Sunday, February 15, 2009

Trip down memory lane

Here is one of the humorous moments that occurred while visiting Willie Mae Tyler (my mother-in-law) at the assisted living place.
The cheery recreation person(hey, that used to me be!) said, "We will now take A TRIP DOWN MEMORY LANE!"
A resident yelled out, "WHERE are we going?"
Another resident answered, "To your MOTHER'S house!"

Anyway, since I am not making any new art lately, and I have been looking through old photos to put pix of my friends on Facebook, I thought I would share some of my artwork from over half a life time ago. How do I feel about art made when I was 20? I feel a little thrill when I see it and think, "Damn! I'm good!"
I feel a twinge when I think of art I made that is lost (a large number of my drawings and photos from my theses show were stolen off the porch -- but you have to wonder about my lazy head -- I had left them there for a few weeks).
I also hear this phrase going thru my head, "That was back when you had potential."
This phrase is sort of serious and sort of a family joke. My dad had worked at the Review and Herald and then went away to art school, not just any art schools, but some of the best, Pratt and Cooper Union. When he returned to his old job and was talking to his old boss, his boss pulled out a realistic drawing done by my dad. My dad, with his new sophistication, saw the drawing as facile, stereotypical, certainly not "Art". The boss looked at the drawing with appreciation, and said, "Now this! This! This is from back when you had POTENTIAL!"
Kind of a slur on my my dad's new, modern art take on things.
Okay, here is the first batch. These are some photos of some kids in Atlanta, and some kids playing in Knoxville, and taken around 1982. They look like they are from a much earlier time period, don't you think?


Michael Kline said...

I was just scanning some pictures too! I remember several of these great pictures. They are sort of timeless don't you think? You have captured something really special there and the potential you speak about is alive in these and it "time releases" whenever someone sees them. All of energy we put into securing some sort of legacy in our work is probably already wasted. You've captured the power of these moments and those people. It does become difficult as we get older to maintain a fresh vision or at least one that's not glazed over with assumptions. Potential is always there within our reach, I think. It's sort of like walking in the dark and trying to remember where that light switch is...Then we realize that we are just inches away. well, enough of my blathering! I look forward to 'following' your blog and keeping in touch. Thanks for posting these pictures. They're (still) great.

Kristen Cook Tyler said...

What you said is really beautiful and thoughtful, Mike. Thanks!

Nancy Tobin said...

These are gorgeous photos! I agree about the look of them being much older.
Last year I spent January going though old photos — it's nice to step back and see what you were doing years ago, and relating it with where you're going now.
Enjoy the refueling and reflecting — I'm sure you're just around the corner from some amazing art-making!
I'm so sorry I missed the show at the Wachtung Art Center. I hope it was a success.

Mark S.A. Smith said...

That's the year I graduated from UTK. Your photos are beautiful and thought provoking. Wonderful work. Thanks for sharing!

Rick Parker said...

I like the way you see the world. But don't let that scare you. "It's all good."