Cat Sitting Fishbowl Stint pt. 5

Christmas Eve Went Like This

Just got back from dinner at Carl & Patty’s; spaghetti and garlic bread. Good company. Others were there as well, Dave & Patty. We all have radio shows on KGFN. We’re all friends. It’s nice having friends. I miss family. I know they miss me. Gotta remember to cal them.

Work on the Tex Rickard house is rigorous. It’s clean, clean. Super clean and being done in glazes so this means it takes time, painting the details right and I don’t rush it. Days turn into weeks with this one.

There are bricks and shingles. My oils lay down in various ways so the tricks come out. I don’t want to have to outline every single brown shingle or every red brick. That’s the challenge here.

So I worked on a different painting after that ordeal. It’s interesting we get to publish our thoughts as we’re painting them, these days.

So this other painting, it’s very van Gogh. Vincent burped out color, almost impatiently, but his drawing style showed up on the canvas as well. He drew into paint, that’s what Picasso did alot as well. This painting is like that.

I had said to myself the other night that Vincent would have not liked the desert; it’s hard to exaggerate colors here. Colors are a bountiful gift and this painting sings. It’s friendly and delightful, but the sky is overcast and the landscape is not sun drenched.

An indulgence I dip into is lots of blue, in the ground, in the buildings, on the walls, the shadows of everything, blue. I love playing with that. I let myself go with this one.

I had started with blocks of color I let dry over night. It was a very brief underpainting so then I was able to let loose and render forms with that color already there for ground areas.

The white was also dashed off unbridled in a few spots. There’s a camper in this painting and it stands out, even beside the red broken down car beside it.

I could walk you to this spot. It’s right by my house and not a typically beautiful location, looking toward some shacks and trailers, but the ridges miles behind, that’s nice to see as a back drop.

So it all lined up nicely in the photo I thought, so this painting came from the lines of that photo shot a month ago.

I call this painting, tentatively and in jest, yes, Fruit Cocktail Desert, yes desert. It’s so bright and lively. Saturated desert scene.


Christmas Day (and Night)

For lunch I was invited to have dinner at the Dinky Diner. I walked down there and it was a full house. Completely full of locals there for Christmas Dinner together. It was such a great thing. For those of us with no family here it was wonderful and the feast was excellent. Small town excellence.

It’s kind of always on our mind, the solitude here. Goldfield is not just out in the country, it’s very remote desert. It’s 4 hours to civilization. Alot of us keep to ourselves and that’s how we’ve ended up here. I’ve done it all and so have many others so we know what we’ve got in our little town.

I took a coffee to go and said my Merry Christmases, hugs and off I was, back to the little camper to paint.

Once nestled in, another canvas was started late Christmas night. It’s the other standing bus at the Car Forest. By the way, I did forget to call family until it was too late. That 3 hours time difference slipped my mind.

I had called this hill One Car Hill because for a long time it only had the one car, which happened to be the first car I ever painted here, years ago. Now it’s burnt. Someone lit it on fire, probably Rippie and the paint was all burnt off but you can barely see a head from what I painted so long ago. Anyhoo, a yellow pick up was added to the hill top and then the big white bus started to stand there.

But the way they’re situated, the way they stand, the way the other two cars stand in front of the bus, it’s as if they all sprouted from the same seedbed. And the thick fog that day, behind the cars and concealing the ridge behind, it makes for a great painting. We’ll see.

But I started on that one Christmas night.

While I paint this bus, I think of the End of the World party and how much has changed here. We had 100 people visit that day but only 20 came to camp around our house. Port-a-potties were not needed. Nice burn though, damn nice burn. The rain let up and Rippie lit it up for a small crowd. Las Vegas newspaper was there. Jeeze, that was 6 months ago.


Cat Sitting Fishbowler Part 3 -Journaling and Photos

Day 2, Evening

A record day on the blog site yesterday I think. Viewers are checkin’ up on me. It’s almost Christmas; lazy bastards -nuthin’ better to do. Suppose I’ll paint tonight.

(click these to see the slideshow blown UP!~)

Last night, cleared this little table and this day bed. I needed space for patient painting.

There are only so many places I could be in this trailer. I’ll list them all:

Day bed, here where I am now. Table & chair, about 2.5 feet from my head at the moment, where my booted foot is right now. Kitchen, starting about one foot past my foot and ending 6 feet beyond that. I’ll call it.. the pantry; that’s just beside the kitchen which is where the cat bowl is on the floor beside the old propane heater.

In these images, you’ll see some shot yesterday of the old high school, during my walk back to the camper. I wish to fishbowl from this building at some point. As you can see, the building needs some attention and I’m all about bringing the noise! It’s a cause I’d like to be involved with. There’s money for preservation if we can get the cause publicized. I don’t know if they really understand what fishbowling could do for them. Readers, please email me back if you have specific ideas where to find money for this historic and most beautiful school house.

Bedroom is beyond this room, about 7 ft. from my foot. There is a porch this is really just a space beside the camper, otherwise, this is the extent of the this abode. If I stand on my left foot, my left hand reaching one wall, stretching my right foot reaches the other wall for the width of this camper trailer.

The train I’m letter is just beyond that silver trailer over there across the way. Whiskers is purring. Stupid dog barks outside. Whiskers looks at me as if to say “should I be concerned?” This evening he showed me the food he prefers by jumping toward it (in the pantry) from the kitchen counter, 3 feet away from him. I’m thinking of offering Mister White Whiskers cat nip; I’m drinking a beer. Let’s PARTY Mister Whiskers!

Took some pictures, alot actually. You’ll see them taken from this end of the camper to that end. 12 feet in distance, I’d say. Time to play and paint. Cats don’t get bored; I like that.

This painting I’m about to embark upon, it’s horizontal in ratio and based on photos of a sunset I took a month ago. Orange, purple, electrified! Concentrated glow.

Day 3, Afternoon

There’s a pretty thick fog outside right now. It’s morning. I’m going out to shoot and then post on the blog here. Also, I’m out of tobacco. Probably walk home for that. I was puffin’ away last night while painting. BUT THIS PAINTING -it’s turning out really well and easy. Yes, no distractions really helps alot.

The 2 books of art I brought to look at are on Van Gogh and Monet. Vincent wrote such beautiful letters and his impoasto paint is impressive, the way he just does it and ends it. I thought of him last night while applying my goops of white and yellow. It’s hard for me to just stop. Thnx for the help, Vincent.

You have to leave this place every day to do your dootie. You know what I’m sayin’? Number two; but it’s great because that most basic of functions the body needs gets us out of our cave by necessity.

The windows of this thing are like chest level when standing.

Monet could get colors to harmonize and clash at will. Looking at his work, you see he only cared about color effects. I care about translucence.

I woke at 11 today. I had excellent sleep, worked late last night I guess. No clock in the camper so today’s filtered sunlight made it hard to tell the time ’til I checked my laptop.

Mister White Whiskers was out most of the night. He got the oily gourmet stuff for breakfast.

I did end up taking that walk home in the biting wind today. Took a couple dumps, downed coffee and gathered a few supplies: canvases, my easel, vodka, cool aid mix, socks, tobacco, color harmony book, hydrogen peroxide for me teeth. Zak and Alison are not home at the moment. They’re possibly getting a ride to Reno for Christmas, but have apparently not left yet. I like the clown head he laid on the table here. I like the sunlight in our house. A couple ATVs came for a quick visit to the Car Forest during my quick visit.

I’m bringing a few onions as well. I was thinking about Diogenes. See his statue in “Cat Sitting Post 1”. They say this philosopher only ate onions and lived naked in a barrel. He was the original cynic.

Maybe I’ll finish this canvas of the Tex Rickard house tonight. Probably record some CDs of my radio show for the parents.

On my walk home today, I was thinking of wants vs. needs. I like the simplicity.

Art Things I’ve Been Working On

I’ve been neglecting my art so I thought I should share with you some exciting developments in my art world. Living in this little town, it’s been of a more commercial bent. I have, however, been starting some new paintings on canvas and showing them at Lisa’s Goldfield Gift Shop. Here’s a sample of some stuff. Gimme your thoughts. Click on any image to see an enlarge version of it.

Zak and I have been doing odd jobs around town and here’s the flyer we use to promote that endeavor. I’m very proud of it, actually.

Mrs. Lubow is a sweet old lady in town we’ve been doing some work for. She had me paint the ceiling of her porch in Mexican colors. Not so much art, but my creative eye came in handy. Love that gal!

Here was one of those odd jobs: house painting. Mrs. Lubow had this whirligig for me to paint. She says it’s not a duck but I think it’s a duck. Here’s before, during and after. This was alot of fun.

The Historical Society owns this old train and my latest endeavor has been to paint the sides of it. Eventually it will say Goldfield Consolidated Mine Company. Here are some pics of it before and during day 1 and day 2. First grinding, then red/brown primer, next black, then lettering.. more to come.. I been workin’ on the railroad..

I’ve been researching like crazy about all things Goldfield, such as the Wobblies and the labor movement and also the Gans/Nelson fight. For an upcoming issue of Harbinger Asylum I’ll be illustrating the cover and writing an article about that notable labor movement event that happened in our city in 1907.

Seems ironic, but that train I’m painting.. it’s gonna’ say Goldfield Consolidated Mines Company, which is the mining empire that George Wingfield headed up and the very company that brought on the troops via President Teddy Roosevelt.

This is a rough sketch-just ideating.

Here’s a drawing of Joe Gans. I’m almost finished reading Bill Gildea’s book The Longest Fight and HOW EXCITING it was! Maybe some day I’ll write the screen play based on my friend Bill’s book.

Here’s the cover design I did for the newest upcoming edition of Harbinger Asylum.

While still president of the Chamber, I did this flyer for our event Beautify Goldfield where 17 volunteers offered their time to clean up the streets of our town-unprecedented local involvement. It was very successful and nice to end on a high note.

I did a street side sign for the Chamber of Commerce.

Not really art, but.. At the end of my tenure, the president of the Historical Society helped Zak and I move this printing press to the front of the Chamber building. OK, maybe it was more like we helped him and his forklift move it.

Here are a few thumbnails of a logo I’m working on for a new business out of Florida called Reel Down. A friend of mine from high school hired me for this job. Stay tuned for finalized design; I can’t wait to see it on Tshirts & such.

I’ve got some art hung in the Goldfield Giftshop. I created a sign for out front and Alison modeled a painting for me.

Here are a couple of the newest paintings I’ve completed. Prospector and Cig and one of The Goldfield High School.

I did a sign for the Car Forest, posted at the end of our street, Crystal Ave. south end of town, right on Highway 95. I’m a helluva sign painter, I must say.

This was a flyer I did that we put around town to try and get old vehicles to bury. Didn’t work. Oh well. Groovy flyer, though, I think.


Jeeze. It feels like it’s been forever.

Anyway, this is a new little oil painting I’ve completed. The high school in town is, well, let’s just say I’ve fallen in love with the place. I think I may need to fishbowl there soon if they’ll let me.

It’s an 8×10 inch canvas. The first of a new series, in which I’m painting the historic buildings in town. I believe my next canvas will be the Tex Rickard house. At some point, I’ll be doing the world famous Goldfield (Hotel). Maybe the Cook Bank building and POSSIBLY the Sante Fe Saloon, as well as Dahlstrom’s Garage.
You like?

A Full Life Living Here… Letting Cats Out of Bags

English: Tex Rickard, American boxing promoter...
Tex Rickard, American boxing promoter and founder of the NHL’s New York Rangers.

Living here, there’s a certain sense of relaxation; maybe I’ve mentioned it: we’re all on Goldfield time here. It makes sense that country music, with its laid back style of verbalization, is popular in places like this. We just don’t give a fuck. We’re here because we’re independent, but here in Goldfield we’re working on our interdependence skills.

Having said that, there is no place like this: This IS Goldfield.

You do realize that I live in a small town that was once a very important city, right? There are plenty of books and links to describe, in detail for you, what this place once was, but let me say now,  it’s a new animal here at this point. We’re a tight knit community now.

Everywhere I look are familiar faces, whether I like that or not. I could paint them leery or friendly, my choice, but it’s a very small number of people living here in this remote, high desert town.

I was in the Goldfield Gift Shop today and saw an attractive female, a blond. She wore a blue tank top. I don’t even prefer blonds, but it was a rare event, in all honesty. Not to put anyone down; I’m just saying that seeing an attractive female that’s not taken (spoken for) is a rare event these days for me. Without the commuters that we’re all trying to turn into “tourists”, this place would suck, completely.. haha.. Fresh blood rolls through every minute of the day.

I’d like to get all Edward Abbey on you, wax on about the mustard sunset and the burnt umber rocks and venomous critters, but it’s not my focus to speak of th0se things. I’m more about people. I’m more about community. I’m more about what the Greeks termed ‘agora’, or market place. People, art, socializing, psyche.

There’s no reason to not let the cat out of the bag but my roommate, Zak, and I are considering opening a coffee shop/art gallery in the space beside said gift shop, between it and our radio station where I have a show, Radio Goldfield,, and across the street from the famous Goldfield Hotel (which was actually called ‘The Goldfield’ in its day, by the way.) It’s time to start wheeling and dealing with this building’s owner.

At this point, we’re thinking signage:

Joshua Tree
Coffee, Art, Books and Music
Goldfield, NV

 I’m probably gonna’ need an investor or two for our shop. (hint hint) Time to make some money now.

At this moment the Chamber of Commerce is having its meeting and I’m down the street typing on the radio station’s computer. I am happy to report, these days, I represent only myself. During my ‘rein’ we tripled membership; my job is done there.

More cats I might like to bring out of the bag are these:

Nevada Matters wants to interview me for their radio show on Fox News Radio about the current happenings in Goldfield and also there’s a cable TV network that’s interested in coming to our town, with my help. It seems someone, technologically adept is needed to make connection and I’m that guy. They really wanna’ film us burning a bus at the Car Forest. I can’t divulge more than that.

I’m interested in promoting a big boxing event in our town to commemorate the historically groundbreaking boxing match between Joe Gans and Oscar Nelson that happened here in 1906. Tex Rickard went on to found Madison Square Gardens, but before that, he promoted that match, here in Goldfield. Maybe in the future, someone will compare me and my co-conspirators to him and his. I recently interviewed, for my show, the president of Friends of Joe Gans and the author of a new book about that match, “The Longest Fight”.

The Car Forest gets visitors from all over the world every week. Our work seems to be done here. It’s an art installation and it will never be “finished”. It may be time to move on to other projects for me, though. Unfortunately the owner happens to be a prick and I’m interested in disassociating myself with him.

A friend of mine is promoting his event, a soap box derby competition for adults, and there’s a new BMX track in town for the kiddies. They have very big lights for night events. I can tell ya, the soap box derby guy’s name is James and I see that he’s never gonna’ stop workin’ it. His wife is president of the Firefighter’s Association, here, and between you and me, some cool things are in the works.

My friend, John Ekman, pres of the Historical Society, is employing me to paint an old train of theirs with the words The Goldfield Consolidated Mines Company. He’s one of the most intelligent Goldfielders I know; though another contender for that distinction would be a guy I helped to build a yurt with last weekend, Bill. Both divide their time between here and California cities.

Apparently there’s a big gold mine moving back into town. We’ll see how that turns out. Somebody from the community needs to get some serious money from their corporation, if this is true. I call it image laundering, and a multi-national like that needs to clean their appearance if they wanna cash in on this place where WE live. Dominic is a friend and our County Commissioner. My hope is that he understands how to play hard ball with these boardroom stiffs.

I went to the courthouse today to collect a couple applications for a couple job openings. I doubt I’ll pursue either job, really. One thing I’m sure of, though, is it’s time to make some money, here in my far away place.

Regarding all of this, you’ll just have to stay tuned. I’m gonna’ go grille some chicken breasts now for my roommate and his kid, Alison. She’s 5 and more adorable than you can imagine.

Goldfield Chamber Presented with Joe Gans Banner, Labor Day, 2012

Goldfield NV 1900a
Goldfield NV 1900a (Photo credit: DB’s travels)

Life is full here in Goldfield. I fill my own time with working on the Car Forest, moving rocks, painting and burying cars, fixing up the house and hosting visitors that have come to see the cars. I also work on Chamber of Commerce projects such as our current community effort called Beautify Goldfield where our army of volunteers is hitting the streets. In a couple weeks we’ll be cleaning up the town together. Also, we’ve voted to make the town’s slogan official “World’s Greatest Gold Camp”.

A personal and creative outlet for me is producing my weekly radio show, Audio Sorgfield on KGFN. That one is all me, but today I got to use the radio show in the service of the Chamber of Commerce. I invited a special guest and we talked about an important historic Goldfield event.

The President of Friends of Joe Gans was in town this weekend. Kevin Grace is about 40 years old and full of zeal concerning all things Joe Gans. Grace formed his organization to promote the accomplishments of this historic boxer and bring his name back into prominence. Both are from Baltimore.

Obtained at
Obtained at Picture taken in 1899. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Out of the blue, at the Chamber office yesterday, Kevin showed up. It’s the second time he’s paid our town a visit and this time he wanted to be here on Labor Day, the fight’s 106th anniversary. Grace’s first visit was 8 months ago and he was by the Goldfield Chamber’s Vice President, Dominic Pappalardo. Angela Haag and Allen Metscher of our Historical Society showed Kevin around. We have a simple plaque in the fight’s historic location as well as a more prominent one outside the courthouse downtown.

Joe Gans was the lightweight champion of the world and back in 1906 he fought Oscar “Battling” Nelson and won the match after 42 rounds to defend his title. That was right here in Goldfield. To some, this was the most important fight of the century. 42 frickin’ rounds!?! It was one of the first sporting events ever to be filmed and gloves had been a recent introduction to the sport.

Joe Gans was the first black American sports super star and this fight was at the center of attention in the sporting world. Gans won his portion of the $30,000 purse-the biggest ever at the time-and with it he opened the Goldfield Hotel back in Baltimore. $11,000, he walked away with, invested that in building the Goldfield and is purported to be the first ever African American in Baltimore to own a car! The car’s price? $5,555.00.

Even in Gans’ hometown of Baltimore, MD he’s been practically erased from history. His historic Goldfield Hotel was demolished and replaced with a post office, which inhabits the spot today. This establishment was America’s first “Black & Tan” club. Whites and blacks dined and caroused together, enjoying ragtime music.

Eubie Blake, an important ragtime musician, got his start at the Goldfield. He has a famous tune called The Goldfield Rag.

Tex Rickard promoted the fight. He was the Don King of his day and lived here in Goldfield until he moved onward. He ended up being one of the founders of Madison Square Garden in New York City. His historic house is still standing, here, though in a shabby state of disrepair.

Talking with the owner of the land on which the Gans Nelson historic marker sits, we discussed possible future plans to name his pond, currently being constructed, after the boxing match. Grace and I would like to have a more substantial monument erected to mark the location as well.

Tomorrow, Grace will be presenting to the Chamber a beautiful banner commemorating the fight. Soon I’ll be painting a scene from the historic boxing match on one of our cars at the CarForest. I’m very interested in getting one of the artists I know commissioned to do a bronze commemorative sculpture on the site. If you saw the spot, you wouldn’t believe something so historic happened there. It deserves the most dignified marker.

I’m honored to be involved with this piece of historic significance.

Labor Day, 2012, Kevin Grace presents the Goldfield Chamber with a gorgeous banner commemorating the historic Gans Nelson fight that took place here 106 years ago to the day.
The Gans Nelson banner at the resting place of Joe Gans in the Mt. Auburn Cemetery, Baltimore Maryland, courtesy of Friends of Joe Gans.

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