on crying

The Disappointed Eye

Crying can be seen as a function of the body that arises when language can no longer do the job. It is a way to communicate feelings, and may in fact be able to communicate what words cannot; it picks up where language leaves off. It is a bodily release that is cathartic, and intrinsic to the processing of grief.  Deep grieving done through crying or sobbing takes me to a place my mind can not understand, or make sense of, or sort out; it is a place where my mind can not do the processing. It is through the tears that my body processes my emotions and takes me to the other side of the pain and sadness. Transformation can only occur through the body. The act of crying is an act of transformation, an alchemical process, not only a kind of healing, but something more that leaves me feeling lighter and changed. Something happens to the weight of those emotions, they are transformed, and released as something physical, a tear. Something that is, like art, an act of creation, something physical is born from that place and then let go of. 

this is an excerpt from my thesis entitled Mourning In A Major Key, from a section on how the eye plays such a huge roll in both visual art and in mourning. 
This paragraph on crying has been wanting to be posted here for a while now. 

Roni Horn, Gold Field, 1982
this is one of my favorite works of art, I also wrote about this in my thesis. I highly recommend reading what Felix Gonzalez Torres writes about seeing this piece for the first time. So moving. It's why I think art is important and so needed. 


from around

- a translation of the interview I did for Insider on Art and Architecture in LA

- great feature on friend, Jesse Kamm, and her families home in Panama

- an incredible interview with the incredible Susan Sontag. I have been thinking about this non-stop since I listened to it over the weekend... thoughts about being a writer, what that means, what that looks like... thoughts about a democratic art, the elite, the masses... about anti-intellectualism... and more. It is so worth a listen to and a think about. 

- Piety and Perversity, a great essay on the history of the palm tree in LA

- colors come and go, by the lovely Claire Cottrell

- a beautiful film on ikebana (thanks Leigh!)

- most men would rather shock themselves than be alone with their thoughts (thank you Matthew)

- Man Ray's 1928 film, The Starfish

- beautiful new work from my friend Jeremy, Clouds

French architect Emile Aillaud
Constantin Brancusi


new moon // july


Thunder Moon
Saturday, 26th of July, Leo, 3:41 pm PST

It's no doubt still a challenging time for most, lots of old pattern and beliefs and energy is surfacing in our bodies, it's all so ready for healing. This just tells us that we are transitioning, and moving into a place in our lives that moves beyond our past, we are ready to let go of the old that no longer serves us. It is a time of growth and forward movement. With the Sun and Moon in Leo you are sure to feel this energy of forward motion and expansion. Leo is also ruled by the Sun, a planet of vibrancy, stamina, vitality, will power, stability and longevity! And with the Lion as the symbol of the Leo mix warmth, generosity and protection into the energy melting pot we are in. 

Think about how the Sun holds our solar system together and the heart at the center and core of your body. This is a powerful time for listening to your heart and following it! Use this energy. You are supported in this moment to take a risk, and go after the thing your heart desires. This is really important, learning to trust that you are supported to take a leap. Issues of being supported might be coming up for you right now too, have lots of compassion during this time. The Lion helps us to get in touch with our inner fire and helps to feed the flames to be courageous in our lives. 

This is also a great time to reflect on how you express yourself in the world, how you create and give and love! This is a very creative time. Ideas may be coming to you, it is important to act on them, to not stifle this flow of energy. Being creative is an incredible tool we have for healing. Now is the perfect time to use it!

I also wanted to talk for a moment about strength, with the Moon and Sun in Leo it seemed a perfect time to do so. It's something that has been on my mind for a few weeks now. I have really been listening to how people use this word. Things like, "Oh, I don't know how you are doing that, you are so strong" or "I didn't think I was going to cry, I wanted to be so strong" have really been hitting me. What do we mean when we stay the word strong or think about our own strength? Where is that sourced from? What does that look like? Does it mean something different to you than it does when other people use the word? For me it does. 

Somehow along the way we have come to believe that strength means not having feelings. That to be strong or act with such strength you have to not have feelings. You have to put up a wall to keep things in or out and forge ahead. Push things down to get through it. To be strong for someone is to often times ignore your own self. And I don't agree with any of this. I really believe that strength is the willingness to feel. To just feel your emotions in any situation, and not run away, not put up a wall, not push them down. 

Think about the person who says, "I didn't think I was going to cry, I wanted to be strong." To me real strength is allowing yourself to feel that sadness. To allow yourself to cry when you need to shed tears is true inner strength, because it's then that you are connected to the self. To be vulnerable and let go and go there while facing the situation you are in. What better way to demonstrate your inner strength than to allow yourself to feel what you are feeling in that moment, to stay connected to yourself. I think that is true inner strength, when you honor yourself by listening to what you feel. 

oh! I almost forgot about New Moon wishes. You are allowed ten wishes maximum, they must be hand written on paper and made within the first 24 hours of exact time of the New Moon (the first 48 hours will do). This Moon is a perfect time to wish for anything involving your heart, your creativity, manifesting dreams, new projects, or self - confidence. 

jean arp/hans arp


full moon / july


Thunder Moon
Saturday, July 12th, Capricorn, 4:24am PST

With this Full Moon in Capricorn it is a great time to focus on your goals. I would urge you to think more deeply and think about your purpose. Sit quietly and feel into your heart, ask, "What is my purpose?" Then ask again, feel into the purpose that lies underneath that, and then ask a third time. Something might come up for you that was unexpected, it might be something that you have known for a long time, it might even be abstract, everything has a meaning. Just hold what came up and feel the feelings that arise around it. Does it feel grounding and open your heart, do you have resistance around it? Do you trust it? Try not to see it as a goal, or something far away in the future that you have to get to, try to feel it all around you, that your heart is at the center of it, and it holds you as you move out into the world in all that you do. 

You can use this Capricorn energy to help you, along with the energy of the Sun in Cancer (foundations, self-nurturing, support). The archetype of the Capricorn is the Mountain Goat, think about the persistence of the goat as it climbs to the top of the mountain, putting one foot in front of the other, never loosing sight of it's goal or purpose. 

Because it is a Full Moon and emotions can be heightened around this time, notice if things are coming up for you around your purpose. Maybe resistance, everyone has their own forms of resistance, yours might be confusion, laziness, anger, doubt, fear... It's your job to start to develop a relationship with your resistance, study it to understand how it works, what it's voice is, what it's telling you, when it comes up. Just notice it, and have awareness of it. Yesterday I had an amazing conversation with a friend about resistance. And they said to me that resistance and fear are the gatekeepers to your hearts desires. And I loved this image, because it visually described so well their relationship. That when we get close to what we want it triggers all of our resistance, but using that image, it means that what we want is just on the other side of that resistance. That we can use our resistance like a compass to point us in the right direction, and to know that when it is triggered it means that we are getting close! Now, how exciting is that!? 

Still from 'L'Étoile de mer', Man Ray (1928)



I am so excited to share that I have two paintings in a show in Chicago opening on Friday!

If you live in the area, be sure to check it out. 
I am a fan of all the artists and so honored to be in a show with them. 
Thank you Regards,!


July 11 - August 23
Opening Reception July 11 5-8pm

Josh Atlas - Christopher Aque - Joseph Cassan - David Giordano
Lauren Spencer King - Andrea Longacre-White
Ethan Rose - Kristen VanDeventer

2216 West Chicago Avenue


Witnesses, 2013 - watercolor on paper on panel 


from around

- wishing I could see these minimal and beautiful works by Lee Ulfan at one of my favorite places in the world, Versailles

- why does so much new abstraction look the same? Thought this was an interesting read, something we should be pondering in the studio if you are a painter and as we look at the art around us. 

- something else that I think should be making us think is the growing epidemic that has become known as the selfie. Though we are about 200 years out from the first fixed photographic image, it's only been about 100 years since a hand held camera has existed that would even have the potential to be held with one hand to take a selfie. Why has it taken us 100 years to turn the camera around and point it at ourselves in this specific way? And why the mass interest in taking them? Why now? How is it changing or relationship to photography (don't even get me started on the fact that now everyone with a camera phone thinks they are a photographer!!!!!) and our idea of a portrait? These are questions I ask myself as I look through my Instagram feed. I recently read this interesting article called Selfie Poetics in Mousse (one of my favorite publications). There were parts that were rather interesting and fed my questioning. I particularly loved this part in thinking about the impact of selfies and how they are changing our relationship to... well, the self and our understand of such through images and culture, "the selfie... reveals the social network as a telephone/mirror hybrid—literally!—and continues the aestheticization of everyday life in social media that has leeched the authority of image-making from mass media and from art." I'm happy to report that my spell check still can't recognize the word, but none the less I'm afraid selfies are here to stay. 

- the top 10 songs written about artists! The last part of this sentence made me laugh out loud, "We’ve omitted duplicate songs about artists — which means Jay-Z’s “Picasso Baby” was left behind — as well as songs that simply and fleetingly mention an artist — once again meaning all Jay-Z’s references to Basquiat have been disqualified."

- a happy dance number!

- this book sounds really great... The Crystal Eaters 

- since the new year I have been loving this LP: I Am The Center: Private Issue New Age In America 1950 - 1990. It's a gem of a find. So good. So. Good.

- it's no secret that I am fascinated by death and mourning rituals, that being said I really hope to get to see this show at the Met opening this fall

- i am really not a fan of his work but this review in the form of a poem of the Jeff Koons show using all the best lines, metaphors and criticism is so on point! "There's something truly cruel in his sculptures' indifference to any audience desire for profundity."

Classical Still Life ~ 1937
James Turrell
Benjamin Valenza
Balenciaga -1960s