Fellow Travelers.



Most people are aware of Sen. McCarthy’s red scare, the hunt for commies under every rock and pillow, but it wasn’t the only hunt McCarthy engineered, there was the lavender scare also, which yes, Cohn helped out with, in spite of being gay himself. There was a terrible purge of people, many of whom decided to die rather than face decades of abuse, turned backs, and no way to find employment ever again. In 2008, Thomas Mallon wrote Fellow Travelers, a historical fiction which centers on two people living and working during the lavender scare. The choice of title is a laden one. Now the book has become an opera:

You can read all about it at The Advocate.

Opposing Forces.

An abandoned U.S. missile base.

An abandoned U.S. missile base.

An abandoned Soviet missile base.

An abandoned Soviet missile base.

Be it the deliberate destruction of something or its sheer neglect, what transgresses is rarely the complete story. I photograph the visual footprints that the human race leaves on the landscape during its march through time. When the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the Soviet Union signaled the end of the Cold War, the holdings of American and Russian nuclear armaments were significantly reduced with many of the supporting facilities being closed and abandoned. All that now remains are decaying reminders of the might once exhibited by two opposing forces heading towards an unimaginable end. Just like time, photography can strip away the extraneous distraction of life to leave a meditative stillness. Sometimes silence speaks the loudest.

Soviet and American Nuclear Missile Bases by Brett Leigh Dicks.

Uprise / Angry Women.

Laura Murray, ‘Plug It Up’.

UPRISE / ANGRY WOMEN Exhibit artwork, The Untitled Space Gallery, New York – Laura Murray – Plug It Up.

In the wake of Paul Ryan’s promise to defund Planned Parenthood, the current political climate is not promising for women. In response, The Untitled Space art gallery has assembled work by 80 contemporary female artists expressing anger and defiance through their art. Uprise/Angry Women gives women a chance to artistically express their fears and frustrations about the sexist and discriminatory rhetoric brought to light by the impending administration. The show’s curator Indira Cesarine writes, “Right now, more than ever, women need to unify and work together to ensure that our rights, which were fought for with blood and tears for many decades, are not only assured, but continue to progress.”

Cara Deangelis, ‘Donald Trump with a Crown of Roadkill’.

UPRISE / ANGRY WOMEN Exhibit artwork, The Untitled Space Gallery, New York – CARA DEANGELIS- Donald Trump with a Crown of Roadkill.

Lili-White, ‘Winning Personality Target’.

UPRISE / ANGRY WOMEN Exhibit artwork, The Untitled Space Gallery, New York – Lili White “Winning-Personality Target”.

Linda Friedman Schmidt, ‘Weeding’.

UPRISE / ANGRY WOMEN Exhibit artwork, The Untitled Space Gallery, New York – Linda Friedman Schmidt – Weeding.

You can read about this at The Creators Project. * UPRISE / ANGRY WOMEN.

2017 Ronin | Globus Artist in Residence Program.


Following a highly successful inaugural year, the 2017 Ronin | Globus Artist-in-Residence Program is back! Open to artists practicing in Japan, this annual program seeks to stimulate cross-cultural dialogue by providing the opportunity for Japanese visual artists to live, work and exhibit in New York City. Last year’s winner, Oz Yamaguchi, concluded his residency last year with a sold-out art show!

Spoon & Tamago is happy to be collaborating once again as a media sponsor and judge. The theme this year is “Iki: Stylish, Simple, and Sophisticated.” Artists working in Japan can submit applications through April 1st, 2017.

(Information in Japanese)
昨年に続き、ローニン/グローバス・アーティスト・イン・レジデンス・プログラムに 参加させていただく運びとなりました。本プログラムは日本のヴィジュアル・アートの先駆者たちを通じた異文化間対話の活性化を模索するものです。紙上に作 品を創り上げる日本人のアーティストに向けて開かれたこの機会では、住居と、畳敷きのスタジオ・スペースと、そしてローニン・ギャラリーで開催される「日 本における現代美術の才能」展に出品するチャンスを提供いたします。本プログラムや詳しい応募方法(締め切りは2017年4月1日)については、こちらをご参照ください。ご応募おまちしております!

This is a great opportunity for all artists living in Japan. Jump on it!

The full story is at Spoon & Tamago.

New Year’s Ukiyoe.

Chinese New Year is coming up, it’s on the 28th this month. 2017 is the Year of the Rooster. I’m a rooster, a fire rooster to be specific. If it’s your year, it’s supposed to be a bad one for you. Nothing new there, except that I can hope that particular fantasy is wrong. Very wrong. Please be very wrong. Are you listening, universe? Probably not.

Over 150 years ago the ukiyo-e artist Shigematsu Enrosai created an imaginary beast as a woodblock print and called it “Twelve Precepts.” The beast featured the head of a rabbit, the neck of a dragon, the tail of a snake, the forelegs of a monkey and the hind legs of an ox. Indeed, it was a fantastical combination of all 12 zodiac animals. Now, Japanese artist Feebee has created her own interpretation, and has produced it in the same technique as it was made in around 1850.

“A beast called Kotobuki”

“A beast called Kotobuki”

Feebee’s creation is titled “A beast called Kotobuki – bird-“ (2017) and is created in her unique style of using vivid colors and excruciating detail to render fantastical beasts. This time, however, instead of painting she collaborated with the Adachi Foundation for the Preservation of Woodcut Printing. If you were thinking about becoming a member, now’s your chance because Feebee’s woodblock print comes as a membership reward (20,000 yen, or about $170).


Below are 2 fascinating videos that show the production process of the woodblock print. Even if you’re familiar, it’s a nice reminder of the incredible work and craftsmanship that goes into producing these.

Via Spoon & Tamago.

Cool Stuff Friday.

The 100 Best Space Photos of 2016.

Click for full size.


Astrophotographer Mike Killian took this image of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket blasting off on May 6 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.


Greg Diesel Walck took the image from Moyock, North Carolina as a thunderstorm drifted across the horizon on Aug. 5. Read the full story here.

Y’know, we get serious weather here, but it never looks like this. Sigh.

Free Legal Tips!

L2 L20 12

The 2016 Comedy Wildlife Awards.

Click for full size.


Stay Afloat.

Every Moment Counts, 1989, Rotimi Fani-Kayode.

Every Moment Counts, 1989, Rotimi Fani-Kayode.

Conversation with a Mannequin, 2013, Kelvin Atmadibrata performance for the camera.

Conversation with a Mannequin, 2013, Kelvin Atmadibrata
performance for the camera.

Lovers Lane, 2016, Sharmar Johnson White pencil Black paper, 22x28.

Lovers Lane, 2016, Sharmar Johnson
White pencil Black paper, 22×28.

A Pile of Crowns, for Jean-Michel Basquiat, 1988, Keith Haring acrylic on canvas, 108x120, Keith Haring artwork © Keith Haring Foundation.

A Pile of Crowns, for Jean-Michel Basquiat, 1988, Keith Haring
acrylic on canvas, 108×120,
Keith Haring artwork © Keith Haring Foundation.

…“In our work and in our living, we must recognize that difference is a reason for celebration and growth, rather than a reason for destruction.” Reflecting on this quote by Audre Lorde, I know that these sentiments are the way forward. Although, I am honestly a bit anxious about the next four years, I see strength and intelligence in these artists. I love the humor in RALPH HALL’s piece Bassethound, which pictures a fluorescent dog with butt plug. I also salute the tenacity of young artists like Kia Labeija. As seen in all their work, many of the artists in the Visual AIDS Artist+ Registry share the same love of an eclectic bunch of leaders that I do. We stand on the shoulders of heroes, like Harriet Tubman, Gordon Parks, Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Grace Jones, Frankie Knuckles, Lady Bunny, Marlon Riggs, Tina Turner and countless others. Brave hearts are not a new concept; this struggle is part of our DNA.

The featured gallery from Visual Aids December 2016. Beautiful, poignant work, you can see it all here.

Neil Patrick Harris is Count Olaf.

After years of chasing a laugh track on How I Met Your Mother, the actor is following roles in Gone Girl and American Horror Story with Netflix’s new Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, based on the classic children’s books. In the new super-stylized series, Harris stars as the villainous Olaf, who becomes the guardian of three orphans solely to abscond with their fortune.

“I’m drawn to puzzles and darkness,” says Harris. “The Alfred Hitchcock–y vibe is something I’ve been into since I was kid, and I loved Gene Wilder’s take on Willy Wonka and Bridge to Terabithia.”

Aside from being just plain rotten, Harris’s alter ego is also a rotten aspiring musical-theater actor — basically, a much crappier, much uglier version of himself.

“Playing someone so miserable makes things hard to complain about,” says Harris, who spends two and a half hours having prosthetics applied for the role. “I can ingest my annoyances and use them.”

Going by the trailer, Harris also infuses the role of Count Olaf with humor. A performance to look forward to, along with the rest of the cast.

Via Out.

The Phantom Atlas.

I love maps. I have a calendar up which is comprised of antique maps. Cartography is a colourful and wonderful art, as well as a record of how we thought at various stages. The farther you go back, the more fascinating maps are, and it’s not just the artwork. Of course they were terribly wrong, and wrought more of imagination than anything else, but there is such wonder and awe! So many places that turned out to have existence in the mind, so many magical creatures which weren’t. Now you can explore The Phantom Atlas: The Greatest Myths, Lies and Blunders on Maps by Edward Brooke-Hitching. (Yes, I noted the Simon & Schuster UK, and I’m not happy about it.)

Sea monsters on Olaus Magnus’s “Carta marina et description septemtrionalium terrarum ac mirabilium” (“Nautical Chart and Description of the Northern Lands and Wonders”) (1527–39).

Sea monsters on Olaus Magnus’s “Carta marina et description septemtrionalium terrarum ac mirabilium” (“Nautical Chart and Description of the Northern Lands and Wonders”) (1527–39).

“This is an atlas of the world — not as it ever existed, but as it was thought to be,” Brooke-Hitching writes in an introduction. “The countries, islands, cities, mountains, rivers, continents, and races collected in this book are all entirely fictitious; and yet each was for a time — sometimes for centuries — real. How? Because they existed on maps.”

Mythical islands were often copied by mapmakers, who, for instance, could not easily voyage out to the Southern Hemisphere to see if it did indeed have the giant Terra Australis continent. The Phantom Atlas includes Hy Brasil, recently the subject of a Boston Public Library exhibition, which stayed on maps for five centuries, and had tales of a sorcerer who lived with huge black rabbits and, later, UFOs. Although Brooke-Hitching features extremes of credulity, like a 40-foot “sea worm” that roamed the shores of Norway on a 16th-century map by Olaus Magnus, he also cites more recent mistakes. Sandy Island was recorded in the eastern Coral Sea by a whaling ship in 1876, and it wasn’t until November 2012 that it was deemed fictional. And in the 19th century, there were still those who believed in a flat Earth, such as Professor Orlando Ferguson of Hot Springs, South Dakota, who in 1893 illustrated a map arguing for this planar view of the planet, which he based on biblical texts.

What makes Brooke-Hitching’s book more than just a collection of oddities is the emphasis on why these errors happen, and how relying on religion at the exclusion of science, or valuing outsider reports ahead of indigenous knowledge, detrimentally impacted centuries of exploring.

Map of the Arctic by Gerardus Mercator (first printed 1595, edition from 1623), with the mythical “Rupes Nigra” magnetic black rock at the North Pole.

Map of the Arctic by Gerardus Mercator (first printed 1595, edition from 1623), with the mythical “Rupes Nigra” magnetic black rock at the North Pole.

There’s much, much more at Hyperallergic.

The Painting Hated by the GOP.

David Pulphus's painting in response to the Ferguson unrest, "Untitled #1", won first place in Missouri's 1st Congressional District in the 2016 United States Congressional Art Competition.

David Pulphus’s painting in response to the Ferguson unrest, “Untitled #1”, won first place in Missouri’s 1st Congressional District in the 2016 United States Congressional Art Competition.

Each year since 1982, the Congressional Institute has sponsored a high school art competition whereby students submit artwork to their congressional representative’s office, which in turn selects a winner. The 435 winning artworks are then exhibited in Washington, DC, hung salon style in a hallway between the Capitol Building and Longworth House Office Building for a year. The office of Representative William Lacy Clay, a Democrat from St. Louis, Missouri, selected a painting by Cardinal Ritter College Prep High School senior David Pulphus in early May 2016. Early this month, the untitled painting was hung in the Capitol. A few days later, the Independent Journal Review, a right-wing website with a mixed record on factual reporting, published an article titled, “Painting of Cops as Pigs Hung Proudly in US Capitol.” A cycle of outrage began. Fox News picked up the story. In a ginned up moment, Representative Duncan Hunter, Republican from San Diego, California unscrewed the painting from the wall, delivered it to Representative Clay’s office, and went to Fox News to brag about it. Today, Representative Clay and members of the Congressional Black Caucus rehung the painting. Shortly thereafter Representative Doug Lamborn, a Republican from Colorado, removed it again, only to have Representative Clay rehang it again. Congressional Republicans are discussing how to remove it permanently.

The full story is at Hyperallergic. For people who almost never shut up about being persecuted or censored (or criticized), conservatives are always the first ones to try and censor anything they don’t like.


A Chilean artist is creating outlandish, eye-catching garments specifically to ensure that they won’t be ignored. Ingrato is the alter ego of Sebastián Plaza Kutzbach, a creative producer at The University of Chile, who uses traditional textile processes to make garments that are designed to attract attention. Kutzbach tells The Creators Project why he invented the alter ego and what he’s trying to do with it: “The project was born because of the need to show the artisan’s work that exists in my country and its devalued state because of the textile industry. Everything that I display as ‘Ingrato’ is handmade.”

Chile has a rich history of textile art. The Mapuche, for example, are an indigenous Chilean culture that are known for traditional garments, which were once so highly valued that one of their ponchos could be traded for multiple horses. Kutzbach is concerned that Chilean garments now have to compete with a globalized textile industry that’s decreasing their worth in comparison to cheaper, factory-made garments. Kutzbach’s intention is to highlight the artistry behind Chilean textiles, especially their handmade qualities, and to illustrate their creative possibilities. “The concept seeks to intervene the human body in different ways,” says Kutzbach. And considering that Ingrato translates to “ungrateful,” it seems that one intervention that Kutzback is determined to achieve is an increase in appreciation for the skilled labor involved with textile production.

Photo: Mairo Arde.

Photo: Mairo Arde.

The full story is at The Creators Project.