Saturday, August 20, 2011

Put a Plug On It**

** My affection for this lent me to go with a really dumb title for this blog post. DON'T CARE.

I'm one of the competing artists for this contest, in which a bunch of us will paint our own designs on fire plugs through Olde Uptown in Harrisburg.
The image to the left is my design, to be painted on the fireplug at Delaware and Third by September 16. The title, obviously, is Yellow Plugmarine.

I chose it for a few reasons:
1. It's just very difficult for me to not act upon a pun when I think of it. For example, I almost just wrote "act upun", but I thought it wasn't worth the risk.
2. Fire plugs really ought to be yellow.
3. Everything really ought to resemble a submarine.
4. I like referential art, and I like that this design is almost inescapably cheerful.

I have no idea how voting works! Do it if you'd like, but it's whatever. I'm just glad for beautification projects happening in this dear, dear city.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Palimpsests Show

I am a one-song bird, admittedly. I really, really love palimpsests (as I've said before. Thank YOU, borrowed writing from before), and that is the theme of the art show I am sharing with my dear, dear friend Evan Cameron. It opens this Friday at the Yellow Wall Gallery at Midtown Scholar. (It's not nepotism. I promise.)

The process of the show started while making author portraits out of the cardboard (cardboardtraits?) being discarded from the Midtown Scholar, my workplace. The image of the author (to the left: "You will find that we are all, as I said before, bugs in amber" (or, Kurt Vonnegut), 2011) is meant to appear in surprising, rudimentary ways while self-referencing the canvas.

Oh hey. Here's my artist statement and some images from the show.

When I was in a film class in college, we used the idea of palimpsests to describe the jarring experience of watching an actor play a role outside of what we were used to. He can carry a lawyer’s briefcase, but John Wayne will always be squinting into a cowboy’s sunset. It makes this new story he’s telling a bit smudged. A bit more interesting. In these palimpsests [author portraits in pen, paint and bookstore cardboard; poems found and circled in cheap novelty books], it's important to me that the original manuscript is visible despite all the scraping. The Making New, the Redemption part of it only works if you can tell that there is a different and earlier story having been told.

My work almost always involves the repurposing of something else, and it’s in this process that I
am trying to find meaning. Here, I used discarded bits and overlooked scraps of this bookstore to
continue telling stories. The authors I’ve chosen are layered in my life in ways I can’t even quite
tell you about. The dime novel poems force a new meaning to make room for a cheekier, sleuthier past.
There was another life that I might have had. But I am having this one. (or, Kazuo Ishiguro)
Liz Laribee, 2011. $45

Good behavior is the proper posture of the weak. (or, Jamaica Kincaid)
Liz Laribee, 2011. $45

If you read someone else's diary, you get what you deserve. (or, David Sedaris)
Liz Laribee, 2011. $45

I want God, I want poetry, I want real danger, I want freedom, I want goodness. I want sin.
(or, Aldous Huxley)
Liz Laribee, 2011. $45