Thursday, December 30, 2010

Pastel Colors Of Sadness

My rig at Lee Harvey's earlier this year:

Me early on a Sunday morning playing my ukulele:

I like this pic of this plug. Stay plugged in:

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Drunkin Smiley Christmas

I probably won't be updating this until next Tuesday or so. So, in other words have some happy fucking perfect holidays in an early 1960's kinda Mad Men Don Draper kinda way. Fuckin' A:

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Random Radness

train tracks:

me with meat cleaver:

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010

Friday, December 17, 2010

Tampons & Diet Coke Aesthetic

7-11 donut aesthetic fun:

Friday psychedelia. I was trying to get a photograph of this girl's tampons and diet coke it was classic:

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Beautiful Death Mask

Gif Created on Make A Gif

Last Train To Barkerville

I've been riding the DART train a bunch to work lately. Thus, I have had trains on my mind a lot and so I have been taking more train related photographs.
The Deep Ellum Station at 6 a.m.:

Train seat psychedelia:

I was sitting inside this train car when some kid tagged the side of it. I got off at the next station and snapped this quick pic. what size balls does this kid have? Geez:

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Mirror Prick Reflection

Kevin Parmer too this trippy picture of me:

Mirror pic:

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Lunge ...

Thom Schaefer and I made this piece in San Diego in 2004. (click photograph to enlarge.) I gave it to a friend because I had no room to keep it and when I visited that friend this weekend I saw this hanging in his house. I hadn't seen it in a while so I took a pic and decided to share it here. I hope you enjoy it. -A.B.

Friday, December 10, 2010

A Long Time At See

I love this photo from a gallery show last night at 2717 Factory. Very cool and interesting instillation. Plus I love the contrast of the white roundness of those balloons with the gold heels. awesomeness:

the DART train at like 5:50 in the morning. I love the depth to this pic:

train stop architectural details:

and more details:

and psychedelia on Friday:

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Boo, Booze & Boobs

More Deep Ellum street art:

and a close up:

Good thing I have Inanimate Objects to keep me company cause everyone that tries to get close to me gets weirded out. Oh, well. Records, books, movies, paintings and guitars are my best friends and my lovers. I guess I'm lucky.
-A.B.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Mailings of Madness

(will post postcard example photos when I receive them. I have been sitting on this for awhile. I hope this is enlightening? If not comment below you turds. -A.B. )

Thomas Arthur Schaefer is one of my best friends, confidants and is a genius artist. I’ve known him for quite sometime and he always surprises me with his ingenuity, skills and prolific-ness.

Here is what his website says about him:
Painter, designer, photographer, experimental musician — Thomas Arthur Schaefer was born on Valentines Day, during the ensuing chaos of one of the deadliest blizzards to ever hit the city of Buffalo, New York – The Blizzard of '77.
Thomas brings a diverse background to the fine art world, having designed and directed for leading Fortune 500 companies where his fine art background and adeptness enabled him to look beyond the contrived ideas of the everyday and develop stunning design solutions. By the age of 16 he had already accumulated a large collection of awards for his work, had the National Holocaust Museum positioning to acquire a painting of his, and was quietly filling an apprenticeship inking comic books for Marvel and DC comics under artist John Lowe. His musical background spans 20 years, with trained and self studies in woodwinds, brass, percussion, guitar and piano. He's gone on to record a large body of experimental music utilizing lo-fi home recording techniques. He studied portraiture with the Chinese sculptor Weining Song at age 20 and focused his efforts in the fields of illustration and photography at the Savannah College of Art and Design. After graduation from college, he spent one year teaching himself graphic and interactive design, skills which have garnered him major corporate accounts.
Schaefer's upbringing in all fields of the arts, including instruction in theatre, dance and film, has transformed him into what some have classified as "A stealthy polymath poised to pounce on the art world at a moments notice." But in the meantime, he is content to work away quietly in his studio continuing to produce a few hundred new works every year. His working methods fall under several idioms of art production including: Arte Povera, Process, Pop, Correspondence, Conceptual, Performance, & Video. His works are exhibited across the country and he maintains a large set of dedicated collectors and a small cult following in the mail art domain. His shows have twisted the comfortable confines of normal gallery exhibitions and left some viewers feeling sick, disoriented, bothered and outraged. That said, his work has been described as acutely mature, intellectually nuanced, sometimes controversial, but always invariably his own.
He can often be found sitting at his favorite local bar Elmyr, popping silently in and out of local galleries or busy in his studio.


I asked Tom if he would do this interview about the mail art I have sent him over the years and here were his responses:

1. How long have you been receiving mail from Aaron Barker?
I have been receiving mail art since 1994... back when I was still in High School. I had a few interesting people that I corresponded with, but nobody was as dedicated or prolific as Aaron Barker. I began receiving mail art from Aaron sometime in June of 2004. Mail exchange was heavy at the beginning between the two of use. It was a total mail art whirlwind romance you could say. The work was vicious, brilliant & frequent... but as time has gone on, I think we have slowed downed like any relationship does after a number of years. However unlike some relationships that break down over time, I feel as though the work has become more nuanced, more thorough, more clinical. I feel as though in the beginning we were both pushing ideas... trying to reach a constant plain of communication and we eventually got there. So after decoding 6 years of work and tracking the mailing framework of both of us, I feel like we've reached a settled plain.


2. How did it start? When? Where? Whose idea? Etc.
The mail art idea started at some bar in New Orleans, but it was definitely somewhere way off the grid of Bourbon Street, that just wasn't our style. I can't place it off-hand, but I do remember it was a sort of Gallery Row type street. We had both met each other just a few days prior for the first time ever, but hit it off immediately and were attached at the hip in an intellectual friendship from the onset. I think there might have been an Italian meal before we hit the bar I'm about to talk about. I'm not sure... but I seem to remember snagging a place mat or some piece of paper at this establishment for later use. We ended up at some bar / nightclub event... there were free drinks, a really shitty band or DJ and I distinctly remember getting shot down by a number of good looking, semi-drunk, poorly endowed women. I like that kind of thing to be honest, but anyways, I remember grabbing a drink and sitting with Barker toward the end of that evening and talking about mail art. Now we had been talking about mail art a few times that week and had been to a few galleries together. So we both had a general idea of what type of art we were both into. We also did a good amount of running around town and drinking. So the buddy-buddy factor had already kicked in. But on this evening at this bar/club we actually sat down and discussed the idea of mail art in serious terms. We discussed how most people suck and they never really continue sending stuff in the fashion we both wanted. No one ever followed through. Barker was just as serious as I was and he suggested that when we got home we start mailing each other. I remember reaching in my pocket and pulling out the sheet of paper I had procured earlier and tearing it in half. I wrote my address on one half and Barker his on the other. We exchanged the split sheets and these are what became the very first mailings we did to each other. I like the idea that the first mailings are actually one in the same. It was a good indicator of things to come. As the years of mailing have gone on, both of our works have paralleled each other at certain points, either in terms of execution or subject matter. It's an interesting thing to note because we never discussed what we were sending to the other ever. So I always enjoy finding the similarities in how our creative production methods matched at certain points in this process.


3. How many pieces have you received?
Aaron - I'm pulling together these numbers this evening along with photos.


4. Over-all impression of what you have received?
I've attempted to start a mail-art relationship with anyone who was serious for a number of years. People are typically good the first few pieces, but after that they tend to just quit sending things all together, leaving me with a pile of work and no one I care to send it any more. Mail art is about the exchange of ideas, the sharing of art and the idea of lose. I've never been afraid to mail something. I know that 70% of the time the work may never reach its intended destination. But that is part of the process. The difference between Barker and just about everyone else I do mail art with is that Barker is serious about the matter. He's dedicated to the practice and has accepted the pitfalls that are involved with it. After receiving work from him for the past 6 years, I've been able to categorize his pieces into a number of different modes of thought. He has been able to develop a number of complex running themes throughout his work. It's extremely exciting to find a new piece of the puzzle in my mailbox. You can lay out Barkers works from the last 6 years from beginning to end and it reveals a very moving portrait of an extremely talented writer/artist. It a pleasure to be a part of a process with someone who is as dedicated to the practice as you are yourself.


5. Favorite piece? Why?
There are a number of serial works that I tend to gravitate toward vs. some of the one-off works. The Girlfriend Series (as I call it) is one that I'm always excited to see inside of my mailbox. But the pieces that hold the most meaning for me tend to be the most personal of Barkers. I call these pieces his artifacts. A pair of broken eye glasses. A hotel room key. A single beer coaster littered with desperate verse in blue ballpoint pen. These are the pieces I hold dearest. If you had to break up the collection, these pieces would remain with me always. But in the end, it's the sheer volume of work that I've amassed of the last few years that leaves the greatest impression on me. Artworks are interesting on their own, but you can get a real picture of the artist if you can view the work in a serial fashion. Where as a finished painting might be beautiful to look at, I find all of the preparatory work more interesting. I'm a man who is obsessed with processes. Those that deal with the act of thinking, those that deal with the process of making and those that deal with passing of time. There is no better way to come to terms with an artist than to see an entire body of work as a whole. I am fortunate enough to own one of these such bodies of work.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Look Into My Eyes

The psycho killer:

Self-portrait: