Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Relevant Family and Drag Queens of Course

WOWZA! What a beautiful day in LA! 

This past week I watched Rupual’s Drag Race Finale. Along with that, I’ve been thinking about the word relevance in regards to art. 

During Rupaul’s Drag Race, Roxxy Andrew has a breakdown on stage. It brought tears to my eyes. I can’t imagine being left at a bus stop by your own mother. After her breakdown, Rupaul says, ‘we get to choose our family’. Even she had tears in her throat. Throughout my youth, I never understood the age-old saying ‘blood is thicker than water. As much as I love my family, I went through a phase in my life where family was not so meaningful. It wasn’t so much that I didn’t love them, but that I had wanted the freedom to choose whom I wanted in my life. In doing so, I created a family of friendships that have lasted a lifetime. This is relevance. 

But as I think about relevance in regards to my art, I realize that, relevance, in any form, is in the eye of the beholder. As much as there is simplicity in my work, there is a depth that goes beyond words. It defines who I am; that is what matters. It’s relevant! According to an online dictionary, relevance is defined as, “a: relation to the matter at hand b: practical and especially social applicability.” And though I can question my work according to the outside world, it remains relevant regardless. It matters because that is how I see our world. I couldn’t possibly see it through anyone else’s eyes other than my own. But (and yes there’s a but) I couldn’t possibly see this world though the eyes that I do had I not had the most amazing family, blood or not. 

I love you all for embracing the person that I am and continue to be. And to all the drag queens I’ve been blessed to meet, you inspire me greatly. 

A most special shout out to my little sister Blanca; she inspires me not just as a sister, but also as a mother, friend, daughter and human being. I love you hermana! The piece here is a painting of one of my very first Little Girls; it’s called “Blanca Cuts Her Hair.” When we were kids, our other sister, Moni, had the idea to play hairdresser and cut Blanca’s hair, or rather, she chopped it. The idea of it makes me laugh. To Blanca, you are the LIFE in my party! 

Food for thought: Existence is no more than the precarious attainment of relevance in an intensely mobile flux of past, present, and future. – Susan Sontag 

Have a beautiful weekend!!!! 

Monday, May 6, 2013


It’s another gloomy day in LA, but this time around, I feel much better. I’m enjoying being home and being creative. 

Over the weekend, I finished reading Will Ellsworth-Jones book about street artist, Bansky, The Man Behind The Wall. It’s definitely left me feeling inspired about doing street art. However, in the last chapter, the critics come to disagree about Bansky. Is his work too accessible? What you see is what you get. Does art need to be complicated and full of hidden meaning? I don’t think it need be. Rikka Kuittinen of the V&A Museum in London said it perfectly; “…I think contemporary art, sometimes unfairly, has this reputation of being difficult…I don’t think accessible means bad at all.” Over the years, I've spent doing art that is uncomplicated; I don’t see the need for it to be. With life already being a challenge, I can’t imagine adding any more complication. 

This morning, I started reading an Isabella Blow biography by Laruen Goldstein Crowe. I’m only a few pages in. The book immediately starts off with Phillip Treacy and McQueen attempting to figure out what to bury Ms. Blow in. Other than being a fashion icon, I don’t know much about her life. I’m curio to find out, if at all, what lead her to commit suicide. The piece here is my Pink Sheep inspired by Ms. Blow. Those who have the courage to live life according to their vision inspire me. Cheers to you Ms. Blow for being unique; it’s beautiful to be different. 

Leo Tolstoy once wrote, "There is no greatness where there is no simplicity, goodness and truth." Ah yes, words to live by and to use creatively. Have a beautiful week ahead. Keep it simple.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Happy Sheep

Oh boy, I’m just getting back from my long morning walk. I wanted to break down in tears as soon as I left my apartment. Though I’m easily affected by this gloomy LA weather, its more than that. I’m feeling discouraged with my art career. 

Immediately I started feeling gratitude for everyone and everything in my life. I’m blessed in every way. How could I possibly be sad? Yet being grateful didn’t alleviate the sadness. I kept walking and thinking about how to get out of this, yet knowing I had to feel it through; I need to cry. I’d wait until I got back home to let the tears flow. They haven’t come yet. 

In the middle of my walk I had a mini epiphany. I had to stop focusing on where I ‘wasn’t’ and start focusing on where I want to go. This is the clue. I’m being pushed to think bigger and outside of myself. The uncertainty feels scary! I’m feeling overwhelmed and curious at the same time. 

This past week, aside from working on painting my apartment (because I need a fresh start), I’ve also worked on my Pink Sheep. There’s something magical about these pink sheep; I feel joy doing them. And though they’re very simple in nature; they’re meaningful. The series is a representation of not following the norm, off not conforming to standards other than your own. The piece here is titled, “Will Work For Sex.” The idea of a sheep working for sex is silliness. How could I possibly feel sadness in seeing this? It cracks me up. 

And as for the rest of the day, I can’t say. But I'd rather be a happy pink sheep than a sad one. 

Be Bold, Be Weird, Be Random, Be AMAZING!

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

PINK Sheep

Happy Belated Birthday Mr. John Waters! 2 Days ago, on your actual 67th birthday, I finished reading Role Models, what a great coincidence and an amazing book. I felt like I took a college course, Cult 101. I learned so much about fashion, art, pornography, books, and even religion. The last chapter titled Cult Leader was especially brilliant. It's like you took the words right out of my mouth. “I had little use for dogma that was drilled into my young mind. I mean, “original sin”? The idea that newborn babies come into the world already soiled before they can let out their first cry? “ I've thought the exact same thing. Hogwash! If you’re going to be a cult leader, I want to be a sheep in your herd. Where do I sign up? 

Speaking of sheep, a few weeks ago I started a new series based on pink sheep. There’s so much to explore. I've always felt like an oddball in life and instead of being a black sheep, I’d like to think of myself as the pink sheep. I’m curious to where this newfound inspiration will take me. It’s very different from anything I’ve done before, but there’s something magical in a pink sheep. I can see this being bigger than I'm thinking. 

The piece here is a simple sketch of my Pink Sheep. It’s called Baaahdass. I think Mr. Waters would approve of the simplicity, I hope. I’ve never been one to follow the status quo. He once said, “It wasn't until I started reading and found books they wouldn't let us read in school that I discovered you could be insane and happy and have a good life without being like everybody else.” How is it that God hasn’t brought us together? You've forever changed my life. Baaaaahhhhh! 

Monday, April 15, 2013

FREE Ricky

Sometime this week, possibly tomorrow, I’ll be starting my art campaign titled ‘Free Ricky.” I immediately thought of 80’s song 'Free Nelson Mandela' by Special A.K.A. But, it was more than just a song: it became a slogan against apartheid. 

In no way could I possibly compare this art campaign to Mandela’s Freedom. But in some way it’s still freedom nontheless and in this case it’s also about free art. For however long it takes, I will be tacking on 1,013 signed mini prints onto trees, mostly around my Miracle Mile neighborhood. Because I'm a little odd, I've chosen an odd number. I like 13 and so far 2013 has been a very good year. I like the idea of free art on trees. Shel Silverstein’s The Giving Tree inspires it. Every time I walk by a tree stump, I think of this beloved story and I’m reminded of how much more I can give back. 

I’m curious as to how the project will evolve, if at all. In some way, it's a 'pre' prequel to a bigger art project in mind. I have my work cut out for me, and though it feels a little impossible, it also feels possible. It's with this little grain of possibility that I'll move onward. Nelson Mandela once said, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.” And as much as I'll appreciate the journey of of this bigger project, I'll look forward to looking back once it's done and knowing I believed its possibility. He also said, “There’s no passion to be found in playing small- in settling for a life less than the one you are capable of living.” As I write, these words have brought tears to my eyes because I have played small in many ways and I can’t no longer. I want to play bigger than I can dream for myself. And this to me is freedom. 

The piece featured here is my LITTLE Pop portrait of Nelson Mandela. Thank you Mr. Mandela for being the man that you are, for the inspiring our world. 

Always remember to give back, to give freely. Have a beauty of a beauty of a week.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Troubled Waters

Happy Monday! 

After all these years, I'm finally reading one of John Water's books; it's Role Models. 

And so of course, I started thinking about my troubled teenage years. But looking back they actually weren't so bad. As a ‘goth’ teenager in an all boys private high school, I was the weirdo. If I had known John back then, I think we would have been best friends and I'd now be an old cult legend. A few days after smoking some mysteriously laced marijuana, I asked my parents if I could see a shrink; surprisingly, they said ok. And though I only had two sessions, because I felt it was a bunch of hooey, my shrink did come to say that I needed to stop drinking soda and start drinking water. Otherwise I'd develop diabetes; it was life changing! But now, I wonder if he could have been forecasting something else? 

A year or so later at UC Berkeley, I was introduced to the cult works of John Waters and Divine. At the local theater, I saw my first double feature of Pink Flamingoes and Polyester (in Odorama). Like quitting soda, it was life changing. On screen were the biggest freaks of all. And though I still consider myself an oddball today, at the time after watching those movies, I no longer felt like the freak I thought I was. And about a year later, I was lucky enough to see John Waters give a talk on campus. Like the good student I had always been, I sat up front. Who would have thunk? 

In Role Models, I'm immediately drawn to Mr. Water's storytelling, enjoying each and every odd nuisance. I'm already learning so much about old films I've never scene or even heard about. In leading a class about filmmaking at the Maryland prison, he asks the inmates to do a little improve and to act “the exact opposite of [themselves].” As I read and rode the stationary bicycle at the gym, I wondered about who was ‘my’ complete opposite? The answer revealed itself easily. My complete opposite is an aristocratic straight blonde haired blue-eyed man with an English accent. He’s polished and ignorant to any and every subculture and probably a CEO or even a lawyer. Or maybe even both. I laughed at the thought; I sat up straight with my chin up and I looked around at the measly members working out alongside me. Did they know who 'I think' I was? 

The piece featured here is titled “Waters: Lost Doggie.” I found this old poster on the street as I left the gym. It’s in homage to the infamous scene of Divine eating dog poop. Ah, good times. And since I'm thinking about troubles, Walt Disney once said, “All the adversity I've had in my life, all my troubles and obstacles, have strengthened me... You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.” I feel the same way. I wouldn't change anything in my life. And how appropriate this qoute is, especially in just having seen Llyn Foulkes retrospective at The Hammer Museum, whose work spoke up against Disney and corporations. 

Is it possible that with all our troubles, the world itself can be the happiest place on Earth?! I think it can. 

Have a beautiful week. And make sure to drink lots of water. 

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

BULLSHIT In The Art World

Bullshit is defined as ‘Stupid or untrue talk or writing; nonsense.” 

After 2 months, I’ve finally finished reading Sarah Thorton’s Seven Days in the Art World. As a behind the scene into the art world, it was an intriguing read. It’s a must read for any artist thinking about what it must be like. It’s left me seriously thinking about how to take my art to a different level. Because as of right now, it feels like the entire process of receiving recognition is a bunch of bullshit. It seems even more daunting than the entertainment industry. Who do I know and who have I slept? 

Is it even possible? 

In the past couple of weeks, I’ve been debating over a new idea, but it will be costly. Yet I know that money can’t be a determining factor in whether or not to proceed. If I can think it and visualize it, then it needs to be brought to life. And whether anything comes from it, I can see it being interesting doing the work; and most of all, I’m curious. I’m calling this new project “Free Ricky.” Aside from it being a slogan about my own freedom as a human being, it’s also about giving back to the world a little FREE art. I’m in the works of figuring out the details. 

The piece here is a sneak peek of what I’m thinking. It’s a portrait of Muhammad Ali. He once said, “The man who has no imagination, has no wings.” These words reminded me of Mr. Stover, my high school English teacher who once said, “You can’t be bored as long as you have imagination.” Since hearing those words 30 years ago, I’ve never been bored in my life. It’s like he gave me wings to always keep imagining, anywhere, anytime. No bullshit! 

Friday, March 22, 2013

Charming Queen

I think the Brits are coming! 

After all these years I never believed that a man would magically come into my life and make all my dreams come true; I never believed in prince charming until last night. The preview show, "Lie Down I Think I Love You" by British artist Charming Baker at Milk Studios was amazing! 

I had just been introduced to his work and there aren’t enough words to describe how beautiful his images are in person. Last night, I was moved. Not since seeing the 2008 Marlene Dumas exhibit, at the MOCA, had an artist touched me. There’s a simple beauty about it that grasped me when standing in front of his paintings. The titles said it all, especially while going through my own beautiful transition in life. I’m not sure what it is yet, but I’m enjoying the process. e.g. "I Look Forward to the Day When Knowledge Gives Way to Understanding." 

Yesterday, I also finished reading Alexander McQueen’s (another Brit) biography, though it was more a reflection on his shows than on his personal life. What I found most interesting was to read the ideas behind his inspirations. There was so much more to his work than meets the eyes; it was truly a reflection of his soul. Of all his collections, I most loved the 2008 Summer Show, La Dame Bleu - a tribute to Isabella Blow who had just committed suicide. The clothes were beyond beauty; if I were a woman this is what I would be wearing. 

The piece featured here is titled ‘Queen of Thrones.’ It’s a photograph of my Queen Elizabeth (another Brit) sticker placed on the street ad of HBO’s Game of Thrones. I’m not sure what it is exactly, but the idea of royalty fascinates me. I don’t understand it. What’s the big deal? We’re all still human. Regardless of history or title, she bleeds just like you and I. (Shakespeare, another Brit) 

Thank you Mr. Baker for bringing beauty into this world. You are my prince charming. “Beauty can come from the strangest of places.” – Alexander McQueen. And speaking of strange, what exactly do the lyrics mean to The Smiths lyrics of a Charming Man? 

Why pamper life's complexity 
When the leather runs smooth 
On the passenger's seat? 

Was Mr. Morrissey being seduced in a car by his own prince charming? I have a feeling he had sex in a car, just like myself when I had sex for the first time with a strange man up in the Berkeley Hills, except that I was drunk and he was no prince charming. But I digress. 

The End. 

(P. S. This one's dedicated to you Annatte... maybe a cardboard truly exists, maybe there is a real prince charming.)

Friday, March 15, 2013

Reading Riding and Breaking Rules

Happy Friday and here's to the 3 R's: Reading, Riding and Rules. 

After 4 years of not belonging to a gym, I finally decided to join again. After 20 years of belonging to a gym, I called it quits, mostly because of the ‘gay vanity’ crap that our gay culture is so consumed by: youth, body, and looks. I couldn’t take this idea of having to fit into a mold of perfection. I had to break the rules in some way. 

I decided to rejoin because, aside from walking and little workouts at home, I needed a change of pace. I’m mostly looking forward to reading books while riding a stationary bicycle; it felt good this morning. For 45 minutes I cycled and caught up on reading Alexander McQueen’s biography. It’s been cool to read his biography and later Youtube the fashion shows being referenced. 

Alexander once said, “You’ve got to know the rules in order to break them.” I loved this! Not so much because I like breaking rules, because I actually do follow the rules, but rather because I like making my own set of rules. It makes life more interesting and I live according to who I am, me. My little sister Blanca once referenced it as being 'Ricky's world.' 

The piece featured here is from my artist inspired “Little Girls” series. It contains two seperate canvases; it’s titled “Light My Fire.” It’s inspired by David LaChapelle’s photograph of both McQueen and Isabella Blow. It was she that really took him under her wings and introduced him into the fashion world. 

Thank you Ms. Blow and thank you Alexander for breaking the rules so beautifully. 

Have a great weekend and cheers to breaking rules even if they’re your own, especailly if they're your own.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Clean Yourself Up.

Ah, it’s a beautiful Saturday in LA. I’m now on day 6 of 21 days of cleansing/detox. Will I make it? I think I will. A week before my Vegas trip last week, I started reading Clean by Alejandro Junger. It’s been 30 years since I fell in love with reading books. And of the hundreds of books I’ve read; only about 25 of them have left a lifelong lasting impression. Alejandro’s book is now one of them. It’s changed my perspective on eating and the habits revolved around it. It’s not that I won’t now be eating burgers and stuff, but I’ll think twice about what I put into my body. 

While doing this clean program, I’ve thought about Gandhi. He not only fasted as a way of protest, but he was a vegan, before being vegan became almost fashionable. Though I didn’t enjoy his biography much, it did leave me wondering about man’s ability to fast and above all our willpower to survive. The piece featured here is in Gandhi’s honor. He changed our world and inspired great leaders in Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King. 

The first couple of days were a bit tough especially with not having my morning coffee and walking while drinking it. The ritual was the toughest. This morning I went for a 2 hour walk and it wasn’t too bad. I ended up finding tons of stickers on the street from our local LA artist. I’ve already added them to my scrapbook. I, of course, left a few of my own out on the streets of my beloved city. This newfound project has brought so much joy in my life. It reminded me that I used to collect junky stickers when I was a kid. And the best part is that I found a large sticker that read, "Eat Good, Poop Good." It was little sign from God to keep going with this clean program. 

Indian guru Sri Sathya Sai Baba said, “Krishna insisted on outer cleanliness and inner cleansing. Clean clothes and clean minds are an ideal combination.” I’d have to add a clean body as well, inside and out. But if all this is to be true, I must now do some laundry and a little house cleaning. 
… and maybe a nap and warm bath. 

Keep Clean, Carry on. 

Happy Saurday. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Stick It To Me!

It’s been a little while since I last posted. I just got back from 5 days in Vegas for the Travel Show; I’ve been consumed with work. 

For the past month during my morning walks, I’ve been placing stickers from my LITTLE Pop series out into the public streets of LA. In doing so, I’ve come to recognize quite a few artists and have become a little obsessed in collecting these street art stickers. Carefully, I peel them off and have started a scrapbook collection. 

With my own stickers, I place them mostly on street signs; afterwards, I photograph them. I find a sense of humor in it. This morning, I took the photo featured here; it’s titled “Queen and Her Dog.” I can only imagine Queen Elizabeth picking up after her dog. 

Aside from taking photos of these stickers/signs, I haven’t done any new work. For now, it’s OK, I’m having a good time doing this. Quite a few of the stickers I've come across have sayings on them. My personal favorite simply says "Bankrupt Slut." The idea of a slut being bankrupt makes me laugh each time I come across it. 

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, "It is said that the world is in a state of bankruptcy, that the world owes the world more than the world can pay." Though this was written many years ago, it applies more so now than ever before. If only each one of us could pay it forward a little more often than not. Give back. 

Have a beautiful week.

Monday, February 18, 2013


It was only last week that news broke out that the Pope was resigning. Honestly, I was kind of happy. Any upheaval within the church reminds me of why I left it. There were too many questions and no answers in return. I was 17 years old when I told Papa that I was no longer going to church. His look told me that he wanted to hit me, but he didn’t; he just walked away. It was a turning point in a young mans life now non-Catholic life. 

Who knew that 28 years later I’d be staging a short-lived campaign for a transgender woman for Pope! Amanda Lepore for Pope! The Pope’s resignation inspired me to create this mini campaign when going to Evita, in Hollywood, last Tuesday night. 

And because of this little idea, I had the pleasure of hanging out with Amanda. Over the years, I’ve done many works of art inspired by her. She’s a muse in my life and I wish I could know her better. I especially love her courage to be herself; it’s inspiring to be different and to honor that difference. 

For the evening, I made a digital image taken from Jason Wu’s doll of her. I inserted a gold cross and the papal hat. Oh how I would love to own one of these dolls, but their either impossible to get or super expensive. I am, however, lucky to own the Swatch by David LaChapelle with Amanda’s face on it; it’s genius! 

On the back of my leather jacket I ironed this image that read “Amanda For Pope.” After a few photo ops, I gave her the jacket. I hope she wears it proudly. I also handed out stickers, but my campaign for her as pope ended rather quickly. I was empty handed within minutes; I should have made more. Would have been cool if everyone had been wearing one. 

During my morning walks for the past couple of weeks, I’ve been plastering stickers in my neighborhood with different images of my LITTLE Pop series. The image featured here is a photo of the same sticker I handed out at Evita. I call it “Handicapped.” Many years ago, Amanda's decision to transition into a woman may have been considered a handicap or even a mental disorder. Nowadays, it can be revered as an act of courage and honesty. Thank you Amanda for being you. 

I like the idea that each one of us, in one way or another, is handicapped regardless of who we are or we think we are, this includes the Pope. And so maybe instead of feeling happy for his resignation, I’ll think differently and remember that he to is one of us; he too is human. 

George Orwell said it perfectly, “The essence of being human is that one does not seek perfection.” It's easier said than done, but words to live by nonetheless. 

Monday, February 11, 2013


Lately I’ve been thinking about time. Does it fly or does it stand still? We’ve often heard the age-old saying, “Time flies when you’re having fun.” But am I really having fun? I believe so; I’ve had 45 great years of life! It’s been an interesting ride; I wouldn’t change a thing. 

I can’t remember the last time I felt like time stood still. It may have been almost 15 years ago when I first moved to LA. I had the privilege of meeting a fly on the 2nd floor of Barnes and Noble in Santa Monica. The little fly flew over to where I was sitting and while I read a book, he kept me company. It’s a simple moment in life I will never forget. For months afterwards, I kept going to the same place and sitting in the same spot. Each time I felt calm; I felt inspired. 

While on my recent trip to NYC, I came across a book called “The Life of Fly” by Magnus Muhr. I laughed out loud when I opened the page. I kept laughing as I kept flipping through the book. I had to have it; it was too funny and it reminded me of my own Mr. Fly, as I came to call him. 

The simplicity of this book got me thinking about art and the amount of time spent on creating any works of art. Is the amount of time spent relevant to the value of art? 

The masters spend years on paintings that I can’t imagine doing myself; I’d never finish anything. Plus, I’d be dishonoring the spirit of who I am and how I live my life. Someone once told me not to reveal the amount of time I spent on my art. Honestly, some of my Little Girls took less than an hour to create. And some of my all time favorite pieces are the simplest, the one’s that happened without any effort and hardly a thought. Does this take away from their value? I hope not. 

When thinking about time and art, the first person to come to mind is of course Keith Haring. His work was simple, beautiful, and meaningful. He once said, “My contribution to the world is my ability to draw. I will draw as much as I can for as many people as I can for as long as I can.” Ah yes, I feel the same way! In honor of his spirit, the piece here is titled, “Dik.” It’s from my latest LITTLE Dick series. I think Keith would appreciate the sense of silliness and simplicity. 

Cheers to you Keith! (If only I could have been a fly on your walls).

Friday, February 8, 2013

Dicks Cocks and Penises

I woke up this morning thinking about things… dicks, cocks, penises, pee-pees, wieners, weenies, pingas, vergas, organs, man hoods, horseys, sausages, packages, its, you-know-what’s, you name it… (Actually if you can think of any other names, please let me know.) 

It feels like I’m being called to do a new series of artwork. Could it be that my lack of sex, for almost 3 years, has lead me to this moment, possibly! It must be God sent. He created us; he created it. For the past week, I’ve been doodling dick, cock, penises…you name it. 

This morning while on my walk, I was thinking about the series and I started realizing that possibly it has to do with having had sex at 7 years old. I was still a little boy, but after sex, I became obsessed with these things, dicks, cocks, penises…you name it. At this time, the details of that first moment are irrelevant, but I know that my life took a different course, none that I regret of course. Especially if it’s led me to this moment and this NEW concept, which I don’t have a name for yet. For the moment, I’d like for the series to come from that innocent place, almost to the moment in time right before I did the ‘dirty deed,’ because it did feel dirty at the time. 

The piece here is titled “Eggs and Sausage.” It was the first thing I did after opening my eyes this morning. I did it on my IPAD, but I’m thinking of doing large acrylic portraits. As I move forward with the series, I’m curious about where it will take me; I love this newfound sense of curiosity. It’ll makes life interesting! 

After years of having gay sex, I wonder if it’s possible that the series can remain playful, uncomplicated, and possibly innocent? I believe so. I hope so. Ernest Hemingway once said, “All things truly wicked, start from innocence.” If for whatever reasons you happen to find this series, (of dicks, cocks, penises… you name it,) wicked, it ‘s not meant to be shocking, but hopefully a little thought provoking. 

Because after all I’ve been through, I’m still that little boy who used to LOVE new erasers on my #2 pencils.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Sid and Coco

OK, so I’m a few days late, but here is what I meant to post on Monday. 

What do Coco Chanel and Sid Vicious have in common? 

Nothing that I know of other than they both had a great sense of iconic style. And with a simple Google search, I come to find that back in 2011 designer Kinder Aggugini launched a line of women’s clothes self described as Coco Chanel Marries Sid Vicious. A-ha, so I’m not the only one that sees them together. Makes me wonder what a dinner conversation between them would have been like? If Coco were to say to him, “In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different.” I think Sid would have listened closely. He’s the ultimate icon when it comes to the punk era; he was definitely different! And to this day, defines a look that is irreplaceable. 

A few days ago, while working in NYC, I also came to find out that in May, the Metropolitan Museum of Art is going to be exhibiting Punk: Chaos to Couture. I’m so excited! I’ll have to make a special trip especially since I just finished reading Sid’s biography Too Fast too Live. It was short and quite sad. (Odd Note: The story goes that when a woman asked him to fuck her because she wanted something to remember him by, instead of fucking her he shat on her.) I don't hink Coco would have approved. 

In wondering what to read on my way back to LA, I remembered having seen Coco Chanel’s biography at Chelsea Market bookstore. When I went back to purchase the book, I instead found “Seven Days in the Art World" by Sarah Thornton.” 50+ pages in and so far it’s been an interesting read about the art world. It makes me wonder about my own career? Is it worth it? Will I receive recognition? As I keep reading, I hope I’m not dissuaded, but rather inspired to keep working on my art regardless of any success. 

The portraits here are of Sid and Coco, it kind of sounds better than Sid and Nancy. I had forgotten about Gary Oldman and Courtney Love’s performances; they were both brilliant. Again, thanks to the Internet, I saw for the first time Sid’s original performance of "My Way." I wasn’t too impressed, but nonetheless I’m still a fan. 

But through it all, when there was doubt 
I ate it up and spit it out 
I faced it all and I stood tall and did it my way 

There is no other way to live our lives...BE DIFFERENT!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Got MLK!

In thinking about what to write this upcoming MLK Day, I thought I’d repost what I wrote last year. I couldn’t say it any better. It started with a dream… 

Burr!!! Happy MLK Day. (And Inauguration Day.) 

I had a dream last night. Definitely not like the one Mr. King spoke of almost 50 years ago. 

I dreamt of myself as a little 6-year old boy unknowingly riding on a bus with an older version of myself. When little me went to tell the bus driver that I needed to pee, he told me to go back to my seat. An innocent bystander came over to help and without a thought, the bus driver opened the door, and while the bus was still moving, he pushed us both out! The remainder of the passengers gasped as little me and the innocent bystander rolled onto the concrete, blood everywhere. 

Suddenly, I was now not only observing the dream, but in the dream. I was now the older version of me in the bus. I stood up and yelled to protest his cruel act of violence; I immediately asked for everyone’s assistance. I got very little help and so I got off the bus but I was already too far away from the crime scene. In the end, there was no resolution, the dream got weird and I don’t remember the ending, ugh! 


This morning I woke up and decided to read MLK’s “I Have A Dream” speech; I read it word for word, as I had only done so once before when reading his autobiography. After all these years, the words are still powerful. They reminded me of all the inequality that still exists in our country, our world. The one phrase that caught my attention was “we cannot walk alone.” It sort of summed up everything. How often do we get consumed into our little lives, not realizing that we do not and cannot walk this earth alone? We, each and every one of us, are all connected, past, present, and future! 
(Rather than post last years image, (Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness), the piece featured here is titled, “MLK”). In his speech, MLK quotes this ‘unalienable right.’ There’s that little me that just doesn’t understand how such a simple thing cannot be granted to us all. How does it all get so complicated? And in one simple answer, I think religion really fucks us up and keeps us from uniting as one world. 
(Obama- to hear a King proclaim that our individual freedom is inextricably bound to the freedom of every soul on Earth.) 

John Lennon said it best: 

“Imagine there's no countries 

It isn't hard to do 

Nothing to kill or die for 
And no religion too 
Imagine all the people living life in peace 


You, you may say 
I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one 

I hope some day you'll join us 
And the world will be as one"