thrashed about

I just ordered this book from a store in Oregon:said-no-book

I ordered it, ostensibly, for the graduate seminar I’ll be teaching this spring on “professional practices” for artists. It’s good to have alternatives. While I wait, I’m indulging in a fantasy about this book: that it will give me great peace of mind, reassurance, and affirmation. It will be humorous, and it will make me believe that capitalism is a weak force in the universe.


Also while I wait, I continue to shoot video of tide pools for a new work in progress. I shot this footage above yesterday. In case it’s difficult to see what it is, it’s a hermit crab thrashing another hermit crab against a rock, over and over again. Yes, it’s a gif that I made out of about two seconds of footage, but I watched this happen for a good five minutes – all of it recorded – before the thrasher hauled the thrashee away in a huff. I imagine it was a huff. To any hermit crab experts out there, what was this all about? The thrashee is clearly smaller, much too small to donate it’s tiny shell to its abuser. I get stressed out, watching it… which makes me wonder why I made it.

Copepodilia’s virtual debut

I’ve just heard from Julia Krolik that our conversation about Copepodilia is now online:
Julia is one of the curators of the blog Art the Science, from a fascinating Canadian organization of the same name. Lots of great art to be found there; I’m honored to be included.

I mentioned these prints in an earlier post, but they’ve now grown even bigger, 30″ x 20″ on Arches rag. They still look crazily 3-d, with so much textural detail. I’m surprised they don’t smell like the sea.

zeroes on the loose

I had a great meeting with Iain Boal yesterday, working on a book project with Iain and Ren Weschler. Iain shared this beautiful poem by Wisława Szymborska.

edge of the pacific


I prefer movies.
I prefer cats.
I prefer the oaks along the Warta.
I prefer Dickens to Dostoyevsky.
I prefer myself liking people
to myself loving mankind.
I prefer keeping a needle and thread on hand, just in case.
I prefer the color green.
I prefer not to maintain
that reason is to blame for everything.
I prefer exceptions.
I prefer to leave early.
I prefer talking to doctors about something else.
I prefer the old fine-lined illustrations.
I prefer the absurdity of writing poems
to the absurdity of not writing poems.
I prefer, where love’s concerned, nonspecific anniversaries
that can be celebrated every day.
I prefer moralists
who promise me nothing.
I prefer cunning kindness to the over-trustful kind.
I prefer the earth in civvies.
I prefer conquered to conquering countries.
I prefer having some reservations.
I prefer the hell of chaos to the hell of order.
I prefer Grimms’ fairy tales to the newspapers’ front pages.
I prefer leaves without flowers to flowers without leaves.
I prefer dogs with uncropped tails.
I prefer light eyes, since mine are dark.
I prefer desk drawers.
I prefer many things that I haven’t mentioned here
to many things I’ve also left unsaid.
I prefer zeroes on the loose
to those lined up behind a cipher.
I prefer the time of insects to the time of stars.
I prefer to knock on wood.
I prefer not to ask how much longer and when.
I prefer keeping in mind even the possibility
that existence has its own reason for being.

– Wislawa Szymborska, from Nothing Twice, 1997