2018

SMASHING METAL

 
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Startled by the sound of metal smashing into metal I awoke from a dream dense with imagery and meaning, none of which I can remember now. It was late afternoon and already dark outside. The room so cold I could see smoke come from my mouth with each heavy exhalation, my breathing fast and nervous due to the ominous sound outside my window. Although I was warm under the covers, my body shivered in fear. Fear of what I’d heard as much as fear of losing body warmth if I dared leave the cocoon of warmth the hours in bed had created. I was frozen by indecision as I heard the sirens start to wail in the distance. This made matters only worse as I knew one way or another I’d have to leave the bed as the police would be banging on each door of every building until someone answered or they broke their way in to search for and interrogate every living creature about the disturbance outside. I stayed put. Of course, I’d been through this many times but not under these circumstances. Would they drag a sick man from his bed to get no information? Or would they allow me to stay where I was if I yelled for them to come in and cooperated, explaining my condition once they entered? I wracked my brain trying to think if anyone had told me what they do in these cases. The sounds of the heavy boots and suddenly the banging on doors down the hall filled my room. It would be only a minute of so before they arrived. Still shivering with fear I decided to remain in bed when they arrived. Certainly they wouldn’t make me leave the warmth of my bed once they saw I had no windows. How could I be expected to give them any information of value if I had no way to witness whatever had happened? Furious voices yelled outside of my door to open up. I tried to yell to them but no sound came out when I opened my mouth. The battering of fists upon my door was a violent cacophony. I tried again but even if I did make a sound I’m convinced they couldn’t hear it through the chaotic symphony they had created. I tucked into my blanket just as I heard the door smash open.

Fred Vee

 

FERNAND LÉGER

FERNAND LÉGER - Trois demoiselles sur fond rouge ou composition aux trois femmes, 1927

I only recently discovered the work of Fernand Léger. I really like how he uses his colors in his cubist style paintings and he has portraits that I love similar to the above style.

I think he played around with more than just cubism and painting. I know he did some printmaking and sculpture as well. I need to study up on him a bit more but what I’ve seen so far is right up my alley.

FV

 

TECHNIQUES BY DAN TIRELS

I found this really cool channel on YouTube by a guy named Dan Tirels. He has a bunch of techniques for printmaking and other stuff like the image I made above using charcoal and acrylic paints on paper.

The tutorials are easy to follow and mostly are low cost, easy to try art techniques to keep your creative mind active. No matter your discipline I highly recommend checking out his channel as I’ll think you’ll get inspired by his clever, simple yet really striking art that he demonstrates.

The videos are also really good as there’s no talking (though some people may wish there was) like a lot of tutorials with too much information. You just see his point of view and the making of the art. Really great stuff. Check it out!

FV

 

NO HANDS

A little reported tragedy that happens to hundreds every Christmas: loss of fingers or even worse, hands, due to opening too many gifts. Many times what seems like a harmless paper cut while unwrapping a gift gets deeper with each subsequent gift until suddenly the appendage detaches from the body. I really wish more attention was this horrible phenomenon.

FV

 

FUNERAL PARADE OF ROSES

One of my favorite GIF's from one of my favorite movies, the Japanese cult classic "Funeral Parade of Roses" (薔薇の葬列). The movie was released in 1970 and explores the gay, transvestite and underground counter culture of the time. Pretty groundbreaking stuff for it's time in any country.

Very avant-garde with a series of twists and turns, the movie naturally goes over the top at some points but only lends interest from point of view. The movie stars a very young and quite beautiful Pita, who has gone on to be an iconic figure in Japan. I’m not exactly sure if s/he fully transitioned to a female but I’ve seen him/her (I don’t know if Japanese trans people use pronouns to identify as it isn’t very common to use them in everyday speech) on TV quite a few times speaking very openly. Again it’s a bit strange as on TV gay culture is accepted (if that’s the right word) but in normal life it’s not so open. Which makes the film all the more fascinating.

Directed and written by Toshio Matsumoto, it's def worth a watch.

FV

IMDB INFO

 

THROWBACK WWII STYLE ART

I totally dig these message oriented throwback posters.

Propaganda works for good or evil, and these are on the good side of things in my opinion.

Unfortunately, I don’t know who the artist(s) is/are. I found these a while ago on Tumblr and don’t think there was attribution. If you know who did these, or if you do similar work yourself, please contact me.

Thx

FV

 

LAM QUA

Lam Qua, photographed by John Thomson in 1871.

Fascinating article by Veronique Greenwood about artist Lam Qua and his medical paintings done for doctor / minister Peter Parker in the mid to late 1800's. Although the subjects are disfigured with various tumors of varying sizes, the artist captures dignity and humanity in each one. As noted in an interview:

“There is something about the paintings that goes beyond gawkery, however. “I can’t speak for all humanity. I know some people find them stomach-churning,” Rachman says. “But to me … if you’re the kind of person who actually thinks maturely about human affliction rather than just turning your head away from it … these people are fascinating.” He reflects on the intensity of preparing for major surgery, the fear, the pain, the distress. At the thought of posing for a portrait first, he trails off. “It’s almost like watching someone get ready for battle.”

Lam Qua’s Portrait Number 6. YALE UNIVERSITY

Very insightful quote and well worth the time to read the article.

FV

 

MONKEY BARTENDER

They don’t make cool, creepy junk like they used to. You’d have to have been pretty drunk before pulling this out for a laugh. I had some family members who had stuff similar to this back in the day. I remember a cigarette dispenser that looked like a horse or some such creature, some kind of odd bird that perpetually swung down to take a drink of a cocktail and other vague images that this bartender monkey sparks. Now it’s all apps or electronic gizmo’s that are just as useless but lack the creepy factor. Other than the possibility that your robot vacuum cleaner is probably collecting data about you and sending it to who knows who.

FV

 

MONDAY MUSIC - DR. DRE

Got this the day it came out in 1992. Start to finish a great listen, of which I couldn’t tell you how many times I have. Not only did it solidify Dr. Dre after leaving N.W.A. as a force of his own, it introduced Snoop Dogg to the world and ushered in the West Coast G-Funk sound. Featuring Nate Dogg, RBX, Daz and others this is a must have in any collection.

FV