Wednesday, February 2, 2011


Beth Orton in Conceived
6.5" x 11"
oil on wood, 2011

Singing train attendant, Japan
7.75" x 11"
oil on wood, 2011
They may not be the best, certainly not the most ambitious but the latest two paintings are happy for sure. Smiles and joy and springtime and sun conceived in the midst of the darkest and coldest of winter. Both these paintings are based on video stills from very happy videos. Let me tell a little about both videos:

  • The video to Beth Orton's Conceived features many creatures—Muppets they are, some fashioned after real animals, some fictional creatures. I painted her with a deer Muppet. I painted Orton together with animals before, a fox being the most prominent. When I wrote about it (see Beth Orton and the Animals) I asked the question if Beth Orton were an animal what kind she would be. The question was picked up by an on-line Beth Orton forum and one subscriber thought it would be a giraffe. Personally I decided it would be a crow. I also painted a deer before: a painting of Bambi graced the Top 100 2006 and my friend  Ryan Agnew thought of it as the greatest painting ever. He bought it. Ryan is an artist too, he does performances. In one of his most notorious performances he enacted a worm and wore a worm suit. And to make the story come 'round, it were worms in the first place that started the whole Beth Orton/animal ordeal. Worms is one of five Beth Orton songs this year.
  • The video of the singing Japanese train attendant/tour guide was posted on facebook by my friend Enny Kleikamp. She recorded him while touring Japan. I imagine him singing about the beauty of the Japanese landscape and its spiritual nature as opposed to the dry factual "on the left you see..." tour guide of the west.
p.s: The year of the rabbit starts today! Happy rabbit year everyone.

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