Birdspot. On the road. Drawing birds.




I have been making a lot of sketches of my taxidermied chipmunk. I love it so much that, because I am thinking of finally getting another dog, it has paved the way for a small, NYC-sized animal as nothing else could have convinced me to do. I think that there is a Yorkie out there waiting for me.

When I pulled this little jewel out of its birthday box, as yet unenlightened to its existence, I glanced up at my friend Peggy and saw her turn very pale. Warning: at a birthday dinner, you might want to check to see if any of the guests are rodent phobic before giving someone a stuffed chipmunk. I can’t imagine what would have happened if it had been one of the freeze-dried rats also available at The Evolution Store.

11 Responses to “mar 1”

  1. Crack-munk.

  2. I’ll keep this in mind for future gifts!

    “Crack-munk” is a great title!!

    “Crystal Meth Munk”
    BTW: the unfortunate titmouse could have picked up a tiny piece of either in the park and the results would have been the same.
    Details on the doc?

  4. re: doc: I am getting filmed today in studio! A birder who has a real job in the film industry is making a documentary on birders in Central Park, and somehow I have become part of the project. Last week they followed me around the park for four and a half hours as I looked for birds and took reference photos. We found the dying titmouse (link here) and they filmed the whole sequence. Since I am going to make drawings from that, now they are following up a few times in studio. And they are interviewing me on how I wrap birding in the park into my work.

    The project is backed by our local PBS but I think will be a short feature, and who knows where it will go from there. I like the filmmakers a lot.

    I am going to need intravenous caffeine today!!

  5. Can’t go to Armory Show, but I have heard Duchamp has a rockin’ piece in it.

  6. Went to the Armory Show, and, well, it certainly was a scene. And, a century or so later than the originator, still felt somewhat/kind of/maybe vital.

    My biggest observation: people who are privileged or who perceive of themselves as privileged are not the kindest sorts to be stuck in a crowd with. I have NEVER seen more brazenly rude walking behavior, as people barreled into each other and boldly out-intimidated one another for straight-line walking space. Shorter folk, older women, and people wearing less expensive clothing were particularly vulnerable to being displaced. It was, truly, astonishing.

    My second-biggest observation: most of the art was insipid and sorely disappointing. This is the easiest thing in the world to hurl as criticism, so take it or leave it, but know that I LOVE contemporary art in all of its conceptual geeky flashy whimsy. Usually. I am not so sure any more. I do not have a clue whether this was any better or worse than the preceding years’ worth, and I do know that this is not the only fair and that it’s not even the hippest one. But the collector base must, in the end, all boil back down to the same rarified few.

  7. 1. Reminds me of David Bowie as Warhol in the Basquiat film bemoaning “I don’t even know what’s good anymore.”
    2. The “art market” has made all passionate discussion of talent and skill moot. No one really cares except monied collectors. I love that you care, as do I (and I do deeply) , but the more I talk to people about the art market, the more I want to go birding.
    3. Now don’t take this the wrong way, BUT you don’t think YOU ARE PRIVILEGED? You are in NYC, doing art, going to shows, drinking expensive drinks AND going birding. Reality check: most of the world doesn’t get to do that. Most people are in over their heads in debt working mind-numbing crappy jobs to make ends meet. You are part of the crowd you are observing, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. You are living a life many people would give their right arm (if left handed) for and I love the fact you are doing it: you’ve earned it. I live a similar if much lower rent and much less cache version. But it is a privileged life too.
    Sorry to be a parent there, when I’m not.

  8. I wish you were here Saturday. It’s the big BIRDER’S MEETING. I am giving a talk on 50 years of birds and birding in Worcester County. Somehow I manage to get in a slide of NEVER MIND THE BULLOCKS and a picture of Massachusetts as Baked Alaska among others. Motto: “always be the artist when dealing with birders and the birder when dealing with artists.” Sheila is giving a separate talk, much more technical on the results of the atlas. Should be a fun day and it’s here in Wormtown this year.

  9. Don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining about my life. I’m not really an insider here, though, I’m more of a straddler, and the privileged we are talking about is is light years beyond what might sound like privilege just because I’m here in the city. I’m only here because I’ve sacrificed just about everything in my life to be here, mostly because it is almost impossible to survive as an artist everywhere else!

    On a bird note, I found a Lesser Black-backed Gull on the Reservoir in Central Park this morning. It’s a pretty great bird for the park! IN BETWEEN studio work and afternoon meetings and doing bills, btw.

  10. LBBG: you know 10 years ago they were a HUGE deal wherever you would find them, if you could find them. Now, I have to say, they are more common than say an ICELAND GULL. They have to be breeding more commonly in North America than the tiny handfulls of records indicate. Unfortunately, some of those records include hybridzing with Herring Gulls. Love the Woodcock report. I am hoping most of the foot of snow we got last week melts so we can hear them on territory.

    You haven’t sacrificed quite everything. FOR INSTANCE: You still appear quite sane. I could be wrong, of course. And you had the choice to make that “sacrifice”. Most folks don’t even have a choice. And artists are at thier best when they are outsiders, you know that. It would really suck if you were in with the in crowd. Look what happened to the Schnabbellicose.
    Of course, there’s Jeff Koons.
    Therein lies madness or happiness, I cannot figure out which.
    You just keep birdin’ and art’in girl!

  11. The limo tweet was just for you, Mark!

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