Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Minds Without Brains

Is it correct to say that plants forage for light, or that they actively avoid shade? Should we say that plants decide where to send out their roots, that they know that they should send roots down into the ground and stems up toward the sky? Is the plasticity and growth of plants to be compared with the free movement and action of animals? These are interesting and important questions that deserve our attention. I won't comment on them any further here other than to notice that if plants have minds, then perhaps they show that you don't need a brain to have a mind, and that's a strange and exciting possibility.

--Alva Noƫ, writing here

Monday, December 19, 2011

Monday, December 12, 2011

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Monday, November 14, 2011

Description of a struggle

I started this painting in August, 2010. After months of work, neglect, a little work, lots of neglect, and then a little more work, I think it is done.


Monday, October 24, 2011

the regenerating organism

Cancer stem cells have acquired the behavior of normal stem cells by activating the same genes and pathways that make normal stem cells immortal -- except, unlike normal stem cells, they can not be lulled back into physiological sleep. Cancer, then, is quite literally, trying to emulate a regenerating organ -- or, perhaps, more disturbingly, the regenerating organism. Its quest for immortality mirrors our own quest, a quest buried in our embryos and in the renewal of our organs. Someday, if a cancer succeeds, it will produce a far more perfect being than its host -- imbued with immortality and the drive to proliferate.
--- from The Emperor of All Maladies by Siddhartha Mukherjee

via The Book of Barely Imagined Beings

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Like the phoenix, it rises:


I'm trying something new out with this one, dudes. So, I've never really had luck selling artwork. Partly this is because I'm awkward at it and don't put much effort into it. Partly it's because I don't like it and it makes me feel weird. I have a job, and I like keeping my art production separate from my livelihood because I don't want to place any burdens on it. If I want to hot glue flowers and weeds and trash together for a week, I like not having to feel like whatever results should have monetary value.

So I've got this "Exchange" page. I want a more structured way for people to ask for paintings through trades, barters, or even just because they like them. Sometimes I worry that people feel weird about wanting art-- they feel like its beyond them or somehow degrading to bring it up. Anyway, I want my paintings to go to different places. There's no set parameters for this, it's totally up to individual negotiation. And I, for one, am open to all offers. I hope that people feel comfortable engaging if they're interested (a big IF!)

I want a way to more directly engage with people that look at and would like to live with my artwork.

I think it's also that I like getting email from people through my website and wish I got more of it.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Snapshots before a move

I've been packing up to move to a new studio space. I've been so lax about posting new projects, I thought I should take a few snapshots. A couple of them are finished, but most are still in progress.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

non-human entities, non-human goals

Posted: Visualizing US expansion through post offices by Derek Watkins

"Invaders from Mars" by Charlie Stross

"...Corporations do not share our priorities. They are hive organisms constructed out of teeming workers who join or leave the collective: those who participate within it subordinate their goals to that of the collective, which pursues the three corporate objectives of growth, profitability, and pain avoidance. (The sources of pain a corporate organism seeks to avoid are lawsuits, prosecution, and a drop in shareholder value.)
Corporations have a mean life expectancy of around 30 years, but are potentially immortal; they live only in the present, having little regard for past or (thanks to short term accounting regulations) the deep future: and they generally exhibit a sociopathic lack of empathy.
Collectively, corporate groups lobby international trade treaty negotiations for operating conditions more conducive to pursuing their three goals. They bully individual lawmakers through overt channels (with the ever-present threat of unfavourable news coverage) and covert channels (political campaign donations). The general agreements on tariffs and trade, and subsequent treaties defining new propertarian realms, once implemented in law, define the macroeconomic climate: national level politicians thus no longer control their domestic economies.
Corporations, not being human, lack patriotic loyalty; with a free trade regime in place they are free to move wherever taxes and wages are low and profits are high. We have seen this recently in Ireland where, despite a brutal austerity budget, corporation tax is not to be raised lest multinationals desert for warmer climes.
For a while the Communist system held this at bay by offering a rival paradigm, however faulty, for how we might live: but with the collapse of the USSR in 1991 — and the adoption of state corporatism by China as an engine for development — large scale opposition to the corporate system withered.
We are now living in a global state that has been structured for the benefit of non-human entities with non-human goals. They have enormous media reach, which they use to distract attention from threats to their own survival. They also have an enormous ability to support litigation against public participation, except in the very limited circumstances where such action is forbidden. Individual atomized humans are thus either co-opted by these entities (you can live very nicely as a CEO or a politician, as long as you don't bite the feeding hand) or steamrollered if they try to resist.
In short, we are living in the aftermath of an alien invasion."

The Charlie Stross text was obtained from mentholmountains. The amazing video is by Derek Watkins.

Friday, July 22, 2011

all the rest is silence

I should say a little more about this, about not writing. A lot of people ask me about it, and I ask myself. And asking myself why I do not write inevitably leads to another, much more unsettling question: why did I ever write? After all, the normal thing is to read. I have two preferred answers. The first, that my poetry was- without my knowledge- an attempt to create an identity for myself; having created and assumed this identity, I was no longer concerned to throw myself into every poem I set about writing, which is what fascinated me. The other, that it was all a mistake: I believed that I wanted to be a poet, but deep down I wanted to be a poem. And to a degree, an unfortunate degree, I have achieved this; like any reasonably well-crafted poem, I am all need and internal submission to that tormented tyrant, that insomniac, omniscient and ubiquitous Big Brother: Me. Half Caliban, Half Narcissus, I fear him most when I hear him interrogate me, next to an open balcony: "What's a boy of 1950 like you doing in an indifferent year like this?" All the rest is silence.

-Jaime Gil de Biedma

via MentholMountatains

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Finished Paintings, Vol. 2

These are a few of my favorite paintings from the past year. A few other selections are below as well.

Finshed paintings, vol. 1

Hello. I wanted to post some of my favorite finished paintings from the past year. It's been a pretty lousy year for me, painting wise, but I like each of these individually.

Monday, May 30, 2011

May Pictures

I started this painting and then the next day I found an old wood frame that looked like it belonged to it. Now I just have to finish it. I have been having a hard time finishing.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I'm Not Saying It Should Be This Way

Whilst [intelligence] is inferior to the natural instrument [instinct] for the satisfaction of immediate wants, its advantage over it is greater, the less urgent the need. Above all, it reacts on the nature of the being that constructs it; for in calling on her to exercise a new function, it confers on her, so to speak, a richer organization, being an artificial organ by which the natural organism is extended. For every need that it satisfies, it creates a new need; and so, instead of closing, like instinct, the round of action within which the animal tends to move automatically, it lays open to activity an unlimited field into which it is driven further and further, and made more and more free.

- Henri Bergson, quoted in Jussi Parikka's
Insect Media.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Monday, March 21, 2011

Naming the Animals

Please join us for two artist receptions
to celebrate our special two-part exhibition


Curious Matter, April 3 to May 15, 2011
Proteus Gowanus, April 16 to July 17, 2011

Sunday, April 3, 2011
3:00 to 6:00 pm
272 Fifth Street, Jersey City, NJ
Saturday, April 16, 2011
7:00 to 10:00 pm
& Naming the Animals
543 Union Street, Brooklyn, NJ


CURIOUS MATTER: Lasse Antonsen • Julia Whitney Barnes • Jill Marleah Bell • John Bell • Arthur Bruso • Travis Childers • Matthew Cox • Joanna Ebenstein • Veronica Frenning • Patti Jordan • Heather Layton • Ross Bennett Lewis • Carrie Lincourt • Eric Lindveit • Colette Male • Marianne McCarthy • Florence Alfano McEwin • Hans van Meeuwen • Raymond E. Mingst • Elizabeth Misitano • R. Wayne Parsons • Inna Razumova • Debra Regh • Andrew Cornell Robinson • PROTEUS GOWANUS: Kristi Arnold • William Brovelli • Christian Brown • Ryan Browning • Travis Childers • Clair Chinnery • Eileen Ferara • Richard Haymes • Ellie Irons • Katherine McLeod • Suzanne Norris • Melissa Stern • Jennie Suddick • Tricia Zimic

CURIOUS MATTER is an exhibition venue for contemporary visual art located in downtown Jersey City. Curious Matter exhibitions and publications evidence the pursuit to understand and articulate our individual and collective experience of the world, real or imagined. We examine fantastic notions, confounding ideas and audacious thoughts. Curious Matter strives to foster dialogue among artists at all career stages with a calendar of regular exhibitions. Our commitment extends to our audience as we endeavor to open a door to appreciating contemporary art in an atmosphere that encourages engagement and curiosity. Curious Matter is a sponsored project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service organization.
For more info: [w] curiousmatter.blogspot.com [e] curiousmatter@comcast.net [t] 201-659-5771
DRIVING FROM MANHATTAN: Take the Holland Tunnel. When you exit the tunnel turn left onto Marin Blvd. Turn right onto 6th Street, then left onto Coles Street and left onto Fifth. Street. (It’s about 5 minutes out of the Tunnel.)
PATH FROM NYC: Take the Newark/Journal Square bound PATH train from 33rd, 23rd, 14th or 9th Streets (all at 6th Ave.) or from Christopher Street or WTC. (Note: on weekends the train stops in Hoboken before continuing to Jersey City.) Get off at GROVE STREET station. Exit and walk West on Newark Ave. When you reach Jersey Ave. make a right and continue to 5th Street. The gallery is to the left at 272 Fifth Street.

PROTEUS GOWANUS is a gallery and reading room located on the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn, NY. A collaborative project, the gallery develops exhibits of art, artifacts and books and hosts events that revolve around a yearlong theme linking the arts to other disciplines and to the community. In adjacent spaces, seven additional projects-in-residence have grown out of thematic exhibitions and partnerships. This year’s theme is PARADISE, an exploration of the light and dark sides of spiritual ascent and sensual escape, in which we invite artists and workers in other disciplines to respond to the siren song of that which is easy to imagine but
difficult to attain.
For more info: [w] proteusgowanus.com [e] info@proteusgowanus.com [t] 718-243-1572
DRIVING FROM MANHATTAN: (There is usually easy parking on weekends.) Continue straight off Brooklyn Bridge to Atlantic Avenue, take left on Atlantic. Go four blocks to Nevins St and take a right. Follow Nevins several blocks til you come to Sackett. Park on the next block (just before Union) and go down the alley off Nevins through the large black gates, second door on the left.
SUBWAY, R or M train to Union Street in Brooklyn: Walk two long blocks on Union (towards the Gowanus Canal) to Nevins Street. 543 Union Street is the large red brick building on right. Go right on Nevins and left down alley through large black gates. Gallery is the second door on the left.
F or G train to Carroll Street: Walk one block to Union. Turn right, walk two long blocks on Union towards the Gowanus Canal, cross the bridge, take left on Nevins, go down the alley to the second door on the left.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Friday, February 4, 2011

Found in Borges

It is universally admitted that the unicorn is a supernatural being and one of good omen; that is declared in the odes, in the annals, in the biographies of illustrious men, and in other texts of unquestioned authority. Even the women and children of the populace know that the unicorn constitutes a favorable presage. But this animal is not one of the domestic animals, it is not always easy to find, it does not lend itself to classification. It is not like the horse or the bull, the wolf or the deer. And therefore we could be in the presence of the unicorn and we would not know for certain that it was one. We know that a certain animal with a mane is a horse, and that one with horns is a bull. We do not know what the unicorn is like.

-- Han Yu, in Anthologie Raisonee de la Literature Chinoise, 1948.

image source

Sunday, January 30, 2011