Went with Lisa Marie and her bf John and my other friend Ingrid S. to a couple of art shows this weekend. For the occasion, I attempted to look more alternative by putting my hair in two side buns ala Princess Leia. I believe I looked slightly like a very special girl who should've also been wearing a crash helmet. At one place, we were crammed into a room with 1,001 hipsters and a man dressed as a woman who was the photographer. Please, please, please God do not let my photo appear on any art web sites; I don't photograph well when I haven't had five minutes to practice my fake smile. I always come off as appearing shocked and discombobulated as though someone has just told me that my skirt is tucked into my underwear. I couldn't tell you what the art was like; there were too many people blocking it. Then we walked 500 blocks to Vox Populi, this great loft space in Chinatown. They had a video installation on running loop; I only saw two of them. The first was a girl fake performing an ice skating routine in her socks. I thought it was funny and clever. Lisa Marie was less impressed. The other video was a send up of Sex in the City, four girls wearing wigs and having unwitty, badly acted dialogue in a diner + nakedness (the woman playing Samantha showed her boobs). I yawned. I can be a snotty bitch sometimes. Next, we went to see the work of Lisa Marie's friend, Josh Rickards. I think this is the second show of his that I've seen; can't remember if the previous one was also at Vox, though I think it was. Josh is a hipster boy with funky black glasses and snappy blue eyes. I ran into him on the street the other day when I was carrying home my artificial pink Christmas tree from Circle Thrift. I made him hold the tree while I showed him the equally bright white wreath with lights. Occasionally, I meet people who don't immediately react to my quick familiarity with fear. He is one such person. His work is also bright--lots of bold colors and portraits of people with phallic noses (please note that I did not use the word "penis." My friend Hillel hates the word penis and whenever I try to use it, he asks me to say "willie" instead. Not that it comes up often).
My favorite piece in this show was a painting of a majestic lion dressed in 70s clothes; I believe he had on stripped pants and a belt buckle. He might have been even holding a glass of brandy in his paw; not sure (if not, it should be added). Lisa Marie and I interrogated him about the use of the phallic noses. I said, So, are you a big fan of Freud? He had three reasons at the ready as to why he does that. I can't recall exactly the three things, but one of them had something to do with the nose being the easiest facial part to remove or change ala Michael Jackson. I said, How does that relate to your artist's statement about human connections? He said, It really doesn't. In searching for his images, I read a review of his work that compares it to the Simpson's. I think that's a stupid comparison; his work is cartoonish but it's also a little dark; I mean, none of the figures he paints are particularly attractive; reminds me more of Crumb; edgy, shocking, a little grotesque but still very human and exposed.
Another piece I like of his is this one he has of a reclining nude man with a moustache and a li'l vulnerable penis (sorry, H.) lying to the side like its just exhausted. I love it because you don't often see paintings like this; we're all totally fine with naked gals and we have The Vagina Monologues and women have been objectified since God was a baby, but you just never get to see naked men posed in reclining postures, offering themselves up in all of their bare pink, white or browness. I thought he was doing a satire of a female nude; a tribute to a Modigliani or a Lempicka or a Matisse or any one of a number of photos in Penthouse. It turns out that he was inspired by Burt Reynolds suave nakedness in a 1972 issue of Cosmopolitan or Playgirl, depending on what kind of Google search you do. I offered to buy the painting from him, saying I would pay him $10 a month for the next 20 years. He said, It doesn't cost that much. We then struggled to figure out what $10 a month would amount to in that span of time and both came up blank. He said, Well, it's only $250. So then I guess I could pay him a quarter a month for the next two decades. Does that work? Also, he copied me and bought a red Christmas tree from Circle Thrift. I take full credit for it. He also promised to let me drive him to the shelter to buy a dog after the holidays. I hope we can go to a no-kill shelter; otherwise, I will end up bringing home two one-legged dogs, five blind cats, a llama and a miniature pony. But if you really want to be nice to me, buy me this painting: