Wednesday, August 31, 2016


A couple of days ago i was in Home Depot buying some string and springs for my big upcoming art show at CAS. When I went to check out my card was refused. Now these cards don't last long in my wallet, so I wasn't too concerned. I paid my bill in cash and went on my way. Since i was near my bank i decided to take the time to order a new card. I parked the truck and strolled into.........WAYNE'S BANK? There was one guy in line. I looked around completely confused, trying to take in what had happened. WAYNE'S BANK looked at me in bad graphics from every wall. "What the fuck?" I said out loud, to the guy in front of me. "This used to be my bank." He smiled. I continued more to myself than to him. "First it was Bank of America. Then it was NDBCD or NBDD or NBDC bank. Now it's fucking WAYNE"S BANK?" Now the guy laughed and a strange girl called to him to step up. I just stood there, dazed, waiting.....

   These days I'm wired a little tight. I never show in galleries. It's not that I have anything against them. They just never ask, so I do what I do without them. Galleries need artists, not the other way around. So when i was asked, I was as excited as my inner 13 year old girl would allow. I may own a church, but to me the  gallery is the church. I take this shit very seriously. The Catskill Art Society may as well be Hauser & Wirth, Gavin Brown and Zwirner rolled into one. If I'm gonna show in the gallery context, I'm gonna kick ass.
   So, as you can imagine, WAYNE'S BANK received the wrath of Osti. Shout out to Tariq and all my crew at WB. These guys talk me off the ledge with each name change. It's never pretty, but in the end I stay resigned to every corporate ass reaming by forces unknown, just because of the people at MY bank.
So we got it all worked out, ordered new checks and card, etc. and I went on my way. I headed onto the on ramp and traffic stopped dead. Six cars ahead of me was a Shortline bus stopped dead. Off to the side there were two cars pulled over and in the middle of the road danced at least a dozen Orthodox Jewish men, hands in the air, fingers snapping, squatting, and grinning ear to ear. WTF! AGAIN! I leaned on the horn. No vehicle moved as the men twirled and vogued in front of the bus. I'd had enough. I pulled over to the right, passed the line and pulled up alongside the dancing Jews. "What the fuck are you idiots doing?" I asked. They all looked at me, smiled wider and one guy reached out to the truck. "Come dance!" he beckoned "Join us!" I could not stay pissed. I almost got out of the truck.....but went on my way....smiling.
    I asked Pigpen if I'd missed a holy day? He said it was probably just an end of the summer celebration. If this is true I have a whole new respect for the Orthodox. I wish I felt that good about anything. Next time I do I'm stopping the truck in the middle of the ramp......and dancing!


Thursday, August 25, 2016

HOLLIE WITCHEY in my old kitchen



I have a Yahoo email. It's the only email I've ever had. It mostly works and I get all my crap news when I chk. my email. This is a blessing and a curse. Mostly it's about the latest "famous" lion being killed in Africa and kids with no limbs "doing amazing things!" I know when the "most famous lion" dies there's always another in the wings and kids with or without limbs will always surprise you, but I'm still a sucker for the Yahoo feed. Today was a doozy. Binghamton University is offering incoming RA (resident alien?) training on how to deal with unruly, ill informed, aggressive, self-righteous "white people" in the dorm environment. This is the most straight forward, call a cracker a cracker, truth in advertisement approach to higher education I've ever seen or heard of. In fact the tag line began: Not Onion-#stopwhitepeople2k16.
   Misguided and hilariously inappropriate, it's like refusing to serve watermelon to your black friends, on a hot summer day, for fear of being somehow misread. I wholehearted agree with the sentiment of this introductory course offered to those in charge, by those in charge. White people should've been stopped eons ago, but that course was never available. The fact that BU put this in print, shows on the one hand extreme courage, and on the other complete, bone-headed ignorance. I love it! This is what you look for, and so rarely receive, from academia. The backlash will be extreme and all too predictable. "What if they said #stopblackpeople"?" they scream. Dude, that class has been popular since 1636- the year Harvard was founded. It's an easy B.
   In my humble opinion "White" connotes so much evil, misery, thievery, and oppression, it should be actively "stopped" at every corner. You can't help your color. But you can recognize the burden that goes along with the hue. Whites, in general, and American whites in particular, have such a false sense of their kin's role in oppression that we find ourselves in a world where we see such a hashtag.
We conveniently forget history, or make up our own. Here's an excerpt from a little of my personal history: "The negro sprang upon and seized her, when she screamed and a large dog she had rushed in at the door and seizing the negro by the throat, there was a severe struggle between them. She then fastened the door and taking my father, then an infant, in her arms, went to the second floor, drew up the ladder, and with child in her lap and cutlass in her hand, kept watch all night at the window"- an account of what was done and suffered by the women of our American Revolution"- Rev. Charles Rockwell THE CATSKILLS AND THE REGION AROUND 1867 Chapt. 7 The Osterhout Narrative.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016


Tuesday, August 16, 2016


Monday, August 15, 2016


Friday, August 12, 2016



When NYC is so hot you can't breathe and the Hamptons are too crowded with billionaires, where do the cool cats go? Why the mountains, of course. The dog days of August may have slammed down hard on the east coast, but here in the 'skills we are in full effect. Artists, musicians, supermodels of all shapes and sizes, hipsters and Hasidics of all ages  descend upon our little piece of heaven en masse this time of year. 'tis the season.
   A couple of days ago, in the midst of installing Terence Koh's piece at the Old Shul, Terence, Garrick and I strolled in The Rock Hill Trading Post behind a young family. Mom and dad were tall, skinny white folks and the baby a sweet, smiling blue eyed cherub. "What a cute hillbilly trio." I thought to myself. Then I turned and realized it was Victoria Secret supermodel Morgane Dubled with her one year old Jo and her husband Nico. Hugs all around. But the craziest thing is Garrick and Terence also were friends with this high fashion French trio. Only in the Catskills!

   Last night was Pigpen "King of the Jews" Rothman's birthday. A celebration was held down at GNJohn's. The Buddes, Kelsey,  cool Denniston Hill residents, plus Rachel, Bill and Patsy were all in attendance. A tornado had just ripped across the top of the hill, leveling one of former Egg-U (now Resnick's) 400 feet long buildings. The walls were gone. Only the roof remained, now sitting on the ground. Thank the LGM nobody was hurt. In most groups this would have been a cause for great concern, and a bummer at a birthday party. But in our set, it was barely touched upon. A tornado? Huh. Pass me the tequila.
   Sadly I had to leave just as the party was getting started. I had a prior commitment @Outlierinn, with Morgane and her family for dinner. This is the only problem we face: too much of a good thing. Tomorrow is Terence Koh's opening at the Old Shul and next week Deniston Hill has their yearly open house on the same day as Terence and my birthday party celebration at Wolf Lake. I need a clone just to make the A-list events. I have no idea what the rest of the world is doing, nor could i give a shit. Today is Garrick's birthday up on Wildcat Mountain. But wait. I have a dinner and conjugal visit scheduled with Shewho. I'll give you one guess where I'll be tonight. HAPPY BIRTHDAY GARRICK! I'll see you tomorrow. Air kisses all around!

Sunday, August 7, 2016


Thursday, August 4, 2016

SAVE-A-ROOSTER- last chance to save a bird from a neck wringing. Closing 5pm Sat.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016



When you work with kids and animals you have to be nothing if not flexible. In 1980 I bought a cow. I branded the cow as part of a performance at the SF alternative space- 80 Langton. Then I arranged with a friend's brother, who had a farm out in Gridley, Ca, to board the cow " for it's natural life." I had no idea how long a cow lives. A year later the cow got loose and got hit and killed by a truck. I then salted the steaks, making art objects of them. I still have a couple. The End.
   A few years back I wanted to re-visit this work. So as part of a video I was making with Eduardo Cure, I printed a neighbor's cow's nose and was ready to brand the cow, when at the last moment the branding iron was deemed not hot enough. The cow was released and not branded. Rosy was reprieved. Like I say, you have to be flexible.

The past couple of weeks I've been "performing" the site-specific installation ROOST X. This piece involved buying 24 hens from MURRAY'S CHICKENS, and 6 roosters fro MAJESTIC FARM. The rubric of the work was to have the community "adopt" the birds and live out their natural lives. But after I installed the birds in THE OLD SHUL FOR SOCIAL SCULPTURE I was informed by my more knowledgable chicken farmer friends, that there was nothing natural about my hens. Turns out these poor birds had been genetically engineered to grow so fast, that it would be decidedly inhumane to allow these birds to live and not slaughter. These were definitely FOOD not PETS.
   So I immediately had to modify my adoption certificate from "never kill" to "kill". Saved from the slaughterhouse loading dock, these 24 hens were placed in a stained glass lit, airy, roomy, ex-place of worship. They were watered, fed, bedded and well cared for under my stewardship. I'm no farmer, but it was a great experience for me. The interaction with the birds and the people who showed up either to adopt, or just out of curiosity, I wouldn't trade for anything. But now this piece is coming to a close and I have to deal. Or YOU the adoptive parents also have to deal. The six roosters are still available at $20 each. These you can let live. They are beautiful healthy Rhode Island Reds that deserve a good home. Because they left the farm, Majestic will not take them back. So you can still save their lives.
    Sadly, this is not the case with the hens. In two weeks they have grown to the size of small dinosaurs. Soon their giant breasts will make them tip over and they will develop health issues. I feel good that I gave them a couple of nice weeks in the shul. Would I have liked to  have stuck to the original version of the piece? Yes. But the fact that now you have to deal directly with killing your dinner in order to get your free collectible is not bad either. I have to deal with it also. So Saturday Aug. 6, 2016 the remaining hens and roosters of ROOST X will be transported to MAJESTIC FARM where we will humanely slaughter these birds and have a chicken bbq. The End.

Monday, August 1, 2016