Like I was at Burning Man, and I was talking to one of the righteously bad true believers about the power of postmodernism, and the freedom that comes when you/one/she/he/they/hir/it reject the metanarratives that the man drops on you, and give yourself permission to find your own meanings inside of you, instead of accepting society's definitions of what is true, and right, and correct punctuation and sentence structure, but like I knew that limited and limiting words could not contain my joy, so like I was so inspired that I grabbed a set of paint brushes and headed out into the night to capture my world on canvas, but only in a consensual kind of way, because just because something isn't alive, that doesn't mean that it doesn't have rights - that would be "livingthingism" - sure, nobody's protested against that yet, but you never know when somebody's going to, and it's always better to be at the start of a parade than at the back, cleaning up after the elephants, you know I'm right, man - bling, bling - so I clean my chakras, and you know how time consuming that can be, and I consult my animal guide, but he's too busy marking the bushes in the backyard to answer, and what gives me the right to say that the non-living-thing-american's often/denied right to not be subjected to pictorial bondage overrides the right of my invisible friend to spray phantasmal spunk all over the metaphysically metaphorical landscape?
Woah, man, I just totally blacked out! Word! 'Cuz in that righteous moment, my inspiration came to me! Hey, don't be comin' down on me about how I been puffin' the ganja, because that blackout just hit me and I'm talking about something that happened so long ago, or about how I be some white bread suburban boy who be so busy trippin' tryin' to be street that he don't dig the fact that he done be mixin' up his African cultures, that he don't see the pain flowin' through the track marked floating jungles of Sausalito ... where was I ... yeah, that was where the inspiration came to me, because don't you read the works of the wise old elders and know that time is a circle, and that all that will be already has been, and so seeing the future is just like remembering the past, just like on Lexx? So, like the inspiration comes to me - that art is like a kind of rape, in which we use the power that light gives us over non-living-americans to penetrate their mysteries, without asking them first and getting their consent - so, like I put on my blindfold and headed out to ask some of the rocks in my front yard if it would be OK for me to get photonically intimate with them. I get about three steps outside my building's front door when I trip over one of the rocks I was going to talk to. "Sorry about that, rock", I said, and then my building manager looked at me most strangely. Gotta to take her word on that, 'cuz I still had my blindfold on.
"What the (deleted) are you doing, Joe", she said, and I told her. She seemed confused. It was then that my animal guide got done wiping himself, and came hopping by. "Joe", it said, "don't you see that you were being even more intimate with that blindfold than you were afraid of being with those rocks? Who gave you the right, man? Who gave you the right?" Duuuuuuude - I was so blown away. He was right, I had so much to learn. "But what can I do?", I asked. "Who are you talking to, Joe", my building manager asked, for she was even more in the dark about the ways of the personalized cosmos than was I. Darkness? That was it! I would paint my subjects only on moonless nights, far away from the lights of the city, and so I set out! To some casual observers, these might look like nothing more than black squares, but if, indeed, meaning is in the listener and the viewer and not in the words and images, then isn't it your own choice not to see the mountain I was next to in that black square? And is it my place as an artist to second guess your choices in that matter? I think not. Of course, if you think otherwise, that's cool, too. YMMV. But we all have to find our own paths.
This first piece is of one of the nest of one of the last of the california condors. I find a sense of peace in the fact that if these majestic birds should ever pass into history, my work will help keep them alive for generations yet unborn.
This next one is of the home of some of those starving children in one of those third world countries. How can any caring person look upon their innocent faces and not feel their plight?
But I don't want you to think that I'm so focused on the pain in the world that I can't see its beauty. Like here's a lithograph I did of Bridal Veil Falls in Yosemite. Talk about places that are hard to get into when you're blindfolded! Ouch! BTW, If you'd like a copy, please be sure to order now, because I'm running out of prints and this is a limited edition.
That's all for now, but check back later and maybe I'll have more for you to see. Until then, would you like to leave a few suggestions for me in my guestbook? Because the possibilities of the color black are just beginning to be explored, don't you think? Until then, it's time to go home.