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.