It’s July in NYC and I’m bored.
So when I was doom scrolling and saw an open call for art from O’Flahrety’s, an art gallery that could easily pass for a dive bar at 55 Avenue C in NYC I thought what the hell. I gave them a big greasy porcelain jug proclaiming “Up With Finks” on it and a stinky finger on the back, it sort of captures my mood lately. Come down to the opening on July 14th at 8pm for a hot and sweaty time.
If you squint it might actually look like the east village of 1994 when I lived in a squat with five other people just around the corner. Ahh, the good old days.
Until I see you at the opening
Here is a mixed tape to listen to, so you can hear what I’ve got playing in the studio this month. Enjoy.
Listen to the July Mixed Tape
Earlier this week I was interviewed for The Large Glass, an art-talk-show-cocktail-hour. Check out this rambling conversation about life, art and some things I’ve been making in the studio. It was fun.
I adore Janis Joplin
My mom didn’t sing lullaby’s to me as a kid, she played Janis Joplin on the record player, and I am so glad she did. Listening to this version of Summertime led me to a gorgeous poem by the fantastic writer Jericho Brown. Dig this…
"Track 5: Summertime: As performed by Janis Joplin."
God’s got his eye on me, but I ain’t a sparrow.
I’m more like a lawn mower . . . no, a chainsaw,
Anything that might mangle each manicured lawn
In Port Arthur, a place I wouldn’t return to
If the mayor offered me every ounce of oil
My daddy cans at the refinery. My voice, I mean,
Ain’t sweet. Nothing nice about it. It won’t fly
Even with Jesus watching. I don’t believe in Jesus.
The Baxter boys climbed a tree just to throw
Persimmons at me. The good and perfect gifts
From above hit like lightning, leave bruises.
So I lied—I believe, but I don’t think God
Likes me. The girls in the locker room slapped
Dirty pads across my face. They called me
Bitch, but I never bit back. I ain’t a dog.
Chainsaw, I say. My voice hacks at you. I bet
I tear my throat. I try so hard to sound jagged.
I get high and say one thing so many times
Like Willie Baker who worked across the street—
Repeated, Please. School out, summertime
And the living lashed, Mama said I should be
Thankful, that the town’s worse to coloreds
Than they are to me, that I’d grow out of my acne.
God must love Willie Baker—all that leather and still
A please that sounds like music. See.
I wouldn’t know a sparrow from a mockingbird.
The band plays. I just belt out, Please. This tune
Ain’t half the blues. I should be thankful.
I get high and moan like a lawn mower
So nobody notices I’m such an ugly girl.
I’m such an ugly girl. I try to sing like a man
Boys call, boy. I turn my face to God. I pray. I wish
I could pour oil on everything green in Port Arthur.
Brown, Jericho. "Track 5: Summertime: As performed by Janis Joplin." Callaloo, vol. 32 no. 1, 2009, p. 72-72. Project MUSE, doi:10.1353/cal.0.0298.
In the studio lately
I’ve been working on some new things including some paintings, prints and drawings. Here’s a peak at what’ve been up to lately.