Saturday, February 8, 2014

Update from a Norwegian-American Sitting Quietly in the Desert

I'm continuing to do mixed-media decoration of little boxes, journals, shrines, altars, etc.  All of the small places where we keep God.  I find nice wooden, cardboard or tin boxes at various thrift shops when I'm out looking for eBay fodder.  I also find some pretty great magazine photos, wrapping papers, scrapbook papers, etc., in my wanderings. 

These boxes are for my "Faces of God" show at RioBravo FineArts gallery in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico, at the end of 2014.  There will be a table in one corner of the gallery with an installation of dozens of little boxes.  The other pieces for the show will be BIG.  

This peacock hexagonal box attracted some attention when I showed it to my FaceBook friends, so now it's in the mail to Joe Possley, a friend from my college days back in Wisconsin in the 1970s. 

This mixed-media mostly-painting is called Amour-Dillo.  It was suggested by my friend Cindy Mitchell, who knows how much I like to paint animals weirdly.  I'm entering it in The Red Show in Ajo, Arizona.  

Ajo is 10 miles north of Why, and it's where we go to buy groceries, get library books, mail my eBay packages, etc.  There is a lively arts community in Ajo.  There aren't as many opportunities to show work as there are in Truth or Consequences, because there are few galleries.  But the community definitely supports its artists.  The International Senoran Desert Alliance (ISDA) rehabbed the old Curley School into artisan apartment/studio spaces

Besides doing artwork, I've been having a little more social winter here in Why than I have in past years.  As I mentioned in my last blog, several TorC friends have camped here at Coyote Howls, and my friends Susan and Dan from Eugene, Oregon, visited for a few days.  I've also gotten to know Michael and Pam, a couple from Albuquerque who are new to RVing--they also happened to stay at the Artesian, the same place I was in Truth or Consequences, but I missed meeting them there.  The longer I stay in this area, there are more parallels and ties between TorC and Why.  I look forward to my friend Janice coming to visit me from TorC next weekend.

I've been up to Phoenix a lot lately.  Five trips up there in about a month.  Really a lot for me, since I prefer to sit around by myself most of the time.  I ran across the perfect meme on FaceBook to describe my attitude:  It's not that I'm anti-social, I'm just pro-solitude.  But I needed new glasses, which took a couple of trips, and then my younger brother Sheldon, his wife Lori, and their four younger children were vacationing at a resort in Peoria, so I went up to spend some time with them.  In the picture above, Sheldon is whistling and acting innocent.  I can't explain why. 

Here's a picture of most of the family--Andy (14), my sister-in-law Lori, Elena (16), Charlie (the small person turned away from the camera), and Sheldon.


Here is a picture of seven-year-old Charlie, whom Sheldon and Lori began to adopt when he was an infant and were finally able to bring home from Guatemala last year.  Lena is in the background.  Charlie's favorite thing is to tickle and be tickled. 

Val (age 18) did not make it into the family picture in the kitchen because she'd been working out and then showering.  Sorry about the wet hair pic, Vali!  

On my latest trip to Phoenix, when I visited with Sheldon and family, I also got to have lunch with Roxanne of Good Luck Duck fame!  

I've been keeping busy with eBay in addition to artwork.  Yesterday I mailed out some borderland cowboy boots to a New Yorker.  I'm trying to stay focused on work right now, during this quiet time in the desert where I have good Internet access thanks to the cell phone tower at the nearby Border Patrol Station, because I simply do not know what's next.  I'll definitely be here through the beginning of April, when I'll have a show to hang at January's gallery in Truth or Consequences, NM.  But after that?  Steve and I are undecided.  Maybe a work camping job somewhere, maybe wandering the New Mexico state parks for the summer, maybe a knee replacement.  


  1. Love your work, even though I cannot imagine fitting my God into a box. Thanks for sharing. :)

    1. Thank you! Yeah. It's kind of meant to be ironic.