“The refuse between mind and matter is a mine of information” Robert Smithson
One of the key concepts conveyed by permacultural practice is the reimagining of that which is in-between the barriers of a human built world: roads, fences, buildings. In permaculture, borders and edges are encounter sites where translation and adaptation between species encourages diversity and resiliency.
We humans also have edges. (1) We participate in multiple encounters and translations with the edges of other bodies within context-suffused mediums called “environments.”
The seed bomb is a permacultural meme that intensifies awareness of this participation. Popularized by microbiologist and farmer Yasunobu Fukuoka (2) and the New York’s Urban Guerillas circa 1973, seed bombs, a mix of seeds and compost rolled into damp mud balls, were also used by prehistoric farmers. Because seeds are lightweight, their mix facilitates distribution and germination by providing weight and protective cover; tossed over a border or fence, the ball, grenade, or bomb waits until rain melts it into the ground. As the seeds swell and cotyledons emerge, seedlings are supported by microbes and the chemistry of root and soil. (3) An amalgam of seeds, fungi, microbe and ground becomes a manifesto for the fullness of in-between. Continue reading melt with us→
Location: Carbondale, Illinois
Date: January 2011
Description: studio sketches, recycled 8.5″ X 11″ printer paper
“i feel sorry for the human people”
“LO SAD PENGUINO”
“i changed all my light bulbs but it melted anyways”
These are the first penguins I painted. Sketched out in Sarah Lewison’s living room/studio outside Carbondale, Illinois. Late in the evening, I penciled and water colored them on paper from Sarah’s recycle bin. And taped them to the wall and snapped a couple of photos. Continue reading sad penguinos – first penguins→
Location: Portland Oregon
Description: ink paintings on various sized scraps of paper
I began to regularly paint small sad penguins on scraps of paper. The painting of small sad penguins was a way to keep going when discouraged. I was printing serigraphs and making visuals for climate justice campaigns. Basically, the collective print studio where I was working, Flight 64, had piles of thin strips of really nice paper. Sometimes when friends came over to my house or studio, their attention would be drawn to small strips of paper, off cuts of serigraphs, painted with small sad penguins. I would be surprised and slightly annoyed. Why weren’t they focusing on my prints? Hard to believe from my fuzzy documentation but, the clumps and clusters of ink sad penguins had uncanny appeal. Continue reading painting between prints→
Location: Santa Cruz Museum of History and Art
Date: May 26, 2012
Description: 14 hours painting sad penguins, card table, paper, sumi ink, watercolor, and tape.
On May 26, 2012, at the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History(MAH) “sad penguins” participated in a multi-artist performance event called Listening the Earth II: Temporalities. This was the first presentational performance of “sad penguins.” I paint sad penguins with black ink and sometimes a few touches of orange, yellow and blue. I paint sad penguins who vary from cartoons to calligraphic ink marks. During the performances as I paint them I give them away to spectators and passersbye, and tape them up or lay them out in crowded grids. Continue reading listening to the earth ii→
Location: Dashila’r hutong near Tian’anmen Square, Beijing, China
Date: June 6, 2012
Description: short performance with Li Lisha, paper, brushes, ink, watercolor, tape.
In Dashila’r Hutong just around the corner from Tian’anmen Square. Artist and curator Li Lisha and I grabbed a table at a soup place, ordered and started painting. We taped the penguins up to the front of an empty store front. We chose the store front because we mistakenly thought it was an underutilized art space. The timing, just two day after June 4th, made the performance tense and, perhaps, over loaded with associated meanings. Needless to say we kept it short (30-40 mins) and left before a crowd gathered. Continue reading Dashila’r Beijing→
Location: Homeshop, Beijing, China
Date: June 7, 2012
Description: Two small stools, ink, watercolor, paper.
I set up in front of Homeshop a small arts and social space. I painted penguins taping them to the front of the building and giving them away to passing school children. I asked the children to let me take their pictures with their penguins. Continue reading Homeshop, Beijing→
Location: Kunming City, Yunnan Province, Yong He Xing Market and Zhuan Xin Market
Date: August 7-8, 2012
Description: Sumi ink, watercolors, brushes, paper, painting sad penguins in popular fresh food markets.
I was selected by the curators to participate in Kunming Markets, a project bringing contemporary experimental art to fresh food markets. I spent two days painting in a smaller neighborhood market named Yong He Xing Market. This small covered market of family operated stalls has green grocers, butchers, dry goods, street food stalls, and cheap manufactured household goods. I made friends with the children who spend the day with their parents working at the market.
i was painting O0O schemes on a some moldy pages of:
Morton, Timothy. “Here comes everything: The promise of object-oriented ontology.” Qui Parle: Critical Humanities and Social Sciences 19, no. 2 (2011): 163-190.