Saturday, August 29, 2009

Simian Manifesto

Back in July I took a 4 week on-line class from Mary Ann Moss called Pure Experimentation. Here is some of the work I have done since then. It uses varying amounts of collage and stencil, so a certain amount of credit for my collage sensibilities and skills should also go out to in person classes with Anahata Katkin and Claudine Helmuth.

Mary Ann's class is all about using spray paint with stencils. She will offer it again in the spring if you should be interested.

This stuff varies in size from the 4 x6 inch postcard size of Red Rats/ No Evil above to about 14 x 17 inches for Simian Manifesto. The background for Red rats is an advertisement found in a West Coast free weekly newspaper(Seattle or Portland) for a skateboard shop.

In this piece my starting point was an Asheville telephone post advertisement for a nightclub (liberated after the event took place). My daughter, obviously raised in more polite society than I, often raises her eyebrows slightly when she observes my ephemera collection activities. Sometimes, because those teen years are not that far behind her, she even rolls her eyes.

Personally, I love the fact that this format is putting those collected bits and pieces to use.

This picture is more stencil than the others posted here. The neighboring town of Abingdon has an art installation of 20 some fiberglass wolves decorated by various artists. The wolf outside the Barter Theater is collaged with photos from performances and roles of one of the resident actors, Eugene Wolf.

One of the photos inspired the cutting the stencil for Eugene. Next, I cut the stencils for the theater roof-line and the wolf. A little spray paint later and we had this composition.

This collage of three Iranian women should be seen up close and personal; there are so many other little bits embedded in it and partially obscured. Finding the components is a mini treasure hunt. It was titled for the quote used in the piece "It is only here-in private-that I am free"

Squid is just a postcard, but I liked the composition.

Cool Cat, Summer in the City is the process close to full circle. It started as a postcard made from a cat food bag image and a department store junk mail flier, coming together in a matter of minutes. I really liked the result, so before mailing the original postcard off to Seattle, I stopped at the copy shop and copied the image in both original size and a larger format. Using the larger image I created this collage and stencil spray paint composition. Now all that remains is taking this image back to the copy shop and converting it back to postcard size, then it will have gone full circle.

Monkeys, rats, robots, wolves and squid, the stencils I cut and use must reflect some aspect of my personality. What to make of it, I will leave to the more analytically inclined.
I'm just having fun.



  1. Your pieces are amazing and beautiful!!!! I LOVE the color and "oddity" of it all - You have really caught on to something and made it yours!
    Keep going!

  2. ooh, I like the jelly fish one a lot. When I first took the class, I wasn't sure what to make of it since I am not a "visual journal" type of person. Now I am finding my own place witht the spray paint and moving in a new direction and really enjoying it!