Saturday, January 14, 2012

Sanjusangendo Pieces Finished for Outside....

VERY EXCITING. After not a very long time, but long enough for me, these four pieces are finished. And let me tell you the ground out there is really solid and cold. None the less, these are my favorite pieces I have made since last May.

Again, I really considered about pretty landscapes and if that is what I wanted to make. I never thought I'd see that day but here they are. I guess I have come to terms with the idea that not everything has to be groundbreaking. Going back to more traditional forms of visually communicating have paid off. The act of pulling something out of the past and updating it. In terms of execution, yes. Silkscreen is the choice of method. Processing it through digital imaging, again yes. Posting it on the web again... contemporary. Using the idea of asian vanishing perspective and the long scroll like format in combination with contemporary tools is something I am becoming far more excited about.

I guess mining the grounds of the way past is a good way to revive your own eyes and thoughts. Sort of going super retro. In terms, art need not always be groundbreaking or trend setting. each piece takes on its' own life though the decisions made about its' execution. Years ago I would not eve have considered creating something of this sort. But after the Fu Baoshi experience things just kind of took off. Much of his work was created during the early tenure of the Chinese communist government. Many of his pieces were based on the poems of Mao. Again, another example of using traditional formats with contemporary ideas.

I will be producing another few sets in this fashion. I do think there should be more in the sets though. And on another note, I will be working with my collaborator over the next few weeks to produce sets of translations of zen koans. this will take a bit so please bear some patience. They will have a pretty large run and will be available for the consumption of the masses.

Also now that I am building up a pretty good stock of work I will start getting them out to the public shortly. The difference now is that I would like to keep the sets intact. I'm not sure of how this is going to work but I will fill all in on this in the near future.


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

And a few new pics from the Sanjusanjendo Pieces! Just finished!!!

  and another!

And now to find somewhere for them to go!

Happy New Year and a new set almost finished....

The past few weeks have been slow with the holidays but none the less a new set of flags is almost complete. This set started off with the idea of printing one thousand Buddhas. This was inspired by my visit to Sanjūsangen-dō Temple in Kyoto. There are 1000 Buddha sculptures in this temple and vary slightly from one another. Origi9nal intents are designed to start taking on a life of their own and so this set has.

While in Cleveland I went to see a show at the marvelous Cleveland Museum of Art. And let me tell you. I have not been moved by art this way since grad school. I saw an exhibit on the Chinese artist Fu Baoshi. He was a traditional ink brush painter that also worked in conjunction with the newly formed government in 1949. His work provided alot of answers for the current work I am doing. Below is just one of his pieces.

These four pieces were started before my trip to Cleveland and stalled in the midway process. On my return I jumped in the next day shook them up a bit and boom. Artists, myself at the top of the list, get into their process a bit too much at times. And this was certainly my case. The image below is the first complete one and I am very excited with it.

I know... I need to get my photo skills down a bit better. I have started to let them take on more of a life of their own. These are going to be more banner like then the previous ones I have completed. They have moved away from Sanjūsangen-dō directly. The Buddhas in these pieces are two of the thousand from the temple. A few funny questions popped about my brain while working on these. The biggest one was... Is it o.k. with me that these are functioning pretty much as pretty landscapes. I have this knack for totally outwitting myself when it comes to these kind of questions and my art. I've seen a million pretty landscapes and even have been adverse to making any in the past. SO... yes, I am good with it. These are still contributing to the Velvet Pelican mission statement. And very honestly, I like it.
I have decided to keep working on the flags project. What I would love to do with this set is send them out away from the Boston area as a hole set. There are three in all. I would like for someone to take them to a location and document them for me. In the end result... keep them and send me a good set of photos. Curious? Contact me!
Over the next month I am going to start looking at further ways to expand and substantiate Velvet Pelican Projects. Perhaps some networking or road trips! Have a suggestion? Let me know.
Until next time.