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montreal

Post #631 • September 23, 2005, 12:25 PM • 76 Comments

I'm in Montreal to attend Artivisitic and speak on a panel discussion entitled Blogging as Art. I'm here at the invitation of Chris Hand, author of Zeke's Gallery and organizer of the panel. It's taking place on the second floor of a heavily spray-painted used clothing store, and when I went through, they were about to screen a film about Bread and Puppet Theater.

I'm actually hanging out here in Chris's gallery at the moment - he's talking to some very nice institutional person about curating a show. There's free wireless up and down the entire street. The weather is perfect, sunny, 72 degrees or so. Montreal has a sweet, sweet vibe. More later.

Comment

1.

Kathleen

September 23, 2005, 12:32 PM

Je suis vachement jaloux.

2.

Harlan Erskine

September 23, 2005, 2:06 PM

I love the Bread and Puppet Theater. Have fun up there.

3.

Jeremy

September 23, 2005, 9:22 PM

I was actually going to wait until school was back in session to talk to you and Mary about this, but I was hoping we could try and set up a lecture series at the school. Being that part of your work is art critique and in general actually discussing art I figured you'd be interested in helping me get this started. I really think it is the main thing students at MIU are missing out on as compared with other art schools. No rush of course, but email me back if you're interested in the idea.

4.

necee

September 23, 2005, 10:09 PM

just this evening someone was telling me that montreal has the best bagels anywhere, including NYC. let me know if this is true before i make the pilrimage...

5.

Kathleen

September 23, 2005, 11:14 PM

On the bagels, I have to say no. Montrealers love their bagels, that's for sure. But they do not beat a New York bagel.

6.

Franklin

September 24, 2005, 11:08 AM

Will do, Jeremy. Talk at you soon.

The bagel we had yesterday morning was divine. Just like Miami's, which I think are different than the ones in NY. Hard, crusty exterior, chewy moist interior. Any other design, and you're just kidding yourself.

7.

Jack

September 24, 2005, 11:12 AM

Very good show by Hollis Jeffcoat (abstract paintings) opened last night at UM's C.A.S. Gallery, across the sreet from the Lowe. Jeffcoat studied with Guston and Joan Mitchell, among others. I hope Franklin can post some images. For info, call 305-284-2792.Through Oct. 14.

8.

Jack

September 24, 2005, 11:21 AM

Also, check out the show "Apocalypse Then" at the Lowe, which includes a series of superb large woodcuts by Durer based on the Book of Revelations. Not recommended for those insecure about their draftsmanship.

9.

ahab

September 24, 2005, 1:19 PM

Hollis Jeffcoat's work looks great on his website, thanks for the heads-up Jack. Alas, alack; woe that I'll not see his show.

10.

Jack

September 24, 2005, 4:20 PM

Ahab, Hollis is a she.

11.

ahab

September 24, 2005, 4:41 PM

Sorry, Hollis.

12.

mek

September 24, 2005, 10:18 PM

hollis jeffcoat is brilliant. goseeart does not list her. can you give more info so i can gosee the show? thanks

13.

mek

September 24, 2005, 10:19 PM

sorry i now see jack's comment in detail above. i will call the number.

14.

Jack

September 24, 2005, 11:31 PM

Actually, the Jeffcoat show was listed in Go See Art, which is how I found out about it, but it was under "Openings," and it was removed from that section once the opening had taken place. It is now listed in the "By Spaces" section under C.A.S. Gallery. Nevertheless, UM could and should do a better job of publicizing the shows at this gallery in general, especially a show as good as this one.

I'd like to think the weak publicity is why no official critics were there (as far as I could tell), but if I found out about it and went, why couldn't they? Isn't it their job to be totally on top of what goes on art-wise? This show is more than worthy of an official review, but I'm not holding my breath (remember Olitski at Goldman Warehouse?). Of course, if this (or anything at all) had been at MAC or the Rubell place or some other bastion of the establishment, a review would be automatic.

Well, I suppose I should be more reasonable, or at least more realistic. After all, I've been around long enough to know that artistic merit alone, even though it should be plenty, may not get very far--assuming it's even noticed by those who should be looking for it tirelessly everywhere.

15.

ahab

September 25, 2005, 1:21 AM

I am smitten with Jeffcoat's paintings.

http://www.hollisjeffcoat.com/artwork_pages/2005.html

Very little to critique - maybe they are just ideally suited to digital reproduction, or else they're just really good. But I do like some better than others. I think that the best recent ones include Traveler IV 2005, and L'Orage I 2004. I just like looking at them and don't really want to dilute the experience further by trying to verbalize it.

In the pieces earlier than 2003 the blurred crosshatching marks really interfere with the image, like unwanted static. The ones I like least give me an afterimage of sorts which I cannot shake, usually a face that, once it appears, I can no longer see past. This is likely due to the scale change viewing them by computer monitor instead of in real space. Telling though, I sometimes find that in photographs I see aspects of my sculpture that alert me to visual problems I hadn't been able to identify in the studio.

I know this will juggle the posts a bit, with Olitski on trial over in "critical art writing", but since Jeffcoat's paintings work me over in a vein not wholly dissimilar to Olitski's, I'll weigh in on what I see of the latter's work as seen at: http://www.charlesnodrumgallery.com.au/ArtistsOlitski.htm (this link thanks to that eternally-internet-vigilant run-on-thought commenter George).

The photos at this site are distractingly full of glare and dark holes, but I found the 2001 Olitski works to be dense - chock full of chemical reaction, from edge to edge. The dripped or brushed framing device seems in most of the pieces to counter feelings of vertigo (as though I were falling into the piece) by providing a reference for the actual surface. The depicted surface seems far far away and I might lean in too close and bump my nose into the work were it not for those very literal frames of reference. The cropping of the images posted at Nodrum was suspect, and made me wonder how the sides of the work actually end. Cropped tightly with a frame? Spilling over the lip of a canvas stretched over twobytwos?

Anyway, seems like it always needs to be small-printed that my comments here are based on an incomplete and impersonal viewing over a virtual connection. One day, people, I will come to see your work in person, and one day some little time beyond that, I will buy it.

16.

jordan

September 25, 2005, 5:21 AM

montreal eh- soft snow sex...

17.

catfish

September 25, 2005, 9:04 AM

About Hollis Jeffcoat: It looks like some of the group (Jack and ahab, for example) are so anxious to find relief from the terminally BAD that they accept less than the really good. While I qualify my reaction when looking at digital repros, I can usually tell when a body of work (and she does have a substantial number of works) is not a player. Jeffcoat just isn't. I'm surprised that ahab said "Jeffcoat's paintings work me over in a vein not wholly dissimilar to Olitski's" but one cannot deny one's reaction. If that is ahab's, so be it. True, George's physical descriptions of Olitski are accurate. But with all due respect to ahab (and I have a lot for him), I cannot imagine how anything similar could be said about Jeffcoat. Her pictures are light, pleasant, and quite proper, from the structure of her values to the use of color. They got a lift while she stayed landscapey (nature has a way of doing that), but still no heavy hitters.

"Good" is good enough. "Not bad" is not. She knows how to apply paint though, so there is hope.

18.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 9:43 AM

I like Jeffcoat's paintings much more than you do Catfish. Olitski is a different kind of painter and i think he is the best painter alive today so I will not venture comparisons, but all Ahab is really saying is that he is getting something from both ("Jeffcoat's paintings work me over in a vein not wholly dissimilar to Olitski's"). She does have a real "touch", as you allow, and this has become a lot stronger in the 2005 paintings.

19.

Kathleen

September 25, 2005, 10:26 AM

I saw the Jeffcoat show and I think that her smaller works are great, especially the ones on plexiglas (those are the ones with the distracting crosshatched lines in reproduction, ahab). In general, but specific to the smaller works (both small and medium) her color massings are luminous, and she's got a great amount and weight of line, which plays well with the field. The plexi ones are just so much better because of the way it changes the paint, line, surface and light. The paint becomes cloudy, smoky or glowing. The hatchmarks catch the paint the way a zinc plate does, creating a layer of lines in-between the upper paint surface and the light (just from the way the ambient light works with the white behind the plexi--no forced light source involved). The small ones are full of vitality.

20.

catfish

September 25, 2005, 10:30 AM

oldpro:

I can't go along with any "best painter alive" designation. (Clem once told me Motherwell was the best artist alive, this in the late 70s - another statement that did not not register for me.) But Olitski is among the best, certainly. It is logical to say "if so and so is 'among the best', then someone must be 'the best'." But logic does not rule the world of art. A blind force runs the show, and it does not answer to human reason. Schopenhauer's "Will" is as good a metaphor for it as I have encountered among philosophers.

I'm surprised you like Jeffcoat, but the response to art is solitary. Her "touch" was stronger in the older landscapey pictures, judging from her web site. But you are looking at the real deals, so I'll take your word for it. That said, her work remains in the realm of not bad.

If we perform exegesis of ahab's text, it suggests more similarity between Olitski and Jeffcoat than dissimilarity, but what the heck. Leaving oneself wiggle room is a good way to handle certain situations, and he left himself a reasonable amount.

Myself, my favorite sport in highschool was track, where I threw things like the discus. I liked doing that because it is a solitary act, even if one does it as part of a team. That was good training for life in the world of art, where one is essentially alone, even if part of a group. That is exhillarating and part of why I love barging through the swamp of art opinion. Wiggle room be damned.

21.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 10:52 AM

Interesting that you heard Clem say that about Motherwell, Catfish, especially in the late 70s. In my conversations with him he was never that enfhusiastic about his art and thought that personally he was "fishy". He was also not nearly as enthusiastic about the early collages as I was.

22.

George

September 25, 2005, 12:48 PM

Re #8 Jack - Was this little gem of Durers, "St John Devours the Book", in the show at the Lowe?

23.

ahab

September 25, 2005, 12:53 PM

There's a lot of scribble 'n' smudge out there, very decorative and pretty. And there is a lot of scenic picture-window painting, very illusory.

I don't think Jeffcoat's work falls into either of these commercial traps. The colours and lines and colour-lines are fine, but they just seem to pull me into the picture, like the way I typed that I felt like toppling into one of the Olitskis. Theirs are different worlds, even disparate, no argument. But both give good. Cannot discern a heavy-hitter from this distance, and could admittedly get good online representation confused with not bad online representation. Wigglewiggle.

Please, not the briar patch, B'rer Catfish. The swamp of art opinion, anything, but not exegesis of my text.

24.

ahab

September 25, 2005, 1:13 PM

George, ya gon'n don it agin.

Great link, thank you.

25.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 1:21 PM

But B'rer Ahab, according to Uncle Remus, exegesis of text must be exactly what you are trying to get.

26.

ahab

September 25, 2005, 1:49 PM

The ploy doesn't work if I can't keep you guessing. Exegesis is the thorny threat that I am unharmed by. But yeah, the analogy falls all to pieces from there.

27.

Cat

September 25, 2005, 1:52 PM

NeeCee,
Trina & I were talking about you yesterday.
Where are you ? Please contact us.

28.

Jack

September 25, 2005, 2:01 PM

Catfish, it's true that "doing without" can make one prone to grab whatever one can get that comes near hitting the mark, sort of like being on the rebound. I've recently alluded to that phenomenon, in connection with my disappointment with the new "MOCA and Miami" show and my favorable response to some photography and installation work I saw immediately afterwards. Certainly, the competition or standard around here is pretty weak.

I still enjoyed the Jeffcoat show, and I think it's worth seeing, which is why it should be covered by the local media. I agree that some suggestion of landscape or natural formation is helpful; most of my favorite pieces in the show had that; the ones that didn't stood out in terms of the color. As for the Olitski comparison, if it must be made, his recent work particularly is wilder, bolder, and more aggressive in its bravura, but obviously he is he and she is she.

Her line or drawing does recall Guston to me. Based on reproduced images of her earlier work and what's in this show, there seems to be a possible ambivalence or lack of resolution about the use of color: sometimes the work is "color-drunk," and sometimes the color is reticent or self-effacing. Sometimes, of course, it's right on target. I may be a sucker for any reasonably confident and competent painterly handling, but I agree with what Oldpro says about her "touch."

Bottom line for people in Miami: Go see the woman's art for yourselves.

29.

Jack

September 25, 2005, 2:06 PM

Answer to George (#22):

Yes.

30.

Jack

September 25, 2005, 2:27 PM

Remember, folks, the Durer linked to by George in #22 is a woodcut, a relatively crude method compared to engraving or etching, which Durer also practiced superlatively. Of course, when you're good enough, the method is just a detail transcended by the talent.

31.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 2:51 PM

"The method is just a detail transcended by the talent."

I would alter that just a bit to "the method is just a detail driven by the talent"

I missed that Catfish(?) had brought up Guston, but there is a trace of Guston here and there in Jeffcoat's paintings, particularly in an excellent painting called "Bourn III" from 1995 and a mate hanging next to it which have some "slow drawing" and a greyish-red "cruddiness" which reminded me of Guston. For me the best pictures are not the bright, lively ones that Kathleen favors but the ones that seem somewhat grimier and overworked and look like a struggle. (Not for that reason, of course). I see this most of all in the 2005 paintings.

32.

ahab

September 25, 2005, 3:19 PM

Jack brought up Guston in #7.

"Bourn III" is viewable at hollisjeffcoat.com under 1997.

33.

Jerome du Bois

September 25, 2005, 3:44 PM

Franklin:

"More later" when, my man? It's been two days. No live-blogging from the conference? The doodlebugs can noodle about Guston, Clem, and Olitski, that's got nothing to do with us. But we're on Chris Hand's ridiculously inclusive list, we make digital net art, we're curious about what "Blogging As Art" might mean, and when I go to Artivistic's "blog" I get nothin', I tell ya, nothin'! Last post Sept.19th. Nothing about what happened at the conference And nothing here but off-topic diversion.

Whaddaya dooon up there?!

Your friend in Phoenix,

Jerome du Bois

34.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 4:12 PM

"doodlebugs", Jerome?

Such a sweetheart you are!.

35.

ahab

September 25, 2005, 4:37 PM

Try this link for Artivistic happenings, Jerome.

http://frederic.levy-hadida.club.fr/artivistic/pageindex/artivisticindex.htm

36.

Jerome du Bois

September 25, 2005, 4:46 PM

oldpro:

Keep whistling past the future, man. Nothing to see here. Fix on funny words instead. Why are you people so easy?

ahab:

Don't say anything. Just link. But I didn't. Why should I?

JdB

37.

Oldpro

September 25, 2005, 6:16 PM

Jerome, you drop in with unplesant little snottisms (thats a "funny word" I invented just for you) like "doodlebugs" and strain to come up with hip little jive phrases which usually don't mean anything and suck up to Frankjin and run off.

Most of us here are trying to talk about art one way or the other, and to discuss it and argue about it with a modicum of seriousness. If you are afraid to engage, or whatever it is that makes that defensive shield go up, why not just stay home? it would be more pleassant for everyone.

If you want to talk about art, please do..

38.

Jerome du Bois

September 25, 2005, 6:46 PM

Franklin:

I'm addressing you instead of your doppelganger, oldpro.

I don't suck up to anybody. I'm serious, all right. I'm certainly not afraid of you or oldpro or anybody else.

Big deal. Like we'll ever meet. I've got more important priorities. Nevertheless, I draw the line, and I won't be jerked around by irrelevancies.

The subject of this post was digital net art and blogging as art in Montreal. Your commenters are not talking about it. I am. They are talking about things that make them comfortable. Fine. This is Franklin's Bar, and you're jumping the counter while he's gone, or while he's hiding under it. Go ahead. Drink your asses off off-subject big-time, which is what you do best. In the meantime, for the last almost three years, Catherine and I have been exploring the question of how to make art that is restricted to the little screen you're looking at now. No complaining about dpi resolution or technical restrictions or if only this or that or yadayadayada. This is what you've got, this little screen, this limited technology: whaddaya gonna do? We did it, we do it. And much else besides.

This world has such glorious possibilities. What's with the tiddlywink ideas?

JdB

39.

arfnkiln

September 25, 2005, 7:14 PM

I agree with Jarome
Everybody will now get in a strraight line facing forwards
Ve vill now only talks about der internetenscish
Kunst waggin is verboten

40.

George

September 25, 2005, 7:16 PM

Hey jdb, open up the comments on your blog and discuss it there. We are functioning fine here, just like we always do, and you are a just stick in the spokes

41.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 7:16 PM

Blogs wander all the time, Jerome. That's half the fun. Franklin is happy with it. Jumping in here with your presumptuous hot shit attitude, telling us what to do and how we should blog, does nothing for no one.

Either add to the discussion or stay home.

42.

that guy

September 25, 2005, 7:18 PM

easy big fella. Let me get this straight. You have been spending the last 3 years making "serious" art limited to the little computer screen? Are the big collectors knocking down your server like they are here in Miami to our doors? At least you'll have a lot of material for your all out tears, all the time blog.

I get a big ol laugh every time you stop on by Jerome. Thanks for providing some comic relief to all this serious art talk. Not sure thats what you were aiming for. Your writing style lends itself to so many interpretations. I think you have become the preeminent farcical writer of our times. And for that I think all artblog readers send out a big thank you. If you keep it up I might just have enough material for my next comedic play for which I won't be giving you any credit. Keep it up you Rita survivor you.

43.

George

September 25, 2005, 7:27 PM

A final thought on the Olitski - Jeffcoat discussions earlier.

While I did not like Olitski's paintings at all, I will give him credit for at least taking a very big risk with the work. He didn't pull any punches and went down in flames. Notable.

Jeffcoats work is journeyman painting, It is pleasent in appearance but it takes no risks of failure, Catfish got it right, not in the hunt.

44.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 8:04 PM

OK George. I guess it is just a standoff. I totally disagree with you about Olitski, and I think you & Catfish are missing something in Jeffcoat. Her painting is not as radically "far out" as Jules' painting is but there is so much rich stuff going on that I am dismayed that you guys just toss it off. And what else is there? Who is doing work that good, "journeyman" or "not in the hunt" or whatever? if it is out there, let me know about it.

45.

George

September 25, 2005, 8:32 PM

#44 Her painting is not as radically "far out" as Jules' painting...
... It's safe.

I think of Mondrian often. I imagine what it must have been like to make those paintings with no precedent, that's courage.

46.

catfish

September 25, 2005, 8:38 PM

oldpro, I'm not missing anything in Jeffcoat. Her work is not that bad, but that's not good enough. "Good" is good enough. That's not exactly a ringing endorsement but it's not a toss off either.She can push paint - not a bad way to characterize "journeyman" (journeywoman?) - thank you George.

Her pictures show how well she pushes paint around, which is not bad, but notice how paint pushing fades in Olitski. You don't notice it because, well, because Olitski doesn't need it. When Jeffcoat no longer needs to show how well she paints, then her hopes may be realized.

Jerome: Why should I take your bad trip?

47.

catfish

September 25, 2005, 8:43 PM

oldpro: "snottism" is a great word.

that guy: yes yes Jerome DuBois provides relief that is palpable.

48.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 9:52 PM

George, you need to read the history of the de Stijl movement before you say "no precedent"

49.

catfish

September 25, 2005, 10:22 PM

oldpro is right. Mondrian was not that "original". He was just one member of his group. From the point of view of style, they were all more or less the same. (All that right angle stuff. Saving the world with it too. I guess the world was saved ... it's still here.)

50.

George

September 25, 2005, 10:31 PM

re#48
What's that supposed to mean? Like duh, I wasn't born yesterday, I know about de Stijl and the Bauhaus. At that time it was revolutionary art. Look at Mondrians paintings, hard fought battles every one of them because there was no template, no guidelines, no safe zone of validation, just colored squares. Bifurcation points like that are rare.

Or, maybe you just meant that because there were some others in the neighborhood with similar ideas it reduced the risk, took less courage? Bull.

51.

George

September 25, 2005, 10:51 PM

#49. I don't see the point in nitpicking here. Regardless of who was first, it was a concentrated moment in time which produced absolutely revolutionary art. Mondrian may not have been all that original, the Sumerians invented the rectangle centuries before, but the paintings he made are hands down better than anyone else in the Bauhaus or de Stijl groups.

My little point to all you other painters out there is that there is a difference between work which takes a big risk and the stuff that just moves along inside of a know set of parameters. I don't care if op agrees with me or not about Olitski's paintings. I know what I saw and they crashed and burned. BUT, and this is the point, I RESPECT Olitski for making the attempt, so much other work in a similar vein is just playing it safe cuddling up to all the little nuances and adding some pretty color. It is as boring as shit.

When op says he never thinks about content, it's a joke. I guess he just sits around all day emoting the paint around hoping he'll get it right this time. Bull, there is an audience and the audience completes the work. If what you are trying to do doesn't connect with the audience, maybe you don't know what you are doing

52.

Franklin

September 25, 2005, 11:17 PM

I've returned chez moi, and will have a report on this weekend either early tomorrow morning or early tomorrow afternoon, depending on when I wake up. Liveblogging didn't work out - sorry, Jerome. Thanks to everybody for keeping it warm around here.

53.

Matty

September 25, 2005, 11:22 PM

George,
When op says he never thinks about content, it's a joke.

That's a mischaracterization George...

What oldpro actually wrote was:
The word "content" never enters my mind while I am painting nor when i am evaluating my paintings.

Of course he thinks about content... he's the one who decides what goes into the pictures (ie. their content), right? But, what goes into the pictures is their form, right?

No matter how much you try to shimmy their reasoning, you can't meaningfully distinguish between form and content for the purposes of discussion... so you might as well stop trying.
It's painful.

Good to have you back Franklin... I hope Mother Canada was good to you.

54.

George

September 25, 2005, 11:34 PM

re#53

What oldpro actually wrote was:
The word "content" never enters my mind while I am painting nor when i am evaluating my paintings.


then

Of course he thinks about content...

I don't think so, what does he think with?

then

No matter how much you try to shimmy their reasoning, you can't meaningfully distinguish between form and content for the purposes of discussion... so you might as well stop trying.

Oh, well maybe you can't.

Suppose I have a gloppy blob of brown, with a tinge of lite blue highlights. Wha'ts the content?

Suppose this gloppy blob of brown looks like a horse, is that different?

If not, then separate the blob from the horse for me.

55.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 11:44 PM

Don't get so excited. George. Mondrian was great but if you are going to make those points you have to elucidate the environment which supported him. That is a historical matter which may qualify the "courage" claim, as I indicated. In the end the only thing that counts is the results.

As for "emoting the paint around", well, I just do the best I can according to my eye. If I get an audience that's good. If I don't, I don't.

56.

oldpro

September 25, 2005, 11:52 PM

George, i think you are losing it.

We can easily discuss your tinge of blue horsey blob and and decide what is there, can't we?

And even if we can"t agree 100%. we can agree 99%, can't we?

Content is what is there. Period.

57.

Matty

September 25, 2005, 11:52 PM

George, your analogy doesn't work... distinguishing 'form' from 'content' is not the same as distinguishing a blob from a horse, so nothing I say about your blob or your horse will get you any closer to understanding what I've said about 'form' and 'content'.

If I paint a picture of a brown horse, then any description of the form will inevitably describe the content as well, and vice versa.

Vainly trying to distinguish the two in a discussion about art is a dead end.

58.

ahab

September 25, 2005, 11:55 PM

Do you do gymnastics to relax, George? Or just when you're blogging? It's almost admirable how you manage to play "I'm rubber you're glue" when your comments are critiqued (#54 mainly, but often enough otherwise that it seems like a fair statement).

By the way, I was wondering if my #15 comments in defense of Olitski's painted borders made any dent in your negative assessment of them?

And, I looked at a bunch of the other Durer Revelations woodcuts that I could find from your proffered link, and wondered if you had a reason for picking that specific one (09 in the url, I think). I thought that there were other better ones - I'll find them again later if you care. Maybe Jack had a favourite?

59.

oldpro

September 26, 2005, 12:11 AM

Catfish et al: I wish the discussion about Jeffcoat's painting had not come down to a comparison between her work and Olitski's. I think Olitski is the best painter alive, Catfish notwithstanding. Jeffcoat is a damn fine painter working in the modernist tradition. Her show at trhe CAS gallery is way better than anything else we will see in this cultural desert for a long time, Basel included. Let's not pick ourselves to death here.

60.

George

September 26, 2005, 12:21 AM

#58 Ahab, re your #19, no. A framing mark is an old device any painter worth his chops knows about.The way Olitski is using it is clutzy, maybe not necessary or possibly a reflection of some other internal formal weakness in the painting.

I picked that particular Durer because of the incredibly surrealist composition not based on a formal evaluation of the prints.

My answer to Matty Op and anyone else who cares, is that I expect "formally good painting" as a given, a requirement and then I want more. I am interested in the audience, how and why they respond to a painting. I want complex relationships, not one-shot answers. I could care less about decoration or beauty, it is just one aspect of perception.

#57 Matty, If I paint a horse instead of a blob, it is different. If you know the horse it is different than if it's just a horse. If it's your horse it's a special picture. Of course it's just a frigging horse, the same one to all three people and to each the meaning is different. Of course, a horse is just a horse and you can take your chances. That's inherently what you and op are saying. It doesn't wash here.

61.

Jerome du Bois

September 26, 2005, 12:54 AM

George:

We closed comments on our blog because we have been threatened with physical violence by people who think they know our phone number and address. Every time we open comments, some troll or trolls out there tries to post this information. What would you do, George? What would Jesus do? I tell you what my Jesus would do: He'd kick their asses. And that's what we do: on our terms.

Email on our blog is open all the time, though, mon ami. You and all the wonderful warm commenters here at artblog are welcome to drop a line at any time. But none of you ever do. Sometimes, though not often, Catherine and I wonder why. We think it's because we have control, and you don't. We think it's because you really have to THINK before posting to the Tears of Things; you don't just get to rattle on and on and on . . . You need to craft your sentences, because you know we'll slice and dice them. Why? Because words mean.

To all:

oldpro jumps on the doodlebug like a duck on a june bug. Predictable. The point is to ignore the provocations, amigo, step over them --only the rubes jump when the firecrackers crack, jack-- and step up to the substance, which you seem to have trouble grasping sometimes.

And we're not on a bad trip, whoever said that. We're happy as clams and kicking ass every day. Ken Kesey knew you, he saw through you. We're sailing above the nitpickers. (You said on #34, and then he said on #45, then she said on #56 . . . Jeebus, people, are you Hasids?)

And, Franklin, you don't have to liveblog to post to comments on your own blog. You had two days to do so. You didn't, while everyone was yakking about Olitski's borders. (Was it the bagels?) Is this blog becoming a parody of itself?

Finally, just to stir the fire --none of you could hold a candle to Marcel Duchamp, a mensch who, among his many independent achievements, never took a dime --a penny-- of public, government, money in his life, as far as I know; and who worked for twenty years in secret on an uncanny artwork which still disturbs us, and should, in the 21st Century. Nobody anywhere around this blog could even come close to Etant Donnés, an uncanny nexus about both the power and victimization of women, a knot we still wrestle with and must unravel. (Again, as far as I know, Marcel Duchamp never denigrated women, as, for example, the murderer Jackson Pollock did.)

Some of you people brag about the ability to write and obtain grants, and some of you live off the public purse. Marcel Duchamp never did. And neither do we. And never will.

I know; I interrupted the discussion about horses and blobs.

JdB

62.

that guy

September 26, 2005, 1:12 AM

You are right Jerome, you're in charge. In charge of a domain name that no one in there right mind would ever type into their browser. Go get um tiger. Your rants for attention and inaccurate claims as to how some of us make a living are endearing, however untrue. Long live Jerome! May he grace us with his pleasantries long after the last great painting has been forgotten and when we can all sing the praises of Duchamp's dullness in unison.

63.

Jerome du Bois

September 26, 2005, 1:17 AM

that guy:

You need to change your moniker to pipsqueak.

JsB

64.

that guy

September 26, 2005, 1:20 AM

I kind of like "pipi long squeak" myself. What do think Jerome?

65.

larry

September 26, 2005, 2:53 AM

Really, I'm comment spammer scum. Franklin just destroyed the link to my pathetic site, so I'm getting lost and I'm not coming back.

66.

Franklin

September 26, 2005, 7:19 AM

You had two days to do so.

Jerome, I don't post weekends. You know that. Rarely I'll make an exception, for some kind of urgent announcement or for Art Basel Miami Beach once a year, but definitely not when I'm on vacation. We had a city to see, a real museum to visit, and a cute hotel room with no internet connection.

67.

oldpro

September 26, 2005, 8:46 AM

Golly, Guy, Jerome jumped on you like a duck on a junebug, whatever that means.

I'm surprised he had the time, what with wrestling with knots, invoking Ken Kesey and a kick-ass Jesus, trying to figure out why in the world he is threatened with violence (that's a tough one!), praising Duchamp for taking 20 years to finish something, telling Franklin how to run his blog and damning those who, unlike himself, are able to get grants.

68.

that guy

September 26, 2005, 9:08 AM

its nice to see that sort of passion oldpro, regardless how confused and misguided. Jerome's best proclamations seem to appear when he's really pissed. I like being an instigator to these 'foam at the mouth' rants.

69.

George

September 26, 2005, 9:16 AM

jdb

Ah, I see, the pen is mightier than the sword. Hiding is a good solution, works for Osama. Hey, it really pisses GW off which is a similar intent. Jesus? Oh, Jerome, he would turn the other cheek. Rather than "kicking their asses", that's so sadomasochistic, you might try kissing them instead, no tongue.

Strutting in your brown shirt, spouting your blind evangelism and attempting to corral every reader into a Ulysses S Grant pen like a herd of sheep is so droll. It is a typical fascist strategy, define a group, and paint them all with the same brush. Better, conduct an inquisition where you twist the meaning of any sentence to serve your needs. Curious how the word "grants" appears to you like movement behind the glory hole. Someone or something to pounce on, regardless of the context, and to distort the meaning of a a benign commentary into a brag on "writing and obtaining grants" from the "public purse". Yee haw, I spit out my coffee when I read that.

Finally, give up on Duchamp and Pollock as models, you seem more like a Francis Bacon type of guy

Back to "horses and blobs" and that pesky third form of criticism.

cheers

70.

oldpro

September 26, 2005, 9:22 AM

For once, we agree, George. The "glory hole" image is gross but funny. (I assume you were not referring to the glassmaking term).

71.

Matty

September 26, 2005, 2:59 PM

Ah George... sometimes I find your posts to be agravatingly obtuse... but then you type something like post #69, and I want to kiss you (no tongue). I agree with OP, the 'glory hole' comment was hilarious... undoubtly perfect for JsB...
The other day, comming off the Rene Barge page, I tried to hunt down some other images, and googled onto a past Artblog page, where Jerk Wood was foaming away after promising to never come back here again... what a lovable looney!
Has he officially declared a Jihad on Artblog yet?... I'd better go check his site (ya, right!).

72.

Jerome du Bois

September 26, 2005, 4:30 PM

You really are a mean bunch of bastards.

We never have applied for a government grant. We never will. There's plenty of room for the rest of you at the trough.

And we are the absolute opposite of fascists.

JdB

73.

oldpro

September 26, 2005, 4:34 PM

Jerome, if you stir up a beehive you're gonna get stung.

74.

George

September 26, 2005, 6:10 PM

yee haw, the pot calls the kettle black ;-)

75.

Jerome du Bois

September 26, 2005, 10:17 PM

oldpro:

I'm not stung, I'm disgusted. You people are supposed to be grown-ups.

JdB

76.

Franklin

September 27, 2005, 6:33 AM

With apologies to Craigfrancis, who lost a couple of posts here, people need to calm the hell down. I apologize further for not saying so earlier on in this thread. Address the writing, not the writer. Also, have another look at the Assume Community guideline: "Even the most opposed factions in the art world still agree that art is important. Begin with that basis and respect other commenters accordingly. Abusive remarks, taunts, boorish language, and the written equivalent of behavior that would get you punched out in a bar jeopardizes your status in this forum. In contrast, your ability to escalate civility in the face of rising disagreement makes you a valued contributor."

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