheekbones that's really sharp.

And if we could, for just the briefest of moment, go back to the red scrunchies? Who was it that used little patches of red to guide the eye around the canvas. I want to say J.M.W. Turner, but it might have been one of his buddies.

Turns out it was Constable.

I want you to think of those dark red blankets on the horses and the oxen as red scrunchies on pigtails. This is a good idea for several reasons. One of the main benefits being the resultant understanding of how "The Hay Wain" by John Constable and "Cheerleader with Banana I (I don't care! I'd rather sink than call Brad for help!)" are no more than distant cousins in the canon of Western representational art.

Muffy, I'm sure, is humbled by the notion.


If I see that bitch Erin Burnett on The Today Show one more time, I'm gonna puke!"
Now I think we are getting somewhere.

If I see Erin Burnett on the Today Show one more time...

Witness the miracle of "Big Maria I (Plane Too Many)"

I'm still trying to figure out how this computer works, so it may not blow up the the size that you, dear reader, may be accustomed to. But the point is this: After months of fucking around with this painting, I have whited (blacked) out much of the area under the arch, plus her veil, in preparation for a significantly revised image. These modifications are not shown above, but be patient and I'll throw them up soon enough.

But the point is this: I originally painted Maria Bartiromo as the Virgin Mary as a protest of CNBC's handling of the Bartoromo/Thompson uproar. In the end, for any journalist, much less someone of Bartiromo's profile, the appearance of conflict of interest should be avoided as diligently as the actual conflict. Thus Big Maria.

But in the end, in addition to hating her veil, I decided that the "Todd, your boss is on the phone..." was a bit too meanspirited--even for me.

Also, from a marketing perspective, that uproar is so totally over that most people have forgotten about it. Thus, new thinking:

And that would, of course, be replacing the "Todd..." verbiage with the following line:
If I see Erin Burnett on The Today Show one more time, I'm going to freak out!"
Or something to that effect. Another option goes something like:
Hmmm. If I'm the Virgin Mary, does that make that ho' Erin Burnett Mary Magdalene?
This one I'm less thrilled with than the first. Nonetheless, the mind reels.

Bit of a breakthrough...

If you scroll down about three posts you can see the picture of Marlon Brando as The Godfather. In that post I go on to suggest that, although I always thought the line read "Look what they done to my boy", it was really "Look how they massacred my boy."

Fuck Sonny, by the way. I always thought he was an asshole.

But back to the matter at hand: After much reflection, I think the line that Brando actually said in the movie is "Look how they messed with my boy"--perhaps an ad lib from the script that used "massacred" instead.

Thoughts are welcome.


For breakfast I had the following:

1 bowl Raisin Bran w/ skim milk
Several cups of coffee
1 peach

Worry not. I don't plan on listing the particulars of my daily food intake as a regular feature. Instead, I thought it would be a nice way to offer the following:

I washed the peach before I ate it. The reason for which leaves me uncharacteristically befuddled. I mean, what is rubbing a little water on my peach going to do, really? Or drying it with a kitchen rag that's probably teeming with flora and fauna? Does it get rid of pesticides? I doubt it. Or the spit from the bagpeople who go to my local grocery and lick the produce? Nah.

It's just one of those ridiculous things we do to make ourselves feel better.

Here is the same peach, with a couple of bites taken out:

Note the somewhat surreal coloring and overexposed bit of the exposed flesh. Both pix are really an excuse to see how the iPhoto program works on my new Mac.

Interesting. I particularly like, on the top one, how the lower background--which is the back cover of a book about Jackson Pollock--darkens and loses focus the farther from the center of the image one goes.

Peaches, like cheerleaders, are potent sexual icons. Hmmm.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Cheerleader With Banana

There has been considerable bitching and moaning amongst those who read these pages regularly about the recent lack of posting.

Fair enough. I've been having computer problems like nobody's business. These, I hope, will soon be solved. But it's bigger than that. For me, at least, painting is a lot like surfing. If there are no waves, it's hard to ride. Therefore the good news: the tide is rising and the swells are starting to plump up. Rideable waves will soon rise from the ocean floor and hurtle themselves toward the shore.

I, atop my board (Vintage Hobie longboard--I'm too old for all the acrobatic stuff), will attempt to shoot their curls; grab a rail; lay the flat of my palm against the gleaming green flank of the thing as it tries to engulf me.

All of which is to say that the "Cheerleader With Banana" project is taking on real life.
Proof you ask? What--my word isn't enough?

Okay--how about these two snappy items:

Vintage cheerleader sweaters, obtained for a surprisingly reasonable sum on eBay. By next week, there may be images. A couple of weeks from now, there may be paintings (note the use of the plural there) But first I have to buy a bottle of Jack Daniels.

Being functionally unemployed, it's safe to say that I have to watch my expenditures responsibly. Which is different, by the way, from actually behaving in a financially responsible way. I'm just talking about the watching.

Anyway, it should be noted that the bottle of Black Jack will probably be the most expensive prop for the whole set of shoots.
Why the bourbon?
Why the bourbon, you ask? Because although the series continues to be called Cheerleader With Banana, there is a fair possibility that most, if not all, of the shots will NOT include a banana. Or any other fruit.

But bourbon? Yes, the bourbon will be inescapable. Ubiquitous.

My vision runs roughly thusly: Cheerleader is depicted as she lies on the floor, presumably intoxicated, arms and legs akimbo, cradling her bottle of Jack Daniels. The title of the painting will be printed around the edge of the image in my usual irridescent gold, reading:
Cheerleader With Banana I (I don't care! I'd rather sink than call Brad for help!)
This we call "Giving Lichtenstein The Cheese!"

The assumption is this: Just the way Roy Lichtenstein (who painted the above--one of his most famous images) co-opted iconic images from the comic books and transformed them into something else (Pop Art, most specifically), I will be co-opting the image of the innocent ... or not so innocent ... cheerleader, adding a bottle of hootch, and transforming them into something else. (Something to pay the rent with, most specifically).

Loss of innocence is the theme, I suppose. Certainly one of them. I wonder if they still make Rebel Yell (the bourbon of choice for me and my associates when we were in high school)

Talking about this project to somebody else last week, I called their attention to my series of Catholic female saints. The purpose of those paintings was to explore the fine line between sexual and spiritual ecstasy. And likewise, I had thought that the purpose of Cheerleaders With Bananas would be to explore the line between innocence and sexuality.

But the liquor changes everthing. Makes it bigger.

You do the math. The mind reels!

Sunday, August 12, 2007


Some days are better than others. It's been a week, maybe, and I'm still in recovery from receiving the first edition of the new, pared-down New York Times. Although I remain angry that they didn't cover the Big Rupert story to my satisfaction, they remain, after all, The Times. The paper for whom my Grandfather covered Amelia Earhart's landing in Ireland. The paper that called my Grasso portrait "arresting." Most days my heart soars like an eagle. And my blood runs black with newspaper ink. But these days...

Do you remember the line from The Godfather when Don Corleone says to the undertaker:
Look how the massacred my boy...
Between you and me, I thought it was "Look what they done to my boy...", but wiser heads suggest I am mistaken.

Anyway, lately I've taken to standing outside my door, in the middle of 7th Street, staring up at the clouds, arms aloft, holding my copy of The Times like Kunte Kinte holding his baby to the skies, crying to God (I suppose) in Heaven (I suppose):
Look what they done to my boy...
I'm sticking to my fucking guns. They massacred him. If I wanted to read the New York Observer, I'd read the Observer. If you get my drift.

The larger question--because there always is one--is how can a God who's both omnipotent and benevolent allow them to do what they did to my favorite newspaper? To suggest that I'm utterly devastated is to understate the issue by a fair margin.

I'm too upset to be allowed near canvas so tomorrow I paint my apartment.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Whither Geoffrey? Volume 2

Or, as Option 3: Self Portrait, 1975:

I'll cough up a better rendering at some point in the future. What you see here is a picture of a framed photo, taken in light too low to allow me to hand-hold the camera. Which I nonetheless did.

It's a bit blurry, but I think the idea comes through.

The photo itself is, if I do say so myself, outstanding; what with its metaphorical depiction of genitalia and my positively David-like hipbones.

To paraphrase Bob Dylan:
I was somewhat leaner then,
I'm fatter than that now.

I don't know why I even try...

Here's the automobile in question. But really, you can't begin to appreciate the majesty of the thing from a photograph. And this crappy little jpeg likely won't accurately render the color either. So I don't know why I even try.

Still, look at the highlights around the headlight on the right side of the picture. Somewhere in there is great truth. And this from a guy who skews green!
Quick note: whatever truth is there does not include the headlight itself, which is a decal.
Interestingly enough, the car I'm most reminded of is this 1962 Ferrari GTO:

Click on this photo and behold it at maximum size. Not to get all gear-head on you, gentle reader, but this is really something. Certainly one of the most beautiful cars ever.

Quick financial note: the Ferrari goes for 1.6 million.
And you thought it was a Jaguar. Shame.

Whither Geoffrey?

I was going to write about the extraordinary blue color of Kurt Busch's Miller Lite NASCAR car (or does one just write NASCAR? I think not.) It could possibly be one of the most beautiful machines ever made, and it saddens me beyond measure that next year the so-called Car of Tomorrow will supplant the current NASCAR body. It, in contrast to Mr. Busch's car, is a wretched looking thing.

But instead, and probably more to the point, I thought I'd explore what my next painting is going to be.

Choice one: A portrait of Jackson Pollock--thus giving credit where it is due--as swiped from the series of photos Hans Namuth made of him, shooting upwards, past Pollock, into the blue sky, while he paints on a sheet of glass. This would be one of them, although not the one I'd choose:

Choice Two: Big Steve I (Le Reve)--a reintepretation of Picasso's Le Reve. You may be familiar with this painting for a number of reasons. First, it is the one that gazillionaire Steve Wynne put his elbow through about a year ago. Second, it is famous because the image of Marie Therese-Walter (If memory serves) features a head which is partly shaped as a penis. I would replace Ms. T-W's head with that of Steve Jobs.

Reading in today's Times about the blog called Fake Steve that parodies Steve Jobs makes me laugh and may have sealed the deal. Plus, and I'm speaking purely from a structural perspective, Steve Jobs has always seemed like a penis-head to me.

You do the math.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

More Scary Stuff

I know you people are sick of hearing about what scares me. Regardless of this, I will present another scary concept:

What if people have ideas like "The Annotated Murdoch" the way women have eggs? Seems like a lot, but after a while they run out. Hmmmm.

This occurs to me as the words what the fuck do I do now? run through my head.

I may take the pressure off and paint my friend Patrick's dog. Don't tell him.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

And Portfolio offers its take, which does make me happy

I downloaded a Lesley Gore song the other night. I was watching a documentary on 50s girl bands and singers and before I knew it, there I was, ninety-nine cents later, the owner of the digital file of "You Don't Own Me."

All of which is unimportant other than that it was also, if I remember correctly, Ms. Gore who recorded "Where The Boys Are." (Although I must admit, the words Connie Francis do churn through my head)

I, by the way, always thought Ms. Gore was extremely hot in an unconventional way. Wonderful eyes--and I'm a sucker for the eyes.

Back to "Where The Boys Are." If you replace "Boys" with "Rich People Yearning to Buy Art", you get a pretty good picture of the Portfolio readership.

Thus, this is about as nice as it gets. Written by Callen Bair, I thought it was lovely. You should read her likewise-nicely-done longer piece on strategies auction houses use to estimate their estimates, notably the estimate of a first-class Rothko going into a recent Sotheby's auction.

(For the record, I have a drip painting titled "White Rothko" that is something to behold.)

Anyway, as a slightly-famous person, I get a lot of stuff written about me and my work. Ms. Bair's, I have to tell you, is one of my favorites. I wonder if she gets a lot of cheese jokes.

More importantly, I wonder if I could get her to take me to lunch at the Conde Nast cafeteria. I've always wanted to go.

What One Hundred Fifity Bucks Gets You, The Reader

Here's what ended up on Radar.

I'm a big Radar fan, by the way. And that's not just the small, petty man with an overblown sense of self-importance talking.

Although that is a nice picture of me, if I do say so.

London Observer

Now this, I want to tell you, is a hit! Of course, late at night, a tough day and a hard night behind me, I can't quite make the damned thing show up. It is an article in the London Observer and it opens and closes with an analysis of Big Rupert's place in the larger scheme of things, plus not one but two pictures.

(note: the passage of half an hour has occurred)

Try this, although you don't get the pix, which were more than half the fun.

Also, I can't figure out if this is the Observer or the Guardian. Any thoughts?

Big Rupert

This, I want to tell you, is Big Rupert:

Now I'm Really Depressed

Do you know how what appears to be a good thing is really actually quite depressing? The bidding on Big Rupert has opened--one guy, minimum bid, lives in UK. All my key people live in the UK.

Me? I have a hard time parting with this painting at the minimum bid. Of course there's still an hour and a half left, and wouldn't it be fun if it took off.

To paraphrase me, as I was quoted in the New York Observer: "It only takes two rich guys to make an auction."