Tonight, through the miracle of Netflix, I'll be watching "The Hired Hand". Directed by Peter Fonda in the very early Seventies, I'm hoping its the philosophical Western that I dimly remember it to be.
Sunday, before and after my trip to MOCA to see Basquiat paintings, I took a handful of photos that I'm happy with although I would agree they fall under the "L.A. Summertime Angst School of Urban Anxiety" but, like I say, I'm happy with them and am going to try and post them in the sidebar.
I've mentioned this to a few people since yesterday but while seeing the Basquiat paintings I realized that one of Basquiat's recurring themes is mental illness, his mental illness. Nobody seems to agree with this and I'm not denying his gifts with color and composition but while many other artists try to do justice to the human body or nature or society, Basquait choose to represent his mind. Overflowing with seemingly irrational references to consumerism, racism, his Spanish-Caribbean roots, black sports heroes, black jazz artists, and more I never got the idea that he was trying to make sense of it all like a good Westerner, only that I was witnessing a mind at war with itself.
But to appreciate Basquiat even more, go to the other show that Moca is displaying - "The Blake Bryne Collection." Usually I would be more sympathetic to this show in that, by and large, they are done by people like me, white and college educated and not much else, but without exception the paintings, and some sculptures, just sit there waiting to be discussed by their peers. A photostat of the dictionary definition of the word "Tart" (by Joseph Kosuth) or "Mesa" a collage by John Baldessari just can't compare with "Irony of Negro Plcemn."