Emily Hughes

NOTE: Full disclosure here, I was introduced to Emily Hughes when she contacted me regarding my long-suffering Grimey Studios project. I recommended her as an artist for MEA before I was a member of the same, so, I am discussing her here as a friend despite her current MEA show. That’s just fortuitous.

"Viberenergy," Emily Hughes

Alright, after a time period best described as “entirely too long,” I think we’re do a look at the work of Emily Hughes, a friendly acquaintance of mine. Emily, who’s in charge at the Logansport Art Association here in Indiana, is a fairly activist-minded, er, illustrator? Just what do you call someone who’s work is primarily drawing (charcoal, ink, colored pencil)? Draw-er just sounds weird, albeit amusing. Illustrator, though, now that sounds respectable, if inaccurate. Hmm…

"Time," Emily Hughes

Moving on, her work is line based, so any comments I have about it being strongly based on line and detail seem a bit silly, but it’s still worth noting that there is a very strong textural presence to her line-handling. Emily’s lines rarely stop and outlining, and go on to form tight, knotted swirls defining trunks, and bark, and other dense, textural areas.

Most of her pieces are in what she’s calling her “Tree Concentration,” the exact concept of which I intend sit down and talk with her about sometime. Overall, the series seems to work by contrasting human figures in their naked state against marshy scenes of trees and related flora. Suggestions of ensnarement (or entwinement, depending on how at peace the figure is with te interaction) crop up frequently.

"Introduction To Color," Emily Hughes

And, while so far the large, full-color piece I opened this post with appears to get the most comment and attention, I personally prefer her more muted, layered works, such as “Introduction To Color,” with it’s very limited color palette and contrasted figures and situations (not to mention the swirling textural lines and the many fine branches that keep encouraging me to pay closer attention to the technical craft that created it.)

But, whatever of her works you prefer, she is MEA‘s featured artist for this month, so any of you in the Indianapolis area (or a bit farther, if you don’t mind the drive) can see eight of her works hanging at Urban Element from now until June 4th.

Chris Valites' "Water" Gives Studio Nudes New Lease On Life

"Water", 12/15, Chris Valites

"Water", 12/15, Chris Valites

So, I remain a sucker for nudes in photography, despite my also being ruffled that so many times having someone naked is a shortcut to getting something viewed as art, whether the subject being naked actually adds anything to the piece or not.

And then Mr. Colberg links today to this series from Chris Valites, which is visually very complete, and restores a sense of both magic and intimacy to the nude by mostly obscuring them and creating visual allusions to showers. The whole collection feels very intimate, stark, and elegant all at once.

Chris, my hat is off to you. Very solid work. Bravo.

Chris Valites “Water” via Conscientious

Chris Valites’ “Water” Gives Studio Nudes New Lease On Life

"Water", 12/15, Chris Valites

"Water", 12/15, Chris Valites

So, I remain a sucker for nudes in photography, despite my also being ruffled that so many times having someone naked is a shortcut to getting something viewed as art, whether the subject being naked actually adds anything to the piece or not.

And then Mr. Colberg links today to this series from Chris Valites, which is visually very complete, and restores a sense of both magic and intimacy to the nude by mostly obscuring them and creating visual allusions to showers. The whole collection feels very intimate, stark, and elegant all at once.

Chris, my hat is off to you. Very solid work. Bravo.

Chris Valites “Water” via Conscientious

Grimey Studios Starts Pondering Podcasting

finnegans_wake_tshirt-p235938976575602243p6jc_400Nick and myself have been pondering starting a Grimeycast for a while now, and over the long weekend at fellow Grimey Max Brustkern’s digs, he re-presented the notion that we should really just all read the same set passage of James Joyce’s infamous masterpiece Finnegan’s Wake and then have a debate about what that passage even said. An idea which I’m actually all for.

It has been said that Joyce, having used as much of the English language as could be used in Ulysses, proceeded in Finnegan’s Wake to make a good and solid attempt at using everyone else’s languages as well. Five eyar’s ago “AJ” from Maryland said the following about the novel in a review on Amzon, and from what I’ve read myself I haven’t found a more apt assessment of the work:

The language in “Finnegans Wake” is a continuum of puns, portmanteaus, disfigured words, anagrams, and rare scraps of straightforward prose. What Joyce does is exploit the way words look and sound in order to associate them with remote, unrelated ideas. For example, his phrase “Olives, beets, kimmells, dollies” may sound familiar to those who happen to know that the first four letters of the Hebrew alphabet are aleph, bet, gimel, daled. “Psing a psalm of psexpeans, apocryphul of rhyme” recalls a nursery rhyme that may reside quietly in your most dormant memory cells, while “Where it is nobler in the main to supper than the boys and errors of outrager’s virtue” sounds like a drunk auditioning for the role of Hamlet. Imaginary adjectives that pertain to letters of the English alphabet are employed to describe Dublin as a city “with a deltic origin and a nuinous end.” “Finnegans Wake” is the ultimate in esoterica, and what you get out of it depends largely on your store of knowledge, so that upon completion, with a mutual wink at Joyce, you congratulate yourself for being so clever.

The idea of a group discussion is, I’m almost sure, occuring to Nick because of my many discussions about the merits of Tom Robbin’s under-appreciated masterpiece Fierce Invalids Home From Hot Climates, in which Switters, the main character, is a member of a group of CIA agents and related trouble-makers and intellectuals who get together infrequently to discuss Finnegan’s Wake in all-night bravado sessions featuring more alcohol and bullshit than a cattle ranch after a whisky rain. And having attempted to read the Wake myself, I think Robbins might have been onto how to actually read that sucker.

only_revolutionsAnd, I need to read Finnegan’s Wake anyway. While I seriously doubt it’s as influential a work as Tristram Shandy–which set the ground-work for what would much later become post-modernism–Finnegan’s Wake is at least the most obvious influence on another of my favorite works of literature, the mind-baffling and circuitous Only Revolutions by Mark Z Danielewski. While both Only Revolutions and Finnegan’s Wake indulge in stream-of-consciousness verbal cartwheeling on top of a circular narrative that renders both of them nigh unreadable, that’s also what gives them their magic.Reading it through one is almost always either one of the most frustrating, exasperating disappoing experiences of your life, or one that’ll gnaw at the back of your mind, forever inviting you to do it again and again until the walls of the insanity dissolve and leave you understaning the majesty that you just know is lurking in there somewhere.

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Tonight’s Docket

  • Business card’s for Cor
  • Work on new blog for Mr. Henry
  • Aramaic Incense
  • Sand primed board down, prepare surface
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