4th quarter of life, same shit or creature of habit? - 6-30-06


Wow, I really like your work.  Knowing nothing about art.......I would really expect to see your work in the halls of our corporations.  It is very modern, sharp, catchy........like what you would see in corporate headquarters.  It seems you would do well in such areas like Dallas TX, NYC business district, Los Angeles.  You should try to get some pieces in some galleries in Laguna Beach CA.  That is like the art capital of southern California.  Wealthy crowd and Irvine is right there which is the major business center in the area.

B. Harp, property manager president, Bangor,Maine - LA,CA, May 24, 2006


Thanks for the feedback. Frankly, I'm a bit burnt out on this art shit. I'm down 1 mil$ in an all out 30 year effort. This thing about "persistence, never giving up, etc." is baloney. I padded my effort with 10 college degrees (mostly in art), built a mansion around my art (lost on the real estate, like Maine), and went for the conservative blue blood art throat (controversial digital art, then bridge the look to 'real' painting to snuff their bullshit criticism that it ain't art, then took it the expensive extra mile and hired painters to paint on canvas (huge) my computer 'designs'.  Really messing with the art market system... if I go to my grave a pauper that blew 1 mil (that could have gone into properties over the decades!), at least I know   I DID MAKE ART HISTORY

although not recognized for it (probably until after I die, if I bother to set up a trust that sustains the collection - tons of large works) still burning me with monthly warehouse storage here - my wife said I should just take it all to the dump. Yes you are right - my stuff is pure high tech corporate material - traces the high tech evolution (since 80s PCs) via what art the products produced when used by a seasoned artist (masters in painting, '75, Chicago). Big canvases= prices too large for the average living room sofa; peanuts to a corporation's tax write off needs.  WHAT I NEED IS A BRAINY PR ART AGENT who knows who to work the system (corporations, art historians, galleries) to get his /her% of the millions due back to me for my life dedication, keeping me a 'starving artist' when I could have been richer than my dental peers.  At 60, I'm starting to think there ain't no justice and developing one's genius talent in art is a sucker bet. I don't feel altruistic anymore to a denying society corrupt with favoritism and self interests (who gives a fuck what a small island boy does) but want what I deserve.  At the least I hope to leave the planet not looking like the fool that I see in my teenagers' eyes.  So the reckless abandonment to escape my tropical Alcatraz chains by attempting museum beach head lst in Bangor then now a gallery in Santa Fe.  Both starting to feel like acts of desperation.   I'm turning a corner in life where old geezers start behaving more conservatively, give up on youthful dreams, keep the buck at home, and start saving for long term care. Shit.
On the bright side, artistically, I know it ain't the art.  It's historical - nobody can argue against that - it a 20 year effort to give legitimacy to digital art as a true new art medium (that threatens the art market system of rare collectibles and painfully made by hand virtues).  The problem is, especially with the visibility the Internet gives a world of artists, there's the awareness of the reality of millions of great artists, all performing at the same level of past historical greats, and only a few lucky ones will win the art gallery representation lottery.  Supply (masters) and demand (who gets promoted and marketed).  Like I said, looks like I"ve played a sucker's game all my life. There's still a decade or so left,.... hmmmm, what to do with that.  I've done enough truly creative breakthrough art for several lifetimes.  Leave the table, try a new game?

Basically, my plan was to buy a small building to house my lifetime of work - the inventory deserves it, ego aside. A body of 250 paintings designed using computers, 1985-present. Sculpture and ceramics prior to my musing with the digital in '85. PHD in art psychology to give me a theory of aesthetic to work by, to insulate myself from criticism and bias based upon old century values and attitude. To be a high tech kinda guy, even if after 40 at the get go. People would pay tickets to get in and see this imaginary world where art history (painting) and computers first conjugated, becoming bed partners in my brain back when conventional artists (globally) felt threatened by the computer's graphic powers and it was heresy to even delve into it, risking "career suicide" as one fellow artist put it in 1985.  "Don't mess with the computer if you are serious of making it someday as an artist."  So, my friend, if you have any idea how to pull this off (corporate bucks would help - think of the PR, especially Electronic Arts - I used their lst program to do lots of ground breaking art - before they became the super power of online game products- know somebody who can get in their corporate door and sell a couple million bucks of art to grace their walls with art made from their first product, art that was ground breaking and should really be in museums).  That's why I went to Bangor in the lst place - cheapo brick and mortar Main Street building online for sale at 150K.  (Renovation turned out to be $450,000 and had to be done with cash Before I could get a mortgage).   "Build it and they shall come." 

Not to delude you with my life woes, but I also want you to know (since I have your ear momentarily), I've taken it upon myself to be my own art historian since the 60s. I'm probably one of the best documented living (serious) artists around.  Not much RESEARCH POSTMORTUM needs to be done if the lucky researcher/writer/editor just goes to www.lastplace.com/page49.htm and compiles and publishes what I have documented in this here "artistic life."  A good marketeer would do such too, even force me to give lectures (Chang, MAMAMAMAMSED,PHD) to hype the sideartshow to mine for sales.

I keep learning about the "reality" of being an artist. The first month ends having my art presented as a professional art catalog at the most trafficked Web site for contemporary art (so the owners claim).  My work is interesting enough to have generated 60,000 hits/clicks (imagine 60,000 coming into an art gallery!) but zero sales or inquiry!  During this course of time I have become acquainted with the level of competition at this site and believe me when I say there are thousands of rejected masterful artists, all looking for gallery representation.  Supply and demand. No wonder so many visual arts maestros still have to keep their day jobs. One echo through the halls seems to be "Is anybody selling?"

In the meantime I continue spending to support the true value-yet recognized of my work. I will publish a full color book of 100 of my favorite paintings. If this isn't enough ammo for a good promoter,  then at least it seals further my art's worth for posterity. As the father of all the produced artifacts, I still truly believe some of these works will fetch millions of dollars down the stretch of time. I'm one of the few who dared to wedge Western painting with personal computers at the get go (1985) and continued to explore this interface for decades with no market in place.