For the first time in quite a while, I supplied the cover art of the Metro Times this week. The illustration was for a story about the possible consequences for Michigan governor Rick Snyder in the wake of the scandal around Flint's lead-poisoned water supply. Snyder likely won't be "breaking rocks in the hot sun," as the song goes, any time soon, but — what the hell, dream big, right?
Saturday, May 21, 2016
For the last several months, I've been studying in the Detroit Institute of Art's interpretive volunteer program to learn how to conduct tours of the museum's collection (we're typically called docents). Today was graduation day, which of course necessitated some partying! For the post-luncheon cocktail party I made this fruit tray to stand in for the DIA's famous Van Gogh portrait, the first of his paintings to enter a U.S. museum collection.
The real thing is traveling (recently in Japan, as seen in this photo of a billboard in Toyota, Aichi), but I thought he should be with us in spirit at least!
Thursday, April 28, 2016
Hey, remember me? Been a while since I posted, what with school and all (I'm back at Wayne State getting an art history degree). I have been working on one art project in my meager spare time, though: decorating the Little Free Library that lives in front of the Hatch Art building in Hamtramck. The kaiju theme was inspired by Hatch's fire-breathing monster mascot. Here's a preview, before I return it to it's post on the front lawn.
UPDATE: Here it is in situ outside the Hatch gallery.
Saturday, February 13, 2016
A very smart person at the DIA decided to hand out foam cut-out hearts to visitors for the Valentine's Day weekend, with the idea that you could lay the heart in front of your most beloved artwork. Well, I'm too much in love with too many items in the DIA's collection to choose just one, so I snapped some semi-selfies of me giving my heart to just a few of my favorites.
(Karl Schmidt-Rotluff, "Evening By The Sea")
"What the Heckel I do if you won't be my Valentine?"
(self portrait woodcut by Erich Heckel)
"I've lost my head over you, Valentine!"
("Judith and Maidservant with the Head of Holofernes," by Artemisia Gentileschi)
No jokes - I'm pretty sure I've touched the little sculpture "Donkey" by Renee Sintenis
every time I've visited the museum since I was in grade school. Love...
Heart Attack I
(Central American warrior figure [need to find the info on this guy...])
Heart Attack II
("Avenger" by Ernst Barlach)
Heart Attack III
("Judith" by Pollaiuolo)
"Good news - I love you!"
(Annunciation by Fra Angelico)
"The mediator between the head and the hands must be the heart."
—from Fritz Lang's Metropolis
("Terra Cotta Head" by Elizabeth Catlett)
"I can haz yr heart Valentine? Kthxbai!"
(Ancient Egyptian cat sculpture)
"Dance, dance, otherwise we are lost." —Pina Bausch
("The Wedding Dance" by Pieter Bruegel the Elder)
"Stop dragon my heart around, Valentine!"
"Here's the skinny: I heart you, Valentine!"
(sculpture by Giacometti)
"I've grown accustomed to your face..."
(19th century French caricature busts)
A practical choice: Where better to keep your heart safe forever?
(Egyptian canopic jars)
"For me? II"
(sculpture by Jacques Lipchitz)
"I love you a Lot, Valentine!"
("Lot's Wife" by Kiki Smith)
"Amedeo, Amedeo / Gli Occhi tuoi / Mi anno fatto innamorare"
—Book of Love, Modigliani (Lost In Your Eyes)
"Dream a little dream of me..."
"I'd like to be, under the sea..."
(marionettes from the puppet collection)
How would I manage without you, Valentine?
("One Minute Managers" by Haim Steinbach)
"I'm falling for you, Valentine!"
("Nocturne in Black and Gold — The Falling Rocket" by James McNeil Whistler)
("Detroit Industry" by Diego Rivera)
Thursday, December 31, 2015
In October, I had a show at Cafe 1923 in Hamtramck of some work that's kind of out of my usual illustration-y wheelhouse. Over the 2014 holidays, I cranked out a bunch of the text-based panels, all done somewhat spontaneously, sloppy-punk-zine style, something I could work on while I watched movies on Netflix. The text comes from miscellaneous thoughts, comments, brainfarts, and disembodied punchlines I'd jotted down in my notebooks over the months. I had no idea at first whether they were "art" or anything I wanted to display, but the reception to them has been really great! Here are some samples from the exhibit, several of which now have new homes with a few of my fans. (Note: Each square in the tiles is 1"x1", to give you a sense of scale.)
Just some sketches and stuff to mark the year's end, although I'm finding that I did a lousy job of documenting some of the activities in which I took part this year. I need to work on that...
First, just a couple of sketches done at the DIA (where I began docent training this year). Savage beasts...
Next, some shots from the Monster Drawing Rally at MOCAD, where I finished four drawings in an hour. Only one was unsold when I left for the evening. (Thanks to Eric Iverson and Aubrie Glennon for the pics).
And here's the one good shot of anything I did at the draw-on-the-wall sketch event held at Hatch Art and sponsored by AIGA Detroit. (Many of the sketches were type-related, so...)
And finally, a quick scribble impression done at one of the many Nick Cave performances mounted around town all this year. It's actually pretty accurate.
I'd add images of the two pieces I have in the "Actual Size" show at the CAID, if I'd thought to photograph them before I submitted them. Oh well!
It was an art-filled year all around. Between a trip to Toronto, two to New York City, and so much happening around the area (Flint, Ann Arbor, Hamtramck, Detroit), I went to a dozens of exhibits, performances and lectures this year. Plus, besides studying to be a tour volunteer at the DIA, I'm back to organizing the art shows at Cafe 1923 for Hatch, and most importantly, I'm back in school at Wayne State working on a second bachelor's degree, this time in art history (and acing my classes so far, I might add...). I had a car in the Popps Packing Pinewood Derby, and I even managed to have a solo show of my own at the cafe (images to come). Whew!
The low point of the year, personally of course, but also artistically, was the loss of my father-in-law George Raptis. He was a well-known Greek Orthodox choral music composer and conductor, a mentor and inspiration to many musicians in his community, and a great guy. He's sorely missed.