Thursday, December 23, 2010
Friday, December 17, 2010
Thursday, December 16, 2010
Monday, December 13, 2010
Featuring live performances by:
Drew and the Medicinal Pen
Emmett and Mary
The One and Only Matt Miller
Recorded on tour, Summer 2011
Edited by Jacob Koestler and Brandon Locher
Also includes a (PRINTABLE!!) 78 pg. PDF
Photographs by Jacob Koestler
Friday, December 10, 2010
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
And now, well, you believe somewhere in there that you want to let go, but are really not sure
you ACTUALLY want to, so you still hold. And holding.
I forgot about the love of life, and please, my my, accept that there is nothing to depend on.
Not eternally. Find warmth. It will go.
All of a sudden, recognize that warmth is all around and inside. It may stay.
I don't know. It may go.
But when it goes, if it does decide to go, fall deep into sad. Recognize other things there.
Fear. fear. far fear. fear. faer. fear. faear f.
there is no boldness to be found in fear. for me, a slow gradual.
please stop hiding. please find your fear and hold it up and hold it tight until you
you let it go.
Saturday, November 20, 2010
Ms. Mandi Leskovac
Short Piece #3: Flash Fiction (Contemplation – Circle)
“You don’t wear a watch." But even my friend, in all her neo-Dolly leanings, was inclined to agree: the suit was devastating. Within minutes I was stepping out of the fitting closet, adjusting the navy blue, burgundy and gold trimmed kerchief in the breast pocket, squeaking on the hardwood floor in leather penny loafers, admiring before the full length mirror how the Modern Fit cut ran the grey woolen tweed over my thighs and up my arms. The Silver Surfer, descended to Terra, poorly disguised as a mortal man. It was the suit I was born to wear, and with my friend Jeb’s wedding approaching, I knew I had to have it.
I couldn’t stop rubbing my eyes as I drove to my father’s house in rural Pennsylvania where the landscape looks like quilts Grandma made or calendars your bank gives away. Pol was just peeking over Mount Twenty-Two, wrapped in a heavy scarf of drab fog, as hesitant to rouse as I had been. Squinting and gripping the steering wheel, I stared hard at the serpentine road that appeared before me as blurry images shot from my headlights. Bright eyes appeared and shone from the wooded sides of the road. All around the world was violently stirred from peaceful slumbers by the roar of my muffler-less engine.
I was imagining the powers the grey suit might endow me - like the aegis - when, rounding a curve, I saw before me a shadowy object like something escaped from a nightmare. Rubbing my eyes even more, I could but faintly decipher what I was seeing. A bear? That big? No. A horse, possibly?
The thing was covered in brown fur, coarse and caked in red clay as if it had crawled from the bowels of the earth. Has to be a bear, I thought. It’s too big to be anything else. But when I slowed to a stop, only feet away, the thing turned to look me in the eyes, the top of its head standing several inches over the roof of the Buick. And, like when my dad described seeing The Amityville Horror at the drive-ins and nearly pissing himself when the glowing red pigeyes appeared outside the second story window, I looked into the behemoth’s placid eyes and realized I, too, was staring at a pig, nearly pissing myself.
Now, I would’ve taken a picture, but my phone’s memory was full of pictures of me in different silly hats, and before I could choose which to delete, the behemoth sauntered off the road, into the dark woods, with a rooster in tandem like some fucked-up Disney adventure movie.
“They’re called feral hogs,” Dolly explained over the phone. I had called Dolly from the roof of my dad's place after the first day. I sat smoking a joint and tried spitting all the way out to the yard. A chilly breeze, sweet with the smell of dead leaves, came off the mountains and carried my high all the way out, across the tracks and through the swamps. The moon was full and bright, hung in the sky like a poor, condemned soul. “Yeah, they’re livestock originally; pumped full of growth hormones and steroids and all kinds of other freaky shit.” Everyone else – my dad, my sister, my brother-in-law and all of the Wetzel boys who’d come over to work in exchange for beer – was highly incredulous and blamed fatigue. But Dolly believed me; started checking it out online as soon as I described it to her. “And they escape! They get so big no pen or fence can hold them.” I closed my eyes and saw the behemoth again, this time walking down Walnut. Its sauntering gait and swinging tail mostly ignored by passers-by, but occasionally an eye would be caught. A passer-by – say a tall, thin, heavily Botoxed, blond woman – would stop, or stagger just a bit, and lock eyes with the beast, enamored by its raw presence, or something. “In 2008, alone, they caused, like, 28 million dollars property damage in North America! Oh my god, you’re lucky it didn’t try to charge you!”
I got back to Pittsburgh and looked at the check my dad had written in exchange for my labor. It was insufficient to cover for the suit and the shoes and a wedding present, but it was more money than I deserved. And probably more money than my father could afford. So I bought Jeb a picture frame and saved the rest of the money for Christmas presents. As for my outfit, I wore an old suit, and I felt great; got drunk for free, danced my ass and talked to babes all night long. I told every one of them the Tale of the Feral Hog, and I ended the story like this: “I realized, - you know? - right then and there, I realized that life’s not really about new clothes, or a new car, or a new house; or a new career, or a new look, or a new partner, or whatever! Life’s about simply being present; and . . . and being open to wonder! It’s about waking up early to catch creation off-guard.”
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Monday, November 8, 2010
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Launch Party @ Corcoran Gallery of Art
500 Seventeenth Street NW
Friday, November 5, 2010, 8pm–11pm
From Curator Andy Adams: "For the past four years I've been publishing FlakPhoto.com, a website that features contemporary photography from an international community of artists. This fall, I teamed up with curator and Indie Photobook Library creator Larissa Leclair to produce a photo projection for FotoWeek DC, which is showing at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, November 6-13, 2010."
More details and all of the photographs can be viewed here.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Greg trudged through the kitchen pushing his fifth cartful of peeled potatoes. Today, they were being fried in canola oil and served as French fries for the children’s plates. It was the only day of the year children were allowed into the private business hotel. A running sous chef dropped a bin of sliced purple cabbage. He looked around to see if anyone saw him. Only Greg had noticed, and they locked eyes. The cook swept the shredded strings back into the bin with his arm, and continued on.
Dora was standing by the big burnishing machine near the dishwashers and she was loading armfuls of forks and knives into the thing. The machine contained thousands of tiny steel balls, and shook violently to break away the enamel on the silver. Greg waved to her, and she returned it. She had orange earplugs nestled deep in her ears, right above the large gold hoop earrings that she wore despite the hotel’s policy against such things.
“Dora, I wanted to ask you a question,” Greg said, just as she turned around and engaged the machine, drowning out his words. He repeated his statement, but again she did not hear him. He stared at her back for some moments and wondered not for the first time what it might be like to see her black hair fall from her cook’s cap across her shoulders. He heard a commotion coming from the other end of the kitchen.
Greg saw the Chef at the end of the hallway. His face was a mosaic of twisted flesh and exacerbated capillaries. His hat looked like it was pulsing atop his boiling head. He was staring at one of the garde mange staff whose cheeks were sickly puckered.
“Then get outta here!” the Chef yelled. He took giant strides across the kitchen, hollering at the line cooks and the extra roundsmen hired for the day. Everyone stopped working. “We need hors d'oeuvres! “ he screamed. “We need ‘em now! We need hors d’oeuvres! Jason’s sick, everybody! He’s gotta go home, because he thinks he’s gonna throw up! He’s gotta go, so one of you has to do his work!” He threw up his hands. “The pot stickers aren’t going to make themselves, every body! We need hors d’oeuvres! Come on, people, you stick a skewer through a piece of meat! This is baby shit!”
No one answered. Jason jogged to the stairwell, hands clamped over his mouth. Greg felt a welled lump rise. When he first started at the hotel nearly three decades ago, he worked at the garde mange station.
“Hey, ah, I’ll do it, Chef,” he said.
“You’re not doing shit, shoemaker.” He strode toward his office. “Mullen, get cher ass to garde mange!” The door crashed close; the heat lamps at each station swayed at the bottom of their coiled cords. The commotion of the holiday resumed as Mullen ran across the kitchen. Greg pushed the potato cart toward the bubbling fryers.
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Closing Reception: Saturday October 30th, 2010 6-10pm (w/ a live performance by The One and Only Matt Miller)
@ UnSmoke Systems
1137 Braddock Avenue
Jenna Hannum / Katie Hinton / Simona Josan / Michael Kalmbach / Adam Lister / Caroline Santa / Phillip Scarpone / Cullen Stephenson / Matthew West
Curated by Brookes Britcher and Alexander Conner
Vanishing Point aims to present work that confronts the notion of a “new abstract”. Inclusive to all medium, the exhibition presents abstraction as a means of reconciliation to the dislocation of self in modern life.
Engaging concepts of science, personal histories, politics and beyond, these artists build upon the histories of abstract art to fashion a sense of stability in an environment ever changing, ever updating – an environment built upon a constant feed for more information, with its reference point focused evermore on the self in synthetic environments.
Through this visual “storm” these artists have honed their use of abstraction not only as a means to understand their world, but as a mechanism to locate themselves as an individual in a sea of turbulent messages and meaning. Our understanding of our self becomes more abstract each day – these artists represent a direction where abstraction is no longer universal, but an intrinsically personal understanding.
More information @ Adaptation
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Monday, October 25, 2010
Sunday, October 24, 2010
Friday, October 22, 2010
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Wednesday, October 20, 2010
There’s Gibbous, as in waxing and waning, who is lanky with perfect timing and teeth; Donna with the penchant for sticky cocaine, and her roommate Angela who is like me in that she tried to leave here to go sing in NYC and came back tail between her legs when her father told her he needed money because he didn’t have any more. I see Gerry, short and stringy-haired, who teaches film classes at the college that looks like a forgotten summer camp, speaking with some straight-faced strangers.
The band stops playing in a huge decrescendo that’s like a wave that looks huge from the sand, but when it breaks against the beach it’s just a paltry little thing. They look around at each other, and I realize that the whole thing sounded just as bizarre to them. There’s some scattered clapping, and I’m wondering just who the joke is on. Banks goes up to them to shake their hands and thank them for playing despite the turnout.
The singer brushes his hanging hair from his face and says ‘Right on, man’ and shoots a spit onto the stage. ‘I dig the pictures,’ he says. I am standing by myself feeling coated in a hard wax, and I just start to listen to around me.
“Take a belt, man. It’s the good stuff,” Gib says to a guy with matted hair that I don’t recognize, and the guy obliges and gives Gib a grimace like he just took a slug of castor oil.
“It’s like a Belgian dinner, you know? Not too much, but very rich. A little side-flanker steak or a rich braat lying there all lonely on the dish, but you don’t need nothin’ more. It’s Flemish, you know? Look, you just don’t appreciate it, what could be contained in such a small space.” And while he is saying each word, his hands fold together and twist and rub over themselves in strokes to paint out the plate before them.
“I don’t know, it’s sour,” the guy says, and he walks out the back fire door that I helped Banks cut the outline for before I left.
I start to weave through the people, and I see Gerry talking to his students.
“I was driving through the tunnel, you know the one that cuts through Chickaree Mountain, and I was staring up at the sides, at the orange lights that they have plastered on the sides in big boxes, you know? It reflects off of that really white tile in there and it feels like you are being launched into space if you drive through there fast enough.” He pushes a strand of brown hair off of his nose. The kids nod ‘yes’. “Well, you know how they have those little enclaves periodically through the tunnel?” They nod ‘yes’ again. “Like the little doors for the workers to go in and out of” They don’t nod this time so he waits for them to and even nods a bit himself to get them to do it. Then he continues, “Well, I saw a man hunched over in one of those when I was speeding through, and I saw him so clearly; I saw him covered in these dark, dirty, black blankets, and he was rocking back and forth in the low light of the passageway. I saw all of this while I was speeding by and it, like, got right inside of me. Should I help? I guess so. I didn’t know what to do. So, I get through the tunnel and I stop my car, right? And I ‘m like I’m going to go back and help him, I just can’t keep going. So I scale the sides of the tunnel on the walkway, against the walls, like a cat burglar, and I get back to the passageway, and I say, ‘Sir! Can I help you?’, and the man doesn’t move or say anything back, but he starts to moan like stuck boar or something, and I say, ‘Do you need any help?’ and he doesn’t say anything right off, but he turns to me slowly, and I can see his grey eyes jut out at me, and he says, ‘Help me kill these leaping beasts.’ And that was it, he goes to sleep, just like that; at least I hope it was sleep, because after I yell at him to tell me what he means, he just makes that low rumbling noise, and I know it’s the tumult inside of him. So I left, and I went home and it stuck with me. So I wrote a movie, and it’s called ‘Leaping Beasts’. I’m showing it next week, and I’d like you all to come.”
The kids release their breath as he shoots a showbiz smile. He takes a bow but it looks like his ankle just gave way.