i disappeared (er drove) down to Portland, OR a few weeks ago to, ya know, sell some art in a parking lot outside a really sweet-ass bar named Pearl Blitz in the pearl district of Portland. once again, i tip my hat off to both Jackie F. and Jay O. for making this event and experience possible in the first place (hopefully I’ll be there next month as well…). so, yeah, i sold a few things. and guess what ? i sold a few more whilst i was down south in San Francisco !
i had exchanged cards with a very nice gentleman by the name of Michael D. who had expressed interest in some ‘box paintings’ i had done back in 2007 when i still lived in new york city. i’ll do my best to explain them ::
so, this is only three out of the five that i sold to this lovely man in Portland. it’s a bit hard to see this from the images (and sorry, they are packed up, so deal with it, there is to be no rescanning), but i painted these images onto different boxes from New York City’s China Town and Little Italy (deep fried Oreos, anyone?).
the concept being :: these two very distinct (though neighboring) districts in the city are in the process of merging, whether they like it or not.
you may think (sarcastically), ‘wow, what an exciting observation…’ but in all honesty, the merging of these two sects and cultures is worth recognizing and is an important development in the LOHO world (that would be, ‘Lower Houston’ for those of you unfamiliar with the city). so, I purchased boxes from both china town and little italy, took a crazy amount of photographs, and through collage, acrylic paint, and different drawing mediums .. expressed the italian culture on the boxes bought in china town and vice versa. the concept is simple enough, sure, but the impact was actually quite strong when they were all displayed together. it’s the sort of concept that is so basic it needs little explaining and zero justification. a concept too simple to be true.
and the results ? well, i was pleased with them because all of these boxes remained portable and commodity-like, just as i wanted them to, but without being obvious. they were subtle. you probably could have placed them back on the shelves in their respective homes and people may not have given them a second thought, as they would have blended in with their backgrounds. the project was a labor of love. the pieces themselves did not take nearly as long as developing the concept and taking the many many photographs required for reference and collage purposes :: the end result was something i was more than proud of.
i have always held a soft spot for new york city’s Little Italy and Chinatown. they are special spots in the city. they hold onto their own cultural worth while appealing to the general (and, need i say, touristic) aspects of the city. a local would feel just as home in this area as a tourist. well, not quite as at home :: but not a far cry from it. as most (if not all?) businesses in the city, they are here to make m-o-n-e-y.. and residing in the hot spot of Little Italy and/or China Town :: they are destined to do so.
in any case. they have been sold to a terrific individual in Portland, OR and I know that they will hang or be placed proudly throughout his home. there are few things more satisfying than selling art or a series of art to someone who not only has an aeshetic, but also a conceptual, appreciation for what they are purchasing.
cheers, Michael ! i hope you enjoy them to their fullest extent.
[collage, paint, and dtawing on miscellneous boxes from NYC’s Little Italy & China Town]