+ Books by Post / Japan Cottage Musings catch-up riff +
Wearing stolen hotel pyjamas, Dave riffs about: Larry Harper’s “70” variety collection, various Richard Brautigan items (Rick Lupert’s Van Nuys Tokyo Express, William Hjortsberg’s Jubilee Hitchhiker, and “the world’s mightiest hat” gift from Marty and Willis), then onwards to the legendary Joan Anderson letter from Neal Cassady to Jack Kerouac, and Jack Micheline’s poems and ephemera… also riffs about analog and digital creative symbiosis and and namechecks Douglas Coupland and others… plus importantly, Ichiro bathtime, Ryoko’s chainsaws, and the usual postcards. Yowza.
In my #daveo50 “personal archaeology“ project, there are over 160 posts pre-scheduled (before baby), however there are at least another 100 in draft form and then still shelves and boxes filled with treasures…
Ergo: The other day I popped out to holy barn studio for the first time since the baby came home and randomly picked up this notebook and it’s pure gold… a log diary from a road trip with my grandpa through UT, AZ, NM, Mexico etc / with no agenda, no school, many motels, every national & state park & monument, endless diners (incl his flirting with waitresses). i’m posting it here as an “placeholder“ reminder to myself that this project can continue on all year and beyond beyond… so much evidence, so many oddities, such documentation.
I also remember that Douglas Coupland exhibit at Vancouver Art Gallery included a display of his notebooks telling me that “the work is the art“ and in this case, this humble $.35 spiral-bound notebook with a mix of my scribbles and my grandpa’s delicious cursive is “the #art” the rest is ancillary.
“So it is written, so it is done”
PS: This note posted elsewhere regarding this “discovery” of personal archeology:
…My heart stopped so many times while opening up all these archives… I’ve moved so many times and been through so much uncertainty and so much turmoil and chaos in my life that the fact these things survived is truly miraculous and each shred of paper and scribble of handwriting is cherished. My grandpa was a colossal character, a real “big Fish“ type… I’m still not to his country count on my travels or to his level of charm so to see his handwriting and remember that trip is really quite splendid.
Note: I wrote a story about a bit of the trip and specifically one morning on a First Nations “reserve” with a few observations while waiting for something to open (note to self: post that up sometime) and read some of it in a Postcard from Gravelly Beach podcast too as well as a tribute to him in another.
With 50th birthday impending and a son on the way (update, born June 23rd!) and the assemblage and reclamation from storage lockers of many life artifacts (plus coupled with parent’s recent passing which resulted in more items) AND the grace of a 150+ year old “kura” grain barn now studio/atelier, whilst in the bath i figured i would do a special exhibit of sorts.
Noting most years i do something creative around my birthday (ex: flying high board game collage, F Varley essay series, Uncle Weed book, Forgotten Vancouver stories video…) and since b-day is in the middle of dog days of splendid summer, usually slips by largely unnoticed.
As such, the project is for my own amusement, for posterity, for curiosity seekers, for my kid(s) to get to know me, and to compile a “life of making” into a “made thing” of its own / as well as giving a modicum of respect to “past self” to spark “future self” to carry on making art every day.
Inspiration gleaned from many places of exhibits by Douglas Coupland and of Hergé artifacts are significant sparks (evidence of both in this archive).
Original plan: 1 year / 1 photo (id) / 1970-2020 = 51 photos
Actual result: 1 year, *several* photos PLUS various artifacts, collections, evidence, ephemera, media articles, publications, report cards, oddities, miscellany
Constraints: Rules are lousy for creativity however constraints can be most excellent.
“don’t think outside the box, think inside the circle” ^dvo
As such, to aim for “connected feeling” and not just a mish-mash of *everything* (especially in more recent years where candidates abound, i set forth the following:
just dave (with some exceptions)
accurate year (figured by cross-referencing glasses and haircuts)
prefer at least 1200 ~ 1800px (avoid low res/size)
resist urge to tell backstory (just too much!), just location and photographer if known
avoid snaps which have natural home in another post/project (i.e. various spiels/jobs/event…)
using various forms forms of photos i.e. instant, photo booths, meta, etc encouraged)
Note: avoided group/party/2-fer/crowd unless no other options or special significance #anotherproject
studio/school portraits (early years)
passport/ID photos (ideal for assessing year)
photo booth (always fun!)
birthday/christmas (don’t over do it)
close square self snap’d (modern days)
other * which haven’t been used (or plan to use) in another obvious collection
Logistics: Starting June 26th 2020 (PST, UTC -8) posts are pre-scheduled (usually 2-4 per day, sometimes back-filled if not quite ready) at various times at https://daveostory.com (you are here) until Aug. 16th and auto-magically cross-posted to Twitter @uncleweed and FB Uncle Weed Story Maker page (not profile) with #daveo50 (may end up other places if convenience permits).
Monitoring and interaction minimal as i will be cuddling baby and starting his photo exhibit.
Thanks: to brother Andrew for curation assistance (pulling me out of the weeds / keeping on track)
Wearing a smoking jacket at Tsuchida Cottage, Dave riffs on recent activities including: planting vegetable garden, playing piano, buying baby clothes, and sort-ganizing archives including digging out loads of books. As such, shows books by Douglas Coupland, Nick Bantock, Gary Snyder, Ethan Hubbard, and reads from Jack Kerouac’s American Haikus, plus riffs about Tintin, fire lookouts and mailing postcards.
Another stack brought in from the kura barn to spark some goodness / Gary Snyder, Poets on Peaks, field guide to Cascadian trees, Douglas Coupland, David Byrne, Wes Anderson, Dr Suess, and Hergé (including some rare Tintin) / + snippets of paintings on our self-made wooden wall > all atop a piano on handmade cloth from island of Yap.
Evidence from mixed-media master Douglas Coupland’s exhibit at Vancouver Art Gallery – the assortment of items i captured from the wide-array of mediums he works with/in, are arranged into 7 volumes for convenience. This is volume 7, Painting, remix’d/G7 (my title, not his). Note: some of these paintings were “technically only sorta” part the Coupland exhibit as i recall. I don’t know really.
Evidence from mixed-media master Douglas Coupland’s exhibit at Vancouver Art Gallery – the assortment of items i captured from the wide-array of mediums he works with/in are arranged into 7 volumes for convenience. This is volume 1, Meta (my title, not his).