Friday, May 4, 2012

leaving baltimore

tony divers by his mural

although he lives 5 blocks away now, his family lived in the block where his portrait went up 50 years ago.

mural by lny

gallery myrtis
2224 north charles street in station village

work by other artists taking part in open walls baltimore

sten + lex on a mission...  (italy)

that was the joke with them.  they were on a mission because everything that could go wrong, was going wrong for them in baltimore.  they had problems with the conversion from meters to feet + reprints had to be made, the weather was cold + rainy, their wall had to be angle ground before they could begin.  (i gotta say, i never knew what angle grinding was or that people did it before installing pieces outdoors but sten + lex did most all of their own angle grinding, frequently in the rain, on their big ass wall.)  

i had the pleasure of spending 10 days with them in gaia's studio.  as i type this, manuel has been searching for the past 20 minutes for his headlight so, as every night, they can continue working late into the night.  james brown's death was timely because sten + lex would have taken his title as the hardest working man in show business.  now, in light of jb's death, they're the undisputed champs. 

their technique is so labor intensive and time consuming it's nuts, but yields beautiful results.  i loved sten + lex before i ever met them or saw them work but love them more after hanging with them.  you guys are the best!

pixelpancho + 2501   (italy) 

pixelpancho (italy)

i tell people frequently that i attended an alternative, quaker, junior high school.  it was the arthur morgan school in the mountains of north carolina.  it was a small school; there were only 24 to 25 of us in grades 7, 8 + 9 during my time there.  each spring we'd divide into grounds and venture out into the world on field trips.  my 8th grade year i did a canoe trip through the florida everglades.  my 7th and 9th grade years i went to a small, black, quaker community near beauford, south carolina.  we did community service work and laying a walkway in the garden or clearing a field of brush, all the stuff you hate to be doing at that age.  

i was supposed to be here for only 8 days but because my first attempt at getting tony's picture up last thursday night (from 8 p.m. until 4 a.m.), resulted in "the major fail," i extended my trip a week.  it's been my first 2 week vacation in almost 3 years.

this 2 week period in baltimore has reminded me of my community building experiences in junior high school.  i had an opportunity to walk the streets of a new, unfamiliar city and make a few acquaintances such that when i saw people on the street, we'd exchange greetings on a first name basis.  it felt good and reminded me of home in north carolina.  

i'm sad to leave baltimore.  i feel i made some good art, met and worked with some wonderful people and connected with a few people in the community who appreciated the art coming to them.  

thank you marty for that!

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