Michael Garfield – How To Live in the Future: Lost Worlds Discovered, Portals Traversed

03 March 2010

Lost Worlds Discovered, Portals Traversed

> Imagery (full gallery here)

In the last few weeks I have continued to elaborate and reinterpret older work, throwing new layers and features into paintings I once considered complete and bringing them to deeper depths and shinier sheens. It's like opening up a time capsule and finding out that a jungle grew in there unbeknownst to anyone. I guess it's a little more like psychotherapy: going back into the fray, digging in, and making a humble but persistent effort until satisfying integration is achieved. Check out these lost worlds both after and before...

Now
Let A Hundred Futures Bloom
2008 11 14 The Granada
(Robert Randolph Family Band, Brody Buster Band
& Swashbuckler, Coult 45 with Echo DaFunk,
Royale, DMTree, and AnimalTek)
16"x24" - paint markers on masonite

Flowers blooming out of the TV screen, the birth of a fusion between the electronic crystal and photosynthetic fluid. A few different metallic paints give this one a crazy luminescent effect as you walk by. Another lovely night with my peeps in The Mile High Sound Movement (see below for video from my show that night). The original painting, from once upon a time:

Before

Once I got started re-vamping old work, I couldn't stop...

Now
Molten Crystal Eggs
2010 02 04 & 02 20 Plush & DCCS
(Ana Sia, BLVD & Mike Grab, Solomoon, The Brandon Brown)
20"x30" - paint markers on masonite

That plainish green background just wasn't cutting it for me. This one didn't rest long before I took that critical threshold look at it and had to pick it up again...and I had a fabulous opportunity at the most recent Pathways Art event in Denver, a beautiful, ephemeral gallery that featured awesome visionary work from all over the country. Not often I get to paint live at a gallery opening to great downtempo electronica, minimal psytrance, etc....I even played a set of my own. Not while painting, of course. Rainbow fills covered by copper grating, and suddenly the whole thing looks like it's slowly rising from beneath the surface of some molten metal flow. Exuded. This is what it was, for latecomers and the forgetful:

Before
Detail

And now for more snakes. :)
Now
Contemplating The Gem
2008 11 01 & 2010 02 26 Ogden Theatre & The Maison
(Zilla, EOTO, Vibesquad, Lynx and Janover & EPROM, R/D, DS@STR)
18"x24" - paint markers on masonite

Back in New Orleans with an old favorite I had just coated in silver paint, the original floral scape peeking out in bits and pieces, at odd angles, as if frozen beneath a sheet of ice. And what goes better with ice than flowers and cold-blooded reptiles, of course? Plus, I have simply not painted enough snakes. Strange fact about this painting I only noticed days later: everything in it is going up...the plants growing, the snakes uncoiling, the bubbles floating, and even the crystal is oriented with the point skyward. All ascendant masculine eroticism – anthers the pollen-bearing male tip of a plant, snakes and wheat famously phallic...just goes to show you, these things only avail themselves to interpretation after the fact, when things have stopped spinning so fast. Here is what it used to be:

Before
Detail
In honor of Peter Gabriel's recent release of Scratch My Back, an orchestral all-covers album, I finally went for it and learned one of his songs to include in my previously all-original setlist. "Washing of the Water" is one of the most beautiful and profoundly simple songs I know; it moves me so deeply that I wrote about this majestic number a while back in a series about songs I want played at my funeral. And I hold to that decision.

Check out this video of my performance from two weeks ago in Denver, playing the ukulele while the snow billowed down outside...as my wonderfully frank and even-handed friend Casey Meade put it, "You started off kind of shaky, but then you killed it!" (you can download the track for free here):

Meanwhile, deep underground, I'm hard at work on both my next studio solo album and a new, jazzy live electronic duo...I'm calling upon all my saints of patience to help me keep a lid on it until it's all done, but I can't wait to show you.


I am excited to announce the makings of a serious spring and summer tour. Here are a few of the shows I'll be mixed up in over the next month or so...and if you have any recommendations for this summer, say so! (Anything from festivals to house parties – I am so game!) In the meantime, I hope I'll see you out there, and if you want more info about any of these events, just email me.

Because I just can't put things in chronological order like a normal person, I'm putting the last-but-most-exciting one first – then looping back through time to luge from the mountains to the bayou like I'm a Monty Python year or something:

Apr 15 - 18 2010 - San Jose, California
between-presentation music @ MAPS.org’s Conference on Psychedelic Science in the 21st Century

I'm playing between lectures by pioneering researchers like Stan Grof and Charles Grob, in the company of legends like Alex & Allyson Grey, and generally soaking up the potent intellectual curiosity and flexible perspective of this watershed event. They present the artful science; I present the scientific art. An incredible honor, and did I mention this means I'll be in the Bay Area for a week or two? Hit me up if you or your peeps want to hang while I'm there!

Mar 4 2010 - 9:00P - Steamboat Springs, Colorado
live art/guitar setbreak @ Ghost Ranch Saloon for Papadosio & Octopus Nebula

Mar 5 2010 - 10:00P - Avon, Colorado
live art/guitar setbreak @ Finnegan’s Wake for Papadosio

Mar 6 2010 - 9:00P - Winter Park, Colorado
live art/guitar setbreak @ Ullr’s Tavern for Papadosio