2-Strats and Cornhouse visit the local getting place and experience perception and stuff.
Here’s some people gazing at Julia Barbosa Landois‘ 2013 piece Star-Crossed II at MACLA on Fisting Friday. It’s a video featuring a ranchera tune about breaking up with Jesus. Landois came all the way from San Antonio to come talk about it.
Landois spoke briefly to the crowd assembled at MACLA about how she started in painting and progressed over time to working in other media such as video in order to better suit her stories. Her speech and her website lead me to believe that she’s been in bands and stuff in the past.
Myself I thought the karaoke bit that marks Star-Crossed II was really captivating and that it motivates the viewer to get into the piece. I asked Landois privately what her warmup tune is for a good night of karaoke but she said she doesn’t do it. Then I asked if she ever interviews herself while washing dishes etc., in order to practice figuring and explaining what her stuff is all about, and she said she sometimes does. Interesting!
The piece is part of MACLA’s Chicano/a Biennial. I love how MACLA always finds artists who keep the medium, the look, very simple for their very complex stories. Bravo and good eye, MACLA! Also present is a prison toilet glazed with a large array of information about the prison experience. Really, everything in the Biennial is excellent.
Lucky for all you ignoramuses who may go see the piece, it has English subtitles so you may not feel threatened by the strangeness of the Spanish language, a language spoken by almost half a billion people on a huge percentage of the planet’s dry surface, even though you went into a space that promotes Latino-ness in order to see it, since apparently there are ZERO bilingual people on the entire internet to read this article, but only segregated Spanish and English speakers, as segregated as you all drool to be in your safe suburban or hip urban coffins. Consider yourself stroked, primped, preened, prepared.
Here’s the Coleman Avenue bridge, by the big shopping center at Taylor, where the recent floods have provided for the latest sculpture to hit San José, this time in the middle of the river. Like many sculptures in the city, it’s a meaningless technical exercise, an immense MS Paint job executed by not even an amateur but a disinterested user. The title of the piece is “Interpolating Concepts,” grabbed mid-paragraph from the piece’s indecipherable pseudo-philosophical justification, which is attached to the river bed and visible only to divers.
The medium is pile of sticks and tree trunks on a plinth of rocks with support from a live tree.
When in fifty years, when the vacuous tech-boom society of Google employees collectively decides, based on a single meme, that this is the most important art of their era, and the artist is asked about his motivation, he’ll have nothing to say but that his boss commissioned it in order to show some long-vanished investors the company’s edgy design ideas, much like the inverted 3D-printed cone on the steps of the Convention Center.
The piece unfortunately took very little logistics to produce, practically zero quarterbacking of dealmaking with Chinese suppliers, and therefore practically zero child laborers were exploited in order to produce it, unlike the iPhone. Americans get off on the idea that everything they consume, including art materials, are produced under the most egregiously, unnecessarily harmful and exploitative means, because it amplifies their sensation that “we’re lucky to live here,” even though they themselves cause the rest of wherever else to not be so lucky a location.
The sculpture, nonetheless, unfortunately doesn’t really hit the latter points in any way.
Natalie Watkins is a figure and portrait artist from Stockton (*I gather) with really nice business cards, whom I met at Local Color’s zine fest. She’s put her watercolors and stuff into a zine called Conjoined:
Here’s one of her Trump portraits, which go cheap and would make great gifts or decorations for homes, offices, classrooms and public drinking establishments.
I don’t know if the portrait is rendered in blood and feces, but that’s what I like to think when I gaze. Watkins says the following about her work: “I do not aim to be a realist painter because I love manipulating the photograph with color and brush strokes.”
Get on Etsy and grab her stuff while it’s cheap!
At band practice, 2-Strats debuts his latest opus. Luke-Ass and Cornhouse aren’t going for it, and in his rage 2-Strats threatens to use force.
Totally forgot about this one until I was reorganizing my stuff. 2-Strats tells Dicknose, who doesn’t actually listen when you talk to him, to make him Rodka. The half-measure taken by the forgetful Dicknose is turns out to be a real cocktail. Dated 5.12.
Almost forgot to mention Smuttywood, whose charming integrants I met at Local Color during their zine fest in downtown San José. They make comics about either famous people’s dicks and boobs or famous people portrayed as dicks and boobs. The thing that caught my attention, however, was the photographic zine Men are Disposable, which I regrettably didn’t buy, but which you can order at their site. They make great gifts!