Image above: hidden/revealed, acrylic & ink on aluminum, 17.5 x 23.5 inches

Friday, April 29, 2016

Searching for Home

Well a home.

For three days I've been researching and visiting galleries here in Albuquerque.  I've talked to a lot of people: gallery owners, gallery employees, other artist encountered in galleries or over the Net.

I'll continue on with this until I do find an art home here, but I know that ultimately I must once again look to the wider world of the art-gallery-complex [not unlike the military-complex] in all of it's intricate dances of posturing and art-speak.  Looking beyond this place, this state.

When I was in the Chicago, and other mid-western art markets [Omaha is great btw] there were many opportunities; someone would call me and say, "Blah-Blah gallery needs a one person show, I thought of you, call so and so, be nice and I think you'll do well there."  Stuff like that.  Produced from a network of friends, gallery owner, and causal meetings.  I've been somewhat lazy creating such a network here, I'd rather do art, look at art, and enjoy the New Mexico vibe of clean air, blue skies, deep deserts and high forested mountains; but lazy or not I meet people, get interested in what others are doing and want to go to their shows.

So now, what's happening is I've been here long enough that the network of acquaintances has started to create a synergy of connections.  Something like a mellow chain reaction.  Having realized this yesterday I truly started to push the curve of building that kind of energy.  I've found some galleries I'm interested in and seem initially interested in me.  Made some presentations yesterday, as I did so decided I wasn't interested in them so much.  The two today that I responded too, and I had walked into 7 places, I think i'll pursue to get 'represented', actually there is a third, but I think the work i'm designing now will be more interesting to them, so laters on that one.

I was reading an on-line article of the ABQ gallery scene from 2007, remember 2007, before the great recession when sales were good and often.  Seems galleries here were struggling with thin margins, low sales even then, god the recession must have been a bloodbath here.  There were gallery website links, about 7-9, and only two of those listed still existed.

So this week ends on a good spot, much more hopeful of finding my little art children a new home; having a plan really is the best LOL.


Wednesday, April 27, 2016


When petting Cats, be sure not to activate the Murder button.

I love that, especially as I look at the many scars on the back of my hands.


Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Just Strange

Well ok.

Was gone for 8 days on a trip to Las Vegas and Reno in mid-April.  Las Vegas to visit a friend and shoot a video interview on him about his art, and Reno to visit an old friend from Kansas City, MO. days, as well as, go to a military reunion [my first ever] of the 377th Security Police Squadron - Vietnam.

So more on all that later most likely, well at least some landscape photos in Nevada on that long drive between Las Vegas and Reno on US 95.

But first some travel oddities I photographed [click for larger image].

Yep, the old Alien Gas-Brothel-Dinner, outside the infamous Area 51.
Note that in fine print under word Brothel is 'Souvenirs', hmmm.

This plane wreck parked outside another Nevada brothel, not sure of the connection here.

Just a really tired old building on the magical road US 95.

This free minded motel just off I-40 in Flagstaff, AZ.
Aliens coming down from Nevada no doubt.


Monday, April 11, 2016


I really love how this image came out. It is a dtp photogravure of a digital infrared shot, the sun is very low, just minutes before sunset.

End of Day
Image is 4x5 inches.

This is a proof, using carbon black ink on Rives BFK.  I've found since starting this blog that scanned images for the blog become very noisy, when in reality there is no noise in the file or on the plate.  Guess I'll have to start photographing these works for portfolio when i get around to making another website. [maybe i just need a new scanner lol].


Sunday, April 10, 2016

Linocut practice

It's been some time since I've done any lino work, so thought it would be a good challenge to model one on an old Lynd Ward image.  I've always admired his work and own several of his books.  Lynd Ward worked in woodcut, and detail can far exceed what lino can do as a medium, but I thought it worthwhile to do an image.

So this is based on one done by him in his Vertigo, A Novel in Woodcuts, 1937 and can be had in new paperback edition from Amazon -link to book-.

Thought I came close, after all it was practice.

Below is a relief work from a few years back:

Into The Woods
 is a color reduction woodcut, using birch plywood @ 3/8 inch.
27.5 x 19.25 inches, edition of 4, I've the last one.


Saturday, April 9, 2016

Must See Exhibits

Four really good exhibits in Albuquerque in April.  We saw them all today, tired.

2016 Insight Photography Show [web site here] April 2 - 24th, Fine Arts Bldg. Expo NM
The old Fine Arts building is in really fine shape, traditional adobe style, with many gallery rooms around a central exhibit space; the show is well lite and hung, and features may talented artists, some mundane, many exceptional.

18th Annual Masterworks of New Mexico Fine Art Show [here for on-line catalog, pdf].  Take a minute to look at the catalog and then you'll want to go.  April 2 - 30th.  Located at the Hispanic Arts Center, Expo NM [just down the street from the Fine Arts Bldg. parking is $5 for all areas].
A well juried showing, nothing to quibble about here on quality or quantity.

Next is numbers 3 and 4, are two, one person shows in the same gallery, New Grounds Print Workshop & Gallery - the Matrix Gallery [info here].

The two featured printmakers are in the front space, Takahiko Hayashi, trained for BFA Painting, Musashino Art University and MFA Printmaking at Tokyo National University.  See this link for a view of some of his works: Gallery; not the current show, one I think from an earlier show there?

Truly wonderful work, these detail etchings utilize colored inks, chine colle,  multiple plates and combining to create very intricate images, some like a kimono in textures, other organic and gestural.

Second, Ando Shinji, MFA Tokyo University of Fine Arts.  Again etchings, some quite large for a single plate [24x18 and larger], with a concentration on multi-plate color etchings. Also here for his past works at Matrix and again not the current showing but in both cases you get the idea.  I believe both are thru April, check with gallery for times and dates.

Much to lust after.


Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Soseki, part 3

Three haiku by Soseki, written after seeing an apparition of a woman on a spring night.

The shadows of a spring night blend and blur,
But there amidst the blossoms I feel sure
A woman stands.

Not blossoms but the midnight stars of spring she plucks,
And weaves them into garlands for her hair.

There she stands so utter alone,
And beaten Spring draws slowly to its close.

[p 50-51]


Monday, April 4, 2016

The Three Cornered World - part 2

Another quote from Natsume Soseki's fine novel:

"Immediately to my left I could see the foot of another mountain, and at times within the filmy depths of haze, shadowy shapes of what might have been pine trees showed themselves, only to hide again in an instant.  Whether it was the rain or the trees that was moving, or whether the whole thing was merely the unreal wavering of a dream, I did not know.  Whatever it was, it struck me as most unusual and wonderful. " [p 24]

"Only when I completely forget my material existence, and view myself from a purely objective standpoint, can I, as a figure in a painting, blend into the beautiful harmony of my natural surroundings.  The moment, however, I feel annoyed because of the rain, or miserable because my legs are weary with walking, then I have already ceased to be a character in a poem, or a figure in a painting, and I revert to the uncomprehending,  insensitive man in street I was before, I am then even blind to the elegance of the fleeting clouds; unable to feel any bond of sympathy with a falling petal or the cry of a bird, much less appreciate the great beauty in the image of myself, completely alone, walking through the mountains in spring."  [p 25-26]

For myself I shall keep this around me as I walk through the desert and mountains.

The Three Cornered World


Sunday, April 3, 2016

Day trip: Bandelier National Monument, NM

About 2 hrs. north of Albuquerque is Bandelier National Monument, just outside Los Alamos, the atomic city.

Evidence of migration and seasonal occupation in the National Monument dates back to about 10,000 years.  Those who eventually settled the canyon are known as the Ancestral Pueblo people.  This is canyon and mesa country, where deep canyons, such as the Frijoles Canyon, are carved into the Pajarito Plateau.  The plateau was formed from two gigantic eruptions, covering 400 sq miles with ash as deep as 1,000 feet.  Jemez volcano blew about a million years ago forming the Valles Caldera, one of the smaller super volcanos.

Click on images for larger view:

Above: Don Messec looking down into Frijoles Canyon.  The road down into the canyon points first at the visitor center, then the trail from there goes to the large kiva and then the foundations of Tyuonyi Pueblo.

Wider view of the overlook.  In the large image the backcountry trail can be seen switching back as it goes deeper into the canyon exiting the right frame.

LS of the ruins from lookout point.

The Frey trail from the campground down to canyon floor.

Click on for larger image, and see the ladders climbing up to Alcove House cliff dwelling.
Note the compressed white ash.

The upper Frijoles Canyon, the section with ruins is to my back.  The monument has 70 miles of trail, if you decide to come check website for trail damage, as a flash flood damaged or destroyed many of the routes.


Saturday, April 2, 2016

Gallery Closing

This will be the last month for the SE-OC Gallery here in Albuquerque, NM.  [This will be the 2nd one that has represented me that's closed in 3 years!]

I went early for the last Arts Crawl that the gallery will have.  Last night was a nice evening, there were lots of openings thru out the city so going early was necessary if I was to make any other openings.  The big one last night was the New Mexico Masterworks show, several of the SE-OC artists are in that exhibit.

Here are a few pictures from SE-OC:

You'll notice two of my images above, center, the Buddhas. I had a large show in Dec-Jan and left just three medium sized works on aluminum.

Like I said it was very early, not quite 6pm.  The windows are north light, just really a wonderful space with very nice people running the gallery.  The space, as I understand it, will be converted to their use for educational out-reach, which they've been doing at another location.

If you're a New Mexico person stop by this month, lots of really good deals on art.  SE-OC Gallery