“Stamen/Anther” is done. So is “Fallopia/Piston Postcards” and maybe that ends the flower paintings. In progress you find a board with a border inspired by Ottoman illumination

↓ ”Stamen/Anther” or “Coming”, (595 x 460 mm), mixed media on MDF.595x460_Stamen
The stamen is the “male” reproductive organ you commonly find in the middle of a flower surrounding the “female” part: the stigma. At the end of the stamen you find an anther. That is where pollen is produced and eventually discharged from. If you are a flower you want to spread that stuff in order to procreate. To that purpose many flowers use the help of bees and other insects. Doesn’t get any sexier, amirite?

↓ “Fallopia/Piston Postcards” or “Longing”, (125 ≈ 127 x 190≈ 245 mm), mixed media on cardboard.
postcards
The second piece from the top actually travelled the atlantic by mail twice before this piece was complete. A Fallopia is a vine many consider an invasive weed. It has an unrelenting urge to cover all and everything with itself. A piston serves only one purpose: to compress, to be driven, to drive and to never ever stop. Unless you run out of juices to combust. Then you need to take a nap.

↓ Untitled work in progress, (600 x 400 mm), mixed media on MDF.600x402
Ottoman illuminations surround words of scripture or the like. The Ottoman empire is now Turkey. Turkey borders Syria. Syria has effectively ceased to be a healthy society. Nothing holy going on in there.

Spring Collection 2015: still on cardboard, some more complex than others but all investigating patterns and their recognitions. As usual there is a discount when made in bulk.

↓ ”A Prayer And A Pizza” or “Bed With A Vision”, (260 ≈ 360 x 320 ≈ 370 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard and parmesan.

view_from_the_room

Yeah. On take-out cardboard mainly. (Thin crust, basil and roast peppers, well done) I had my medium delivered on a rainy day. And while waiting for her to come out of the shower I contemplated her architecture; at hand and out there. Both displayed in front of me for my viewing pleasures, shadows dancing in straight triangles, extending their corners. Then we drew the blinds to the world and tried to see it for what it really is.

↓ ”Grab” , (480 ≈ 270 x 290 ≈ 310 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard.

grab

1/φ, 22/7, part of the Fibonacci sequence and a cat called Schrödinger. And why not? Just random scraps in random shapes that you try to sort in random order. Cause if beauty is in the hands of the beholder it will eventually find its way to you, play right in to your yearning eyes. So that piece is best viewed with your eyes closed. Unclenched.

↓ ”Shoulda, Coulda, Woulda” and “Oughta, Mighta, Gotcha” (480 ≈ 270 x 290 ≈ 310 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard.

shouldacouldawouldamightaoughta

Some cardboard boxes come with print. That makes it kinda ready-made. This one came in white, magenta and imperative words, full of spoiled surprises. That night I happened to dream I was making tea for a host of waiting people but I kept complicating it for myself, to a degree that it just became utterly impossible. And voilà: a piece on obligation and its pitfalls emerged. Hereby be warned. Adding a little spiritual geometry hopefully will detox it a bit.

↓ ”Autoportrait in Homemade Notation” or “Unfinished song in FM7 or something” (490 x 325 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on fret-cardboard.

Song_or_Autoportrait

I noodle. Mostly guitar. Start with a weird chord stacked all lop-sided and always end up with a quirky progression and a song that takes me places. Mostly I get lost there, but that seems the purpose of my most productive endeavours anyway. Here I put it on corrugated fibreboard from what seems to have been a moving box once and it kinda ended up visualising that process. This particular piece is best viewed on a somewhat crunchy tube amp and goes well with my fretless bass.

Update: finished stuff and works in progress. Lots of mixed media, acrylic and genitalia. Current soundtrack by Yasmin Hamdan, especially the song “Enta Fen, Again” from “Ya Nass”

↓”Official Target vs. Erlösung”, (440 x 375 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard

Official-Target_vs._Erlösung

I am a pacifistic, anti-violence revolutionary, more-feminist-than-my-mother peace-lover first. Next I am a scientist, explorer, fighter, curiouser-than-your-cat mega-nerd. So I went to Springfield, MO and shot a police issue Glock 22, 9 mm, pistol, and much to my surprise I was actually able to do it -pull a trigger. The target wasn’t anthropomorphic, so that helped. It was by far the most violent thing I have ever experienced: the sheer force and brutal sound coming from my hand left me trembling with adrenalin. Back home the target and the experience went in to this piece; my way of making peace with it. Later I happened to be in Berlin, Germany,  on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz and cut the word “Erlösung” (“Redemption/Salvation”. It’s a wordplay on “Endlösung”, “The Final Solution”) from a newspaper and incorporated it in the diptych. Adding and/or blocking out with intersecting diagrammatic graphics of reproductive organs of flowers and spiritual islamic geometric patterns is probably just a feeble-minded attempt to come to peace with all this violence.

↓”Stigma vs. Myopia”, (390 x 570 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard

Anther_vs._Myopia

↓  No title, (540 x 598 mm)

540x598

↓”Stunted vs. Pacific”, (360 x 360 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard

Stunted_vs._Pacific

↓  Work in progress: “Anther Penis Thing”, (595 x 460 mm) mixed media

595x460

↓  Work in progress, (480 x 460 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard

455x485ish

↓  Work in progress, (480 x 460 mm, apx and respectively), mixed media on cardboard

firesmudge

A new duo of scavenged cardboards. A new set of fragmented patterns. Old sacred geometry? Sure …

↓ Untitled (so far), 365 x 350 mm, mixed media on cardboard

duocardboards

Postulation? All signs made on cardboard are a social commentary of one kind or another.

Except maybe the ones printed there en masse you might think, but then: not really. It does not matter whether you are picketing a behaviour incompatible with your own, asking for a free ride in a particular direction or soliciting financial compensation for your misfortune. Those are just the actions behind the sign. The sign itself is what you see first: a statement, a bulletin, an intention spelled out as clearly (or misguided) as the designer is intellectually capable of. Find them on the streets, discarded after use or ready at hand, more than often frayed with the incapability to change much if anything. But still and always addressing someones need or willingness to engage in some kind of social contract, to buy, to sell or whatnot and thereby issuing that postulated commentary. Is that reason enough for yours truly to apply artfulness on them? That is as legit a question as anyone and there’s this: as of 2011, fifteen percent (1.000.000.000) of this planets human inhabitants still see to their bodily needs in the open.

↓ Title(s): “En Suite: the right turn, our collective values, their shared advantages and the sound of freedom” (365 x 485 mm, mixed media on cardboard, work in perpetual progress)

ensuiteA

The right turn:
“I am the light!” she yelled and blew her whistle.

ensuiteB

Our collective values:
… that night he kept walking by our windows,
screaming his frustration at his phone: “… but I love you, asshole!”

ensuiteC

Their shared advantages:
“Flinging magnetic curses amid the toil of piling job on job, here is a tall bold slugger set vivid against the little soft cities.” (C. Sandburg)

ensuiteD

The sound of freedom:
“The Uniform Plumbing Code, section 409.2.2 requires that all water closet seats, except those within dwelling units or for private use, shall be of the open front type.”

In progress: these are not cardboard signs and I do not work for food.

cardboard
I just work. To still that particular Hunger. Later I’ll cook. Mushroom risotto.

 

Standing at that street corner, dazed by the mid day heat of summer: this petite and straightforward woman rides by on her bike, laboriously carrying a full size sledgehammer, upside down by the end of its shaft.

↓ Working title: “Axegeis?” (540 x 598 mm)

540x598

540x598

Consciousness snapped back with the image. Like an instant enigma, a flash of divination. Still reeling I crossed the street, hot rubber kissing the tip of my right foot as a car swam by engaging its horn. The vision got knocked in to my cornea for an eternal second and the titillating scene seeded an inferno at the end of my spine, shooting blind impulses at my cerebellum and beyond.

For months now I have tried to read the riddle. Deciphering and paraphrasing the visual, trying to force transparency onto the fetish. Listen … the Danes are a tribe of cyclists and I’m as devoted as any. Albeit a little late in life – I was six and already a wimp, I woke up one morning having dreamed of teaching myself how to keep balance, got up and outside and just did it: ran my bike straight in to the nearest wall and then out in to the world. And yet I can not solve the formula of woman, hammer and two-wheeled motion.

There’s a bodily satisfaction in pedalling yourself forward at speed, by your own faculty. I’ve watched the muscles of my thighs build over the stretch of just a few weeks, I’ve shuttled the most awkward items on my faithful wheeled vehicle (or tried to) and I’ve had some seriously rough exposures to tarmac, gravel, more masonry and fellow road users.

So there is clearly something physical at hand with this matter. In that observation. Somewhere in my mind. When that woman teetered by. Carrying a sledgehammer? A tool for back-breaking labor, an object of brutality, a symbol of crude energy and immense authority, far to hefty for her delicate build and most obviously not one she was used to carry along (seen from a point of gravity it would have been easier to carry the hammer by its head one would think?) Still she jerked me out of my stupor in the middle of the street and faded out of view. Flummoxed, I still am. A bafflement now partly consigned to board. The investigation still in process.

Standing at a street corner, oblivious in the heat of summer and this mousey housewife rides by on her bike, laboriously carrying a sledgehammer upside down by the end of the shaft.

↓ Working title: “Ax me?” (540 x 598 mm)

540x598

And oblivion turned to a full-on mysterious quasi-revelation as I crossed the street, the image seared in to my cornea for a moment. The whole thing turned me on, flicked a switch in my gut, fired crisscrossing axons in my brain. Of what is a conundrum to this day. Even after visually dissecting it for a few months. Now … I love riding my bike, as do a lot of people in this tribe we call the Danes. There’s something physically gratifying in propelling yourself forward at speed, by your own power. I’ve watched the muscles of my thighs expand over the expanse of just a few weeks, I’ve transported the most unwieldy objects on two wheels (or tried to) and I’ve had some severely abrasive contacts with tarmac, gravel, walls and even cars. So there is definitely something corporeal going on. In that image. Somewhere in my mind. When that woman rode by. With a sledgehammer? A tool for hard work, an object of violence, a symbol of brute force and overwhelming power, far to heavy for her petite stature and most obviously not one she was used to carry along (it would’ve been easier to carry it by the head? I’m guessing. Who am I to know.) Nevertheless she made me stop in the middle of the street as she vanished down the street. Perplexed, I was. And almost run over by another cyclist of life. The image has since been analysed, altered, interpreted, over-worked, re-worked and now half committed to board.

I’m still confused. And turned on. What?

Done. Now have a seat. But be careful while you march on, alright?

↓ “The Chair” or “Auto-portrait #117” (367 x 475)

367x475
367x475367x475367x475367x475

 

 

“Coke Adds Life” was the 1976 slogan for the Coca Cola brand

Ebola

The Kola nut (Cola Acuminata) is native to tropical Africa and has up to 3.5 % caffeine content. Kola nut extract is no longer used in the Coca Cola recipe. The Ebola river in northern Congo (former Zaïre) gave name to the virus. In april 1865 the pharmacist John Pemberton developed what became Coca Cola as an opioid free alternative to morphine. Chewing the bitter Kola nuts can ease hunger pains. Soda is the main source of calories in the American diet. Several sources list the nurse Mayinga N’Seka, who died in october 1976, as the index case for Ebola. Doctor Kent Brantley became the first infected person in the US when he was flown from Liberia to Atlanta, Georgia in 2014 where he is in improving health due to an untested experimental drug. The general lack of water in parts of Conakry, Guinea, has the populace prioritize drinking it over using it for hygiene and sanitation. Headquartered in Atlanta, the Coca Cola Company had a 2013 net income of almost 8.6 billion dollars from serving more than 50 billion beverages per day, worldwide. The current Ebola outbreak is the biggest yet and has killed over a 1000 people as of today. Diabetes killed 73.831 people in the US in 2010.

(Sources: Wikipedia, BBC et al, Coca Cola and the CDC)