Early Abstractions has gone to the Getty.

I had Harry Smith’s own 16mm print of Early Abstractions for about 20 years, since he got it out from under the bed at his little apartment on the Naropa Institute grounds. I just passed it off to Rani Singh of the Getty Museum and Harry Smith Archive. Sad to see it go, as it’s a relic from one of the people who has meant the most to me. It’s  a treasure, though, and it deserves a better archival situation than I can provide. The Getty is comparing all the available prints to the 60-year-old original hand-painted 35mm film (and the later parts) and making a “definitive” new restored version. Rani took great care of Harry during his last years, and I know the movie is safe under her guard. In any case, the color and condition are far better than the print used for the Getty’s current working DVD version, which I recently saw for the first time. Hopefully, my print (Harry’s print) will make the restored version better than it would have been. That’s better than having it in my closet for an occasional screening, and waiting for vinegar syndrome to bloom. I miss you, Harry. Thanks for trusting me with your movie for a while.

Sorting continually through all that comes in, obliges, and reveals itself.

A few more items for the RMCAD show in September. It’s been a busy few weeks – just back from California, off soon to Missoula, MT for an iron pour, with the end of the semester a little more than a week away. There’s also an exhibition coming up in Ireland in a few months, with a video piece from me and a lettery installation by Rian. ArtWorks in Letterkenny, Co. Donegal, starting in late July. One recent surprise was an impromptu outing to see Jonsi with Carl at the Paramount. Keening, moaning, thundering Icelandic “post-rock” amidst a hyperintelligent, geeky, absolutely devoted crowd. Sheets of sound raining down like Ragnarok amidst grim, entrancing and/or silly animated projections. Teaching class the next day was a bit dreamy, with heavy eyelids, but I fooled ’em, I think. My own music and sound projects are moving slowly along, but I’m mostly accumulating fragments. I know, I know – the desire to make something whole dates me, and it’s all about fragments in this metaposthistoricalprotoneodada environment, but I still plug along with my quaint 20th century notions in my post-solitary bailiwick. Working on a number of things. I just spent a few minutes helping set up Michelle Ellsworth’s show at MCA Denver and had another look at Bill Stockman’s drawings while I was there. More to say about that, I think. For now, though, back to work, with tomorrow’s class to prep for.

Big Show of Little Pictures

Grabbing odd moments in a busy life as a daddy/lecturer/artist, I’ve been working on a series of tiny prints, some of which will appear in an intricate array at Rocky Mountain College of Art & Design’s Rude Gallery this September. There’ll be movies, too, old and new. You’ll find a few select images above, but you can also look to the image archive tab above for a sprawling, unedited view of recent excreta. Well, or you can just click here. Some of them duplicate images from other recent “slideshows” below. Be patient as the page loads. Lots of pictures. Hope you like ’em.