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Monkey Business - click for closeup

B-Side - click for closeup...is it true you once worked in a flea circus?

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(33k page)
(b-side 52k page)

Monkey Business
1999 - Watercolors and Correction Fluid on Paper

Monkey Business is one of the later works in the series, and it probably reflects a sense of wanting to stretch out, and find something new. These later works, like Duck Soup and Horse Feathers and Admiral Baby, came about during the end of 1999 and pretty much followed Spicy Asian Pork Burger, which I've always felt was the culmination of my work with watercolors on paper.

For these paintings, I was experimenting, trying to find the next vein to mine (to use Neil Young-speak). For Monkey Business, I used watercolors as a background pattern, but splattered blie acrylic paint in the foreground. Liquid Paper, what else?, is mixed with the blue, and you can notice the difference between this and mixing LP with watercolors. It's like trying to mix with mud; not really something I'd recommend.

I wanted paintings that were more alive, more kinetic. Paintings that moved and flowed. The final effect here is captured fairly well, especially considering the improvisational nature of painting in this style. You can map out where you want to go, but when the paint and brushes start to fly, you have to think on your feet pretty quickly. Success and failure are very real terms, and maybe that's what gives expressionist art its kick when it works. When it fails, everything just becomes an embarrassing mess.

The B-Side was assembled sometime in 2001, like most of the back sides to everything on paper. I did so after the B-Sides to the Watercanvas paintings, and tried to take advantage of the added space and better frame ("widescreen" is always better.) This is just about the best collage in the entire collection, crowded and messy and fits wonderfully. There are a number of quotes and references to Malcolm X and other various things to think about, as well as touches of color here and there for flavor.