post Philly!

November 15th, 2009

Filed under: art,check this out,food,friends,thoughts,travel — nics @ 6:21 pm

I took a road trip with my friend Missy this weekend to Philadelphia. Thanks for asking me to join you and suggesting some great destinations, Missy! Every time I go to Philadelphia I have a great time and see super-duper (I used the thesaurus to get that word because I didn’t want to use great again and my brain wouldn’t come up with anything interesting – thanks thesaurus!) things and convince myself I want to move there. Are there any out Philadelphians out there? Is it as awesome as the awesomeness I am projecting onto it?

Part 1: Jason Hackenwerth Show
Missy introduced me to this artist (which I believe is what inspired her idea for this trip in the first place). We saw his large scale balloon sculptures at a gallery whose name I can’t remember but was an amazing restored warehouse style space and was in the same neighborhood as the restaurant we went to below. The fingery parts of the uninflated ends reminded me a lot of some of my more obsessive amoeba-like drawings.

Part 2: Lunch at Johnny Brenda’s
We met a friend of Missy’s for lunch here, thanks to her friend’s wonderful suggestion. At my insistence we began the foodfest with a whiskey donut. Delicious! And very whiskey-ish. I couldn’t help but be reminded of my grandmother’s super soaked rum balls that I love now but was disgusted by as a kid. Also at my insistence we sat at the dark table with pulsating lights (pictured above with the beloved donut). I proceeded to order ham and cheese grits which was covered in sunny side up eggs. Also very yummy! I finished it all off with some wonderful local beer – they had a lot of choices on tap. It looks like this place has it all: good food (both savory and sweet), good drink, interesting decor, and apparently live music as I see from their website.

Part 3: Eastern State Penitentiary
I have always wanted to go here but for one reason or another all my trips to Philadelphia have not allowed the time to squeeze it in. Until now. If you have not been there, it is worth checking it out! We happened to pick the perfect kind of day to go (dreary, overcast, and chilly) and the sun was setting toward the end which added to the creepy factor of the place. The detritus, textures, and gloomy atmosphere forced me to have to restrain myself from taking a photo every time I took a step. Artist installations appear here and there in some of the cells. I wouldn’t suggest going there if you are expecting something amazing installation wise. While some of the pieces were great (again that great, but too lazy for thesaurus this time), you aren’t going to run into one every time you turn a corner and a lot of the technologically dependent ones weren’t working. Oh, and if you decide to go, you have the pleasure of a walking recorded audio tour with Steve Buscemi to look forward to.

We had a few other interesting adventures but I think you’ve heard enough and those are some of my particularly favorite highlights.

post curses of art poop

November 13th, 2009

Filed under: art,thoughts — nics @ 12:33 am

I’m having one of those days (or weeks, or months) when I feel like being an artist is a curse. Every spare moment I have in which I am not making art I feel guilty that I am not making art and therefore even the time I set aside to do nothing but have fun is partially tainted by this underlying guilt.

And this guilt stems from making nothing that I have been terribly excited about lately. And the work that I force myself to do anyway I like to call art poop. Which is not necessarily bad art but is unexcited sad art. I give you art poop.