Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Good old SLOG

A dear friend of mine helped me to get me a delightful mention in The Stranger's web blog, SLOG, under the Visual Arts section-Currently Hanging-posted by Jen Graves. This is a great thing! I'm very grateful for this. If you want to check it out (although, dear readers, I suspect you have already seen it if you are seeing this post) it's on Find the SLOG, and the visual arts section, and scroll down past the picture of the naked pregnant punk-rock lady. Which has created a bit of an online stir according to Jen.

This happening just reminds me how happy I am to have a lot of wonderful supportive friends in this town (and around the world). Trying to make it as an artist is an exasperating process, one that leans heavily on networking and connections and constant promotion and to have such a wonderful group of people out there helping me along here and there when they can just tickles me pink. Thank you all so much, always! And I hope I can always return the favor, or at least buy y'all a beer.

Moving on...the Form/Space show is almost down, one more week to go. Next week I will be hanging and prepping for the bit Portrait Challenge show at Fat Tiger, and hang a few new works of my own as well. I'm moving out of my post-big-show letdown period and getting productive as well. I'm not sure why I just mentioned that. Maybe to remind myself to never slack off.

Any who, I did slack off a bit and now have a few reviews for you:

Grand Archives -The Grand Archives Mat Brooke and friends have released what may prove to be the best album of the year on Sub Pop. It's so pretty and polished and lovely. It's almost too pure. A bit CSNY, a bit Beach Boys, and of course a bit Carissa's Wierd. They only thing I'm not entirely sold on with this album is that some of the extra instrumentation, the horns, the steel guitar, seems a little superfluous. But maybe I just wanted to hear nothing but guitar and violin (as in I just want to hear new Carissas Wierd) and likely it's simply a personal taste issue. Pretty damn great though! 4.5 Molos

S, Sera Cahoone, and Grand Archives at the Triple Door - I was quite ill when I saw this show, but I had a few whiskeys and sucked it up because how could I pass on this! Jen Ghetto, aka S, Sera, and Mat were all in Carissa's Wierd, so maybe, just maybe they might play some CW songs?? Well, they did play one, it was just Jenn and Matt playing, and it was worth the ticket price all on it's own. (Actually, S played a CW song right before Mat came on stage which was great too!) In fact, S was worth it all on it's own. I love Jenn's shy, lovely stage presence and simple, rough, precious songs. Sera Cahoone was excellent as well...and by the time GA came onstage I was getting really tired...but they played through their entire album and were masterful. Great show! 4.5 Molos

The Fountain - On DVD. The last picture by Daren Aronofsky (Pi, Requim For a Dream). Came out in 2006 to a sea of baffled reviewers. This movie is far better than everyone said it was. It's essentially 3 stories in one, all related to each other and can be taken a few different ways. It's not a happy picture, being about life and the stuggle against death-Fountain of youth kind of stuff-hence the name. And I shall not try to explain the plot to you. But if you rent it don't try to super analyze it too much. Enjoy the lush imagery and really strong middle (chronologically within the plot) story. Hugh Jackman is surprisingly strong in this film. 3.5 Molos

Days of Heaven - I rented this classic Terrence Malick feature as well. 1976 I think. A young Richard Gere. Great movie. Very very Malick in story and setting. Which means the characters all are dealing with heavy, harsh realities of life-struggling against man's own violent nature and doing so in a very wonderful environments full of beauty and promise even. Man vs Nature is not quite what Malick is about-it's more about Man fighting his own nature and the natural world is very much telling us things about the characters....any who, i'm getting off track. Gere is great, the film is lovely, painful, really painful, quirky, pretty and sensual. With a young and strong Sam Shepard too. Malick is a master. 4 Molos

Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Goldenrods

I just finished watching the Oscars. Which I did not intend to do, but having been sick all last week, then recovering just enough for a trip to Portland and a fair amount of um...consumption-not terrible, but enough to keep me pretty exhausted after driving back up here-I found myself not having the energy, or motivation, to do much but vegitate....

So there I sat, mildly interested.

And I recalled, that I had promised you, dear readers (all 5 of you?) that I would recount my favorite films when the Oscars had come around, under the assumption that I might have gotten around to seeing a few more of the better heralded pictures.

SO here is an update of the best films I saw in 2007:

1. There Will Be Blood
2. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
3. No Country For Old Men
4. Before the Devil Knows You Are Dead
5. Eastern Promises
6. Grindhouse
7. Superbad

With There Will Be Blood way ahead of the pack. It's Citizen Kane on Steriods. See a review in a previous blog.

The awards themselves provided no surprizes-with the execption of the French(?) actress wining-which was a surprize, for me anyhow, as I have not even heard much if anything about the picture-which probably is a bigger sign that I don't nearly have my finger on the pulse of Hollywood as much as I claim to.

But then again, how come I knew that No Country would win picture and director(s), and Diablo Cody would for original script? Very easy to predict.

Nice to see Tilda Swinton win a goldenrod-she should have won for The Deep End a few years ago.

Glad Daniel Day Lewis won. Have I mentioned that movis is excellent?

OH, speaking of TWBB, the amazing score of that film, didn't qualify for best original score, because not enough of Greenwood's music was written specifically for the film. Otherwise i'm sure he would have won it. He's the guy from Radiohead, by the way. Great music in that movie.

I wish they had the balls to give Julian Schnabel the prize for The Diving Bell and the Butterfly...such a powerfil film which so clearly was due to the direction.

Oh well.

Oh, kind of funny when they listed a lot of the best pictures-a lot os blah, boring movies that no one cares about anymore on that list, eh?

Chicago? Really? Chicago won? yikes. A Beautiful Mind? wow...Crash? dont get me started on that one...Shakespeare in Love?

that's got to be the worst of recent memory. Shakespeare in love beat Saving Private Ryan, and The Thin Red Line (one of the most gorgeous films of recent memory). Likely the two WWII films split votes, allowing Shakespeare win, but still...just silly.

Then Forest Gump did beat Pulp Fiction back in the day.

Well, enough.

Sunday, February 10, 2008


Thursday brought another successful opening at Fat Tiger. This time we kept it a little more laid-back as both Cait and I both had big openings on Friday in Belltown to worry about. Both of our shows were very successful and went off without a hitch.

If you haven't been to the McLeod Residence, you should go check it out-it's a great multi-use arts focused venue right across from the Crocodile Cafe (RIP). Cait's work is perhaps too big for the space, but still fills it in a very fun and energetic way.

My show at Form/Space has left me very exhausted. I'm not sure if it's the stress from the show, or the late night from having a bunch of friends in town that really did me in, but I'm still feeling beat. Also there's the dreaded post-show depression.

It sounds silly, but it's real. Doesn't matter if you sell all your work or get a bunch of attention (press, what-not) but there is always a major let down after any large show. Maybe it's just about the process of doing all this work and throwing it out to the world for this reception party and going there and having all these disjointed conversations with really great and smart people, but how can you really talk about work, let alone your work, in any serious way, at an art reception with the crowds and the wine and the whole scene. (sorry for the run-on)
Perhaps that leads to it. Or it's just that it takes time for these shows to really sink how sometimes I dont really know if I like a piece I made till 6 months later. You need to let it stew.

Any who, I didn't sit down to write a rambling self-indulgent blog and I have. I apologize. Let me just give ya'll a couple film reviews and leave the journal alone.

Oh, but don't worry, i'm used to Post-Show depression and I have a lot of big, new ideas for many actually, that I have to get cranking on. Stay tuned...

So I saw There Will Be Blood a few days ago. Spoiler alert! This is one of those films that I feel like any review of it will only cloud your judgement going into the I suggest this to you, dear reader, stop reading, skip down to the next paragraph, and go see this movie. But if you need more convincing, I shall share a few things with you. The movie is wonderful. PT Anderson is one of, if not the, best young directors working. Between this and the wildly underrated Punch Drunk Love (probably wasn't as heralded due to naive Adam Sandler backlash-Sandler is amazing in that film-truelly a talented actor, even for all the shit he has done) PT has made 2 of the best films of the last 5 years. The acting, the music, the filming, the story of this movie is brash and powerful and hyper-cinematic. It's over-the-top in ways so delightful it's hard to describe. The dialog of Daniel Day Lewis' character is so wonderful and demented. This is a movie that is not afraid to be a movie, that is it is both extremely realistic and historically accurate, while creating these characters that are both complex, real, and at the same time, very...extreme. 4.5 Molos. Best film I saw from 2007.

Net Flix brought me 3:10 to Yuma which is kind of the anti-There Will be Blood. It was stupid. While the acting was solid, and the direction was okay, and scene-by-scene it was fun to watch, I didnt' buy the character's motivations for one minute. Way too over the top- look at how the bad man has changed and how this other broken man is staying good despite the chance to make a lot of money...etc...just didn't make any sense. Perhaps the original worked better due to the naive attitude of the 50s or something. 2 Molos.

Everyone's favorite Canadian throwback to 70's heavy psychedelic rock band, Black Mountain, has released a new CD, In The Future. Ironically titled since it sounds so tied into the past, but it's pretty good. I enjoy it, a couple of really good songs but it's not all that amazing sounding anymore-Black Mountain. Maybe because too many other bands are doing a similar thing, maybe because they just dont have that much great music to make. I'm not sure. But if you haven't heard them before, this album is probably a great one to pick up. Think kind of Jefferson Airplane but darker, heavier, and slightly more folkly at the same time. No doubt you can hear some on myspace. 3 Molos

I haven't picked up a lot of new music lately other than that. I'm looking forward to the full-length Grand Archives coming out on the 19th. I have been listening to an older 764-HERO record, Weekends of Sound (3.5 Molos) a great deal. It's really pretty great...i'll have to pick up some of their other stuff. They are very much in the vein of Built to Spill, but a little more of an rock-atmospheric band, a lo Kinski I guess. Very PNW, very late 90s PNW and very tight. They did an EP with Modest Mouse, Wherever you see fit, that is wonderful.

That's all for now folks.

Monday, February 4, 2008

A Place to call your own

The last couple weeks when not dealing with the masses flocking to the R Crumb show I have been hard at work finishing up my paintings for my show A Place to call your own at Form/Space Atelier this Friday. The work is up on the wall, and needs only some lighting and labels and come Friday the wine will flow and hopefully folks will enjoy.

I really don't have any other things to share-I've been on a cultural hiatus while holed up in the studio so I'm afraid that I have zero reviews for this week. Until next time...