Friday, July 30, 2021

52 Fridays - Self-Portrait From the Future


I want more beans! Or at least I think I will eleven years from now. Why "more beans", probably because that's all there will be available to eat, cans of beans and SPAM, but I've sworn off SPAM, so bring on the beans! I guess it's optimistic to think that I'll be alive eleven years from now, but lately, like the last five years or so, I've been feeling the opposite. I don't think the "world will end",  just that it's going to get more chaotic and less pleasant for human life. But what do I know? I'll check in again in eleven years and we will all see what is indeed up.

Zahdah and see you next week!


Friday, July 23, 2021

52 Fridays - I Stick My Tongue Out At You

You know who you are, and I stick my tongue out at you. All the selfish, willfully ignorant humans out there that are making things so unpleasant for the rest of us. I tell you, I will not allow you to steal my smile, nor harsh my mellow.

Onward - This week's image is a "Yombe Ntadi Bakongo" sculpture from the Democratic Republic of Congo that I found on the Instagram account "contemporarycongoleseart". The original looks simple, but the more I look at it, the more I see. I'm feeling more confident to interpret more loosely; get up and do my thang. This is week thirty of this drawing project, twenty-two to go, though I don't think I'll stop after this year is up. This project is succeeding to help me re-engage my creative life on a more regular basis. I don't know why I resist doing something that I enjoy so much and is big part of my essential nature. There's always that little shitty voice that tries to talk me out of exercising or eating healthy or trying something new, taking a positive risk. Laziness is fear and fear is the mind killer, so I will resist it. I stick my tongue out at that fear. And you, what or whom do you stick your tongue out at?
See you next week,


Friday, July 16, 2021

52 Fridays - The Center Isn't Holding Like it Used Too

This week I tweeted, "Looking through the news most days I feel like I am living in a prequel to Cormac McCarthy’s #TheRoad". If you haven't read the book or seen the movie, it's a tale of a father and son trying to survive and also keep their humanity in the face of an all too realistic dystopian near future of extreme weather and marauding bands of cannibals. I read the book once and saw the movie once and that was enough to haunt me. I don't think we are heading to the "end of the world", that would be too easy. No, I think we are moving into a new challenging era of chaos caused by climate change, the pandemic and hyper-tribalism that will just make life less pleasant than it's been in the Western world in the last century or so. Of course for most people in the "undeveloped world", it's more of the same. Life is never easy, so if they get flooded or there is a drought, those people pick-up their few belongs and move somewhere more friendly. In the west, we continue to build on the coasts, binge-watch streaming video in our air-conditioned McMansions and order shit we don't need from Amazon. Nothing hurts and the good times will never end. William Gibson the science fiction author once said, "The future will not be evenly distributed." I think the same thing can be said for this creeping dystopian environment we are living in. Parts of the world are burning and other areas are literally drowning. Some countries have more vaccine than they can ever use and the virus numbers are dropping quickly, while other regions haven't vaccinated anyone and the virus is running unchecked and unmeasured and the variants have fertile ground to mutate and get weirder and stronger. 

So what does all this DOOM TALK have to do with this week's drawings? I'm glad you asked. I drew the same face three times this week and realized that it feels like a scream. My scream. This is my version of Munch's "Scream". It's all I can manage in the face of such existential dread. It's the face I make while, "...listening to the terror through the wall." (Ginsberg) I hope it is not my death mask. Mixed in with this darkness is some light, some hope of reset and finding a new way to live. That a new society will carry on, despite the difficulties, but it will be a bumpy ride.

This is a "Keaka Head" created by the Ejagham People from Cameroon region of Africa.  I found this on "feereafricanart" an Instagram feed I have pulled from before. I was immediately hypnotized by the eyes and teeth. Also made me think of Jack Kirby, the legendary comic book artist's work. I did three versions to explore that face. Two drawn with a cheap-ass ballpoint pen, directly referencing the photo and one from memory with a marker type pen and intentionally trying to channel Kirby's style (and falling short).

Which one do you like?

Do you feel the DOOM as intensely as I do or do you think I am being melodramatic?

See you next week...


Friday, July 09, 2021

52 Fridays - Yakuba Zakpie

“Yakuba Zakpie” sounds like the name of the coolest preacher in West Africa or something you might say to someone to acknowledge a small injustice in the world, like a nicer way of saying “shit happens”. This super cool mask comes from the Cote D’Ivorie region of West Africa and is a Dan Yakuba Zakpie Mask I found on the Instagram feed of “passionate_or_obessessed”. I like it because it reminded me of Grace Jones. I really like the asymmetrical form created by the necklace (?) ball things. 

See you next week,


Friday, July 02, 2021

52 Fridays - Wide-Eyed

 This week’s drawing is a “Dan Mask” from the Gio subgroup of far- eastern Liberia that I found on the Instagram feed “evansafricanart”. I choose it because it has a haunted quality. There’s a wide-eyed wondering of, what the hell comes next in this crazy world. What a time to be alive.

Stay safe out there!


Friday, June 25, 2021

52 Fridays - Happy Man!


This week’s drawing is a “Showwe Statue” I found on an Instagram post from “art.afrique.showroom”. I drew him because he reminds me of Sammy Davis Jr. and because he looks happy. I am also happy! I hope you are also happy.

Happy Friday!