Wednesday, December 21, 2005
I love you so much. But just because I accidentally left the roll of paper towels out after cleaning last night, doesn't mean I have a need for absorbent shreds of paper all over my nice chair. Thanks for taking care of this.
Dude, there's no reason to meow, loudly, from underneath the bed when my alarm goes off. I heard it, thanks. And the percussive noises you make with the boxspring? Not so cute at 7 am. Just so you know.
Love, that lady who feeds you nasty canned food and brushes your hair from the chairs every day.
Monday, December 19, 2005
I made mozzarella balls last time and they all went. Maybe I'll do those again. Can't remember if this is a dinner thang or more snacky picky type foods. I'll have to ask.
I love these parties. It's like we're grown ups or something. Living as I do in my parents' basement apartment, that's sometimes hard to come by. But this is our year, 2006, when Kev and Lauren get a house. I'll be able to work more starting in the summer, and I hope to have some classes lined up soon. That would rock, I just can't wait to get my own classes. It's so scary/exciting/happy/daunting!
Sunday, December 18, 2005
Tonight I believe I will put up the tree. Also, I will vaccuum so I can wrap presents, because no one wants cat hair on the tape of their packages. I love to give presents. So much fun! It's better for me than getting them. I mean, I won't turn down a gift, no way, but I like giving them even better. I still have a bit of a list to shop for, including Kev's parents, his sister, my mom and my aunt. I have plans for all but Kev's mom and sister, but they're pretty easy to please. Not worried about it too much.
I do, however, hate to wrap presents. People say, but you are an artist (which, uh, I haven't produced anything in months, am I really?) or you went to art school, but people? they do not teach you how to wrap presents there, oh no. Too busy with the perspective and the craft and all that. And let's not forget the extensice education in pretentious art speak, either.
This week will be a whirlwind of activity, capped off with Andrew's annual Christmas Eve Eve party. I hope to have their wedding present done for them by then. Because they only got married in October. I hope they don't mind, but I doubt they will.
Tuesday, December 13, 2005
So, anyone know about Caravaggio's working practice? anyone? Beuller? (that looks funny, is that how it's spelled?)
Friday, December 09, 2005
Isn't funny how when the end is in sight, you get kiiiiiinda lazy?
Anyway, please contact me if you want to make some extra holiday cash...
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
An aside-- Charlie Brown's Christmas special was on tonight. I went to my sister's to watch it with her and Liam, and my mom and me. SOOOO fun, he seemed to actually watch and enjoy it. The little man has taste, right!
Okay that's it, I can't type any more, my hands = icy. Good night, and think of me between the hours of 3-5. I hope my outfit looks cute! Since that's what it's all about anyway...
Sunday, December 04, 2005
What's that? You want to know what my pres will be about? Well, it's about the painting technique that Caravaggio used. I'll be dealing with the ground he painted on as well as the way he composed. As a matter of fact, this pres will show how, in a way, he's related to Leonardo (da Vinci, which is not, Dan Brown, his middle name- and any self-respecting art historian would know that, duh- he was a bastard child without a last name, from the town of Vinci. That's it, my new new last name is da philadelphia. I mean, what a jack ass. And this Robert Langdon character speaks neither French nor ITalian? PLEASE! I can read both, and I'm modern/contemporary! But I digress)
Then I have a paper about Michelangelo and Neoplatonism, I think? And then I'll fix up my pres for a paper, and then get cracking on my Directed Research paper. Everything except the DR is due by the 14th, when I will finally get to put up my Christmas tree, yay!
That's the thing about being in school, you see. Finals really cut in to my Christmas revelry. So, I am glad that this is my last Christmas as a student. Woo ha!
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Now, nothing, I repeat, nothing will stand in the way of me having that paper in to the Graduate Office by the New Year. But I live now in mortal fear of Graduate Chair, who normally loves me and likes my writing style a great deal more than my advisors, prime and deux. And of having to go in front of Grad Committee and explaining why it took so freaking long and hey, can I please not take my comps again? I think the problem is that I applied for Graduation last year, before I even had written a word. Why, I dunno. Overly optimistic, I guess.
So, maybe I'll be going back to school next semester. I am really angry with myself right now. But there isn't too much more I can do about it. I'll just have to finish up my work for this semester and see what happens. Stupid, stupid.
Monday, November 28, 2005
So you know I'm not dead, for now anyway.
Sunday, November 27, 2005
Oh, and the Mac? is here and very beauteous.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
My dilemma- I have a paper that works for both of them! But I think it would be cheesy and possibly even tacky to submit the same paper (done two different ways, of course) to different conferences. I think I'd rather just send the Boston one and hope and pray. Maybe? I dunno. Again, the suggestion box is open, people.
Help!, she whines.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Also, my boss has been looking at info on thyroid cancer, since she's got it. And it's making her a little crazy too. Because really, all you have to read is one off stastic, and you're completely freaked out. She's so scared, and I don't really blame her. But we try to joke about it, and make light of the situation. We figure that when she can put "Cancer Survivor" behind her name, her work will sell like hotcakes. Specially since she's only 29. She's a cool boss, she gives me lots of room to just work on my own and stuff. Very nice, much better than the last assignment I had, jeeee-sus! AWFUL students, scatterbrained profs, and I had to do all the final grades myself. F that!
Friday, November 18, 2005
In December or January, I want to go with Andrew, aka sheepshank to see Raymond Pettibon's drawings at the whitney. And I want to go to the Met with my mom and sister to see their giant frickin tree and creche. Ginormous and intense.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
And if anyone knows anything about setting up a business, like for tax purposes, let me know? Kev-dog wants to set up No Problem records, officially. And maybe Uncle Sam will cough up some dough for our new, beautiful, 20-inch Imac with 1.5 G of RAM and a whopping 250G hard drive (and that's without any upgrades!) When did I turn into such a geek??
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
I will not have my students hate me as I do mein Maester. grumble grumble
Monday, November 14, 2005
I've looked over the notes, and there are a record 6 pages without writing on them. Wow. And a lot of the writing of his is not major, dude, you have to address this, this and this. It's crossing out my words and putting in rather similar ones. Argh. I'll say it again, I will never impress him. Nevah!!
I just have to brush up on my feminist literature, no big. And throw in some other artists, no problem. I can't wait to be done! Cause when I'm done, I'm getting a massage. And maybe a facial too. I'm developing a hump in my neck from craning to read/write/edit/catalog/do all the things art historians do. I've noticed that almost all of use wear glasses or contacts. Could it be because we sit in the dark looking at slides and trying to take comprehensible notes?? Maybe?
Oh, and go Birds!
Sunday, November 13, 2005
So this meeting with my advisor on Friday, yeah, it was 45 minutes long. Good
Christ!! And he pretty much just read me his comments. Dude, I can read!! There
was this one passage, I loved it, where I reacted to an
oft-quoted statement on Lisa's work (the artist that I'm
writing about. Since I've spent a year on this project, I 've
decided that I can call her by her first name). The critic
said that he felt like a rock fan "parsing nuances on a guitar
strum." After I looked up what parsing meant (sorta like examining)I took issue with it. Because, well, that is completely dumb to me, there's nothing
subtle about her work, at all. So I likened her technique, in
the conclusion of chapter one, to a riff. And I began a
sentence with the phrase, "Like the opening chords to Smoke on
the Water...yadayada art speak pretensious...." And he didn't
know what I was talking about. HE doesn't know this song!!
He's in his late forties, I think, maybe early fifties. GOD!
Even if you don't know what it's called, you know that riff.
He said that I can't assume my audience is as hip as I am.
Uh, dude, the song, it's about 30 years old!! I give up, I will never impress him. Sigh
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Tomorrow I have a meeting with my advisor. He's read my thesis and wants to discuss. Jee-sus. I hope it's not bad. I feel like the last chapter is bad, personally. My dream reaction would be for him to say, hey, that last chapter, cut it. Expand this, this and this, and call it a day. I am so on whatever he says though. I just hope the criticism isn't too biting! Cause crying in front of your advisor is not something you should do. Twice.
Oh, and I'd like to send out a big FUCK YOU to PGW. There is no gas in our house. The stove was broken, so my parents bought a new one. Well, it wasn't the actual stove, we have a gas problem. So the gas co. came out yesterday, turned it off and now... brr! It's cold in here, and there's not hot water. I am going to look so sexy tomorrow without showering! Maybe I'll become a hippy....
Monday, November 07, 2005
I feel really guilty. The guard even checked my stuff, and he didn't catch it either! It wasn't intentional, honestly! I feel like I should go back, but I had to wash the socks, I need them for tomorrow. They're gonna think I'm crazy. My mom said to give the money to charity. Don't need a lecture, but what do you think I should do??
Saturday, November 05, 2005
Friday, November 04, 2005
I got mine. I am now sick too. Only me of the retarded sinuses, my cold turned immediately to a sinus infection. Right now, the stabbing facial pains are gone, but I am congested and generally under-water feeling. And my breathing sounds like Darth Vader.
All because I made fun of him. I mean, yeah, guys are usually pussies when it comes to being sick. And I always get a cold around this time of year. But I am not going to make any more fun of my wonderful husband. Well, at least not about being sick. Even though he wasn't sick, he just had the sniffles. I, on the other hand, was sick sick.
Saturday, October 29, 2005
Sorry this post is neither funny nor intellectual, my faithful readers. No sexy pictures either. But I'm too busy taking it easy this weekend to think. ;)
Thursday, October 20, 2005
Sam looks a little annoyed, doesn't he? He was just attacking my papers before I took this. What a stinker!
Someone has a lil caffeine problem, no?
You may be wondering why I have two copies of the same book. Well, I had one, and it fell behind my desk. Tangled up in the wires as it was, I couldn't find it. Unfortunately, it had since gone out of print. Temple's library doesn't have it (big surprise). And since about half my images came from it, I needed it badly. So I go the gallery where the show was. I ask. I have to flirt just a little. And I get to buy it again. Thaaaaaanks, gallery dude. Thought it'd be free. Anyway, when I moved my desk out of the corner, lo and behold! It fell out of the sky!
I am suprised that I am still married, I must say. I guess I have to thank Kev in my acknowledgements, don't I?
Monday, October 17, 2005
I am writing about the Penthouse pictures. What fun!! I am detailing their reception, and the polarization of the audience that they entail. I am writing about working practice and sources and all kinds of fun stuff. Want to see Figures 16-20? I know you do, so
Friday, October 14, 2005
Wish me luck with finishing!
Sunday, October 09, 2005
We're going to meet our prof up there around 2 and get a lecture. But I'm up this early because Kev called at 7am. I thought there was something to worry about. He just thought we were leaving mega early. No way. 10am is much better. But I'm up, so I'm cleaning and obviously blogging. Because unlike normal people, who would just charge right through tasks they don't like, I prolong the pain through procrastination. Hello, thesis? But I digress.
There is some kind of terror alert for the subways today. So I'm thinking it's not the best time to try and navigate the system. Springing for a cab sounds like a better idea to me. But if I do that, have the terrorists won? I don't care, I just don't wanna die. And since Kev and I got into an accident in his pops' car, and I managed to be the only one who got hurt, I figure I shouldn't take chances.
Monday, October 03, 2005
So anyway, I must have missed a step. Or five. I dunno, all I remember was yelling, then flying, then falling. To stop myself, I used my foot. Which is now bruised and swollen and very owy. And I have a bruise on my ass. I narrowly avoided a support column in the basement. Maybe 2 inches separated me from knocking myself unconscious and killing my brain. I wonder if I impaired my brain function if they'd cancel my student loans. I don't think I should have to pay them back if all the schooling leaked out in a freak accident. But I digress.
So I sit here typing this while I should be at a Pearl Jam concert. That kind of sucks. A lot. But I couldn't drive there, park in South Philly at John's house, and then walk to the subway. I couldn't take it! So I'm sorry about that.
There's a lesson to be learned here. I'm probably not going to stop fighting with my mom, not with her frustrating knack of nagging me for not being exactly like her. But at least now I know to keep the arguments stationary. Now I'm going to ice my ankle again. Cause owwwwwwww.
Friday, September 30, 2005
Wednesday, September 28, 2005
Maybe hate is the wrong word. I don't like him though. I know I should. I like a lot of bands that like him, that are even directly influenced by him. I am the wife of a musician, for God's sake! And a pretentious art nerd besides! And the reason is so superficial. It's...
The VOICE. Good God, to me, it's like nails on a chalkboard. Or a drunk goose barking at me. I can admit that he has great songs, and his writing is impeccable. But sweet merciful crap, I do not want to hear him sing. At all. Ever.
Now, this isn't intended to be mean to Mr. Dylan. I respect him, a lot. But I don't like him. Or love him, which is what, it seems, I am supposed to do. I dunno. Maybe I have horrible taste in music. Judge for yourself in the previous entry. But I can't make myself like him. I know I'm wrong, so don't lecture me in the comments that you big fat won't leave.
Bad Lauren, bad bad Lauren.
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
She said that on her dig this summer in France, she was saddened by the proliferation of Ipods that the students brought. She couldn't listen to the music they were bobbing their heads to. Of the something-teen diggers, only 3 didn't have ipods.
This lead to the discussion of people buying songs instead of CDs. Kev's new job was the lead-in for that. Which then lead to the discussion of why bands don't make ALBUMS anymore. So I started thinking of albums that I love to listen to, straight through, no skips. I came up with a list, a short one.
Anything by the Beatles after Revolver (which may be my favorite)
David Bowie-- Ziggy Stardust
Nirvana Unplugged-- stripped bare and raw. Not overproduced
Def Leppard-- Hysteria. Totally overproduced. Subject of a gushy blog entry of mine.
Green Day-- might be ruining my street cred here, (as if Def Leppard didn't kill it anyway) but this is a NEW album and it's good.
Police-- Synchronicity-- reminds me of being little and listening to my dad's big ass headphones
Care to add any? NB-- this is not to say that I don't enjoy mix CDs, and I'd take an Ipod if someone else is buying. But it's kind of sad that fewer and fewer bands are making real records any more. It's not a bad medium, ya know?
Saturday, September 17, 2005
It's kind of strange to hang out with people who usually you have a completely different relationship with. We hang out, us students, occasionally, but throw the profs in as well and it can get a little weird. But this year, the profs cleared out early. Probably because it rained and it was crowded in the house. We were all afraid of knocking art off the walls, I'm sure.
It was fun, this year, because we are all a big group and we can talk about things other than classes and art. Kev even found one of the girls' boyfriends and they talked about their bands, which have eerie similarities, and photo. I always feel kind of bad for him, because he doesn't feel all that comfortable with the people from school. I wouldn't feel all that comfortable walking in to a semi-established group, either. I am socially retarded, but at least I know these people already.
We talked until we got kicked out, about 11:30. The drive back to the great Northeast was scary, because I had to drive my handles like a sack of potatoes Taurus on Lincoln then Kelly drive. Think tight curves, small lanes and assholes screaming past at 55 miles per hour in a 25 zone. SCARY! On the way home, we stopped at McDonalds. I am not sophisticated, and these parties always confirm this for me.
At the Christmas party last year, I brought chicken fingers. Of course they went, and faster than the tofu containing pasta junk, and the bitter salads. I felt vindicated when the son of one of our professors remarked, "Oh, thank God, real food!" and scarfed down six fingers himself. Sophisticated, Lauren is not. But pleasing to the masses, and that's something.
Monday, September 12, 2005
...and I dance dance dance. and I dance dance dance
Sunday, September 11, 2005
Anyway, I think I should get presents when I graduate in December. I also think I deserve a party. A big one. Not huge, like in a hall. That'll be in 2019, when I finally write my dissertation and graduate with a PhD. Kev says then he'll buy me a brooch and a scarf. Standard art historian wear. But I think I deserve something for getting my Masters. I want to go to a spa. Get a massage, a facial and a pedicure.
I got a facial for the first time in May for our anniversary. Spent some money (paper) to get relaxed. Great present, by the way. And if my skin is clear, I won't look so much like a student. And then I will be more respected, dare I say more professional? My jerk ass advisor kind of suggested me wearing suits and stuff when I TA's for him last semester. NO fuckin way! I am an artiste, or at least an artistic soul, and I am not dressing like a lawyer to gain respect. Anyway, so the expense of a facial is justified, and I think I could even use some student loan money to pay for it. Don't you?
Sunday, September 04, 2005
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
When I am in the house after I realize that they don't wash their hands, I'm all skeeved out. I just get a CSI image of feces streaked sofas and countertops.
This entry is so nasty. But it's my greatest pet peeve in life. eeeeeeeeew! The title is a quote from my cousin Gianna, who is seven. She is from a house that also has no soap in the bathrooms. She seems to think we, as a family, have some kind of problem with washing our hands. I don't know about that...
Friday, August 26, 2005
This weekend is my last one of freedom before school starts. It's the weekend of the christening. Oh boy! Our family and the baby's dad's family in one place, let the white trash wars begin! Of course, there are so many more of them than us, but what we lack in numbers we more than make up for in intensity. Can't wait to update all my rabid readers about this!
Thursday, August 25, 2005
Anyway, it's funny that later on in the day, I got a migraine. I've been migraine free for about a month now. It's school, it just has to be! Migraines are awful, and I wouldn't wish them on the girl who was supposed to be my best friend in high school who convinced me how much I still really cared for this guy I had been seeing and got me to admit it and tell him and then we went out again and then one night I caught her at my boyfriends house and he was cheating on me with this girl who was totally busted looking and had a big broad back and a hairy upper lip. I mean, I don't think I'm gorgeous or anything, but seriously, I am wayyyy hotter than her. Yeah, so I wouldn't wish the pain of a migraine on her, even.
It makes me sad sometimes that I have to take preventative medicine for my migraines. By the way, don't call them headaches to a person who gets them. I get headaches occasionally too, but migraines are so much worse because they involve nausea, sensitivity to light, sound, smell, and they just hurt like hell on top of it. For me, the pain is always in my eyes, and that is just the worst place for pain. Except maybe your mouth, that sucks too. Anyway, I worry about what I'm doing to my liver. I take a beta-blocker to stop them from coming, Zyrtec for allergies, the sniffling associated with the allergies triggers my migraines, and of course the good ole birth control pill. And then when I get a headache, I take Imitrex. My own little helper. The only bad thing about that drug is that it makes me all flushed. Looking like you've been slapped on both cheeks is not a good look, but anything to take away the searing hot nauseaeous (good lord is that a hard word to say!) pain.
Another side effect is an urge to ramble. I should cut this off before I write another 38 word sentence.
Sunday, August 21, 2005
The paper is pretty good, though, if I do say so myself. It's about an artist named Hannah Wilke. She was a performance artist and photographer. She did a lot of pieces that involved her being all nakey and stuff. And since she was pretty, she got a lot of craph for it from feminist writers. Ah yes, the f word again. So the gist of the paper is the limitations of working within the feminist rubric when dealing with Wilke's art. Here's the kicker. She died of Lymphoma, a type of cancer, when she was in her early fifties. And she documented the deterioration of her body on film. In brilliant color, not black-and-white, which would give it a more documentary effect. There was also this strong Catholic underpinning in the imagery. And the posthumous show in which this Intra-Venus work was shown served as a memorial/pilgrimmage/relic of her life. Because she showed herself going through these changes and disfiguring of her once-beautiful body, she was lauded for her courage. And her early work was championed in that it served as reminder of her former self. One has to ask oneself-- if she had not gotten sick and died, would her earlier work have been so widely accepted and praised, retrospectively.
Ah, I go on. But that's what the paper is about. I'm pretty proud of it, but I don't think it'll get accepted. Paying dues sucks, and I can't wait to have the PhD after my name to make this all worth my while.
And just so you know, since I never really do this, the second post of the day is so that my blog doesn't have 13 posts in it. Cause I'm crazy superstitious like that. ;)
And a big shout out to Andrew M for reminding me of the Newsradio episode in which Dave writes a eulogy for a guy at the office who everyone just barely knew. At least this lady didn't end up having any major skeletons in her closet!
Wednesday, August 17, 2005
Which brings me to my point. Why would they ask me to write her eulogy?! It's not completely my own work, they've "written down their thoughts" for me. I have to string it into a coherent speech. Maybe they liked my work on my mom mom's eulogy? I don't know. But this is my whacked out family, and I'm going to do it. Weird.
Even weirder, they've asked my MOM to read it. With my cousin Corrine, who is 7. My mom didn't know this woman any more than I did. Well, if you know my mom, who is super friendly can talk to anyone, she knew more about her than I did. Still and all, it's gotta be strange. Imagine the cousin's wife's brother being at his own mom's funeral, thinking, "Who's that woman giving Mom's eulogy?" I've never been to a funeral where I didn't know who the eulogist was in relation to the deceased.
I'm warning that there will likely be a follow up to this macabre post. Also, I may detail for all my rabid fans my obsession with funeral homes. Maybe it's related to Six Feet Under's series finale this week, but maybe not. I'll try not to get all creepy up in here. Promise
Monday, August 15, 2005
It's funny, but since I've started my PhD courses, there haven't been many classes that I've been dying to take. And the ones I am excited about turn out sucking majorly. I'm still in the running for the class on drawings at Penn, but it doesn't look good. I really don't want to take greek Vase painting, ew. So I must resign myself to the fact that I have to take another filler class, one that I don't love or even care about, again. BOO!
But I am really excited that this December, come hell or high water, at the expense of royally pissing off the Graduate Chair, I AM GRADUATING!! From my master's, but still. I am still really fucking aroung trying to get this thesis thing written, but hey, I do well under pressure. And if I'm super stressed, maybe I will lose some weight. Cause loath as I am to acknowledge it, some professors really, let's say, prefer that their students look nice. And the ice cream belly I have going on right now is just not going to work. Not to mention that very soon I'll have to buy new clothes to squeeze my ass into. Which reminds me, I bought a workout DVD about 2 weeks ago, where is it?!
Thursday, August 04, 2005
Anyway, so here we are, sitting in this SWELTERING hot church. You'd think because of all the marble in the joint, it might be cool. WRONG! So I'm sticking to the pew, right up front, while this nun yammers on and on about the Church. She really dumbed it down, too. She didn't seem to know the PX symbol has a real name, the chi-rho, or that it spells the first two letters of christ. It's an early christian symbol, Constantine, in hoc signo vincit and all that stuff. So anyway, we're getting the whole Catholic lite treatment. One thing she really hammered home was the paschal candle. Sister, remember when we lied and said that we're all good, practicing Catholics? Yeah, we all know what that big ole candle in the front is, m'kay?
Why is it that all nuns smell the same, anyway? They take a vow of poverty, so maybe they all have to use the same products and that's why? It's a mix of old lady smell, undoubtedly the products, and mothballs, and maybe a little old lady perfume. Weird.
Anyway, back to the heat. I had sweat dripping down my back as I sat there and smelled olive oil and chrism. And then she kinda skimmed over what we actually have to do the day of the Christening. So I don't know who holds the baby, and what I have to do, and the godfather doesn't know that he has to light the baptismal candle (I only know because I saw a baptism this week at church. What, I do go, about 50% of the time.) It was just like our wedding rehearsal, except this nun last night didn't yell at us the whole time and make me cry. The wedding Nazi was awful, and which of my friends did she like the most that night? Jim, good old, messy, often looks like he's homeless jim. Jim courts the tortured artist thing sometimes, and his hair is wild and curly. He's often mistaken for being Middle Eastern, but he's just regular old Italian. Sicilian to be exact. The reason the catholic nazi liked him was because he was wearing a tie and kissing her ass to make fun of her. Good ole Jim.
So what I'm trying to say with this whole entry is that I feel a little unprepared to do this whole godmother thing. I hope I do a good job, because I've never done this before. I mean, I'll be able to always be there for little william, and I'll always be a doting godmother to lil leon, but I just hope I don't fall into the font.
Tuesday, August 02, 2005
I took a class at Fleisher Art Memorial. You may have read about my cats' sabotage of my one drawings before. I was the youngest person in the class by at least 30 years, which was fine. It's been a while since I felt young in the classroom. I made three drawings, two of which I really liked. I had a lot of fun drawing. And, I'm happy to admit, I didn't completely suck! I sometimes feel like a fraud because I have this BFA, and I don't do anything with it. I mean, why bother to get it, right? Overall, it helped me realize that I love art history and want to do this for the rest of my life. But to not make art at all seems lazy to me.
So like I said, I made a few pastel drawing this summer. I also helped Kevin to make tshirts today. We broke out this silkscreen kit that he had bought me a few Christmases ago. I should post a picture of our wares. They're pretty cool. They're for a gig that he has this weekend with Problem Solving. It's a woodstock-like event, so I'm not going. Not really a nature girl, this one. So I'll have plenty of time to write.
Even though my t-word isn't complete yet, I still feel I've had a productive summer. And there's still a few weeks left to eek out that paper.
Sunday, July 31, 2005
Anyway, so this synopsis will hopefully solidify my thoughts and get my ass in gear. I am all psyched to hand my advisor a copy at the orientation breakfast. And next week is chock full o' running around with my sister, to her baby's doctor's appointment (oh no, shots!) and to get her wisdom teeth pulled. So I want to get chugging along, because it's much easier to keep going than to get started. So about Lisa Yuskavage.
Lisa Yuskavage is a painter. She's in her early forties, born in Philadelphia and raised in scenic Juniata Park. She's a Catholic School girl, like myself. Also, In her extended family she has an aunt who is a nun. This is often mentioned in biographies of hers, because the subject matter she paints is so stunningly not religious (I don't get this, but hey, I write about porn with my background). She also went to Tyler, which is where I go now. Cool stuff.
My thesis will be broken down into three chapters. The first two will speak about the ways in which her paintings are criticized. She often receives acclaim for her paint handling and techiques that she uses in making her painting. Formal qualities of her work are often paralleled with old masters, and her use of plaster maquettes especially is aligned with Tintoretto and Michelanglo. So oftentimes writers gush about color, lush brushwork and other visual qualities of her work.
The second chapter represents the catch to her work. Her paintings are traditional in their subject matter, to a point. She paints the female nude or semi-dressed. So have thousands of other painters for thousands of years. But her babes are not model-thin, or in many cases even realistic. They are painted from memory or imagination, and often their sexuality is pronounced to say the least. She takes cues from Penthouse magazines from the 1970's, from which she remembers learning about sexuality in the first place. This section has the potential to be huge. I can bring in other artists who work in this vein. Vargas girls, Mel Ramos, John Currin, Vanessa Beecroft, etc etc. But what makes Yuskavage's work so interesting is the tenuous relationship they have to feminism. She is a woman, after all. But her work is not a clear criticism of pornography, nor does is necessarily embrace it. Second and third wave feminism, oh my! So as you can see, this section is the biggest, and it's the most rich with possibility. It helps that last semester I got the chance to see Lisa speak at ICA and she addressed her strange relationship to the f-word. She said, when asked if she was a feminist, "Well, what's the opposite? I mean, it's not as easy as saying, well, I'm not a misogynist, so I must be feminist." Yeah, paradox, gotta love it.
The last section will deal with one of her most talked-about bodies of work. The Penthouse pictures are right for this because they have a naughty subject matter, and they are copied from magazines (with just enough artistic tweaking to be acceptable). See Day and Night. So we have dubious subject matter and questionable technique.
I guess what makes this project persuable is that though she has been written about a good deal for such a young painter, I don't feel anyone has quite gotten it. I feel like she is purposely mixing high and low, and that she is deliberately contradictory. It seems to me that there is an attempt from both factions of each aspect of her work that are trying to claim her for their own.
Saturday, July 30, 2005
Sometimes I feel like, you know, I'm a grad student, maybe I should be listening to opera or something. But you know what? I do listen to music from the era I study. I could be pretentious and say it's all research. But I'd be lying. I really just like shitty music. I love Def Leppard, I love bruce Springsteen, I love love love Bon Jovi. It's ridiculous. And pretty much all the older people at school have no idea what I'm talking about. They listen to NPR and all the granola crunchy stuff. And there's nothing wrong with that. But I like my WMMR, WYSP kinda tunes.
I like a lot of good stuff too. I love the STones (especially the older stuff) I love the beatles, I love Pink Floyd. Though most of these bands went through their over-produced phases. The long and winding road. The whole Tatoo you album. The division bell.
But let's be serious. Hysteria is a GREAT album. It's a producer's wet dream, as kevin would say. It is layer upon unneccessary layer of sound. I mean, come on. The other guys had to do something while the drummer learned to drum again, right (this is Kev's observation, too). It took 4 years to produce. It's like candy for your ears. It's coated, coated with sounds! It's fantastic, and I challenge anyone who says it isn't to...well... I don't know, cause I'm not in the business of challenging people, really.
Friday, July 29, 2005
On a positive note, I've emailed my advisor, and I've locked myself in to handing him a completed draft the first week of school. God, I can't wait to go back to school! This semester I'm taking a class on Caravaggio. That will be fun, because it's sort of a historiography class, meaning that we'll study the way Caravaggio was studied from his own time to the present. All kinds of cool things, including queer theories and good sexy stuff like that. I'm also trying to get a class on drawings. It's through UPenn, and it's given at the PMA. So I'll be able to physically handle and look at real drawings in the PMA's collections. How's that for art-nerdiness? And for my final class, I'll be taking a Directed Research, probably with my advisor. I'd like to focus on the eighties and see what comes up.
But I simply cannot show my face at school if I don't get the damn thesis done. It's all up here, why do I have to write it? What I should do is post a synopsis of my arguments. I did write an outline, so maybe tomorrow, for your reading pleasure, I'll give you an abstract. I know you're waiting with bated breath.
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
I get really crazy when I write. To back it up, I'm not a "writer", per se. I write papers for school, but it's not like I'm sitting here trying to churn out the great american novel. Just my thoughts on artists. Just needs to be coherent and somewhat original.
It might be that I have a hard time impressing my advisor. Other profs like what I do, to greater or lesser extents. But for he who shall remain nameless, I fear getting papers back from him. Always with the red ink swaths and nit-picking of my normally flawless grammar.
But it must be done. Now is the time to buckle down and get this sucker done! And I will. I am well on my way. I'm looking at my brand-spankin'-new outline right now. I have direction. And tomorrow, I begin the journey.
Friday, July 22, 2005
This weekend we'll be helping my sister move. She and her boyfriend have a place that is a few blocks away from our house. I'm sad! We've gotten to be much closer since she got pregnant, and this summer with her being on maternity leave. Sometimes I feel a little guilty, since I'm ostensibly supposed to be writing my thesis. This leaves little time for a jobby. But this summer is one of the best of my life. I'm married to Kevin (and he's not bummed out about being unemployed this summer!) and we get to spend lots of time together. And the added bonus of mornings and afternoons with Liam. Far supercedes my need for money. And, not to be a snob, and this is totally going to sound snobby to most, I think I'm just a little bit overqualified for most summer jobs. I'm Liam's au pair. This is a French word, meaning unpaid.
The weekend will be spent helping Steph and Steve (their real names, I shit you not) to move. I was looking forward to my friend's housewarming party, but with the little studly man sick, I don't want their kids to get sick. I hope to get my hair done. I've got a gray streak that is starting to strongly resemble Rogue. And my eyebrows are modelling themselves after my birthday buddy, Abe Vigoda.
Thursday, July 21, 2005
For this story, pictures tell the story so much more effectively. But I will set it up for you first.
I am taking a class at the Fleisher Art Memorial. It is a seven-week class on working with pastel. It's a great class. I'm the youngest one in it, with the age gap being approximately 30 years. The teacher is married to my very favorite instructor from Beaver, Scott Noel. Janice is really cool, she's really laid back, and as is, I'm sure, common when you've been married for many years, she uses a lot of the same phrases as Scott does in class.
Anyway, I had a drawing that, while it wasn't finished, I kind of liked for some reason. I brought it home with me, and left it on the kitchen table. When I woke up I found this mess.
You'll notice that there are two distinct sets of pawprints. One is Sam's, and one is Sophia's. Sophia's role in this is apparent because she is so small, therefore we were able to catch her and pawprint her. Just like CSI. Sam, well, he was hard to distinguish from the other big cats. Or he would have been, had he not had a big blue smudge on his ass.
Please also note that you can see paw prints now on the drawing.
Wednesday, July 20, 2005
He had been hemming and hawing about going to Ozzfest. He's had a renewed interest in metal since he joined Se7enheads. It's been really good, too. It's completely different from his other band, Problem Solving, and he's been hanging out with his friend since grade school, Jim. They had sort of lost track of each other after college.
So to make a long ramble shorter, Kevin never got the tickets for Ozzfest. Last night he headed out to practice. When he came home, what did he have? Yes, a free ticket for Ozzfest. And not only that. This was no general admission ticket, it was in the seats in the pavilion! Lucky boy! So on a day off where he had nothing planned, he got to go to a concert, for free, in the shade.
Today I dropped Kevin and Jim off at the ferry from Penn's Landing over to Camden. He just got back a little while ago. He had a good time, and is now sleeping so that he can get up at 2am to go to work.
I love how we can each do our own thing without feeling like we have to be together all the time. We have interests outside of each other. It may not always be like this, but right now, it works for us. Maybe that comes from being together for over 10 years. We, or at least I, did the whole, I have to go to every show because he likes the band sort of thing. But now I'm confident enough in myself and our relationship to say, Nah, I don't like whoever, I'll stay home. I love that I could drop Kevin off at the ferry today and not feel the need to go. I had a good day, and so did he. He's a lucky boy, but I think I'm a very lucky girl too.
Monday, July 18, 2005
In relation to non-art-nerd things, I am married to Kevin. He's great, he's a musician with a band times two and he's an artist. We live in NE phila, with my parents for right now. Shhh, we're poor. We have two cats, Sam and Sophia. I'll add pictures of them. They're crazy, needy cats.
So that's it for now. This is an experiment, and I hope that others find my life interesting enough to read. It's not a glamorous life, but it's mine and I like it. ;)
Friday, February 25, 2005
Who am I?
I am your average PhD student- poor, hardworking, willing to teach just about anything for a paycheck, with recurring nightmares about the day my student loans come due. I study art history, got my MA in 2006 after an epic thesis-writing endeavor, and have managed to finish extra classes for my PhD by the time I got the damn thing done. I study contemporary art, especially painting of the 70's, 80's and 90's, women artists, contemporary realism, and censorship.
I also have a BFA in painting, and I dream of someday going back to it. Only, unlike when I graduated college, I'll be super-talented, brimming with the knowledge that I've gained through study, and will set the art world aflame. I might even write about myself. Then I will form a supernova and implode on my self. Or not.
In other news, I am married to an awesome guy named Kev. I probably should have given him a "blog name", but for the longest time my only reader was our friend Andrew, and, well, I felt dumb code naming him for one dude who actually knows him.
Why do I blog?
I blog because, well, I like it. I guess it's a bit narcissistic. I don't really think I have a lot of important/hilarious/even marginally interesting things to say. But I began this blog as an exercise in writing daily, and in keeping my stories short and to the point. I'm not sure how effective I've been at that, to be honest.
I also blog because I like to feel a part of something, even something as intangible as the blogosphere. I don't really want to be famous, but more than 7 readers might be nice. And maybe I want to be caught, so my advisor knows how I think he's a giant douchebag, and how I wish my second advisor would just take over already.
I'm careful not to reveal too much on this here blog, and I refrain from talking smack on the in-laws. Though it probably would feel really good initially, I am a sissy and would cry if I was outed here.
What makes me tick?
I'm a sucker for art-school boys with long hair, who turn into rock-star types with beards. Music is good, and my taste runs the gamut from honest-to-God crap to stuff the critics think you should like. I don't have much of an attention span for movies, but Jaws and Rocky rank right up there for me. Both came out before I was born, but hey! Books are great, but I find myself reading a lot more blogs recently. I like geeky tv- Rick Steves' Europe, almost anything Rome/Early Christianity related on the History Channel, and Miami Ink. In art, I like tons of things, but among those that make my mouth water are Degas' pastels, Manet's still lifes, Lisa Yuskavage's paintings, and anything that causes a scandal.
To sum up, I'm an average arty girl, who couldn't do, so decided to teach. I like music and geek tv, and most of all, I like the blogging community. That's me in a nutshell.
Thursday, February 24, 2005
1. My skin is really really pale.
2. I think this is because I am Irish
3. Actually, Irish, German, and perhaps a bit Dutch
4. My grandpop was the only one who said we were Dutch
5. No one knows if he means Dutch Netherlands Dutch or PA Dutch
6. Did you know that you’re supposed to call the PA Dutch PA German now?
7. I didn’t, until I was corrected in grad school. Oopsie
8. I have my Master’s degree in Art History
9. I’m now going for my PhD
10. I have no idea when I’ll be done, but thanks for asking
11. I study contemporary art.
12. I especially like art about big bewbies
13. Despite all this, I am teaching ancient architecture in the fall
14. I am poor
15. I’ll take any paycheck, as long as it does not involve working at a deli again
16. I worked at an Italian deli for 10 years
17. I made cheesesteaks and hoagies
18. I have a serious aversion to raw meat
19. I could never be a vegetarian though, because I don’t really like beans
20. Or peppers. Vegetarians seem to eat a lot of those
21. Maybe for protein? But that doesn’t explain the peppers.
22. I’ve been married since May of 2004
23. My husband’s name is Kev
24. Short for Kevin
25. I should have made a fake name up for him, but feel like it’s too late now
26. I called him by his real name because originally, only our one friend read my blog
27. He (Kev, not our friend) refuses to buy me the entire series of Sex and the City on DVD
28. I’m not sure why! I tried to sell him on the “it’s research, dear” aspect of it all
29. Yes, I talk about Sex and the City in my thesis
30. I also talk about porn
31. I didn’t like Sex and the City when it was actually on.
32. Now I can’t get enough
33. Though I could definitely skip the parts with Carrie’s inane voiceovers
34. And I have to wonder…
35. I think it’s pretty safe to say I’m a flaming liberal
36. I have a hard time reconciling my Catholicness or former Catholicness with the whole hating homosexuals and treating women like crap thing
37. I still mildly identify myself as Catholic though
38. I’m in it mostly for the kitsch aspect though
39. I collect Papal memorabilia
40. Loves me some Pope schwag, especially relating to Pope John Paul II
41. I call him JP deuce. We’re tight like that
42. I think he was pretty cool, though not infallible
43. He died on a day when I was trying to write a paper
44. It didn’t get done that day
45. I stayed up all night to watch his funeral with my mom
46. My sister had us wake her up, but I felt disrespectful not waiting up for it
47. She was pregnant then though
48. She toyed with the idea of naming my nephew John Paul, but went with Liam instead
49. He’s my godson
50. Liam, not the former pope
51. My sister and I went to Italy to visit Kev in 1998
52. She tripped in the Sistine Chapel and said “Fuck”
53. Which, incidentally, is a pretty-much international word
54. Who knew?
55. She also almost got into a fistfight with a big fat French bitch in our hotel one night.
56. My sister has a blackbelt
57. I still would have put my money on Frenchie
58. She was really big
59. Kev and I live in the apartment in my parents’ basement
60. It sucks in some ways, but in others it is pretty good
61. Cheap rent is good
62. And we have a decent amount of space
63. The eighty bazillion cats we have aren’t so great
64. Kev and I have 2. My sister has one. My parents have 3
65. I know, shut up
66. We’re taking ours when we get our house.
67. I wish we had a house now
68. But living with my nephew is so amazing
69. My sister had lived with her babby-daddy for about 6 months
70. She found out that he was stealing from a job she got him, and she left him
71. On my birthday
72. When I was in Boston
73. And could do nothing to help her
74. I thought Kev was joking when he told me
75. Six months later- he wasn’t kidding
76. I’m really bad with money
77. I am also my family’s CFO
78. Why? I don’t know, but I suspect it’s because Kev is very hesistant to write checks
79. I’m pretty tall- 5’8”
80. Most of my girl friends are super short
81. I look like a Sasquatch next to them
82. I used to be self-conscious, but now I like it
83. Kev is 6’1”
84. Our babies will be very tall, too
85. Despite my height, my feet are small- 7.5 ladies size
86. I blame my clumsiness on this fact
87. I am a proud Mac user
88. Seriously, get rid of your pc, it treats you like you’re an idiot
89. (My own laptop is a PC. Shhhh!)
90. I might use my student loan next semester to get a PowerBook
91. I like to mismanage my funds like that-see 76-77
92. I’m a feminist
93. But I don’t have many girl friends
94. I’m working on it, and I even like one of my friends’ girlfriends
95. But not the other one, she sucks
96. I blame this one on my mother, who made me be friends with the girl next door because she didn’t have many friends
97. There was a reason for that- she was mean and more than a little crazy
98. One day, she just stopped hanging out with me, which was fine
99. Now I’ve made it my business to only hang around with people I like, or can at least tolerate
100. What’s up with this indentation? See, Microsoft products for ya!