Archive for May, 2010

A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself…Happy Memorial Day

May 31, 2010

Joseph Campbell

Joseph John Campbell (March 26, 1904 – October 30, 1987) was an American mythologist, writer and lecturer, best known for his work in comparative mythology and comparative religion. His work is vast, covering many aspects of the human experience. His philosophy is often summarized by his phrase: “Follow your bliss.”

Like all artists I want to cheat death a little and contribute something to the next generation.

May 30, 2010

Dennis Hopper

For more than 50 years, Dennis Hopper brought an extra edge to every role because some little unspoken something told us that maybe he really was as nuts as the guy he was playing.

Hopper was just a teenager when he first played characters who didn’t fit into the world around them, supporting his pal James Dean in “Rebel Without a Cause” and “Giant.”

Dean and the young Marlon Brando created the restless-young-man template to which restless young men still aspire today, and in many ways Hopper was the young man who carried that torch through the years, after Dean died and Brando got simply strange.

To the extent the movie rebels of the early 1950s had a philosophy, it was summarized when Brando’s character in “The Wild One” was asked what he was rebelling against and he replied, “Whatcha got?”

Hopper spent much of his movie career tacitly addressing both questions. From his motorcycle drug-runner in “Easy Rider” to his bizarre and scary psycho in “Blue Velvet” up through the drug-addled music man he played recently in “Crash,” almost every one of his roles asked, “Whatcha got?”

Nor did he get an answer, which after a while became the answer. In a world where so much is so screwed up, Hopper’s characters seem to be suggesting, someone has to say no, things are not all right.

He was also blessed with the right physical makeup to play characters who didn’t trust the rules.

He looked normal, the kind of guy you could bring home to meet your parents. It was only when he turned up the intensity in his eyes that you realized there was something scary there.

At the same time, for all the well-publicized drug problems that led him into an 18-year lost weekend, the off-screen Hopper did not end up wandering off into aimless indulgence.

When he wrote and produced “Easy Rider,” he saw something all the big boys in Hollywood could not. “Easy Rider” earned $40 million on a $380,000 budget, launched Jack Nicholson, spawned a boatload of cheap independent flicks and was one of the few mass entertainment productions of the late 1960s that seemed to understand the restlessness it was tapping into.

One of the things that made “Blue Velvet” such a disturbing and fascinating film was director David Lynch’s use of Roy Orbison’s great song, “In Dreams” – and the way Hopper’s character plays off it in disturbing and fascinating ways.

Orbison, a quiet, Christian man, was asked shortly before he died what he thought of the movie, particularly whether the Hopper character’s graphic language bothered him.

“I was a little shocked,” Orbison said. “But it was hard to take your eyes off that character.”

If only because, to the end, you were never sure what Dennis Hopper would do next.

Read more:

Being true to yourself is what feeds creativity, not self-doubt and criticism.

May 29, 2010

Diane Arenberg

Ancient Meditation

Ancient Meditation

Diane Arenberg is an artist who enjoys the challenges and rewards of working in many mediums. A resident of Mequon, Wisconsin, and Santa Fe, New Mexico, she pursues her love of creativity in pastel, paint, ceramics, stone, printmaking, and metalsmithing. The common thread amongst all these mediums is her passion for the landscape, nature, light, and texture. She derives much of her inspiration from the Midwest and Southwest, particularly New Mexico and Arizona, where she spends several weeks a year painting on location, or “en plein air”.

Arenberg began formal art studies at the University of Illinois and continued in the arts at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities, specializing in Interior Design. After spending ten years in the contract design field, Arenberg felt the pull to return to art. In 1986, she enrolled in post-baccalaureate Art Therapy and Alcoholism Counseling programs at the Thomas Merton Institute. In 1994, while working as an art therapist in a drug and alcohol rehabilitation hospital, she realized that her true calling was to be a fine artist.

Much of Arenberg’s training has been through classes and workshops with pastel artists such as Doug Dawson, Sally Strand, and Albert Handell, sculptors Paul Yank, Mary Davidson, and Jim Kempes, and jewelers Gene Pijanowski, John Strachota, Dale Smith, Judith Foster, and Mary Anna Petrick. She has continually broadened her scope of knowledge through stone carving, jewelry, bronze cast and found object sculpture workshops taken at Ghost Ranch Conference and Retreat Center in Abiquiu, New Mexico. It was there that she first painted with four women who joined her in a group now known as the Color Rangers.

Our old experiences, memories and fears guide us down the present path. It’s not so much that you are the artist; you are the conduit.

May 28, 2010

Nick Bantock

Nick Bantock (b. 14 July 1949 in Stourbridge, England) is a British artist and author based in Saltspring Island, British Columbia. Bantock is well-known for his popular series, The Griffin and Sabine Trilogy, and for making collage popular. His books are published by Raincoast Books in Canada and Chronicle Books in the United States.

No road is too long for him who advances slowly and does not hurry, and no attainment is beyond his reach who equips himself with patience to achieve it.

May 27, 2010

Jean de La Bruyere

Jean de La Bruyère (French pronunciation: [ʒɑ̃dəlabʁyˈjɛʁ]) (August 16, 1645 – May 10, 1696) was a French essayist and moralist.

Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain and most fools do.

May 26, 2010

Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin Franklin (January 17, 1706 – April 17, 1790) was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. A noted polymath, Franklin was a leading author and printer, satirist, political theorist, politician, scientist, inventor, civic activist, statesman, soldier, and diplomat. As a scientist, he was a major figure in the American Enlightenment and the history of physics for his discoveries and theories regarding electricity. He invented the lightning rod, bifocals, the Franklin stove, a carriage odometer, and the glass ‘armonica’. He formed both the first public lending library in America and the first fire department in Pennsylvania. He was an early proponent of colonial unity, and as a political writer and activist, he supported the idea of an American nation. As a diplomat during the American Revolution, he secured the French alliance that helped to make independence of the United States possible.

Franklin is credited as being foundational to the roots of American values and character, a marriage of the practical and democratic Puritan values of thrift, hard work, education, community spirit, self-governing institutions, and opposition to authoritarianism both political and religious, with the scientific and tolerant values of the Enlightenment. In the words of Henry Steele Commager, “In Franklin could be merged the virtues of Puritanism without its defects, the illumination of the Enlightenment without its heat.” To Walter Isaacson, this makes Franklin, “the most accomplished American of his age and the most influential in inventing the type of society America would become.”

Franklin became a newspaper editor, printer, and merchant in Philadelphia, becoming very wealthy writing and publishing Poor Richard’s Almanack and The Pennsylvania Gazette. Franklin was interested in science and technology, and gained international renown for his famous experiments. He played a major role in establishing the University of Pennsylvania and was elected the first president of the American Philosophical Society. Franklin became a national hero in America when he spearheaded the effort to have Parliament repeal the unpopular Stamp Act. An accomplished diplomat, he was widely admired among the French as American minister to Paris and was a major figure in the development of positive Franco-American relations. From 1775 to 1776, Franklin was the Postmaster General under the Continental Congress and from 1785 to 1788, the President of the Supreme Executive Council of Pennsylvania. Toward the end of his life, he became one of the most prominent abolitionists.

His colorful life and legacy of scientific and political achievement, and status as one of America’s most influential Founding Fathers, have seen Franklin honored on coinage and money; warships; the names of many towns, counties, educational institutions, namesakes, and companies; and more than two centuries after his death, countless cultural references.

My eyes were made to erase all that is ugly.

May 25, 2010

Raoul Dufy

Regatta at Cowes1934

Raoul Dufy (3 June 1877 – 23 March 1953) was a French Fauvist painter. He developed a colorful, decorative style that became fashionable for designs of ceramics and textiles, as well as decorative schemes for public buildings. He is noted for scenes of open-air social events. He was also a draftsman, printmaker, book illustrator, a theatrical set-dresser, a designer of furniture, and a planner of public spaces.

Walk softly in to the night..then scream like a mother fucker to let them know you are there.

May 24, 2010


The only person you have to please, with your art, is yourself.

May 23, 2010

Don Getz

Ode to ‘Arley 1994

Born in 1934, in the small northeast Ohio town of Salem, Don Getz took to art at the ripe age of five, drawing steel trucks and cars of customers at his father’s steel fabrication business. Getz, Sr. was artistically inclined; able to create almost anything to order from metal. Don’s mother also had a flare for art which influenced her son.
Getz worked in commercial art for 23 years, as an illustrator and producer of TV commercials; turning to a career in fine art in 1977, He began painting for relaxation in 1962 and quickly began to teach others. He founded the Boston Mills Artfest in 1972, directing the two weekend event for 25 years. In 1978, he was instrumental in the founding of the Ohio Watercolor Society, serving as the founding president until 1988. In 1980, Getz organized the Boston Mills Artist Workshops, offering up to 40 summer classes in the final year of 1984.
In 1985, Getz was granted signature membership in the prestigious American Watercolor Society. He has designed and supervised the production of the annual AWS Exhibition Catalog since 1985, is a life member of AWS and serves as 4th V.P. of AWS. He also served Knickerbocker Artists-USA, as a director, for several years in the early 90’s. Don is also responsible for creating a series of poster paintings of the Adirondacks since 1986, for the Arts Center / Old Forge, NY. This series has become highly collectable and serves as an annual fundraiser for the art center. Getz presently serves as curator of a series of educational art exhibitions, Art @ M.D. Garage, in a restored 1940 era gas station owned by the National Park Service, in the heart of the Cuyahoga Valley National Park, where he and wife, Judie, reside. Getz is also an advisor to the NPS “Artist-In-Residence” Program at CVNP.

A man’s worth is no greater than the worth of his ambition.

May 22, 2010

Marcus Aurelius

Marcus Aurelius Antoninus Augustus (26 April 121 – 17 March 180) was Roman emperor from 161 to his death in 180. He ruled with Lucius Verus as co-emperor from 161 until Lucius’ death in 169. He was the last of the “Five Good Emperors”, and is also considered one of the most important Stoic philosophers. His tenure was marked by wars in Asia against a revitalized Parthian Empire, and with Germanic tribes along the Limes Germanicus into Gaul and across the Danube. A revolt in the East, led by Avidius Cassius who previously fought under Lucius Verus against the Parthians, failed.

Marcus Aurelius’ work Meditations, written in Greek while on campaign between 170 and 180, is still revered as a literary monument to a government of service and duty.