When Bad Things Happen To Good Museums

from the Pre-Raphelite collection at the Delaware Museum of Art

What does it say about our supposedly great and civilized society that in the midst of economic recession, the government bails out mega-banks (and their CEOs and shareholders reap the rewards) while our venerable cultural institutions—public art museums— are forced to consider selling off chunks of their collections in order to keep the doors open? Continue reading

Ellsworth Kelly at the Barnes Foundation

Ellsworth Kelly in front of 'Sculpture for a large wall' at the Barnes Foundation. (Emma Lee/Newsworks) One of the best perks about working at a cultural institution like the Barnes Foundation is that occasionally I get to do something really cool. Usually, it’s something like visit the conservation lab to see what masterpiece is being saved from certain doom by the dedicated team of conservators, or listen to a guest lecture for staff only, from scientists who have been studying the pigments Continue reading

InLiquid Benefit v. Thirteen

Last night I attended the 13th annual InLiquid Silent Auction Benefit at the Crane Arts building’s Icebox space. Although with more felt fedoras, bow-ties and ironic mustaches in attendance than was strictly necessary (seriously, it was like a Hipster factory exploded), it was a fun evening hob-nobbing with fellow Philly artists and collectors.

InLiquid Benefit 2013

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Untitled Drawing #1 (1998)

 

Untitled drawing #1, 1998 © J. Thomson Here is another untitled “automatic” drawing I made when I lived in Scotland in 1998 that I found today while organizing my studio. It’s approximately 5″ x 7″, and I probably intended it to be a postcard, but I never sent it to anyone.

I’ve posted this drawing on my Zazzle site, where you can buy high-quality reproductions.

Untitled Drawing #2 (1998)

 

Untitled drawing #2 (1998) © J. Thomson I found this drawing (and one other, shown in the next post) today in my archives while organizing the studio. It’s one of a small series of drawings I made the year I lived in Scotland. I remember making this drawing sitting in my studio at the top of the tower at Hospitalfield, around April I think. The sky was bright but overcast, and evidence of spring was all around.

These abstract drawings were made in the same manner as automatic writing… I just started drawing without any pre-conceived notion (except for colors, of course) of what form would appear. It was a very meditative thing to do, and doing it seemed to calm me down from some of the frustrations I had while living there.

I’ve posted this drawing on my Zazzle site, where you can purchase high-quality reproductions of it.

Trailer Trash Toile – Voting NOW OPEN!

The polling place is NOW OPEN! Spoonflower’s weekly contest is up, and I am one of 82 artists competing in this week’s “Your Town Toile” contest. (By comparison, last week’s bicycle design contest yielded over 200 entries).

Polls close on March 7th. You can vote for as many entries as you like (but please vote for mine, pictured below). VOTE NOW.

 

Trailer Trash Toile by J. Thomson © 2012 All rights reserved. Available at http://www.spoonflower.com/collections/14219 Continue reading

My Experience as a Censored Artist

from "Labels: One Fag Bashes Back" If you browse around the web today, you’re likely to notice something different… blackouts and censored photos in protest of two bills circulating in Congress right now (SOPA and PIPA) that threaten the Internet as we know it. I won’t write about these issues here now (but you can click my “stop censorship” ribbon in the upper right corner for more information).

But thinking about censorship today reminds me of a time when I was a young art student, and one of my art installations was censored by the University I attended. The controversy seemed to consume the student body, and threatened my grades, my reputation, and my personal safety. This post tells the story from my point of view… that of the censored artist. Continue reading