Remember: There are always other jobs.

Remember: There are always other jobs.

Tags: Lewis Hine

Mucking about with gooey, sticky stuff makes for a regression of sorts. You start dredging up images and episodes connected with childhood that you didn’t realize had such an effect on your “grown-up” being. These were not enormously dramatic events — not every artist has had a traumatic upbringing. These may be considered minute incidents, but triviality often makes for interesting art.
But NOW, my god, life has gotten far less trivial. The shit has gone down. So I paint so I won’t go fucking mad… or get mad. Not because I want to eat or pay the rent… but that would be wonderful!
When many artists discover painting in oils, there is a love-hate relationship that develops between the imagemaker and the caustic materials. The sensuous natures of the oils are easily pliable, perfectly suited for artists to go on their god trips. Then there is a quality to the oils that give the artist the ability to build up lush surfaces, where one can layer, and build an intimate surface history. On the flip side breathes the almost unbearable need for patience, the wait time, the un-instant gratification. Ultimately, the death disco of the toxicity exists as a double edge sword — destroying brain cells that may actually help the desired artistic language.
Memories are a tricky thing. A conflict evolves between factual history and emotional impact. Fabrication is an important component of memory and painting from memory-experience is a sort of compound fabrication that may lead to some sort of general truth or symbolism as opposed to a literal document of experiences.

Mucking about with gooey, sticky stuff makes for a regression of sorts. You start dredging up images and episodes connected with childhood that you didn’t realize had such an effect on your “grown-up” being. These were not enormously dramatic events — not every artist has had a traumatic upbringing. These may be considered minute incidents, but triviality often makes for interesting art.

But NOW, my god, life has gotten far less trivial. The shit has gone down. So I paint so I won’t go fucking mad… or get mad. Not because I want to eat or pay the rent… but that would be wonderful!

When many artists discover painting in oils, there is a love-hate relationship that develops between the imagemaker and the caustic materials. The sensuous natures of the oils are easily pliable, perfectly suited for artists to go on their god trips. Then there is a quality to the oils that give the artist the ability to build up lush surfaces, where one can layer, and build an intimate surface history. On the flip side breathes the almost unbearable need for patience, the wait time, the un-instant gratification. Ultimately, the death disco of the toxicity exists as a double edge sword — destroying brain cells that may actually help the desired artistic language.

Memories are a tricky thing. A conflict evolves between factual history and emotional impact. Fabrication is an important component of memory and painting from memory-experience is a sort of compound fabrication that may lead to some sort of general truth or symbolism as opposed to a literal document of experiences.

God Is Ugly



We wanted to be U2 or The Police really fucking badly. After all, it was the Live Aid decade and we were suburban white kids with nothing really to be pissed-off about. We were trying our damnedest to “make it big” and we were doing a fine job at it. Fine enough to win a 1986 Battle of the Bands at a suburban northern New Jersey college. Grand Prize was the opening slot for the infamous legends of punk rock, the band that had started it all, The Ramones. They were gods to me—gods clad in black leather. And god sure was an ugly motherfucker!

One thousand rabid Ramones fans packed the ballroom to see the umteenth tour of a band that was already an historical icon. No other band mattered to them – especially a band whose least-effeminate member sported only two earrings, minimal eyeliner, and was mistakenly trying to look masculine by wearing an Aerosmith shirt. When we took the stage they wanted us dead.

Nothing is more memorable than looking out upon a crowd and seeing a sea of middle-fingers thrust forth in greeting to you. Oh, those young faces with angry spit foaming in the corners of their mouths, screaming “You faggots!” hold a special place in my heart. It was only those blessed police barricades at the foot of the stage that kept this mob from pounding us to a fucking bloody pulp with their bare hands and stomping our lifeless meat piles until tender and ready for eatin’. Believing in the spirit of rock n’ roll, we still decided to begin our set.

“Everybody dance!” our keyboardist/singer Wren implored. He was a consummate drama major whose singing idol was Stevie Nicks and he had the many scarves to prove it.

“Come on, dance!” reiterated our singer/bassist Cygone who had freshly broken out the hair bleach in a vain attempt to mimic his hero Sting. He had an uncanny knack for whipping a crowd into frenzy, but at that moment it was the wrong sort of frenzy.

Struggling to remember my guitar parts, but distracted by the strain of the pulsing steel fencing that held back the hungry lions drooling for Christians, I nervously glanced over at my friend, and, in my mind, my newly appointed body guard, Munk. If or when the barricade gave way, he would be there to protect me, right? But his face told me that he wasn’t preparing to tackle and forcefully remove anyone who posed harm to me; he was planning his escape route from the ballroom. I’d never felt so alone.

At the end of our first number, Cygone and Wren huddled together, causing a roar from the crowd, “Homos!” Cygone turned and shouted to me, “Two more!”Miraculously, a thirty-minute set became a nine-minute set. And that was ten minutes too long.

Set at a college campus, this facility was alcohol free. How un-rock n’ roll of us to be thankful that alcohol was not served. We appreciated that alcohol had not been served in bottles. We appreciated that alcohol had not been served in cans. Those bottles and cans would have served as missiles. Missiles aimed at us “Queers!” Alcohol was most assuredly consumed before this crowd had entered the ballroom and they wanted to make sure that they got their hard-earned money’s worth and were at the peak of their buzz when their heroes took the stage. This was hard-earned money received from working their warehouse jobs and other lofty callings. This was hard-earned money from which they received change back after purchasing a twelve-pack. As we slogged through our second song, this rabble reached into their pockets and found their missiles.

This was not change being tossed into a busker’s hat in the subway. These were quarters being launched to take out the eyes of “Pussies!” My focus shifted from worrying about the straining barricade to dodging quarters. Have you ever been hit in the face with quarters?

“Give us all your money!” taunted Cygone as we stumbled into our final song. He seemed to have a little too much faith in that steel barrier between the seething swarm and us. Maybe his dad was an engineer or something.

We abruptly ended the rock n’ roll experience of a lifetime after performing only three of our most finely crafted masterpieces. Anxiously, we scrambled to break down our gear. All of the rack-mounted effects units, midi-controlled samplers, electronic drum triggers and boxes of Aqua Net needed to be quickly and efficiently removed from the stage while not showing panic and while maintaining an air of dignity. This is what I had really finagled my buddy Munk into doing, not to be an impromptu and skinny security agent. I noticed that he had not hopped up on stage to take my pointy-headed guitar from me, nor to power down the smoke machine. My eyes found him shuffling around on his hands and knees collecting the change that had just been intended as buckshot to remove my eyes.

“I’ve got about five bucks here!” shrieked Munk.

After we finished humping our gear haphazardly into a side room, which was doubling as a safe house, we finally got to reflect upon the dream-gig we had just lived out.

“That fucking sucked,” I clearly noted.

After ten minutes of painful self-analyzing and shell-shocked murmuring, feeling like we had just been beat on the head with a baseball bat, the Ramones emerged from god-knows-where, and we were introduced. They were tall—larger than life. It was like they stepped from the pages of some glorious duo tone comic book. Black and blue. Denim and leather. They were born together. They set the spirit free.

“Hey,” garbled Joey (as in, “Gabba Gabba,” I wondered?).

We shook hands, all of us. Hair-sprayed suburban brats clasping the hands of the guys from Queens who started the buzz of punk rock—a music that has molded minds and changed lives. We had just finished performing our songs with heart and soul to an unappreciative and down right murderous audience and we were questioning our musical existence while still shaking from a near-death experience. Two words fell out of the mouth of Joey Ramone. These words made all of the doubt, sadness and fear disappear.

“Nice set.”

I realize he didn’t see our set. I realize he really didn’t mean it. That didn’t matter. Joey Ramone said to us, to me, “Nice set.”

God Is Ugly

We wanted to be U2 or The Police really fucking badly. After all, it was the Live Aid decade and we were suburban white kids with nothing really to be pissed-off about. We were trying our damnedest to “make it big” and we were doing a fine job at it. Fine enough to win a 1986 Battle of the Bands at a suburban northern New Jersey college. Grand Prize was the opening slot for the infamous legends of punk rock, the band that had started it all, The Ramones. They were gods to me—gods clad in black leather. And god sure was an ugly motherfucker!

One thousand rabid Ramones fans packed the ballroom to see the umteenth tour of a band that was already an historical icon. No other band mattered to them – especially a band whose least-effeminate member sported only two earrings, minimal eyeliner, and was mistakenly trying to look masculine by wearing an Aerosmith shirt. When we took the stage they wanted us dead.

Nothing is more memorable than looking out upon a crowd and seeing a sea of middle-fingers thrust forth in greeting to you. Oh, those young faces with angry spit foaming in the corners of their mouths, screaming “You faggots!” hold a special place in my heart. It was only those blessed police barricades at the foot of the stage that kept this mob from pounding us to a fucking bloody pulp with their bare hands and stomping our lifeless meat piles until tender and ready for eatin’. Believing in the spirit of rock n’ roll, we still decided to begin our set.

“Everybody dance!” our keyboardist/singer Wren implored. He was a consummate drama major whose singing idol was Stevie Nicks and he had the many scarves to prove it.

“Come on, dance!” reiterated our singer/bassist Cygone who had freshly broken out the hair bleach in a vain attempt to mimic his hero Sting. He had an uncanny knack for whipping a crowd into frenzy, but at that moment it was the wrong sort of frenzy.

Struggling to remember my guitar parts, but distracted by the strain of the pulsing steel fencing that held back the hungry lions drooling for Christians, I nervously glanced over at my friend, and, in my mind, my newly appointed body guard, Munk. If or when the barricade gave way, he would be there to protect me, right? But his face told me that he wasn’t preparing to tackle and forcefully remove anyone who posed harm to me; he was planning his escape route from the ballroom. I’d never felt so alone.

At the end of our first number, Cygone and Wren huddled together, causing a roar from the crowd, “Homos!” Cygone turned and shouted to me, “Two more!”Miraculously, a thirty-minute set became a nine-minute set. And that was ten minutes too long.

Set at a college campus, this facility was alcohol free. How un-rock n’ roll of us to be thankful that alcohol was not served. We appreciated that alcohol had not been served in bottles. We appreciated that alcohol had not been served in cans. Those bottles and cans would have served as missiles. Missiles aimed at us “Queers!” Alcohol was most assuredly consumed before this crowd had entered the ballroom and they wanted to make sure that they got their hard-earned money’s worth and were at the peak of their buzz when their heroes took the stage. This was hard-earned money received from working their warehouse jobs and other lofty callings. This was hard-earned money from which they received change back after purchasing a twelve-pack. As we slogged through our second song, this rabble reached into their pockets and found their missiles.

This was not change being tossed into a busker’s hat in the subway. These were quarters being launched to take out the eyes of “Pussies!” My focus shifted from worrying about the straining barricade to dodging quarters. Have you ever been hit in the face with quarters?

“Give us all your money!” taunted Cygone as we stumbled into our final song. He seemed to have a little too much faith in that steel barrier between the seething swarm and us. Maybe his dad was an engineer or something.

We abruptly ended the rock n’ roll experience of a lifetime after performing only three of our most finely crafted masterpieces. Anxiously, we scrambled to break down our gear. All of the rack-mounted effects units, midi-controlled samplers, electronic drum triggers and boxes of Aqua Net needed to be quickly and efficiently removed from the stage while not showing panic and while maintaining an air of dignity. This is what I had really finagled my buddy Munk into doing, not to be an impromptu and skinny security agent. I noticed that he had not hopped up on stage to take my pointy-headed guitar from me, nor to power down the smoke machine. My eyes found him shuffling around on his hands and knees collecting the change that had just been intended as buckshot to remove my eyes.

“I’ve got about five bucks here!” shrieked Munk.

After we finished humping our gear haphazardly into a side room, which was doubling as a safe house, we finally got to reflect upon the dream-gig we had just lived out.

“That fucking sucked,” I clearly noted.

After ten minutes of painful self-analyzing and shell-shocked murmuring, feeling like we had just been beat on the head with a baseball bat, the Ramones emerged from god-knows-where, and we were introduced. They were tall—larger than life. It was like they stepped from the pages of some glorious duo tone comic book. Black and blue. Denim and leather. They were born together. They set the spirit free.

“Hey,” garbled Joey (as in, “Gabba Gabba,” I wondered?).

We shook hands, all of us. Hair-sprayed suburban brats clasping the hands of the guys from Queens who started the buzz of punk rock—a music that has molded minds and changed lives. We had just finished performing our songs with heart and soul to an unappreciative and down right murderous audience and we were questioning our musical existence while still shaking from a near-death experience. Two words fell out of the mouth of Joey Ramone. These words made all of the doubt, sadness and fear disappear.

“Nice set.”

I realize he didn’t see our set. I realize he really didn’t mean it. That didn’t matter. Joey Ramone said to us, to me, “Nice set.”

"Poetry and painting are done in the same way you make love; it’s an exchange of blood, a total embrace — without caution, without any thought of protecting yourself.



— Joan Miro
"Poetry and painting are done in the same way you make love; it’s an exchange of blood, a total embrace — without caution, without any thought of protecting yourself.
Watching someone you love slowly die is a profoundly moving experience. I’ve learned as much from my best friend during this dying process as I did from him during our 30 years living as friends. Though he did not survive this extremely emotional and painful experience, I did, but I won’t get over it. I am a changed man. Healing is just beginning and this life will never be the same without his presence.
This great man is gone.
 
Mark Steven Lombardi had always wanted to be known for some sort of greatness, in a humble understated way of course – as long as it included some sort of money. Any small amount of wealth he attained, it might be said that it was squandered – because he was frivolous with his generosity.
 
Mark was bothered that he hadn’t attained that “greatness” that we’d dreamed of ever since high school, and all throughout college, and all throughout life– that there wouldn’t be some sort of grand legacy left on this earth. No legendary rock star, nor movie star status. No visionary filmmaker, nor business tycoon. 
 
But in general, Munk was carefree, but when it came to helping and loving his friends, Mark was free to care. And he cared about his friends like no one I’ve ever known.
 
And this is his legacy. We are his legacy – a diverse group of freaks and non-freaks who’ve had the honor in this life to have been loved by Mark, who are now all bonded together in this common love and who will be forever changed by the spirit of Munk.
 
This great man is gone.
 
 
June 8 2011
 
 

Watching someone you love slowly die is a profoundly moving experience. I’ve learned as much from my best friend during this dying process as I did from him during our 30 years living as friends. Though he did not survive this extremely emotional and painful experience, I did, but I won’t get over it. I am a changed man. Healing is just beginning and this life will never be the same without his presence.

This great man is gone.

 

Mark Steven Lombardi had always wanted to be known for some sort of greatness, in a humble understated way of course – as long as it included some sort of money. Any small amount of wealth he attained, it might be said that it was squandered – because he was frivolous with his generosity.

 

Mark was bothered that he hadn’t attained that “greatness” that we’d dreamed of ever since high school, and all throughout college, and all throughout life– that there wouldn’t be some sort of grand legacy left on this earth. No legendary rock star, nor movie star status. No visionary filmmaker, nor business tycoon.

 

But in general, Munk was carefree, but when it came to helping and loving his friends, Mark was free to care. And he cared about his friends like no one I’ve ever known.

 

And this is his legacy. We are his legacy – a diverse group of freaks and non-freaks who’ve had the honor in this life to have been loved by Mark, who are now all bonded together in this common love and who will be forever changed by the spirit of Munk.

 

This great man is gone.

 

 

June 8 2011

 

 

Tags: Munk

"

At this point, I’m generally glorious with smatterings of diving depression. I realize that this day is simply a “date,” and that I need to accept that this life marches on like fucking ants regardless of the fact that I wish with all of my might for it to go backwards and stop at some point in time when Munk was alive and healthy.

I’m stunned by time. I shocked by what is reality. That which is my life, my surroundings, my new intimate partner and love in this life – that which IS existence is so…wonderfully odd. I have no idea how I got here, but I’m glad that so much weight of sadness has lifted.

He passed between the few hours that I eventually succumbed to sleep, around 5:00am, after struggling to remain conscious next to him with my hand in his, in bed together, and when Caroline came in and found us joined like lovers, Munk no longer struggling to breath, and me barely trying. She screamed “George…George…George…George! no!” and I simply turned my head up and said “Yes.”

He was gone…done. He beat us to it. He spared us. This lovely creature was no more. This God of a man was to never utter a word again. His friends and family would never hear his goofy voice. We would never see those oddly refined facial features with his inset eyes, refined nose and surfer’s hair. He was quite handsome but never knew it. His knobby knees always undermined his confidence. Such silliness! And now…done…poof!

His wiseassness and knowingness…gone! Who do I go to now? Duh…no one.
He delivered lines with a smirk…pause…delivery…and laugh. And with complete audacity.

And I ask myself…why the fuck am I still here?

My mind’s eye now has an image of a healthy and vigorous Munk – funny as fuck and happy to call someone “fella.” It is the young man who I went to college with, and went on stupid camping trips in the desert with, and made fucked up videos with when we were 19. The Munk that was slowly taken down by his own internal bodily battle becomes apparent to me when I start to review some of the video footage I took during his illness.

I am so glad to have had the honor of listening to him with his fear and pain. I was mentally helping him, physically helping him – preparing him to leave this life. At times, it was a fucking horror to live through…an absolute mind-fuck, but eh…those horrors fall away.

And then the amazingly loving memories of wonderful life moments with my best friend of 30 years rise up.

My paintings of little girls now have the girls accompanied by a monkey. The background landscapes are much more abstract and expressive having connotations of an environment not of this world. I’m pleased with the two pieces I’ve done so far. I’m happy that someone believes in what I do again and has given give me space and time to create. The next step is to keep moving with this series and get it in front of the right people to show it to the right people….bam!

Should I sleep now?

MUNK LOVE

"
I Wanna Bang A French National

I Wanna Bang A French National

A good cologne does wonders.

A good cologne does wonders.

What the f*ck is a Reince Priebus (besides an obvious idiot and @sshole)?

What the f*ck is a Reince Priebus (besides an obvious idiot and @sshole)?

It all comes down to love and relationships in the end. That is all that remains at the finality of life, love and relationships.

It all comes down to love and relationships in the end. That is all that remains at the finality of life, love and relationships.