Emerging artists at Columbia MFA Open Studios

Matthew Fischer's paints, Columbia Open Studios

The question is, where are they emerging from? The underworld, their shells, obscurity? Let’s say all of the above. It’s like baby sea turtles or Monarch butterflies—there’s a real vulnerability to the process. It’s a challenge to get everything cleaned up and presentable, and serve as an ambassador for your work, while you’re still in … Continue reading

Autumn dusk at Socrates Sculpture Park

Totem and autumn leaves, Socrates Sculpture Park

One week ago

Columbo capsalong: Cindy Sherman edition

My phone call from prison

Columbo: kindly, sage, disheveled, indirect. So interpersonally astute he needs no CSI to solve crimes. He relies on being underestimated, historically a feminine strategy. He’s like the woman behind his own throne, but he’s a man, so he gets to be a detective. And indeed, a lovable one. I always root for him. Except for … Continue reading

Women of mystery

Shadowed woman in costume

One day I photocopied inspiration images using an unmaintained institutional Xerox machine. Normally I would be aggravated it couldn’t reproduce tonal images accurately—but on that day the beautifully grainy, sfumato results, like mezzotints, were a happy accident. Or a mysterious and melancholy one. I give you goddesses, warrior women, noir ladies and theater gypsies—how they … Continue reading

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