23 April 2015


Roots and leaves themselves alone are these;
Scents brought to men and women from the wild woods, and from the pond-side,
Breast-sorrel and pinks of love—fingers that wind around tighter than vines,
Gushes from the throats of birds, hid in the foliage of trees, as the sun is risen;
Breezes of land and love—breezes set from living shores out to you on the living sea—to you, O sailors!
Frost-mellow’d berries, and Third-month twigs, offer’d fresh to young persons wandering out in the fields when the winter breaks up,
Love-buds, put before you and within you, whoever you are,
Buds to be unfolded on the old terms;
If you bring the warmth of the sun to them, they will open, and bring form, color, perfume, to you;
If you become the aliment and the wet, they will become flowers, fruits, tall blanches and trees.

--Walt Whitman


Touch is a series of hyperreal paintings by Korean artist Kwangho Lee.

22 April 2015

natural colours

"Flowers, and thoughts of flowers, were Miss Foxe's main occupation. She didn't especially care for motion pictures; she found them too noisy. She would have liked to have had friends to lend books to and borrow pie dishes from. But it was difficult for Miss Foxe to reach that stage with anyone. She spoke so quietly that people couldn't understand what she was saying and quickly lost patience. When she paid for things in shops, the change was invariably placed on the counter instead of in her hand. Miss. Foxe occasionally wondered if she had spent her life approaching invisibility and had finally arrived at it. She encouraged herself to see her very small presence in the world as a good thing, a power, something that a hero might possess."

--Helen Oyeyemi, Mr. Fox.

Gerhard Richter
"Hang your roses upside down and keep the last love in
The great thing about winter flowers is they look alive when they're long gone
So hang your roses upside down and keep the last love in them"

-- Martha Tilston, Winter Flowers

18 April 2015

Saturday Poem

a piece of quartz

"My brother once showed me a piece of quartz that contained, he said, some trapped water older than all the seas in our world. He held it up to my ear. ‘Listen,’ he said, ‘life and no escape.’
Anne Carson, Plainwater.

15 April 2015

Beatrice Wood

A Mother of Earth!

It’s non-threatening stuff

BB My ex-boyfriend used to tease me, he’d come in when I was working and say, “Working on your dowry?” At certain times I’ll put myself on an art diet, I’ll say: no more dishes, no more 19th century, no more household objects. The use of them becomes a habit and then a style, which is not ever what I intended, it’s embarrassing. But then I think, why am I so drawn to these things? It’s not that they’re from the feminine domain, although I’m certainly aware of it, but it has more to do with scale. I’m attracted to the enormous, important matters of life that take place on a small, everyday scale. Nabokov, a favorite writer of mine, pays incredible attention to details, like a glass breaking. In our culture everything which is large and grandiose is assumed important, and everything which is small is considered of less importance. I don’t think that way. I’m interested in a gesture or an expression on someone’s face. And that gets paralleled in the object-making world as well.

KS It’s non-threatening stuff.

BB I guess. It’s quite presumptuous but I want the experience of looking at my art work to change someone’s life. And I feel that if you give someone a big experience then they have to translate it back into the normal world. But if you give them a small experience which is somehow confusing or profound, but in the realm of their own world, then it doesn’t have to be translated, it’s already there. Because it’s not that far away from theirs. Does that make sense?

KS Yeah, it has an accessibility to the here and now, except that it’s an altered accessibility.

BB What I present is not the real world, it is fantasy, but the fantasy world spins off the real world. It’s not about War and Death; it is about loss or absence. Recently, I’ve been thinking that I’m attracted to these objects because they are breakable. I’ve always been attracted to objects which because of their fragility have an implicit absence, like glass and porcelain. I’m slowly working on this piece that has to do with things that have been broken and repaired. They’re based on the traditional Asian art form of repairing broken objects with gold. It’s almost like dental work.

KS It’s making the repair evident and obvious, a part of the experience.

BB Rather than hiding something that’s broken, it aggrandizes it, saying that something that has a history, that is not perfect anymore, is more beautiful and more valuable than something which has no history. It’s the opposite of our culture. When I was in Japan and saw these for the first time, they were so beautiful that they made me cry. And then with this accident that I had recently where I—got so broken. This is the perfect metaphor: to think about objects that are repaired with gold. These objects are stand-ins.

KS We take heart in ourselves for being a conglomerate of things that don’t necessarily work out. We are temporal and fragile, but we get a strength from being mended and repaired. That in-between of existence . . . Glass and ceramics are the two materials that are the most telling. Pot shards are found all over at archeological sites, glass ceramics all over the Roman colonized world.

BB I love that a culture could be told by its pots . . .

KS Both of those materials in terms of art are marginalized, and regarded in low esteem as craftsy-waftsy.

BB Not anymore.

KS I think ceramics is pretty marginalized in the art world.

BB I don’t think that I’m making ceramics.

KS Yeah, I know. Porcelain. (laughter)

Brilliant conversation between Kiki Smith and Barbara Bloom over at Bomb Magazine
Read it in full here.

Lucie Rie (again)

Lucie Rie

14 April 2015

Barbara Bloom

"Recently, I’ve been thinking that I’m attracted to these objects because they are breakable. I’ve always been attracted to objects which because of their fragility have an implicit absence, like glass and porcelain. I’m slowly working on this piece that has to do with things that have been broken and repaired. They’re based on the traditional Asian art form of repairing broken objects with gold. It’s almost like dental work."
-- Barabara Bloom in conversation with Kiki Smith.

Mexican hope chest

The Hope Chest

"My mother owned a long narrow cedar trunk that looked to me, when I was a little girl, like a coffin. It was at the end of her bed and my mother would pile quilts on the coffin, covering its surface. If the quilts were spread over a bed, I would see that the wood was carved with flowered panels. Among these flowers sat a small copper lock, cool as a wasp, securing my mother’s box from the destructive forces of curious children like me.
Eventually, I found a way to break into the trunk, but when I saw the contents, I couldn’t understand why my mother had locked it to begin with. It was filled with the most mundane things imaginable: A stack of white embroidered napkins, china cups and plates with silver at the edges, a cut crystal candy bowl, an album that contained mementos of me, my sister, and my brother: locks of hair, scraps of baby blankets, inked baby footprints. The air was musty inside the trunk, as if I’d entered the closed darkness of a cellar. I’d expected to find bars of gold bullion, jeweled cups, or at least a birthday present hidden among the tissue paper."
True Romantic #5: The Hope Chest

4 April 2015

Saturday Poem

If you gave me
half a moon of a chance
i would
kiss the incisors
out of your mouth, clean
and hold them in my
own, like chippings
from an old mug
pray my tongue into
a bowl of holy water
and ask god to never
leave you thirsty

-- Warsan Shire

1 April 2015

"Kiki's studio is practically her body"

David Hicks

Artists need some kind of stimulating experience a lot of times, which crystallizes when you sing about it or paint it or sculpt it. You literally mold the experience the way you want. It's therapy.
--Erykah Badu

30 March 2015


Marc Quinn

Marc Quinn


noun: cast; plural noun: casts
  1. an object made by shaping molten metal or similar material in a mould.
    "bronze casts of the sculpture"
    • a mould used to make an object by casting.
      noun: plaster cast; plural noun: plaster casts
      "the artist's casts and moulds became the property of the museum"

    • a bandage stiffened with plaster of Paris, moulded to the shape of a limb that is broken and used to support and protect it.
       noun: plaster cast; plural noun: plaster casts
      "I had to spend a month in a cast"
  2. an act of throwing something forcefully.
    "he grabbed a spear for a third cast"
    • the form or appearance of something, especially someone's features or complexion.
      "she had a somewhat masculine cast of countenance"
      • the character of something.
        "this question is for minds of a more philosophical cast than mine"

    • a slight squint.
      "he had a cast in one eye"

    20 March 2015

    18 March 2015

    Shedding Skin

    “The skin biopsy was the first stage to creating the artwork. It was the moment when I thought OK this is real. It was a proper procedure. It wasn’t overly intrusive – it didn’t hurt or anything – it’s just a case of sterilising a part of my arm and cutting out a chunk of skin.

    About two weeks later we converged at the Institute of Neurology to look at the stains and the actual skin that had been processed. They were stained in particular colours; a purple, minty green, blue and a pinky colour. They looked amazing – they just looked like paintings. I was really blown away by all the detail. What we created was me!”

    -- Ghostpoet on the making of his latest album Shedding Skin.

    Found via it's nice that.