Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Bag It!

It’s official –  Governor Jerry Brown has signed the law banning one-use plastic shopping bags in all of California.  San Francisco was one of the first cities to eliminate plastic bags and our streets are a little cleaner for it and it’s a step in the right directions protecting our oceans.  So what are you waiting for?  Get yourself a cool, reusable shopping bag with my art on it from Society 6.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Can a Steamroller be used as a printing press?

Yes it can!
Today at the bottom of Potrero Hill, the San Francisco Center for the Book sponsored the annual Roadworks Printing Festival.    An excellent selection of local printmakers were showing off their work as well as other print activities – and of course, a big old steamroller.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Postal Art Mail Activism

Karen Lindquist’s three pieces in the Collage meets Landscape exhibit are part of a new series called New Mexico Love Story. She describes the series as a visual homage to a magical state with an anti-hydraulic fracturing sub-text.  I visited the magical state, New Mexico, or, as I call it The Holy Land, earlier this month.  I spent a day with Karen in her home in rural New Mexico.  Getting a peek at her new work in progress and talking for hours. 

Hydraulic fracturing, aka fracking, is threatening rural communities and wilderness in New Mexico and across America.  All in a race for short-term profits.  The long-term consequences out of this rush to bleed the land for every last bit fossil fuels are not completely known, but the potential for environmental disaster – unnecessary disaster – are staggering.

We spoke on the phone last week and were discussing ways to effectively respond to the fracking threat.  Karen is currently working on a series of handmade, original postcards (the one I received is shown above).  Many are being mailed out to elected officials.  Talking to her I realized what a brilliant idea this is. 

Most politicians are unlikely to give a great deal of attention to email.  Especially those email templates from political websites.  Posting things on social media sites, e.g., Facebook, is pretty much like shaking your fist and yelling at a cloud.  Politicians only take notice of Twitter when, well you know, photos of their junk is involved.  Even sites like change.org are pointless.  Yes, it’s true, you might think your electronic activism is doing something, but it’s pretty much meaningless.  Elected officials still take note of constituent letters – original letters – not pre-printed petitions and postcards.

Imagine if we all started taking Karen Lindquist’s lead and started sending mail art about issues we cared about to our elected officials.  We may not sway opinions, but we won’t be completely ignored either.  At the least, the staff would take notice and you can bet your cards would be passed around the office.

So get making some art about what you care about, send it out!  And if you want to see more of Karen’s work, you need to go to see Collage meets Landscape before it closes this Sunday (September 28th).

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Meaty Mail Art

As an artist, I have become accustomed to people seeing all sorts of things in my art – often ideas that I never imagined.  And, as an artist, I sort of have to let it go and accept that my audience might take away something that I never intended.  It’s all part of the relationship between artist and audience.  Well, for now, it’s my turn….

I always look forward to getting these envelopes from Italy stuffed with colorful, printed images from Serse Luiggetti.  The latest set was exceptional, and this very red one (seen above) is my new favorite.  I realized what makes it work for me is that it looks, in a geometric, abstract way, like a cut of meat.  And don’t let the name fool, you, I have a love all meat-themed art.   

Packing Tape Transfers

Inspired by a piece of mail art I recently received from Adrienne Masson, I’ve decided to try my hand at creating image transfers with packing tape – I have a new obsession.  And yes, that’s lil’ Tofu doing an interpretive dance at the campground (look closely).