Archive for July, 2008


Mary Cassatt Show at Shelburne Museum

July 29, 2008

Touring the show Sunday, I was struck by the real differences in Cassatt’s style between the paintings and the drawings. Many of the paintings contain passages in which the artist’s freedom takes flight: wildly counter-contour brushstrokes, choppy-textured, casual rendering and some areas left completely unfinished, as was in vogue.

Summertime — circa 1894

This painting was not in the show, but it is actually a better painting than any that were, so I’m using it for an example of her painting style. This particular work is better organized energy in motion; the rythmic patterns created by brush strokes work well, and relate the shapes to their space; enlarge the piece two times and you will see. However, most of the paintings that contain her flights of freedom with the brush are not the happier for them, for those passages often seem at odds with the rest of the painting.

The drawings were much more tame, timid,  … too precious.

quietude — 1891

This is pretty representative of the drawings in the show. Call me crazy, but this type of drawing is SO BORING to me!

Much is made of Cassatt’s relationship with Degas, as if her body of work on its own isn’t strong enough to carry the show. This may be true, but sad… . A friend who saw the show last week mentioned the Degas connection right off, and then went on to talk a little bit about Degas’s craziness. So, if a main narrative to emerge out of a discussion about a show of works by a female artist is about a male artist contemporary, what does this tell us? aighghgh! back to the drawing board!


Dangerous Riptides, Tornado Warnings and Killer Lightning…Our Placid Maine Beach Getaway

July 20, 2008

Friday was a wild day in the Southern Maine coastal region by all accounts. Two killed by lightning in Standish, 12 needing lifeguard rescue at Old Orchard, and tornado warnings for a chunk of the afternoon where we were, in Wells Beach all made for interesting times.

My sister, two nieces, and I have a lovely room on the beach for 4 days, and are really making the most of it.

Sarah’s bud Marc, Dani, Sarah and Sal — we’re half picked up and ready for the next onslaught…see the ominous backdrop?

Storms interrupted things several times, but we always remember the good old New England adage, “if you don’t like the weather…”

Friday was different however. after an innocuous start to the day, with hazy warm and humid blah blah blah etc., the sky began to blacken and didn’t stop.

anyway, Just before the lightning became so severe that lifeguards ordered all out of the water, we witnessed some pretty unusual clouds with the vertical/diagonal circular looking structure, not realizing that they were probably associated with the subsequent tornado warnings. Later from our room I took these:


Wind Turbines on the Highway Median Strip!

July 12, 2008

Peter Everett of Morrisville writes a Burlington Free Press “My Turn” column today suggesting that the highway median strip be used for alternative power production. What a great idea! I wish I had thought of that, and I hope it is an idea that is snapped up by some entrepreneurial soul real soon. I also wish it was easy for a property owner to install small windmills and little solar panels around the property for fun and profit. Why are there none to be found with the exception of some cheaply made landscape lights at Home Cheapo?

A couple of years ago, I drew this while on the train from the Austrian Tyrol to Vienna.

It’s not any specific place, just a mashing of passages that I was seeing out the window. The lovely windmills were just everywhere; the countryside was covered with countless windmills…like beautiful wild flowers…really beautiful.


Pumpkin Garlic Scape Saute yum yum

July 9, 2008

Wild combinations from the garden lately. This evening’s was no exception. It’s my second pumpkin dish. In case you are wondering, I’ll tell you right off the bat: pumpkin is extremely good to eat. At this stage, it is very much like zucchini/ yellow summer squash– just slightly more dense.

I’m a little sleepy now, so will add ingredients to post tomorrow.


Getting Shot on Pine Street and New Art Exhibit

July 8, 2008

It’s a dangerous ride down Pine Street when biking after dark on Monday eve. Some kids shot at me out of a car with one of those little pellet guns. At least that’s what the officer thinks it was after hearing my description: A popping sound and a sudden sting. Really made me mad, not that it hurt that much; although it did leave a welt on my backside. Dangerous, stupid kids. I was travelling south on Pine Street, and the car was too. They shot when they were slightly behind me. It looked like NH plates on a silver 4 door sedan. I was momentarily stunned and then tried to read the plate, and tried to catch up to them, but couldn’t. ughghghhg.

I’ll be posting later about the latest art show at Uncommon Grounds

click on image to enlarge


Tee Shirt Design Thinking

July 2, 2008

Hey Fellow BOB! people, sorry I’m not giving you a finished product yet, but check these out, and let me know what things you like/dislike or what ever. We’ll get there! (but maybe not this year…)

you can click on the images for enlargements

The above is one sketch with different color effects.

Some cleaning up needed:

1) neater and slightly larger “Burlington” (and add the !)

2) vertical edges cleaned up

3) add “Bringing the forest to the city, one tree at a time” across the bottom to clean up that edge.

Here is another sketch — I didn’t draw in the little houses yet:

We will probably also want a border around the image, something like the same color as the lettering, and about same thickness.