First, there is a art opening where no one will notice a piece of food stuck in your teeth, here.
Below is thoughtful fodder to the modern painter from Last Communion, purchased here:
Two years ago my daughter, then a senior at college and president of the student art exhibition committee, suggested that I apply to the same agency that supplied her club with artist profiles, from which her college regularly chose talent and invited them to show.
So I did. It took me a full day to organize all the content the Katherine T. Carter Associates requested. I was not disappointed. I got “accepted” the next day. Or so I thought. I sent in my $250.00 deposit to secure a date to meet with Katherine in the big, big city.
Lick-lick. Check in the mail by mid-morning. Finally, after so many years of hope and desire, and yes, action to shame an unlikely creative John Calvin, I was weeks away from representation. Galleries! Museums! A living to be had. Modest income spawning light travel and leisure with my wife. No longer would she need to support me. This was a boon to the career that had not yet become a career, through no honest fault of my own.
Then came the associates packet in the mail. The fine print. For a total of $500.00 I would have two hours of Katherine’s time to “consult” with her. That is, listen to her pitch. For about $4,000.00 (more or less), I would have the chance to be profiled in the same book distributed to my daughter’s college, and, which I assumed, many others to boot. No promises however. Not even an “it takes money to make money” admittance on her part. Just $500.00 and a two-hour talk.
Way back in 1958 my stepfather applied to be a cop in Utica, N.Y. His cousin (already a cop) told him to give $500.00 to the city mob boss. He walked into Mr. Falcone’s pool hall and said, “Go to Hell. I’ll pass the test on my own, get the job on my own, or expose you to the state WASP authority.” Well, he must have hit a soft spot in the heart of Mr. Mafia, because he got the job based on his ability to work and not pay his way. And Mr. Falcone never killed him.
According to, not only Katherine Carter, but all complicit museums and galleries that deal with her, I am expected to pay my way into this corrupt art mafia, without even being guaranteed admittance into the elite society. I might be too political, in that I actually make that kind of art carrying an opinion, one that is usually counter to an establishment seeking moderation in everything and every one.
I believe that contemporary art is run by a cartel called The Careful Family. This is how I see it. My daughter was taught by her college how to authenticate art. See who the art mafia likes. It must be good because each one of their choice professionals paid at least 1/2 a year dishwasher’s salary to “get made”.
Now really, who the hell is this charlatan Katherine Carter? What is she painting? Where does she get the crime boss balls to corner an industry that isn’t even an industry? And to you, college and university art departments… Do you not have enough MFA’s to seek what is downright good and gooey for their own students? It can be a lot of fun, actually choosing what one likes, and not what some greedy New York business person declares is likable.
I am a painter of much energy. On a spiritual level, it is enough for me to know this. Practically I have dug myself a hole two ladder lengths down from Hades. But the art students don’t care. It just brings proof to the claim of the “fool persisting in his folly until he becomes wise”. State College Fred and Private art school Lana would “get me”. Much more than they would some oil painter of Assateague wild horses, or a Columbia University PhD skilled in the silhouette cut outs of slaves being whipped and raped.
How much did they have to pay to get in?
Well, what do souls go for these days?
For those gallerists still wanting youth to choose what is vital, ask them if my work is worthy of a room. Tell the kids that I write too. About art and living. That’s interdisciplinary and no one needs to suffer a painting of the Space Shuttle to round out a course. They can see my stuff on a blog I keep which is a week’s wages worth cheaper than that phony art realty tome which is Katherine Carter. For a little push is all I need. That, and a part time dishwasher’s salary.