I finally read, or listened actually, to the classic sailing story from the first man to sail solo around the globe. This guy is the real deal, re-built a boat by himself in a field, tried fishing, failed, decided to start sailing around. Just the anthropological randomness that oozes out of this book is worth it: hostile natives in the Straits of Magellan, Mediterranean pirates actually sailing after boats, etc. The narrator is ridiculous, but its fun, and you can get a free download of this from Audible.com Or check your library for a copy. But trust me, its great to work to. Only bummer on the audiobook deal is you gotta cancel it after you sign up or you might get stuck on their monthly rate, but its worth the minute of trouble. It hit a soft spot with me because of a passage involving the islands of my great-great-grandparents, the Azores, specifically Pico. As he is curled up sick with food poisoning, passed out in the cabin, he wakes up to see a ghost sailor at the helm, who says you should not eat the white cheese of Pico with plums. Then the ghost starts to sing and calls out "High Are the waves, fierce, gleaming. High is the tempest roar. High the seabirds, screaming. High the Azores! I wonder if that is a sailor song that was sung way back in the cross-atlantic merchant-sailing days? Maybe Slocum made it up? Either way its nice to imagine someone high up in the yards of an old square-rigger, calling out as he spots the green peaks of the mid-ocean islands rising out of the sea. It seemed every time I sailed past the Azores while working on a container-ship was at night, and all I saw of them was a bright-green blur on the radar screen. Maybe someday I'll see them come into view by boat... The nearness to the islands did inspire a trip when I got off the ship, by plane however, to visit the town where my ancestors left many years before Slocum sailed through. Here is a shot of my three brothers and myself swimming in the harbor of Calheta de Nesquim on Pico, being baptized so to speak, in the waters of the small whaling village that used to be home.
Well the kickstarter deadline has passed and we officially made the cut-off! A huge thanks to everyone who chipped in big and small. We've got a lot of ideas to make this residency great, both for myself and the other two artists. I also have some ridiculous ideas for the final show that I'm going to try to get the Clipperton people to give the thumbs up on. We'll see how it goes...
Doing some music research for a possible podcast on island music, came across this funny little video of a marching band in Malta, eventually the filmer gets a dirty look and it stops.
The ever evolving Clipperton Project is aiming to start things off right with a five month art residency at their headquarters just north of Mexico City. They are raising funds to house two local artists from Queretaro State in Mexico. In addition I have been given the honor of joining them for the initial/final months of the residency, where upon I will get opportunity to curate an exhibition of the artists involved. Having this curatorial carrot dangled in front of me, I am already scheming of ways to include more San Francisco based artists in the exhibition as well, (I know there are so many here in the bay who have roots south of the border) to create a better dialogue between the SF and Mexico City arts communities. But the focus will certainly be on the two chosen. Check out the Kickstarter page here for more details and if you are able to donate a buck or two, please do! In addition to helping fund the residency, you have several options to receive prints, original works, and more. Now to get back to painting and practice my trilling in solitude to my outdated Spanish tapes! rrrrrrrrecomiendo
Made it back down to the lower 48, actually been back for a couple weeks. Had a decent season fishing, great crew, great adventures. Happy to be back home and in the studio once again. Lots of film to scan, this home scanner is not cutting it as you can see here. Lots of work to be done now! Plenty of updates on the Clipperton Project as well, check back soon!
I got a little coverage across the pond in England, Now Then Magazine used my images to illustrate their pages.
Well its that time again, heading up to Alaska for the sockeye salmon season. They're predicting a good run, so I hope we have a great season. Check back in at the end of the summer for some pics and stories. seeya!
Looking forward to meeting the crew of the Clipperton Project this fall. It will be an interesting international mix of scientists, sailors, and artists. We'll be setting sail from Mexico to search for the tiny atoll far off in the Pacific and when/if we return, presenting our discoveries in what will surely be some creative formats. Check their site for more info on the trip, the island's strange history, and lists of the international exhibits already planned.
Well I finally hit my html limitations, sucked up my pride, and asked for some help creating a new site. This should help me update everything more often and hopefully give me more time to get in the studio. I've got a ton of new paintings in the works and a short documentary on shipping coming along as well, so check back soon! - Martin