Michael Garfield – How To Live in the Future: New Paintings from Art Outside, Sonic Blossom, & The Parish | Denver Live Art on the Cover of Kush Magazine!

17 November 2011

New Paintings from Art Outside, Sonic Blossom, & The Parish | Denver Live Art on the Cover of Kush Magazine!

“Purpose is the place where your deep gladness meets the world’s needs.”
- Frederick Buechner

"Whatever I do is done out of sheer joy; I drop my fruits like a ripe tree."
- Henry Miller

I want to start by expressing my enormous gratitude to everyone reading this newsletter.  You've given me a voice – a way to satisfy my urge to share and maybe kindle some creative purpose in others at the same time.  I subscribe to marketing guru Seth Godin's blog, and he had this to say about Thanksgiving:

‎"A great way to give thanks for the privileges we've got is to do important work. Your job, your internet access, your education, your role in a civilized society...all of them are a platform, a chance to do art, a way for you to give back and to honor those that enabled you to get to this point. For every person reading this there are a thousand people (literally a thousand) in underprivileged nations and situations that would love to have your slot. Don't waste it."

Thank you for helping me not waste it.  (I'm always open to suggestions for how to waste this opportunity even less by helping more people.  Let me know if you have some...)

"Introducing Denver: Live Art Capitol of America"
on the cover of Kush Magazine

One thing I love is using my work as a writer to applaud, exalt, and promote my artist friends and the venues that support us – and I'm lucky enough to do this as the new Colorado Arts Correspondent for national cannabis culture journal Kush Magazine.  You can read my first feature with them, an ode to the special magic that makes Colorado's Front Range such a uniquely excellent place for the emerging live art community, right here in their sleek e-reader on pages 74-75.

If you've been looking for a way to explain what live art is all about, here's a good place to start:

Here on the edge of the Midwest, perched on high ground where the crisp air and mountain view gives everything a sense of adventure, a growing cadre of live artists is working to liberate three generations of suburbanites from their alienation.  Live art isn't just a symptom of the internet's new society of transparency, or a gimmick; it's a spiritual guerrilla movement to help everyone recognize their personal calling and collaboratively create a new positive vision for society.  It's leadership by example, telling people, "You can do this too. Don't deny your creative spirit.  Get out there.  Take the initiative and shine." (read more)

I'll continue to report on the Colorado scene in the months to come.  Stay tuned!

Mobius Brain
2011 10 07, 08, 09 Art Outside Festival
(Psymbionic, David Starfire, Bird of Prey, Riders Against The Storm, Sorne, Ricochet, Dolomites, Soundfounder, Butcher Bear, Kinder Lo Phi, Ntropy, Nicoluminous, Happy Happy James)
2011 10 14, 15 Sonic Blossom at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom
(Ott, Kraddy, Random Rab, Octopus Nebula, Kaminanda, The Human Experience, Karsh Kale & Jamie Janover)
2011 10 16 Fusion Gallery (Bird of Prey, Kaminanda, The Gaia Experiment)
24"x30" - paint markers on canvas panel (click image to enlarge)

Possibly my most time-intensive painting yet, and certainly my most deconstructed, this one rides the divide between my lives in Colorado and Texas.  (I don't know if you can tell, but all of this music was super inspiring, beautiful sounds for the creative process.)  In response to my friend Jonathan Zap's suggestion that I "rupture the plane" more frequently, it marks a deliberate attempt to break as many of my own rules and inject as many visual paradoxes as I can...a kind of glossy, cortical Devil's Fork.  Painting myself into and then back out of a problem is delicious, and of course I have high esteem for plane-rupturing geniuses like Oliver Vernon, whose work helped to inspire this piece.  Here it is in stages:

Commissioned Studio Painting for Thomas & Ruth Carter
16"x24" - paint markers on masonite (click image to enlarge)

As above, so below.  Trying to imagine the world through animal eyes, to feel it as they do.  My first attempt at moonlight on the water.  (Can you find the lady bug?)

Sunny With Pteranodons
2011 11 18 The Parish (Paper Diamond, Run DMT, One4All, White Noise)
18"x24" - paint markers on stretched canvas (click image to enlarge)

Ah, my first gig as an Austinite, painting at the legendary 6th Street venue for none other than Boulder's own Alex Botwin (DJ'ing as his alter ego, Paper Diamond).  This is how I feel in my new home – easy, lucky, and free, like I caught a tall thermal and have a belly full of fresh fish under the warm prehistoric sun.  It was a pleasure to work alongside fellow live art mainstays Tourmaline Todd and Chance Roberts, and much love goes out to the guys at Polaris Presents for welcoming me on such short notice.  My friend Jonathan Garza took great pictures of this show, which you can find on his Austin arts/music/culture blog, Collective Perspectives.

Painted Hats Galore

I've found some awesome allies in Austin with Whomp, a new art and fashion store now selling my hats and paintings as well as a tremendous amount of other cool stuff.  Here are the latest adventures in headwear I've cooked up:


...and for those of you who missed them, here are my most recent live albums.  Together, they represent the full spectrum of my work, from passionate jazz-pop through guitar-tapping instrumentals and into improvised psychedelic loopscapes.  Until I get my next studio album together, these are the definitive recordings.  And like all of my music, you can download them free:

I've started booking my spring and summer festival circuit, so if you know of events that'd like conscious, intelligent acoustic-electronic music to put a star in people's eyes, please refer me to the organizers!  Few things in my life are sweeter than creating sacred space with an audience and feeling into it together.  I'm nourished by the opportunity to play for you, and deeply appreciate your support as I start to weave a year of pilgrimage to creative, genuine communities where I can put my work to the greatest good.

That's it for now.  Have a spectacular day and don't hesitate to write!