Where were you born? Where did you grow up and where do you live?
I was born in Dallas Texas. I left Dallas around 7 and moved to Scottsdale, AZ. I currently live in Carlsbad. M folks retired in Solana Beach. I came here because my parents were ill. I am 64 years old.
How old were you when you first began creating? What influenced you?
I was living in a motel in Oceanside running with the devil. I had no background in art. One day while driving in Encinitas I saw a for rent sign in a run down place. I had never created art in my life. 2 years later the house was an artistic landmark. I began by painting the front door pink. That was the green light to begin creating all over. A creative valve opened in my brain at 53. Approximately 10 homeless people and myself began began project. When I touched it, it became a artistic explosion. It was a giant happening, but I didn’t even realize what was happening. VH1 TV came for 2 days. I was on the front page on newspapers. ‘Weird California’ book featured my home.
My current art environment in Carlsbad is an extension of of my first place in Encinitas.
Is the Encinitas house still there?
It was torn down about 4 years ago.
Describe your medium? What influenced this?
I try to create the beautiful and abstract. I try to integrate it into the soul. I am under the current theme of a tribute to the founders of rock n roll. I am looking for artistic beauty, not just rock n roll tribute- art hitting senses. I am drawn to intense colors and beauty. It is sensory plus imprints of soul and childhood memories. The abstract is not enough, The full package is the beauty and soul. It is not complete without soul. Any face could be used that is soulful. The gallery is the art itself.
What is the hardest part about working in this medium?
Making pieces spectacular, but coordinating them with the rest of the art. Seeking a balanced environmental canvas. A lot of chaos is going on, but your mind is at rest because there is a flow. There is a tremendous burst of creativity, but when you are done, you are left with a maintenance project. Art is inspiring, maintenance is work.
Why do you chose the materials you use? Where do you get them?
I use bright colors because they turn me on when used in a balance. They affect your brain waves. My art is a fucking instant gratification. It is to knock your brains out. I usually hear the wow. Lots of florescent, gems, beads, glitter. I get them at the Michael’s or at party stores.
Your house is your canvas, but why not create on canvas?
I want to create an environment and the time it took to maintain it consumed all my time. I also had a lack of confidence because it was new. I did a few small pieces and realized it was easy and it didn’t have to be part of the environment. I broke the ice. I do know the one positive thing my creative juices are again flowing. I have future plans to sell works on canvas.
Are you installations ever finished?
It seems like it is a slow evolution. You think you are finished but then you get another idea to take it to a new level. Hopefully they continue getting to higher levels. A goal is to take it as far as I can take it… beauty and insanity. Totally to the limit. They are never finished because there are always maintenance.
You use many music icons? Do you play music yourself?
I have a deep love for music, but I don’t play any instruments. Harmonica or sax would be a chosen instrument because they go directly to my soul. My favorite music is something I can feel. It inspires me or I can dance to it. Chuck Berry is the man. Otis Redding, Jackie Wilson, The Temptations, The Rolling Stones. I’m not into too much modern music. I can’t feel it man.
Favorite section of installation?
I turned an old shed into a thing called the surrealistic slave shack in Carlsbad. Not to minimize the suffering of slavery, just an artist thing. One section with Robert Johnston is my favorite. I moved into this place and was happy with a place to live. I had no TV so I read a book on slavery and blues. Beautiful picture of Muddy Walters with a pompadour. I blew it up and wanted the shed to turn into his place, then it went from there. That started the Carlsbad installation. I have been to hell and back with the shed.
Do you encourage visitors?
I encourage visitors. People always want positive attention. You want them to enjoy your work. I did do art for arts sake because the location is remote. The first one in Encinitas was too much because it was like a museum with no privacy. The best way to set up a meeting would be to call. This place would be good for children’s art classes. It lets your imagination go. It would free kid’s minds more in terms of creativity.
What changes in the local Carlsbad art scene would you like to see?
If my place was kept up at a very high level, it could be a local landmark. I am looking for the proper exposure to get it there, but maybe it is not in the right area. The proper exposure would be to show people with some with influence to get it to the right landmark status.
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