March 1, 2003

lacquered rapid line bride

The long endurance rally has started--the must-get-everything-done-NOW leadup to the Finland/Russia trip. Yesterday the Fellows headed down to the Finnish Cultural Embassy for a briefing/meeting with some Finns (which as Allan pointed out will forever rhyme for a certain segment of Americans above a certain age with "folks in Siam do it/think of Siamese twins" (which in turn makes me think of some piece a group of tape-pranksters whose name I'm desperately trying to remember did in the mid-'90s, looping from Ella Fitzgerald's version of "Let's Do It": "think of Siamese twins/think of Siamese twins/think of Siamese twins...")). They showed us a movie about Finnish culture, beginning with a sequence in which a group of Nordic-looking cavemen engage in some kind of battle, emerge victorious, impress the local cavewomen and toddle off to start Finland--I am not kidding.

Coco's class missed a meeting last Monday thanks to the snow, so we made it up last night with a trip to Julie Mehretu's studio. Mehretu makes stunningly detailed semi-abstract drawings with fine-line Rapidograph, and turns some of them into paintings, some of which are "maps" of others--she has little gestural characters and groups of characters that move around landscapes, interact with each other, establish territory, etc., and she tends to do a hyper-detailed layer, cover it with a sort of plastic, do another layer on top of that, cover that, etc.--up to nine layers in each piece. There's a gigantic painting she's spent the last four months on (whose structural core is diagrams of post-colonial African capital-city architecture) that'll be up at the Walker Art Center soon, and it's fantastic & totally absorbing--I kept thinking of Duchamp's "Large Glass." Also, it turns out she's from East Lansing (!) and used to come to Okemos to play in the Suzuki orchestra (!!).

Today: recording email writing band practice party Reputation Tune_In. Tomorrow: draw draw draw draw draw Tiffany Mills at the Guggenheim. Next Wednesday: presentation at NYU. Next Thursday: presentation in Aesthetics & Politics. Weariness setting in already.

Posted by Douglas at March 1, 2003 9:30 AM

Congratulations on the tattoo!

Re: Finland. Kalevala, sweetie, Kalevala. Read it on the plane if you haven't already; it's gorgeous.


Posted by: Monica on March 2, 2003 4:37 PM
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