Monday, July 28, 2008

Garden Art Meets Academic Prose

A climbing rose has appeared in my garden, likely planted by the garden gnomes, since I have no recollection of planting it, and I was thinking how grand it would be to have a sturdy trellis for it to climb. I have some scraps of cedar wood that would make a fine trellis, if I ever took the initiative to put them together. They have been under my deck for nearly three years, however, because I dislike any project involving tools that do not go into dirt, as well as anything requiring nails and screws.

Fortunately, as I was walking around the neighborhood one Sunday evening, I discovered this deck railing on someone's trash pile. I considered returning home for my car, but I feared that another scavenger might happen along and realize its value, so I hoisted the thing onto my shoulder and made my way back home, looking like some bizarre performance artist.

Which made me wonder...since my carbon offset scheme...er...program went nowhere, perhaps I could apply for an artist's grant. I'll call it a sculpture, and use words like "oevre," "verticality," "ontological" "juxtapose," and "paradigm" in my artist's statement.

So what do you think of my piece? (Real artists just say "piece," which is short for "piece of scrap lumber I found on the side of the road." If you work in academia you know these things.) Is it a commentary on bourgeoisie striving, symbolized by a ladder leading nowhere? Or a subtle evocation of Jacob's ladder, probing the man-God dialectic in ancient Hebrew thought? (I gotta stop--this is like shooting fish in a barrel. I knew I should have finished grad school!)

13 comments:

Wrenna said...

I would say its a symbol of non-duality, the very essence of nothingness, encompassing the paradox of actually being useful.

Hehe, that was fun.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I would say that your lumber under the deck is safe for another three years or so and that the railing...errr trellis will work just fine. It is a lovely piece of your imagination sitting there propped against your fence. I believe the rose will be quite happy on whatever you supply for it to climb.

Lori said...

Heehee! You bring back fond memories. I have a B.S. in Art, and yes, I took special relish in saying that it was a more accurate description than a B.A. ever could have been.

Josh said...

Getting a grant? That's still work, as far as I'm concerned. You should have faked an injury carrying the piece back to your house, and sued the previous owners.

Iris said...

That Josh is a real schemer, isn't he? If only he'd use his powers for good...

Nice railing, by the way. It brings to mind the tower of Babel and our endless graspings for a common vocabulary. Or something.

Carolyn gail said...

You have to be a little crazier than you already are to become a famous artist. You gotta have a plan that stands out from all others.

There was an old woman who had her easel set up on the street in downtown Chicago and sold her work for 5 or 10 bucks. She made scribbles much like a first grader but when she passed away a local museum owner who had been quietly buying her doodles sold them for thousands of dollars.

That's a nice garden trellis, Bobby Earl, but it stops there. You really are a piece of work.

Blackswamp_Girl said...

I don't think you're thinking quite big enough here, to be honest. Why just go for artistic grants? With your aesthetically-minded repurposing of found objects, aren't you effectively "taking items out of the waste stream?" Hence, RECYCLING? It's all about Going Green these days, baby... there have to be TONS of grants (and maybe some tax breaks?) for that!

Annie said...

Well, I quite like it actually..even though it does appear as if you want to peer at the neighbours!

Annie

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