Before I begin (at the beginning) I must mention the wonderful BBC2 drama called a poet in NY, http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/p01w6llk/a-poet-in-new-york it’s about Dylan (Zimmerman’s inspiration for his stage name)Thomas. It’s very very well done AND you got to watch the dance Essie Davis (Caitlan Thomas) does at 20 minutes in, wow, beautiful and uncannily similar to a dance my girl did when she was a child.
She began to dance naturally and so unexpectedly to some music I was playing for a funeral for a friend (Christina Challis). I took several photos which I then turned into her portrait in my ‘master’ piece, Venus Stares.
Took a long time for me to realise that my doing ‘paintings’ was me just merely following in the footsteps of giants but I must admit that since my early days of making art in the mid – late Sixties I never just wanted to idly ‘follow’. I did strike out early on and did portraits with difference. Like this one I did of my li’l sister back about 1968 whilst still in the 6th form.
my sister aged 14, now destroyed by mice.
Many of my portraits only used the sitter as an excuse to ‘paint’, to manipulate colour, shape and texture on a surface. Recently I have found an idiom which can hold my idiosyncrasies, digital prints onto canvas. Which I can then leave alone or render, paint, collage, beat up, obliterate, destroy etc. the images which emerge are never meant to replicate the ‘real’ tings…my images are only triggers. For the mind, eyes, senses to take off. My future utube videos will give insight & inroads as well as being part of my art as my blArts are.
Do you know that I been held back/down by the weight (wait) of no expectations*? Or maybe, Not Expecting Much. Most everything I achieved was a surprise ( to so many, you? No, not you). * there is a Bruce McLean exhibition coming up at fistite gallery, Colchester in June.
Looking at his work you see a man who spat in the face of expectation, almost, “IF you’re not expecting me to do I can, I shall, I did- up yours.” Now, there is a lot of that in my work too but whereas Bruce got himself (determinedly) into a place where he was ‘expected’ to achieve certain levels (out of art colleges# etc) I did not.
# Art schools have been vetting stations for artists-to-be for years, I declined to go/avoided them determined to prove my worth by sheer hard work and my innate talents. By my old friend Percy V. Rance. Rancid may be a better name? It doesn’t work. Sadly after 45 yearns making art I remain Anon., arsk me if am bovvad? Well actually I Yam cos, like me ole mate Van Coff, I’m skint. But my brother won’t send me no cash (he’s Scottish true & thru by the way, as am I and am mean as mean can be). Galleries dealers market all missed a trick by ignoring me BUT they keep an age old trick up their sleezy sleeves, they get you when you die. Sadly for them I ain’t fixing to die anytime soon, so everybody loses. Except you that is you can select anything to purchase from my first 45 years output if yer quick enough.
And with expectation comes a certain belief or disbelief. ‘I can’t believe he’s done that,’ or ‘I thought, if anyone would do that , he would.’ Followed by sales, accolades, recognition. In my case these tings didn’t follow cos the expectations weren’t there. Therefore no sales etc. most everyone in the establisherment (and that includes art colleges) would not ‘see’ I did it. Consequently, like Van Cough, I never sold a sausage. In fact am tinking of starting a new publicity campaign in Germany, home of some of my art heroes like Dieter Rot, Jo Beuys and Anselm keifer. Maybe there they’ll get my achievements, my originality, my contexts. Like. My ‘Books Called Enbuk, In A Plastic Box’ (after D. Roth). And my ‘Rubbish Art’ like ‘Bedpetes’. Some people see my art as opuscule, but some (you?) love it.
my play on stools pun
Let me explain my use of stools.
Both Dieter Rot & Richard Hamiltoe used stools in their works. So did van Gogh. So did Beuys with fat on. And Gerhard Richter
http://www.gerhard-richter.com/art/search/detail.php?5617 did a skit on his one time tutor Beuy’s fat chair.
Hamilton said of the adverts which triggered his visual pun on toilet matters, ‘Some adverts make me wax quite poetical. None more than the series by Andrex showing two young ladies in the woods. His ‘poetic visual puns manifested in several photo/paintings of women crouching; ‘Girl with Skirts up’, ‘Girl with Trousers Down’ and ‘Girl with Tights Down’. He’s dealing with a number of ideas/issues here like the way Andrex used the notion of heavenly bliss in dreamy landscapes set in forest glades to advertise toilet roll. And the fact that even the queen uses the toilet daily, queen of the slipstream, yes i know. And Rot used the turd in his work in many forms, from number twos themselves to rabbits made from cow claps (?).
http://www.dieter-roth academy.de/Essays/das_weinen_das_wahnen4.pdf see also http://www.frieze.com/issue/article/this_mortal_coil/
.I suppose we could call their contributions The Turd Reught, or A Herd of Turd, or The Art of Turds?