The Evil World of Commerce


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December 27, 2009


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It is a shame that the art form is not longer taught there (or wherever it is now). I'm glad though that you no longer have to eat weeds and wash your clothes in the bathtub with detergent. Still, it has made you the person you are now!


I had no idea about lithography stones being such rare things! I hope those old stones are being treasured somewhere in the world.

And the Dowell Dance! Oh, if only Youtube had existed then!!! You in black doing interpretive dance with a dowell? Please please recreate, film, and post. Please.


The limestone for litho stones came from Bohemia, or modern Germany, and no I NEVER heard of somebody managing to break one (only stories of how people had broken themselves by way of a litho stone).

It was a tricky medium. They taught it at my school, the old way. But I had some trendy friends who taught me how to do it using metal plates, or (even better) thin sheets of plastic that came in ten packs and could be drawn on with a sharpie (cool no?).

Well, glad to hear that you at least found a safe-haven in printmaking. Even there there were kids that created "monoprints" that were essentially rolled out, day of, with a giant relief roller and a single, solid color of ink. I mean, honestly?

For me the print shop was a place where I could not talk to all the other goofs and NOT be personally insulted to be counted amongst (some of) them. I once had to sit through a performance piece entitled "Starbucks Fucks Paris." I'm not sure if words can come to terms with my reaction to the piece.

Granted, no dowells were involved. Only a blindfold, glue, a giant pinata, a mermaid suit, and black plastic bags.

Conceptualize that.

I suppose there are some things that we wish we could forget, and other things that will never go away...

That said, ditto to Elizabeth on the retroactive Youtube fantasy--perhaps an on-site civil-war-style reenactment is in store?

a thousand shades of twilight

Ralphie: Oh, I get nostalgic for weeds-a-la-medievalist from time to time. Not really!
Elizabeth: It could be that they just promulgated that myth so we would look after the stones? Anyway, I fell for it, and treated those stones with unadulterated reverence and a degree of trepidation. As for the dowell dance, as much as I would love to recreate it, I fear I might do myself a permanent injury. M and I were just watching Ken Burns' Jazz documentary and were laughing at the thought of two ornery old timers like us attempting something as energetic as a jitterbug. I fear we would have to strip it down to a few "essential" moves..
Lizzie: It was a tricky medium wasn't it? I only ever did it the old way, but was partial to transferring collages with turpentine and drawing into them. Unfortunately I was fairly ham fisted with my drawing!
I suffered through some unfortunate performance pieces too. One woman writhed around casting shadows on a paper screen with horses drawn on it and then burst through it at the end. She said it represented how she felt at art school. As much as I could relate to the sentiment, I always get the giggles in solemn situations (probably due to a childhood misspent in church). I spent the whole time thinking "don't laugh, the last thing you should do is laugh because that would just be mean" which is of course a recipe for disaster in those circumstances.


Haha yes--I, too get the most uncontrollable church giggles for exactly the same reason I'm sure. I'm laughing just imagining you laughing in that situation....haha ohh my.

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