Saturday, April 30, 2011

leonardo study by gardega

If anyone wants this, simply email me. It is a study after Leonardo for my celing mural. Pencil on tracing paper, 18 inches by 24 inches. Signed gardega after charge in celebration of my near completion of 6 months labor.
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I am on hour 12 (almost) I have another 6 hours in me.. I have more energy at my age than I did at 20..not sure why. I used to drive my assistants into the ground, even the ones half my age...most people cant paint a ceiling on a step ladder for 12 hours straight. I can do it for 18 hours. Its all in your mind, pain and tiredness, that is.
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the final ceiling

I am in the home stretch and my body and mind are feeling it. I have to make a ceiling of davinci caricatures to follow around a spriral staircase. I dont want to stop until im breaks, no lunch..redbulls for breakfast. My shoulders ache, my neck and back are shot. Started at 6 am this morning. I am not sure what I will do when finished but it will involve red bet your living ass it will.
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ceiling imp

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mural detail

Thief of grapes
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corner element

Sketch it on the time to noodle....problems need to be solved asap.
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a thought for a day

Did you ever notice that those people you speak to or hear about who come from nothing, the garbage heap of dire poverty and rise up and start a business etc and become very succesful by their own blood sweat and tears and years of hard work..those people just want to be left alone to create their genius, their dreams into solid reality. They dont look to handouts, they dont look to some big daddy gov. To tell them they are helpless victims. They just want the freedom to succeed on their own terms. All hope lies in these people. They are the engine that drive a country. Hard work is the key to good fortune.
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Funny how after 6 months of hard work on my mural I was never short on any supplies and now on my last two days I find myself dangerously close to running out of two crucial things I need. That is art in a nutshell. IF you are working at 5am to finish a bookcover due at 9 you discover you are missing an important supply needed to finish the piece . I call this gardega's law. It is the art version of murphys law but murphy is no name for an artist. Gardega is a name for an artist.
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I got up at 6 today to hit the ground running. I am on a mission to finish today but I probably wont finish until tomorrow. Either way six months of hard work will be done this weekend. That is a good thing. My friend was in the middle of the tornado mess in Tuscaloosa she thinks up to 500 people may be dead. Terrible. Our media was too focused on the royals to really bother with Bama. I have a bunch of large cans of redbull and the gardega art machine will be in high gear today. I am on a mission to get this thing done and I will succeed.
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Friday, April 29, 2011


This is what a book looks like after you have read it almost ten times. I have worn the thing out, made hundreds of pages of notes and now my screenplay is going to be made into a movie. I have asked the author questions and he told me I know the book better than he. Do you homework, lazy masterpieces.
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post modern messes

I read an article over lunch today about the endangered post modern architectural gems of no canaan ct. What this article was about was these crappy modernist cube house built in ct. That are now being torn down. Etc. Basically, these are those ugly little low ceiling, small kitchen glass and aluminum jobbies thatlook cool in movies from the 60' but no one want to live in them. The article spoke of the HARVARD 5, architectural circle and the german influence and it was not unusual for these genius idiots to solve problems over lunch using sugar cubes...The reason they are tearing these things down is they are ugly and dint stand the test of time. Give me an old farmhouse made solid with love and care any day over your dumb sugar cube houses. They didnt stand the test of time any better than modern art will, it will melt like a sugar cube into the swamp of history, a tiny footnote in the book of great art. Idiots
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working methods

I am one of those artists who work out of chaos. I try to make beauty out of chaos. My methods arent the most organized and sometimes after 12 hours my setup looks like a warzone but in the end I try to make my work (if on canvas for a gallery or a wall for a client) as great as I can. I have known many a super neat and anal artist whose work has as much life as week old sushi. Even in my chaos I make very few errors of spilling paint or the like. I am always aware of whats going on because i have to always be thinking steps ahead. Sometimes I can find my palette so ill use tinfoil taped to cardboard. Whatever gets the job done. You can organize and method your way until the cows come home...I believe in getting shit done...whatever it takes...excuse my french
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today in the news

I read today that the federal gov. Did a sting operation that lasted a year...what were they after you may ask? Was it guns or drugs over the border? Was it terror ties? Worse? Amish milk, the federal gov. Raided amish farmers for selling raw un pasteurized milk. The gov. Says it is unsafe...non organic milk sold in the stores has such horrible chemicals in it, hlaf the milk in vermont has radiation it it from japan and 440k people die ayear from smoking and the gov. Decides to raid the amish. Those damn barnbuilding amish. To me this is like a comedy movie with a federal agent going deep undercover to catch the big amish milk godfather. The real forces behind all this are the big food companies trying to forcefeed you bio franken foods. Its okay that american water is poisoned with fluoride and half of american cities have chromium radiation in their drinking waterthat is fine but we have to raid the damn amish for selling pure milk. America is doomed from the top down. What is going to be illegal next?Helping your neighbor build a barn?
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why people read my blog

People read my blog from across this big blue marble of ours for many reasons. The main reason being is that it has the unmistakable odor of truth and honesty. It doesnt pander to the lowest bowels of art ot humanity, it is not pet photography nor is it commercial swill, it is neither new and improved nor is it savory etc etc. The brain of gardega is a thing that is hard to ignore, it is a carnival of thought, a buffet of insight into the geometry of the human condition. IT IS irony free, the stench of irony that has ruined modern art has no place here. Here you are not shielded from the hard rain of reality, there is no PC umbrella to keep you dry and safe. In a world of the mentally neuteredsheep, tv lobotomies and big pharma zombies I am here to guide you to the promised land of free and cognitive thought. Art is made with knives, not brushes and fine and a thing of beauty is a joy forever..pray to God but row away from the rocks and the brain of gardgea and my musings are like holding a wolf by both ears...hard to let go of...
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I love the media all but ignoring 300 dead and or missing in alabama to focus on a couple of hemophyliacs getting hitched. Way to go katie couric.
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art lesson by gardega

If you are working on a project, always save the difficult portions for last. I learned this from michelangelo. He would always start with the easist sections of a mural or sculpting commision. The reason for doing this is that you get better as you go along, you get sharper and your skills improve. I hate lettering, especially hand lettering with paint so I saved it to last. After six months my hand eye is a lot better than when I started so the letttering isnt an issue. After painting a ceiling for 3 months putting letting on a wall seems easy. Art is also a confidence game, you will be a lot more confident 6 months in on a project than when you start. When I started I was a bit overwhelmed at the amount of work I had ahead, but know I would tackle a 25 foot mural without blinking an eye. My new personal works will be better because of this 6 month stretch. I plan on some large scale pieces as well. Two more windows for the mausoleum and I have put to bed my two major projects that have haunted me.
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the royal wedding

I cant wait to not watch the royal wedding. I dont believe in prince and princesses, I dont believe in unicorns or magic frogs. Being born into privledge generally either turns you into a snob or dumbs down your wits to the sharpness of warm butter. The only good monarchs are butterflies, at least they make the planet look better. I am sure I would jump at the chance to sell a painting to a prince or queen or princess but that is because I am an art whore. time to paint.
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Thursday, April 28, 2011


Dont put your hopes in this color
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murals nyc by gardega

Today I will have completed the five ceiling wine labels. They were really tough to paint on a ladder, lettering, detailing, gold borders etc. Worst case there will be some touch up tomorrow. After that I have a davinci caricature ceiling. And that is all she wrote. I am going to work late tonight and tomorrow, home stretch.
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still life without motion

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After 6 months of hard labor, (half of which was me painting a ceiling mural from a step ladder) I will pack up my brushes and paints on sunday and return to NYC. I saw the marathon through and I am only only a little worse for the wear. My back and neck will recover as it always does...I wear ben gay like cologne these days. It is the secret color in my paint kit. I was hoping to finish by friday But to make things perfect, Ill need until sunday. The ending will be bittersweet and anticlimatic as I return next month to paint a mural in the home theater. The journey began with a single brush stroke and will end with the same. I will have everything shot professionally soon. The homeowner joked in dec. And asked me what I would like for easter dinner. Neither of us expected it to take this long. Most days I was on a ladder by 7:30 am and done late at night. I could have had a helper but I cant find anyone reliable or good so I go it alone. Im never happy with my own work, it can always be better. I am happy I saw the puppy through until it was done. Viva gardega!
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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

cherubs on ceiling

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Get drunk: charles baudelaire

 Get Drunk

Always be drunk.
That's it!
The great imperative!
In order not to feel
Time's horrid fardel
bruise your shoulders,
grinding you into the earth,
Get drunk and stay that way.
On what?
On wine, poetry, virtue, whatever.
But get drunk.
And if you sometimes happen to wake up
on the porches of a palace,
in the green grass of a ditch,
in the dismal loneliness of your own room,
your drunkenness gone or disappearing,
ask the wind,
the wave,
the star,
the bird,
the clock,
ask everything that flees,
everything that groans
or rolls
or sings,
everything that speaks,
ask what time it is;
and the wind,
the wave,
the star,
the bird,
the clock
will answer you:
"Time to get drunk!
Don't be martyred slaves of Time,
Get drunk!
Stay drunk!
On wine, virtue, poetry, whatever!"

Does art matter?

I was in the hospital yesterday with my dad--he needs a bypass. I sat with a french surgeon and looked at my dads arteries on a computer screen. The surgeon was about my age, maybe a few years older. I watched him look at the arteries like an artist looks at a tree or a landscape. It occurred to me that art really doesnt matter that much..saving peoples lives is much nobler than painting slop. I started to think about my childhood dreams of being a doctor or scientist (but I have bad math skills) Then I went to the second doctor ( a friednd of mine) and he had painting sall over his office (even some of mine) maybe art has a place but it doesnt save may make people feel better, an aspirin or a martini...While I was in the office I got an email on my phone from a Brazilian magazine who wanted to buy one of my images for an article they were writing about floods. It was a very strange moment, like god was trying to tell me that art does have a place. My painting was indirectly about God, it was about floods (which is in my mind always related to God) I still believe if you are stranded on an island you would want to have a doctor  there more than an artist..then again, maybe both are need something for one your soul is broken (art)  and something for when you break your ankle on a rock. I guess if art didnt matter then there wouldnt be museums filled to the brim everyday all over the world. Art is the thing you cant explain

14-Year-Old Girls Carry Out Apparent Suicide Pact

This is a sad american tale. Growing up can be really tough for kids. Kids are crueler than the animal kingdom because animals dont pick on each other for fun...animals fight for dominance..they dont take pleasure in causing harm to others. If you are a teenager you must remember than jr. high and high school seem to take forever to get the hell out of but in reality they are just winks in the eye of life. The idiots you went to high school with grow fat and stupid will mean very little to your future after you get on with your life after high school. I have two sisters and I will say that women can be crueler than man...This I believe to be a truth. Keep your eye on your dreams and stand up for yourself.

in the high school halls, in the shopping cool or be cast out. N. peart

gardega News

I am off to long island to finish my mural...four or five more days will be all that is needed.  It will feel like the end of a marathon. There are new murals to be done, exercise room, home theatre etc.  but the main wine cellar will be finished.

Monday, April 25, 2011

gardega news

I was contacted by a magazine in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil today ( I wont say the name just yet) They like my Deluge painting and want to use it to illustrate an  article about the floods that occurred there. Technology has its moments (they found me online) I look forward to seeing the magazine because it is a large format magazine..sometimes magazine print your paintings and they look better than what you painted and sometimes worse but I like when my work is printed, gets the work out. I am going to continue my flood series soon. The original of this painting was purchased by someone in Oslo..I cant tell you how much I would like to visit both oslo and rio.

the meaning of life

Why are we here? What's life all about?
Is God really real, or is there some doubt?

Well, tonight, we're going to sort it all out,

For, tonight, it's 'The Meaning of Life'.

What's the point of all this hoax?

Is it the chicken and the egg time? Are we just yolks?

Or, perhaps, we're just one of God's little jokes.

Well, ├ža c'est le 'Meaning of Life'.

Is life just a game where we make up the rules

While we're searching for something to say,

Or are we just simply spiralling coils

Of self-replicating DNA. Nay, nay, nay, nay, nay, nay.
In this 'life', what is our fate?
Is there Heaven and Hell? Do we reincarnate?

Is mankind evolving, or is it too late?

Well, tonight, here's 'The Meaning of Life'.
For millions, this 'life' is a sad vale of tears,

Sitting 'round with rien nothing to say

While the scientists say we're just simply spiralling coils

Of self-replicating DNA. Nay, nay, nay, nay, nay, nay.
So, just why-- why are we here,

And just what-- what-- what-- what do we fear?

Well, ce soir, for a change, it will all be made clear,
For this is 'The Meaning of Life'. C'est le sens de la vie.
This is 'The Meaning of Life'.

amused to death

Doctor Doctor what is wrong with me
This supermarket life is getting long
What is the heart life of a colour TV
What is the shelf life of a teenage queen
Ooh western woman
Ooh western girl
News hound sniffs the air
When Jessica Hahn goes down
He latches on to that symbol
Of detachment
Attracted by the peeling away of feeling
The celebrity of the abused shell the belle
Ooh western woman
Ooh western girl
And the children of Melrose
Strut their stuff
Is absolute zero cold enough
And out in the valley warm and clean
The little ones sit by their TV screens
No thoughts to think
No tears to cry
All sucked dry
Down to the very last breath
Bartender what is wrong with me
Why I am so out of breath
The captain said excuse me ma'am
This species has amused itself to death
Amused itself to death
Amused itself to death
We watched the tragedy unfold
We did as we were told
We bought and sold
It was the greatest show on earth
But then it was over
We oohed and aahed
We drove our racing cars
We ate our last few jars of caviar
And somewhere out there in the stars
A keen-eyed look-out
Spied a flickering light
Our last hurrah
And when they found our shadows
Groups 'round the TV sets
They ran down every lead
They repeated every test
They checked out all the data in their lists
And then the alien anthropologists
Admitted they were still perplexed
But on eliminating every other reason
For our sad demise
They logged the only explanation left
This species has amused itself to death
No tears to cry
No feelings left
This species has amused itself to death
Amused itself to death

The royal wedding

I am glad the media is focused on the royal wedding. Half of Japan is either homeless or radioactive and the media focuses on the royals. What is the old saying about keeping the peasants happy? Bread and circus? circus and bread? Escapism is like booze--there is always price to pay for ignoring reality

british law

Here is a crazy fact about british laws. 83% of british laws are handed down from the EU. And no one knows who passed the law, who wrote the law. That is a scary of a thought as any I have heard. Your laws are handed to you on a plate by a stranger, like an old fish you dont really want.

the flu

There is a horrible flu out there and I have had it for a week, every time you think you are getting better it drags you back in..cant keep food down...stomach a mess. kinda gets old after a while waking at three, sick

Sunday, April 24, 2011

life lesson

This morning I walked across town, through central park, to my sisters to be driven to long island. As I walked along I saw an old man in front of me in a suit. Even though he was old, he still held a certain grace about him, a dignity in his limped walk... I wasnt in a rush so I watched him walk for a bit and I thought about the fact that I was also walking the same street (almost empty) and I was in a suit and I was a lot younger. I also realized that old age and even death is on every humans horizion. You can no more escape old age than you can escape will find you..I felt strange speeding past the guy and I wondered if her noted to himself that I was almost young (younger) and also wearing a suit with long hair etc. and If I made him think of his younger days...I didnt look back at him. he was me. (in a future sense)

true story

happy easter

easter 2011

Here is a photo from my easter at my bro's beach house. My brother is on the left--he is one of the smartest cats you will ever meet but I still school him on literature even though he majored in it..He is a  top notch IT guy...brilliant kid and amateur painter...Betwixt him and I is my brother and brit-in- law and finance bond whiz....inf front of us stands my nephew who is more like me than the parents even want to think about..he goes whole days without talking lost in his thoughts..just as I was..poor kid, brilliant chap...lovely day..I love family.This was our first beach house easter, we dined outside near the beach..much fun and beer pong..

sing along america!


I spent all the money
just like W before
I lied straight through my teeth
and started a new war
Im a puppet for the bankers
but I sure fooled the sheep
I promised hope and change
and change is all youll keep
cause I took all your dollars
to bail out foreign banks
and the people are so braindead
they still give me thanks
the people stood like zombies
as tears rolled down their face
they bought all my lies
and put me in this place
so come on all you people
theres still so much to spend
Its been one big party
when will it ever end?
Dont worry about the iceberg
this ships too big to sink
turn back on your tv's
it doesnt pay to think


There is the famed oracle at Delphi where Pythia would sit above a fissure in the earth and share her wisdom... we've had countless Sages and prophets through the ages gazing into the ole' crystal ball and bringing wisdom to the masses.

My humble blog is like a crystal egg of gnomic genius. I distill the massive overload of information we are bombarded with everyday and boil it down into an omelet that even the masses can stomach. I often gaze into the crystal egg of genius and get back to my worldwide audience who await their daily meal.

I predicted Obama would be a disaster (as I did with bush) I predicted the collapse of the housing market and the rise of Gold and Silver yet unseen level. I predict the collapse of the dollar (by design) and the rise of a global currency. I predict the world will turn black and white like the old newsreels of the great depression. 

I predict a new tv show called Breadlines of the Stars (like dancing with the stars but a lot more waiting around and no dancing) I have been laughed at by friends and enemies alike but I keep the course and have been proven right again and again. The wheels of time grind true and the crystal egg of genius is hardly ever wrong. I find it sad that those who wish in another wall street puppet (with a bright smile) for another term will find their kids and grandkids drowning in a deluge of debt so bad that the goodship america will sink like a stone.

When americas debt reaches its GDP then will be no need to bail the ship anymore, you are better off rearranging deck chairs on the titanic..But alas america is a country of fools and TV has dumbed us down and The eggs of genius go unheeded and no arks are built until the rains have already started. Another obama term will be the final sword in the back of the american bull and although the horned beast that is america is better off dead to some, the devil you dont know that hides behind door number three is one I never want to meet..thus speaks the oracle.

hindsight is funny funny

Sometimes I look back at some of my crazy ideas and media explorations in art and life I laugh, because If I had read them as an outsider I would question the sanity of the creator of them. I do believe in one thing all in art and that s action..dont sit on fences--get out and do things..better to do stupid things and fail than nothing at all. An artist who doesnt make art is like a fish who doesnt go in the water ( kinda uselss) I think I am past my exploration of media phase of my art but one never knows. You never know how your ideas will age, they are like children--some may turn out useless and embarrassing. The only way to know is through the filter of time and hindsight is truly 20/ 20.  


No need to worry about the Easter bunny not finding you to hide his eggs, he can simply track you via your cell phone. 

Watch the video in this link. very important. The powers that be not only keep a constant ongoing record of your location they monitor twitter etc to get a national "zeitgeist" of the "american mood as a whole" By monitoring google search terms and Twitter and social networks they are able to form a picture of the "national animal" in all its moods and glory. I am sure this is only the tip of the iceberg and somewhere there is an electronic file of you--everything you have ever tweeted, blogged, or spoken into your phone..sounds crazy? no more crazy than google admitting that they listen to you hrough your computer microphone (but supposedly only in snippets and anonomously) to make their advertising more direct..For isntance if big brother hears a dog bark in your apt..there may be mor edog food ads...If you think this is crazy tinfoil hat talk, here ya go. (MIT PUBLISHED ARTICLE) and yest they are ALREADY using this..this is an older article.

The easter bunny and big brother know more about you than you would ever suspect but the american sheep dont mind, they go along to get along and there is TV to be watched. One day your kids (and grand kids) will wake up in a world where everything they do from the moment they wake until they sleep again will be tracked and monitored. And the great unthinking american will drool and mutter and say "no big deal, Im not doing anything wrong, let them track my every move...I do believe that orwell had it wrong when he coined the term groupthink, I think the correct term is actually groupunthink...Americans as a whole have lost the ability for true cognitive thought because when I try to speak to most people about the importance of privacy (my blog only shares what I wish it to share) in a humans life they look at me odd or go back to their xboxes and TV's. 

I dont mean to bring up such things on a holiday. I woke up and read an article that spurred my interest. I am in a good mood and no longer sick. These are my thoughts, in an eggshell.

Friday, April 22, 2011

my earth day

How was your earth day? Mine was fine...No cars, no traveling, no plans to fly in big jets anywhere soon, no second homes..just me sick with a bottle of nyquil and a nypost and a pile of books. small footprint and no guilt. Al gore should call me from one of his mega mansions and thank me for my low carbon footprint. I did have my two 500 watt bulbs on as a tried to paint and couldnt...I hope God forgives me...


Slow tourists walking in front of you in times square are like marxists. They are keeping you to the same speed as them, if you try to walk past they wander into your lane.  I cant walk at that speed, my brain has two gears, full on and then faster. They are the "keepers of the speed."

words of the day: woody guthrie

I’d like to rest my heavy head tonight
On a bed of California stars
I’d like to lay my weary bones tonight
On a bed of California stars
I’d love to feel your hand touching mine
And tell me why i must keep working on
Yes, I’d give my life to lay my head tonight
On a bed of California stars
I’d like to dream my troubles all away
On a bed of California stars
Jump up from my starbed and make another day
Underneath my California stars
They hang like grapes on vines that shine
And warm the lovers glass like friendly wine
So, I’d give this world just to dream a dream with you
On our bed of California stars

Hippie dreaming gets you nowhere...get up and paint no matter how sick or tired you are..three redbulls and Im crawling over to my easel. Im not going to have any less of a flu by laying in bed.


To damn sick to get out of bed or even write anything on here. Think this is a first in 4 years. Trying to read Faust to take mind off chills , thats a real cheer upper.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

my script

My script is finished tonight..120 pages of hard labor..then one week of re-write...They have offered up more money for a budget to make the movie than I will even dare mention here. I am too cynical to believe in anything until the proverbial check clears. But the investors etc arent the kind of people who mess around. People ask me how I wrote a screenplay for the first time etc. Easy..I read the book seven times. watched a hundred of hours of DVDs about screenplays, read 5 screenplay books..then I sat my ass on my couch and typed for so many hours I gave myself back problems that I hope wont last. Writing is the only thing where you dont get "off" your ass to get it done,  you sit "on" your ass...Just get it done, no excuses in life or art.

Einstein's kin dies destitute

Eintseins grandaughter died last week in california. Dirt poor. His beneficiary (hebrew university in jerusalem) wouldnt help her pay for assisted living needs. 

His image alone makes millions a year in licensing.

Iphone or spyphone?

The happy little Iphone that everyone loves so much and people slept on the street to be the first to buy is now revealed to keep a record of everywhere you go complete with time stamps. Computer researchers Alasdair alland and Pete warden discovered the big brotther aspect of the Iphone (which is kept in a hidden file) "we are not sure why they are gatehring this data but it is intentional" ..

The two have developed and app that lets user access the files.

I know why apple does this...To me it was a very simple answer and here it is.

welcome to 1984

guilty until proven innocent

The bedbugs of modernism: art lesson by gardega

Young art student! Be awake and find the right heroes..look not to rothko or jasper johns or dekooning...steer free of abstraction, of the 60's, of falsehoods and slipshod craftsmanship. Take your cue from the old masters and timeless beauty.  The art bed you make is the one you will lie in and the bedbugs of modernism will chew away at the toes of your soul while you sleep. Although, I am the most modern of artists, my tools and my heart are from the past. Modernism has surgically removed the heart from itself (as if heart is only a vestigial organ) In the end is all Shadows without substance and sugar without vitamins. Pray at the alter of genius and you will learn much in art. Looking back on my art school days I mostly have memories of fools and gimps (kids pulling out there own hair and gluing it to canvases..other kids trying to paint like german expressionists (the redheaded stepchild of all art movements) You are only as good as your eye, your taste. I was born with a love for rembrandt and leonardo the masters..It will serve you well to study them and most of all study nature..Leonardos guide was nature, not another artist. 



Eleven spiritual paintings to warm thy soul

william blake: the ancient of days
 Leonardo: adoration of the magi (unfinished)

Leonardo: virgin on the rocks

alfred kubin: der mensch
Meeresufer im Mondschein (Seashore by Moonlight) by Caspar David Friedrich, 1835-1836, oil on canvas, 

strange world: by gardega 

Odd nerdrum: I dont know the title

Church: the tropics 
The deluge by gardega

Dali: the persistence of memory

Raphael: st. catherine

words of the day: columbus

“You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore.”
- Christopher Columbus

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

painting of the day

Im really into this piece..not sure who painted it...going to research it. I love japanese art more than I can say. I like the gold and the fact it is on 4 panels, maybe a folding screen

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

weather changes moods---Kurt cobain

I sometimes go back and read the crap I have written...sometime my words seem a bit bitter or angry. I believe that in life and art, it is important to get things out..if you hold them inside they will eat you alive. I think overall I am a pretty positive person with a very dark sense of humor and an occasional mumbling rant spills out of my mouth. If I am in a dark mood, then I am typing dark things. I believe the cornerstone of art is honesty. When I make art it is from my gut and sometimes one doesnt want to see ones own entrails. I have a lot of hope for humans and I also have a big jungian shadow that hangs over me like an awning over some cheap deli. I am not a pet photographer, I am an artist.. Artist paint to get themselves off...dont paint for an audience, dont live a lie, you will learn to regret it. whatever voice you have inside, trust it..god doesnt make junk.

words of the day: by gardega

"Being an artist is like holding a wolf by the ears, you may not like it at times but you sure as hell better not let go" gardega

words of the day

"If destruction be our lot, then we must be our own author" abe lincoln

For some reason I have been on a civil war and abe lincoln obsession idea why.  I am really influenced by early americana...some of my favorite art is from the hudson river school painters and from the golden age of penn. illustration--wyeth, pyle, etc. There is a certain genius to america..America's genius cant be explained, even by a poet. It is a genius that is both sad and free and caged at the same time. I love america. I have travelled and always want to get home to america. Whatever genius america has it is without a doubt a flawed genius. I do fear america is an old horse and the future of old horses is in no need of explanation. I hope I am wrong. Sometimes I am wrong...

crappy days

the cast of happy days is suing CBS for non payment of royalties. I used to love watching that show as a child, it is a fond and golden memory of my texas childohood.  One of the actors had her house foreclosed on, very sad. You would think if you were part of a property that made billions you could take are of the actors. I am a free market man but I think corporations could be less evil (as could we all). Give the poor bastards a million each and thank them for making a part of the grand and noble thing called the american psyche. I am so tired I am probably typing gibberish. But I find it sad that you can be so famous and lose your home to the bank..doesnt seem fair. Fame is a bitch. I would rather be rich than famous anyday.  I wouldnt want to walk into a bar and have strangers come up to me etc. Artists can be famous and not recognized, actors cant.

alex update

I am worn out, shot, exhausted and tired. Need a vacation..third window is up.. mural is only three or four days more worth of work..then I am painting a mural in his home theater and exercise room. I am really starting to feel the stress of months without a day off.  The pace is getting to me but I cant complain in  todays world a lot of people are in much worse stress. I had a meeting last night about having a show in shanghai. Looks like It will happen which is great news. Never been to china or the orient.I am really looking at the wrap up of my serious projects fairly soon.It feels good to see some light through  the etched window of art.

Monday, April 18, 2011

art lesson by gardega

I recently came across another art blog----five posts total

Here, the owner of this blog laments about her non-profit going out of biz and she is out of a job. While I feel sorry for her, I think she is out of her mind.You CANNOT put your faith in any god or government or hope for salvation from anyone in art. you must have guts made of steel and a heart that is half iron/ half gold. If you take a victim role, you  will die in a failed and lost life. Maybe if daddy is rich you can start a fund or some such nonsense etc. but if you dont have that, then I would only rely on a single person--the man/ woman in the mirror. If you want to survive in NYC in the arts then you must step up to the plate. There is no room for whiners, for the weak, the non-profits wont save you and neither will I. Funny how (for the most part) the people who make a living in the arts are neither rich kids nor gov. trusters but rather guys  or girls who work their own fingers down to the bones and dont cry about the need for some bureaucratic  angel to come save them...Get off your ass and make something of yourself..earn your own respect.





A sigh of relief...Although brief.

I'm pleased to know that my barrage of emails to government officials the past few weeks might have helped save the arts - and maybe a phone call from Robert Redford. Yes that's right. According to an article in today's New York Times, "Saving Federal Arts Funds: Selling Culture as an Economic Force" Mr. Redford made a last minute phone call to Nancy Pelosi last week that may have helped change the vote to reinstate the $50 million for the National Endowment for the Arts. This historical stimulus plan that includes support and protection of jobs in the non-profit sector hopefully becomes a reality tomorrow when President Obama signs the plan into action. But when will those of us effected by these job cuts actually see a change? It's been over 3 months now since that gloomy day in November when I was told my position with an arts education non-profit was going to be eliminated.  I never imagined with my experience, education and creative resourcefulness that I'd still be actively on the job hunt with very few leads and growing more frustrated by the day collecting unemployment benefits. Yeah, I know shut up with the whining right? So while trying to remain fervently optimistic about the near future, here's what I'm doing about being out of a job.


Composition is a squishy animal. Hard to hold. To me this is composition. The darks, the lights, the colors, the moment
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how to survive as an artist in NYC

This cracks me up.

I found this blog today

It is a blog about surviving as an artist in NYC.

If you notice, the creator of this blog got all excited, started a blog, made a couple of entries and then left it on the sidewalk like a mumbling step-child.



words of the day: marlon brando

"what are you rebelling against?"

"whaddya got?" 

marlon brando

eco friendly bulbs: the real story

greg mortenson: moron of the month--three cups of lies

I never read three cups of this book. But I just watched an interview on 60 minutes,...three words out of the guys mouth and I dont believe a word his says, he is a sketchy bastard...I have a built in BS detector (to paraphrase hemingway) I know when people are full of sh&*^%t he is one of them. People are suckers. I trust no one, I dont get suckered..I saw through our pres, I saw through W and I see right through this liar. If you watch this video it shows the men who helped him ( that he claimed in his book were taliban) He took a photo of the guys who helped him and put them in his novel and said they were his kidnappers..I hate liars and hypocrites.

words of the day: gordon lightfoot

If You Could Read My Mind

If you could read my mind love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old time movie
About a ghost from a wishin' well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet

You know that ghost is me
And I will never be set free
As long as I'm a ghost, you can see

If I could read your mind love
What a tale your thoughts could tell
Just like a paperback novel
The kind the drugstore sells
When you reach the part where the heartaches
Come the hero would be me

Heroes often fail
And you won't read that book again
Because the endings just to hard to take

I'd walk away like a movie star
Who gets burned in a three way script
Enter number two, a movie queen
To play the scene of bringing

All the good things out in me
But for now love let's be real

I never thought I could act this way
And I've got to say that I just don't get it
I don't know where we went wrong
But the feelings gone and I just can't get it back

If you could read my mind love
What a tale my thoughts could tell
Just like an old time movie
About a ghost from a wishing well
In a castle dark or a fortress strong
With chains upon my feet the story always ends

If you read between the lines
You'll know that I'm just trying to understand
The feeling that you left

I never thought I could feel this way
And I've got to say that I just don't get it
I don't know where we went wrong
But the feelings gone and I just can't get it back

the diner: photo by gardega

This guy reminded me of a a hopper or  a modern-vermeer character..He caught me taking the photo as he ate a croissant..

astoria panorama: photo by gardega

I was waiting for a subway after installing some art in queens. I believe there is art to be found in every place and every moment if your eyes are open..If you are doing something dreadful like waiting for a subway in Queens---make some art out of the moment and the moment will be neither wasted nor lost.

"the focus is sharp in the city." N. peart

Sunday, April 17, 2011

our reason to be here

No rest for the weary

I have just returned from a mural stretch in long island and now I have half an hour break and I then have to go to a meeting and install some glass art. I would like to sit on the couch but I dont have that option.

murals NYC: by gardega

I did a decent amount of work while in long island. The wine cellar will be done after one more visit.   Four days total work to finish, now. Ceilings are hell if you cant lie back on a scaffold, it is really hard to control hand over head on a ladder..tough going. But I have improved my coordination after many months of hard work. I have found a great gold, is the one single color that either sings ans makes a piece perfect or falls into the relam of cheese. Gold is not for amateurs as you will wind up looking like an art student and not a professional. I painted for 6 months until I determined that gold would be perfect for these wine label borders. I have found a great acrylic gold that took me forever to find. Most commercial golds (aside from gold leaf) look horrible. I cant believe I have almost finished this job...long road...Next he is building a home theater and a gym that I will paint.

Saturday, April 16, 2011


I finished for the day, fifteen hours painting a ceiling standing on a step ladder. I usually get a second wind after 12 hours. It is so damn hard to paint a ceiling like this, looking up, craning neck. My new color on my palette is ben gay. Art requires extra miles, if you cant goe extra miles then art may not be the thing for you. The good thing about a long hard day is you sleep well.
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I am on hour thirteen of ceiling mural. Probably wrap up in another three to four hours. Still have energy.
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ceiling mural by gardega

Today is going to be a tough one. I am painting ceiling panels on a ladder. No room for scaffold. Only 9 am and I am already feeling it on my neck and back. Ill try to give my readers some art lessons and progress reports today. The good thing is I feel good today, my hand is working. Some days you are rusty and some days you are on target. You never really know. Here I am starting one of five wine labels on a ceiling. I am using a grid system to tranfers, grids and ceilings are a tough combo.
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Friday, April 15, 2011

mural detail

One more hour to wrap up many months of hard work. Then I move into another area to work. I can almost see daylight now
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Today I put the final burshstroke on months and months of hard work. I will finish the stair murals and ceiling today. Then I will start the second part of cellar that includes 5 ceiling panels approx. 3 foot by 5 foot each. I will be happy to put this whole project to bed. It hasnt been easy.
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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

gardega update

A good artist should be able to paint a cherub on a ceiling out of your head with no reference. If you have drawn hundreds of images of something it should be in your memory.
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Today I wanted to test something while eating lunch. Leonardo said that a man is the same height as the length between his arms ourstretched. (See his vitruvian drawing) I am exactly 5' 9 tall and the exact measurement of my arms from finger tip to finger tip is exactly 5 foot nine inches. Never believe anything, test it yourself.
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ceiling border

The goal for today is to finish the stairway ceiling. When that is done I have some work on one wall, probably three hours on that wall. When that is done the entire wine cellar is done minus the actual cellar hallway where I have five ceiling labels to paint, lettering and some other work. It will feel great to finish the main area of the wine cellar after many months of hard work. The other day someone asked me how to write a screenplay, I have no idea, I said. I read a few books, watched a few movies but if you want the real secret, I want you to go sit and write and after you have logged in 40 hours, Ill give you the word from the guy thus far. The real secret to anything is hard work. The antithesis of achievement is excuses. My script is done may 1 and the funding and director are now lined up. Work is the key to good fortune.
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art lesson by gardega

I recommend starting everyday you possibly can with a drawing. Not a drawing out of your head but either a study of an old master or some figure or anatomy study. This wakes up the brain and hand. I wasnt feeling inspired this morn to start my mural so I did a quick leonardo drawing to warm up. There are exercises that will wake you up and get the blood pumping. Never start making art in a fog, you will waste time. It is best to always draw form nature or a real figure but the next best thing is to copy an old master. Never a day without a drawing
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time to make the donuts

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

and what a task it is

Here are three of five labels I have to paint on a ceiling. I don't even want to think about the struggle this will be. I made sure to pack a few things, My paints, my reference material and my Bengay..Goodbye neck. Is kind of nice to put your children's names on wine labels on a ceiling in your wine cellar, though...thats a good dad.

Alice in Winter Watercolor

12  x 16 inches on arches paper to purchase