Musings on Life: My Trip to The Electrical Supply Store

Even as I got into the car I could feel the attitude in place. I knew even before I pulled into the parking lot of our local electric supply store they wouldn’t have my 400 Watt bulb and even more than that they will be rude and condescending.

But I don’t want to get ahead of myself.

On March 1st my Mom and I went to the electric supply store (which shall go unnamed, as this could happen to anyone, anywhere) amidst a few different errands. I needed a few different supplies   at the store, but it is the large indirect light bulb that burned out in the Art Center ballroom, where I work, that is my reason for being here.  With the dead bulb in hand, I entered into The Electric Store.

Tacky shiny chandeliers made for the finer homes of Aston or Ridley dangle down from everywhere. Forcing me to stoop and dodge as I make my way to the register.

Behind the counter is a large black man. He awaits me.

He is tall and heavy and burly. Much like his thick coke bottle glasses…is dense, “Can I help you?” His voice is thick and raspy, a Camel man would be my guess. Immediately I feel like I am inconveniencing him.

“Yes, I need to order some bulbs, 6, 60 Watt standard bulbs, a dozen exit sign bulbs, and two of these.” I show him my 8 inch long monster bulb. Confident now because with bulb in hand we will have no confusion.

“What kind of bulb is this?” He has taken the bulb from me and is holding it like it is the turd of an alien.

“Let me look in back, and see if I can find them.” I smile at my Mom. She looks dismayed and annoyed.

Coming up to the counter again he says, “We don’t have any in stock, but I will order it if you like.”

“Okay, when will they come in?” I didn’t expect them to be in stock. Everything is right on track.

“Ten days. We’ll give you a call.” Yeah Right!

“Do you want me to throw this out?” He is dangling the bulb over a 55 gallon trash can. In his thick calloused hand the bulb doesn’t look so large. [Read more…]

My Earliest Memories as a Child

My earliest memory, as a child

Is the desire

Now trapped in my mind.

I follow ideas

They coalesce into chaos

But What

Am I looking for?

Bob Deane 9/8/09

Musing on Art: What and Why is there Art?

  1. Art is the attempt by one to challenge the preconceptions of another.
  2. Art is the creation of beauties.
  3. Art is the attempt externalized self-inner self.
  4. Art is snapshots of moments in human history.
  5. Art is the revealing of secrets.
  6. Art is the attempt to blend the beautiful and the grotesque.
  7. Art is the belief (evidence) the consciousness bears responsibility.
  8. Art is the attempt to unmask the mysteries of life.
  9. Art is the tool before science and after religion to understand.
  10. Art is the belief that it matters.
  11. Art is realization of how much more there is to say than words allow.

Bob Deane 6/17/09

Musing on Art: Deep Into Why We Create

The desire to be creative can be broken down into three basic categories.  The sublime achievement of creating a reflection of oneself. The joyous process of doing. The acquisition of things independent of creating.

  1. The joy of having created something. Moments of peaceful reflection, enjoying your contribution to the collective enlightenment of the planet. It is about feeling an urgent need to say something. To share some perception even though it may be painful.
  2. The process, this has to do with the pleasure of making things. The opportunity for nervous hands to find relief. It is about sitting in the comfort of a den writing or the restlessness of a potter who always wants to have their hands dirty. It seems the process becomes important for people during their unhappy times.
  3. There are many things that are acquired by creating something.  Money, prestige, power and career. Many of these concerns are not important initially, but moving out of the safe haven of college or family, forces these concerns to become more important. The desire of the artist escape their own mortality is critical.

Bob Deane 9/19/2009

Musing on Life: My Left Thumbnail

My left thumb nail. From early moments of childhood, I decided to let that nail grow. To see how long I could get it. To use it as a tool, my handy pocket nail ready clean the gunk under my other nails, cram it under the screw to pry it free.  I polished, nurtured and in turn, abused it. While I never named it, it was a separate articulate entity, challenging the world from its tenuous extremity. 

Early in our relationship, I became quickly aware of how soft and thin the nail was. I wanted the nail to grow to become long, hard, and proud, as well as to be used for any spontaneous purpose.

The delicate nature of my nail became clear during frequent visits to my grandparents. In the evening, we would all gather in the living room, Mom on the love seat, Grammy in her old green recliner chair with the frayed arm rests that I spent years slowly pulling apart, and grandpa resting in his old green leather chair with the wooden arms, his old calloused feet resting on a green vinyl foot stand, eye level with me in my spot on the floor in the middle of the living room. The soft snore of his alcohol snooze. The unlit cigarette bobbing with each breath. The old worn tee shirts with holes in them. The few long grey strands of hair on his head, which with ample length, were used to cover so much of his head.  All these features led to many games of childhood play. The earliest game and one of my earliest memories was “take the hat off grandpa’s head and run off with it.” The footfalls of his pursuit causing me to squeal in terror and delight. A later game was to unravel his cigarettes from his tee shirt sleeve and see how many I could get in his mouth before he would rouse and then try and catch me. [Read more…]

Clay Musing: The Duality of Clay

Clay can be:

  1. Functional or Non-functional.Pumpkin sculpture vase - Bob Deane
  2. Abstract or Representational.
  3. The forms can be geometric and architectural or soft and lifelike.
  4. Tiny and precious or large environmental.
  5. Construction can be done with soft clay or hard clay.
  6. Creative process can be positive or negative (add clay or remove clay).
  7. Lots of tools or just your hands.
  8. Two dimensional or three dimensional.
  9. Pure and perfect white or soft and subtle dark tones.
  10. Shine like a gem or muted earthy colors.
  11. There can be lots of science or NO science.
  12. Community centered or private.Bob Deane teaching ceramics glazing

Written in 2009 – shared here in Feb. 2014