Back in March I mentioned I was working on a
painting of Mike Doughty from an Old Rock House gig back in October. It seems
I’ve hit a brick wall with this painting as I’ve started over on it three times
now. Not sure what is causing the block but I sense it’s the fact that I don’t
care much for his music. I read his book and quite enjoyed it but can’t listen
to the his tunes. So while speculating on a new plan of attack on how to
complete the piece over a beer at the Tap Room, I run into Chris King. He
tells me he’s worked out a deal with El Lenador to have first Thursday art
openings that will include drink specials and asks if I want to help him put
some shows together. I say, “sure thing” and then he says, “OK, great, first
show is Thursday, get some bands and we’ll put up some paintings”. Rolling with
the punches (and the beer consumed) I agree and go my merry way.
The next day I had a vague recollection of
having to book two bands for a show in 4 days. I email Chris to confirm and
sure enough I had agreed to such a thing. After some discussion, we agree it’s
probably best to push this project off for a month so we can properly prepare.
Chris tells me I can hang whatever I want but I don’t really have anything to
hang. I look over at my canvas rack and it’s filled with completed canvases
that were just shown in a January show.
I noticed a number of long blank canvases
sitting on the rack. These canvases measure 12 inches by 36 or 18 by 36 or 12
by 18, nice long canvases I’ve never used. I figured I could fill them up with
beer El Lenador sells so when someone asks what kind of beer they have, they can
just point at the walls. I could do a painting of a Corona, a PBR, a Stag, a
Negra Modelo, a Modelo Especial, a Becks, a Dos Equis and finally a Schlafly
Pale Ale (pictured above).
Then I decided to do all the paintings in oil.
My usual medium preference is acrylic but I was still grappling with the whole
Mike Doughty thing and trying to figure out a way to loosen things up a bit. I
thought if I worked in an unfamiliar medium then that might keep me on my toes.
I also wanted to keep these fresh and not over think them, so I started and completed
each piece in one session. Yeah there might be some mistakes here and there but
too bad. Kind of like a live performance from a musician. Go with the flow and
see what happens.
Over all I’m very happy with the results. I
didn’t spend too much time or overwhelm myself and I got eight new canvases
completed in less than a month. I started with spray paint and then filled in
the blanks with oil. Oil is much different than acrylic, it’s less forgiving
and requires more attention. Again, it’s like music, like playing music on an
acoustic guitar vs. electric. Acoustic is very easy to control, like acrylic
paint, but once you step into oil, like an electric guitar, everything gets
amplified and you better be ready to make every stroke and movement count.
It was decided that the first show will be on
Thu July 5 and Chris added Jay Babcock to the line-up of artists. I talked with
Tim Rakel (Union Electric, May Day Orchestra) and Sherman S. Sherman (Peck of Dirt) about playing some solo tunes and now we’re set.
El Lenador 3124 Cherokee
St. St. Louis, MO
Rakel Sherman S.
5 9 pm -
midnight Art up until
Aug. 2 This also kicks
off Negro Modelo Night at El
Lenador $1 off Negro
Model drafts at all Thursday night art openings. Next openings:
Tim McAvin (Aug. 2), Kim