Thursday, December 31, 2009


December 31, 2009. The final image of the year is the starburst chandeliers of the lobby of the building I work in. It wasn’t until today that I noticed how much like exploding fireworks they are. When you walk into the lobby, you are on Christmas overload, thousands of sparkling and illuminated crystals – the buildings calling card. And it never made sense to me, but now, when I think of it as fireworks; I can imagine it for Chinese New Year or the 4th of July. Our lobby is a year-round celebration. How could you not want to come to work every day?

Wednesday, December 30, 2009


December 26, 2009. The road to home, after a snowy night. Or the road looking back. No matter how I look, I know where I am, where I’ve been, where I’m going to, and to where I will return. This single road, freshly plowed, wide and white, has recorded countless steps of children on their way to school, like the grains of sand on a beach. My sister-in-law, who came from the northern woods, once remarked that this vast open sky could cause melancholy, by sheer dint of its scope. She might be right, and maybe that is what the settlers traveling over the prairie felt. How much warmer must it be to have trees overhead and sheltering. Alas, that was not to be in this fertile farm country, which was cleared to make way for farm after farm and small town after small town. But it is where I took my first steps and it is to where I am drawn from time to time, like a fish to its place of beginning.

Saturday, December 19, 2009


December 17, 2009. On the subway entrance outside my office building, this says it all. Love will save the day.


December 15, 2009. Coming back from Supreme Court I came across this sketch on a red fire department call box on the street corner. It immediately reminded me of a drawing I saw years ago on the sidewalk across from Cooper Union. Some kids had decided that they could make money by selling urban drawings of tragic, but to them comic situations. Tragic because of the humanity involved, comic because you wouldn’t dream up those scenarios. This sketch reminds me, in part, of their Crack Whore drawing. The comic aspect has long since stopped being comic, in light of the toll the epidemic has taken on people around me. The tragedy of the addiction looms much larger.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


December 13, 2009. My tree, decorated today. Taken in the dark of the early evening, in my apartment which my friend Keith says needs more light, and my friend Todd says needs less, this tree is reminiscent of the tree in an old picture from my childhood. There’s something about a tree made ready for the holidays – anticipation and nostalgia – but just about everyone loves it. I just like to look at it. I once took a nap with my head under the tree. It smelled nice.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


December 9, 2009. I was walking through City Hall Park when I had to stop to look again. These wonderful plants had been drenched in rain most of the morning, and then the afternoon turned sunny and mild. Beaded on these blossoms were droplets of water, reflective in the sun, almost like little ice drops.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


December 8, 2009. Centre Street is home to the courts, and urban art of the heroic variety. Four men are supporting something heavy, weighty, maybe the weight of the world, maybe its sorrow, maybe some other burden. But they seem resolute to me, united, joined in this task and able to do it. They stand, heads and shoulders burdened by this light to the world, maybe a light in the darkness, maybe a light to illuminate the surrounding gloom. I find their planed legs appealing, as in the beginning of abstraction, but not ready to go there just yet. And the silver in the light fixture against the brilliant blue of the sky was glorious. Added to it, I was released from jury duty and could return to my work.

Monday, December 7, 2009


December 7, 2009. As I left court from jury duty I came across this image on a building in the area. It won’t be there for long and clearly it isn’t meant as a permanent marking on the column outside the entrance doors. As little as someone might not have thought about this, they did! The rectangle is punctuated with the circles at the junctions, and in the larger rectangle there is the internal straight line and the wave. Each line is meant to cement the former sign to the stone. But the person who did this was not only thinking about adhesive, but something that was pleasing to their eye, otherwise why bother with the individual circles and a wave? It’s a wonderful design made visible by the tearing away of the overlaying signage.


December 4, 2009. I went christmas tree hunting with my friends TJ, Jeff & Jim. For the 2nd year we’ve gone to Pine Farm in Youngsville, NY. There are acres of trees, and while looking at them, you can also see many other wonderful things, like this moss with these red flowers growing over the remains of a stump. It was a little surprise in addition to the larger wonders of the woods and I didn’t see it until I was on the ground sawing the White Fir I took with me. The soft green of this moss, punctuated by the bright red of the flowers was unexpected on a chilly day in December.

Friday, December 4, 2009


December 3, 2009. A view of green and terra cotta. What was once maybe cast-off has become a flourishing forest of leaves and blooms. From this desk, the world can always look lush, verdant and alive. People pass by in a blur - a glimpse in a busy day as you peer from behind the greenery.


December 2, 2009. Personal space as artistic statement. We each gather things around us and build a personal statement in our homes and where we work. I like to see the differences, from wild variety to smooth surfaces. These opposites are the fuel of fashion and style, the ideas that are seen in fabric design to home design and the inherent tension between them drives all sorts of compromises in-between.