Monday, December 28, 2020

Saturday, December 26, 2020

Sandblast videos

 I have always wanted to make instructional videos.  Covid is making that dream a reality!

The first two are on sandblaster setups and equipment and Sandblaster Maintenance.

Sandblaster Setups and  Equipment

Sandblaster Maintenance

Sunday, December 20, 2020

Last Belch of the Fish


Last Belch of the Fish 25" x 24.5"


I attend a meeting in a space that has a children’s carpet with a lily pond motif.  I have been there often enough, staring at it for long periods of time that I began to think about how I would redesign it.  So this is that piece.  The title is from a song by David E. Williams—he granted me permission to use it, which I was keen to do since it fits so perfectly.

I see dead fish-people


What inspired it beyond the carpet?  Visits to the Salton Sea, concern about habitat destruction, ocean pollution and overfishing.  Reading about animals’ emotions. A sense that animal protagonists are more affecting in some ways than human ones, after all, they are so obviously innocent in their predicament, as well as innocent of it---that ratchets up the poignancy by a more than few degrees if you ask me.

Fish are not easy subject to depict as characters without going overboard with anthropomorphic caricature.  But I tried.

This is really the only sketch I made.

Compositional concerns: trying to make the dying fish appear in a fetal sac, whilst simultaneously suggesting a planet whirling about in space.


Body Bag, 200? (I forget and I am too lazy to launch the doc to find out .


Another thing that was key in making this piece was a desire to revisit the compositional motif from “Body Bag” (2002)—I wanted to make an amorphous, almost abstract cloud that  went in and out of recognizability in terms of image.  I wanted to create the feeling of a swirling muck puddle.  

Suffocating fish
Muck puddle


 And of course, as always, I wanted to put forth a beautalist version of such.  Beautalist is my new word that I invented just this week intended to convey a brutal beauty.  I would never want to make a work that I could not look at, or consume myself.  If one is going to traffic in preachy dogma, it had better look really, really nice, which is a lesson I copped from Christian art.

Layers comprising fish pond separated.  This part was partly improvised while in progress.

Partway through.
Bubble motif: l--red/clear flash glass, Middle: blue/clear flash, r: both pieces together.