Wednesday, May 27, 2015



Artists! “The jig is up”.  I know how you did it! I just saw Teller’s (Penn & Teller) documentary of the expose of the method of Johannes Vermeer, the Dutch painter of 1632 (Remember the Girl with the Pearl Earring?).  Tim Jenison,  who made zillions designing computer games (I think) was inspired by David Hockney’s book that Vermeer had some technological method of painting.  He noticed that all of his paintings were about the same small size.  Tim built a Camera Obscura, refined it and showed how Johannes could copy exactly what the ‘Camera’ showed. Tim had never done a painting before (I think he painted his house once) but proceeded to build a replica of Vermeers room, then projected the image onto a small board. This guy was motivated! He spent about five years, about 180 days, painting his picture. He even had to see it in person in the4 Queen’s palace in

England. You’ll be amazed at his painting. I couldn’t have done better myself.   


Every real Designer has to test his mettle by designing and building a chair. I had the opportunity during the mid-‘60s’ and the current owner of the house it was designed for had a German Craftsman, Kirsten Keifer build a couple of replicas as I still had the drawings. (at $2000 each). These were featured in a show I had at the Laguna Beach Art Museum a few years ago.  The real challenge was the chair was adjustable from Lounge to Dining by a very simple wing-nut turn on the base. Recently, Kirsten (from his shop in Germany)  made another but upgraded the materials from mahogany & fabric to Rosewood and Italian leather, plus his excellent craftsmanship.  The photos here are of his latest version but also show my table, with extendable top (+ five feet). $3000. 
How bad does our ‘Drought’ have to get until we realize we are not utilizing a massive source of potable water in our back yard? Our Santa Rosa Waste Water processing facility alone purifies about  20 million gallons of water a day, but we can’t use this except to water farm land. Water that comes out of the plant is clear, drinkable H2O!. If you put that water into reservoirs used for drinking water, you would have to reprocess it to be clean enough to be drinkable again as reservoirs contain too many contaminents due to birds, run-off, etc.. We have to alter our attitudes regarding the use of this water. The astronauts drink water that is distilled from their sweat (water vapor) and urine as well as the urine from their lab animals (Like rats). Let’s get real and begin utilizing the tertiary treated water from our Sewer Treatment Plants.
When last in Italy, I sent friends on a day trip to Rome . I gave them an itenerary of the usual Tourist Traps ( Sistene Chapel, St. Peters, etc) but all had to see the Treve Fountain. Now, the fount in itself is pretty amazing, as it kind of morphs out a the large adjacent building with the pool in a small kind of ampitheatre. BUT. The tourist crowds there are some of the worst in Rome, and only due to a movie of 1954 “Three coins in the Fountain” an “undeniably Sweet “ movie. It’s a fairly small area but with the throngs of Americans, Brits & Germans it is a madhouse. So everyone has to toss a penny in the water as good luck or whatever they remember from the movie, but the Romans have to clean it up every night as it is full of coins. Maybe they should fund a re-make of it using dollar coins (or dollar Euros, a coin) in order to boost up the rent.
Mob at Fountain