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Artomatic 2008, Vineland, Clouds
I finally made it to Artomatic last night, the last night of the show. I wandered around for quite a while without seeing anything that really grabbed me, and then on the tenth floor I struck gold. Sculpture's not usually my favorite, but I loved what Aaron Quinn Brophy did with these egg shapes:

IMG_0960 IMG_0956 IMG_0962

And then, from Alexandra Zealand, coffee filters!


I loved Eric Celarier's relief-map-like tapestries made of old motherboards. Here's a detail:


Honorable mention:


Call me a damn hippie (everybody else does), but I loved these plywood sculptures. And this guy's paintings of tornadoes appealed to my inner weather freak and, I guess, my inner Dorothy (hey, my mom is from Kansas):


Also yesterday, I finished reading Vineland. This supposedly is not a favorite of Thomas Pynchon fans (not tricky enough, too political), but to me it was awesome, maybe the definitive book about the sixties and its aftermath. I've often been irked by pomo fiction because so often it seems to be all about literary parlor tricks, leaving no room for heart (paging David Foster Wallace) but this was different (and granted, not the most extreme example of pomo). Vineland uses painful puns and too-clever names (a landscape contractor known as the Marquis de Sod—wait till you hear his theme song; a Northern California Cajun restaurant named Humbolaya), pop-culture references (the female ninja subplot), anagrams (Frenesi, the elusive central character, contains "free" and "sin"), obnoxious acronyms, and hilarious made-up movies ("Pia Zadora in The Clara Bow Story") to tell a deeply emotional story about what happened in the sixties and to the sixties. Some critics think the story is too flimsy, never explaining why exactly a third-generation revolutionary would run off with the evil cop. But the guys at Babies of Wackiness (a Japanese sitcom, dontcha know?) speculate that Frenesi on some level is the American nation, born free but seduced over and over by authority in the form of a man in uniform, and that's good enough for me. To me the book was enchanting. It's probably the best I've read this year. Here's more, in Salman Rushdie's New York Times review.

Finally, just for atenea_nike, I made a set of the cloud photos I took for my meteorology class.

It took me some time to put this post together with all the images and links, so somebody please comment or I'll have to start wondering if you can see my ratty old t-shirt from where you are.

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12 comments or Leave a comment
(Deleted comment)
florafloraflora From: florafloraflora Date: June 17th, 2008 01:25 am (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I was tempted to jump right into Mason and Dixon, which I've had on the shelf for years, but I held off.
(Deleted comment)
florafloraflora From: florafloraflora Date: June 17th, 2008 01:26 am (UTC) (Link)
Why, thank you (for the t-shirt and the cloud pics).

zugenia From: zugenia Date: June 16th, 2008 05:22 pm (UTC) (Link)
The egg sculptures are SO GREAT. And the coffee filters, which reminds me that I need another cup.

I only very occasionally think to myself that I should read more Pynchon (I've only ever read Lot 49, which I did love), but your review has compelled me to put Vineland on the list.
florafloraflora From: florafloraflora Date: June 17th, 2008 01:27 am (UTC) (Link)
"your review has compelled me to put Vineland on the list"

Heh, heh, heh... just two more and I'm eligible for the toaster!
(Deleted comment)
florafloraflora From: florafloraflora Date: June 17th, 2008 01:31 am (UTC) (Link)
Really? I didn't know I had such pigeonhole-able taste.

I never did get to see the Tate Modern. I was too busy chasing through the Tate Britain and the National Gallery trying to feed my Gainsborough fetish. Next time it won't get away. I've been enjoying your London diaries BTW.

I guess I said "hippie" because it's all about the bare wood grain and its intrinsic properties. On the other hand, maybe it's not ornate enough.
kairon13 From: kairon13 Date: June 16th, 2008 10:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
Cool clouds. But you really need to change that t-shirt, dear...
florafloraflora From: florafloraflora Date: June 17th, 2008 01:31 am (UTC) (Link)
No worries, I've traded the t-shirt in for my bathrobe ;D
megglesmcgoo From: megglesmcgoo Date: June 16th, 2008 10:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
Great art!

Like the tshirt! You're a hippie!

Can I add you on flickr?

The above reads: serious, messing, serious. I am extremely new to flickr so won't be bothering you with lots of photos to look at as i haven't quite worked out what I want to do with it.
florafloraflora From: florafloraflora Date: June 17th, 2008 01:35 am (UTC) (Link)


Sure thing, and I'll add you back!

I don't take photos very regularly, but over time I've accumulated a few of them.
melydia From: melydia Date: June 17th, 2008 01:01 am (UTC) (Link)
Pretty cloud photos! :) I get the distinct impression that you and I have rather different tastes in art. I dug the coffee filters and the tornado paintings, but the rest...well, maybe it's better in person. :)

Glad you had a good time. I haven't had a good art fix in a while.
florafloraflora From: florafloraflora Date: June 17th, 2008 01:40 am (UTC) (Link)
Thanks, glad you liked them. Yeah, most people would say I like weird art. There was a lot of more normal stuff, and then other stuff that was too weird for me. I should have called to see if you wanted to go. I'm too apt to pigeonhole my friends, never thinking that maybe my rock-show friends would be into a hike or that my dog-romping friends might like some theater too.

Edited at 2008-06-17 01:41 am (UTC)
henrydt From: henrydt Date: June 20th, 2008 05:47 pm (UTC) (Link)

clouds-FFF book club

I like the mist covered dirt road and the church at sundown. I tried to find Vineland at my local library and the Latech library. The local doesn't seem to have any Pynchon--maybe they're all checked out?--straight from Puzo to Quindlan, and the uni doesn't have Vineland. I'm enjoying Oscar Wao--I'll put a post up after I finish
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