Thursday, January 14, 2016

VAN STEIN'S SKETCHBOOK






Come morn, we are out, out, out for the roll toward Phoenix, first stop beautiful Blythe... 


Blythe's finest restaurant
...the perfect place for a piss-call because that’s all it truly is, and off again, the final leg this day, landing in Old Town Scottsdale by mid-afternoon, an hour later than expected because Arizona with its outlaw mentality ignores Daylight Savings Time.

I slide into a space on Main Street and by foot we cruise this five-block zone once bustling with art galleries, artists, and art collectors.  

Many of the galleries are empty and up for lease, devoid of other people and forlorn, a ghost town of sorts.  


And no wonder, because you wander in the remaining galleries and get your sensibilities sullied by stale schlock.  



Old Town Scottsdale art scene:
It's over
The gallery owners, once pompous and snooty, are so delighted to see a real human-being-potential-collector, they smile and dance and probably fart from the excitement of it all.






I find it sad and depressing and were it not for a road trip novel I plan to pen about a semi-starving artist trying to find new markets for his wares, I would boogie this terrain for more pleasant plains. 








The only bright spot is a life-size bronze statue of Mark Twain sitting on a sidewalk bench and smirking at the irony of this debacle.