Monday, November 6, 2017

Exquisite Corpse Games, St. Pete

I was honored to be invited to join the Exquisite Corpse Games this year.
The game is designed to bring the artists out of their comfort zone and create a piece of art JUST FOR FUN.
I attended the introductory meeting for the games at St. Petersburg's Museum of Fine Arts (also where the final pieces were unveiled last week) eager and ready. Well, almost ready. It was a particularly busy month with upcoming exhibits and workshops. Per the rules of this game you only get 17 days in which to complete your section of the corpse so that the next (mystery) artist can get on to their piece. The pieces start at the legs, followed by torso and finally head.
So all through the meeting, during artist introductions, instructions and other pleasantries a record skipped inside my head. "Please don't give me legs. Please don't give me legs. Please don't give me legs."
Not only did I have a hectic schedule and feared having to tackle an extra task would affect the quality of the piece, but vanity also played a role in my anxiety over getting legs. I'm mostly known for "my ladies". Their stylized faces are, for lack of a better word, part of my "brand". What would I do with legs or even a torso?
Finally the envelopes were handed out and I carefully opened mine. Wouldn't you know it??? I got the goddamned legs.
At this point I settled into my role and took on the challenge. I had to remember that I was to create JUST FOR FUN. And I did. I resisted injecting too much thematically into my piece and created out of chaos. The result: a quasi self-portrait. A barefoot artist painting another barefoot artist (or self) among his creations and inspirations (women and music).

Barefoot Artist, my collaboration to Exquisite Corpse Games 2017

The complete 3-painting collaboration.
Photo credit: Freddie Fred, who created the piece's torso.
The head was painted by Tammy Berk.

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