Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Susan Hanberry and Craig Burkhalter at the Exchange

The “Sweeter Side of Craig” series will be exhibited at the Contemporary Arts Exchange on December 6. As the poster says, ”No politics, No naked people, No statements”. I’ve mentioned the series to several friends and their first reaction is, “That’s no fun”. I haven’t stopped producing those dumbass political pieces but these presentations are the less controversial works. I produce a large amount of floral, broadsheets, books and botanicals that many people are not familiar with. These will be smaller, framed prints that would make excellent Christmas gifts. (hint, hint) I will also be offering Christmas cards; linoleum cuts with hand painting on Thai paper. I posted some “Sweeter” images on an earlier blog and some book images on another. The pieces I’m posting now are some new works that will be included. I use some experimental techniques but most are based on letterpress, stencil and relief processes.

 Allegory of Happiness

 As A Thread of a Necklace

 Overlapping Ferns

 Overlapping Ginkgo

 Ginkgo Pattern

 Holiday card

 Holly Fern

 Diamonds and Iris

 Gingko with Double Sticks


In the other gallery we will be hosting Susan Hanberry. She will be exhibiting a crocheted coral reef. This is an amazing piece of soft sculpture. It measures over six feet and is an intricate assortment of coral, starfish, shrimp and sea life. My favorite part is the big-eyed red octopus. My photograph does not do it justice.

Come on down to the Exchange December 6 from 7:00 – 10:00. Cakery supplied by the sweetest baker in town, Amanda. Also check out the Middle Georgia State College student show at the 567 Gallery. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Elegy for the Poet

When Daniel entered my class one of my first thoughts was, “Oh shit!” He talked incessantly at a pace my poor old southern mind could barely comprehend. It didn’t take long (in retrospect it seems almost instantly) before I realized there was something special about him. There was an aura about him that affected everyone around, students and teachers alike. I’d taught a really long time and seen thousands of students and knew this would be one of the relationships teachers dream of. Daniel would not have benefitted from my regular class instruction so I worked with him on an individual basis. That was when I realized he was a true visionary. I have always been aware of the division line between student and teacher and feel like God looked down on me and smiled when he allowed Daniel to stay in my life after school. I came to love Daniel as a son and felt honored he would share his passion for life with me. It all started when he was my student and painted a series of scenes of Hell, a strange, strange mixture of William Blake and Jean-Michel Basquiat. Quite honestly, he couldn’t paint for shit but I’d never had a student so passionate in his work. Thoughts came so fast and furiously he couldn’t slow down enough to control his hand. Writing was his art and his performances were mesmerizing. I’ve watched him with the “hip hop” crowd, with my students after he graduated, with his friends but what I loved the best was watching him read to old white women. They LOVED him. Always quick with one of his poems (always from memory and never actually reading) whenever there was a crowd, he naturally would run into old white women in my studio. For a young black man to have such a broad spectrum of theme and imagery to hold their attention was fascinating. They would clap, cheer and urge him on for more. If only I had the same power!

There were quieter, more intimate times when he and I worked on projects in my studio and we would talk. He felt the pain of the world. He knew individual pain, he knew family pain and he was deeply aware of the pain of man and man’s soul. You could feel it in an almost a deep bubbling way in your gut when he read. He spoke of relationships found, of relationships lost, of God, of Hell and his struggles to believe in either. He reminded us to be human, to love, to accept and be accepted. Sometimes when he would read I could swear he stole thoughts right from my soul.

Daniel and I “got” each other. I understood his visions and he understood mine. I do some pretty dumbass stuff in the name of art but Daniel understood when a lot of other people didn’t. I did a drawing / collage entitled Even White Folk Think Sibaltia Be Bangin’. He was really amused by it and used it for the cover of his book. He shot the photo with his phone and it is a very light, screened version on the book cover. I did it for him but he never took it from my studio so I still have it. There are also unfinished book projects we had going on. It feels very strange to me to have bits and pieces of him still hanging around. Here are a few photos, drawings and prints of Daniel. Rest well, you did good.

 All White People Need a Dose of Sibaltia

 Drinking Coffee and Listening to Daniel

 Even White Folk Think Sibaltia Be Bangin

 He Reads, I Dance, Sibaltia

 Daniel on studio roof

 Book cover

 Who's Crying?

I Am Not Sibaltia... But I Know Him


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Richie Jones at the Exchange - Photographs of Cuba

As I said before, Cuba was absolutely the most fascinating trip I’ve ever been on and to be able to see it again through someone else’s eyes makes me excited all over again. One of the other people on the Historic Macon trip was Richie Jones. He was just like the rest of us shooting thousands of photos but it wasn’t until after we got back to the States that I actually saw his work. What great shots! Since we travelled as a group, I shot many of the same things as Richie but different eyes make for really different art. September 6, at the Contemporary Arts Exchange we will be exhibiting Richie’s work. This will be a fun show. I am a big fan of Richie’s photographs and am really excited about his exhibit. In one gallery we will show his work and in the other gallery we will show some of the Cuban art we collected while we were there. The photographs posted here are Richie’s work. I’ll post some of the Cuban art at a later date. Come on down and check them out. Friday, September 6, 7:00 – 10:00 at the Contemporary Arts Exchange. Also check out Richie’s work set to music on youtube…Richie Jones Cuba 0001