Saturday, August 18, 2018

VAN STEIN OIL PAINTING FOR SALE: GODBOLD



Godbold, Marfa, Texas
2006
Oil-on-board, 8 x 10
$1000

Available at this online gallery:





From Surreal Bounce (Earthshine Editions), 2009:

We cruise Marfa's residential streets, built on a grid.  

The natives are big on trailers and mobile homes, especially shiny vintage Airstreams.  And Godbold Mill... a damn sight more interesting than Donald Judd's crates or boxes or cubes or whatever the hell they're supposed to be.  Also, Godbold has function:  It processes something useful to people.

Old Godbold represents the difference between natives and New Marfans.

The natives are naturally minimalist; the new crowd contrives minimalism, desperate to install themselves; install being the hip new keyword.

Design an art installation, around which to de-install themselves from New York and install themselves (at least for posturing purposes) in a small west Texas town.

Who cares?  The locals don't.  They're just grateful to unload decrepit houses for a hundred grand; houses they used to board up and abandon.

Van Stein has a thing about making ugly structures look beautiful.

"I'm gonna paint that," he says.

And he does.



Friday, August 17, 2018

ORIGINAL PAINTINGS BY THOMAS VAN STEIN FOR SALE



Sturgeon Moonrise, Lavender Farm, Los Olivos, 2007
Oil-on-board 6 x 8
$950


Available through online gallery:



From Surreal Bounce (Earthshine Editions 2009), limited edition of 150 copies:

Van Stein paints at a lavender farm while my imaginary friend and I hang at Mattei's Tavern, an old stagecoach stop, for pinot noir and endless dialog about gods and dogs, semi-colons and midgets.  I notice my imaginary friend is without a wristwatch.

"I never wear a watch," she says.  Her reasoning is so sound I consider shedding my own time manacle.  Which leads me to checking the time and discovering we're late picking up Van Stein.

When we roll up, the artist is deeply absorbed with the finishing touches of a rising Sturgeon Moon.



Sunday, August 12, 2018

RIDEAU





The only kind of club worth joining is a wine club (as opposed to whine clubs).






WINE VALLEY BLISS



The Gathering Table, Ballard



Seven months since the mudslide.

Never been better.

Feels like I died last January 9th and went to heaven.



Old Town, Santa Ynez

Photo:  Claire Eringer Boyle



Sunday, August 5, 2018

THE EDGE





Final night in the desert, climaxed at The Edge, a quite spectacular steakhouse so-called because it sits on... the edge. 




Afterwards, for dessert, a precious view of Mars.

Nothing like the desert sky for star (and planet) gazing.



SAN JACINTO PEAK



Photo:  Marcus Boyle





PALM SPRINGS AERIAL TRAMWAY





From the desert floor to San Jacinto peak (8,000 feet up) in fifteen minutes.

Desert:  107 degrees F.

Mountain peak:  67 degrees F.





BEST BUDS: READY FOR AN ADVENTURE








Saturday, August 4, 2018

AN ADMISSION





Were it not for being phenomenally fortunate through family and some modicum of skill, I might have ended up at one of these off-beat places.

If it seems at any point like I'm making fun of these folks, it is a misperception.  I'm laughing with them at the material world. These are my people, the wild ones, the mavericks, the artists, the rebels.



GOODBYE SALTON SEA (THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES)





After four hours' circling the Salton Sea we are overheated and manic-eyed, and rolling back toward the material world (which in Rancho Mirage means a gazillion country clubs and golf courses and in Palm Desert means every shop, brand and fast food shack ever devised).


SALTON SEA: GROUND ZERO






Here's one thing you didn't know:

The San Andreas Fault begins beneath the Salton Sea.

When the Big One quakes (long overdue and expected any moment) the rock 'n' roll starts here.  



Friday, August 3, 2018

BOMBAY BEACH: THINGS TO DO







You cannot drive your own car into this but you're welcome to take a seat in one of the wrecks to watch whatever horror movie is featured.


(Time to change the marquee)



Most popular:  The Hills Have Eyes, which was filmed nearby.


The Botanic Garden

See?


The Opera House


Inside the Opera House


BOMBAY BEACH





In the 1950s, this was a gem of a resort, east side of the Salton Sea.



WHAT TO DO IN NILAND



Stay here


Brunch


Hang here, people-watch (not)


Sup here


Load up on booze


But if you're looking for excitement, say, a drive-in movie, opera house and botanical garden, drive 18.2 miles north along the Salton Sea to Bombay Beach.  

(Stay tuned...)



JIMMY HORNFEATHER






En route to Niland from East Jesus, we discover a kindly gent hawking his wares on a roadside stand near his home (above).

Jimmy Hornfeather has resided here since 1985.




This is the road that Jimmy lives on.

And this is Jimmy...




This is what Jimmy crafts and sells...





"They're all twenty dollars each, doesn't matter big or small," says Jimmy.  "They've been twenty dollars each since 1985."

Jimmy throws in free horn-carving lessons. 






Awesome as a road-bag adornment.



UPON LEAVING EAST JESUS





A few magic words and the portal opens for a return to reality.

That said, the so-called reality is nearby Niland.

(Stay tuned...)



EAST JESUS EXIT RAMP



By air


East Jesus has many ways out.


By sea


By vintage VW hippie bus


By house (think Dorothy, Wizard of Oz)



And then you realize, once you cross through the portal into East Jesus there's no way out...




EAST JESUS RESIDENTS





They were very busy and had nothing to say.





At the risk of sounding political, this is where, for all their sins, America's white men will end up.



EAST JESUS: THE RESIDENTIAL NEIGHBORHOOD