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Post #736 • February 22, 2006, 1:23 PM • 18 Comments

Jeffrey Carson once said to me that no blue sky he ever saw compared to the one over the Aegean, except for the blue sky of South Florida. To have this sky in late February is a blessing. I will miss it when I go.

But in a sense, I have already packed it. It came with me the first time I went to New England and it will come with me again. It will push out through my work even if I'm calf-deep in snow. I spent thirty years under this blue sky, and it will always cover me.




February 22, 2006, 3:18 PM

"Calf deep"? it snows more than once a year up there, you know.



February 22, 2006, 3:33 PM

Should that be "neck deep"?



February 22, 2006, 3:37 PM

10-foot drifts are rare, but not unheard of.



February 22, 2006, 3:39 PM

I will definitely be getting a lot of work done, then.



February 22, 2006, 5:41 PM

You will be shovelling snow is what you will be doing.



February 22, 2006, 5:57 PM

No, I'm going to train the cats to shovel snow.



February 22, 2006, 10:17 PM

bah! break me a give with the 82 degree temperatures in february. I wish I had a house to sell and move somewhere cold.



February 23, 2006, 10:09 AM

don't even go there alesh.



February 23, 2006, 12:35 PM

You know Franklin, if what you seek is an enviornment that would be extremely fertile for your painting and writing AND you are willing to brave the snow to get it, why stop at New England? "The herd of independent minds" controls contemporary culture there just as much as it does in Miami. Instead of a Cuban bias there will be a NYC bias. It will be the same animal wearing a different suit of clothes. And you may be less welcomed there than you are in Miami, where you enjoy quite a bit of respect as a leader of the lunatic fringe.

Once again I bring up western Canada: Saskatoon and Edmonton. I've been to Saskatoon and there is plenty of civilization there and I understand it's even more so in Edmonton. The herd has influence on culture there too, but not to the extent of most other places. There is a hardy band of true independents, some of whom teach at the universities even, and others who scratch out a living by other means. ahab and matty could fill you in on all that better than I.

If I were 30 something I would ponder these places seriously. They seem like they could provide an artistic environment that does not exist anywhere else at the moment (and has not existed for 30 years anywhere else I know of), the type of enviornment oldpro has referred to on occassion. It is a group that does not waste time on the side-bars, but focuses instead on issues surrounding the real McCoy. In truth, grappling with the real McCoy is more challenging than fighting off the idots. I fear all of us lose something by living in places that are completely dominated by them. Sure it is fun to expose their empty arguments, but even that can drain the spirit that otherwise would struggle with being the best. And the control they exert over culural resources is downright toxic.

As I said somewhere else before, I listened while the great Clement Greenberg told a desperate painter essentially the same thing, way back in 1985. The guy did not go and he is still desperate.



February 23, 2006, 2:17 PM

For my painting it sounds like a good idea, but for turning from a local into a national concern, I have to move somewhere on the art belt between Boston and DC. The nice thing about New England is that there's a lot happening under the radar around there: the Peabody Essex just had a show of 400 years of Thai art, the Hyde in Glens Falls, NY has what looks like a great little screwball of a show called "Selections from The Arkell Museum at Canajoharie," the DeCordova in Lincoln, MA always has something to look at, and have you ever heard of the Shelburne in VT? Then there are NY and Boston themselves, which have tons of good stuff and I can be close to both of them without the hassle of having to live in either (I feel that way more about NYC than Bos.). Portland, OR, which is a great town with an exploding, serious art scene, is analogously positioned to Boston as LA is to Miami. Even Edmonton becomes closer, and I'm totally going.

Thing is, if I go to NYC I won't be able to get off the merry-go-round. If I go to Edmonton I won't be able to get on it. New England gives me a certain amount of choice about the matter.


Marc Country

February 23, 2006, 3:29 PM

I think you've probably made a good choice, Franklin, but, back on topic, and to back Catfish up, there're some perty big, blue skies to be seen on the Canadian prairies, I tell ya.
(not that ahab and I can enjoy them much from our windowless studio...)



February 23, 2006, 4:07 PM

Franklin: What would you have said to Gaugin?

Artblog will never be tied to a geographical location unless you want it to be.

In any case, you are welcome to the snow-belt. I'm leaving as soon as I can.


Marc Country

February 23, 2006, 4:22 PM

I get the impression that Franklin is into reviewing big museum shows as much as he's into painting, so being within driving distance of so many 'major' centres makes sense for him, as a writer. Gaugin didn't need hot topics, so he chose hot tropics instead (and as I sit here in Hawai'i, I must say, I can't blame him).



February 23, 2006, 4:25 PM

"Yo, Paul, slow down on the booze!"

Someone described Providence as having three beautiful seasons and one tolerable one. I'll be okay up there.



February 23, 2006, 7:42 PM

Franklin, it sounds like a smart move to me.



February 23, 2006, 11:16 PM

Take a look at Terry Fenton's paintings, Franklin



February 24, 2006, 1:18 AM

I'm blotto, but still, speaking on behalf of windowless-studio partners whose veiw [sic] out the back door is one composed mainly of power lines, they're set against a very bright prairie sky. And the snow just makes them stand out that much more.

You're very very welcome to visit us in Edmonton, Franklin, but be warned, it's much more "real mccoy" than might be anticipated by even the most romantic of gutter romantics. You know how they say that to really get the most out of a city like New York or Paris you have to live there? Well, Edmonton is the great juxtaposition to those cities. Culture might as well be cutlery for all anyone here cares.

I've gotta go to the bathroom.



February 26, 2006, 9:35 AM

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