I went to the Hwy 62 Open Studios tours the Sunday after the big floods. I stayed in the far east, visiting the 29 Palms Gallery to see my friend Ben Allenoff's show (wonderful sculptor working with rust stains), a gallery in an old car mechanic shop, a kids' school in an old motel, and two homesteads out in Wonder Valley. The photos show the homesteads, a lovely place filled with antiques from the 40s, and a crazy mosaic house. I also visited Cybele Rowe's giant outdoor ceramics in Yucca.
Basically my abbreviated tour confirmed what I've already begun to suspect: the artists working out in the desert are the real deal: authentic, devoted, friendly, and unaffected by the market. I can't wait to be a part of it!
The weather was lovely, mid-80s at the hottest, on hopefully what will be our last weekend without water. All I can do at this point is trash pick up--the entire front fence is now cleaned. (I have a thing about a house's front yard being presentable. Not that it matters in this rangy property, but still. I have a thing.) Big excitement was uncovering a scorpion the size of a small lobster. Too bad you can't grill 'em.
T and Kid.02 were more creative: they made a "wind break" for the ramada out of found wood and signs. Don't know how long it will last, but repairs will be creative. And I woke up on Mother's Day to this lovely greeting off the front porch, where I drink my coffee and watch for road runners every morning...
The new electric line is now hooked up to the barn, and the well will be repaired and updated this coming week. Halle-f****in-lujah.
Fun Saturday night gallery hopping in Joshua Tree. My guy bought me a small sculpture from local metalsmith Gubby Beck at the Art Queen. Ed Rusche was showing at JTAG--fancy prices for the desert, but nice to see. At Taylor Junction we met the brave owner of another property restoration project, the John Hilton House, just a few miles east of us. Jamie's been out here working for three years already. The original owners were artists connected to the Cowboy Artists of America, whom I'm familiar with through my grandparents. But that's another desert story. Ended the evening at the ever inspiring Furstworld.
Last weekend I took Kid.02 out to stay at the Dairy, and he was impressed, except for the lack of water. I told him we were going to work like dogs, and that's just what we did. He was a trooper.
On the way out of town we visited the Glass Outhouse Art Gallery, just east of downtown Twentynine Palms. It's a former rabbit farm turned outsider sculpture garden. The main attractions are a small chapel, an outhouse made of one-way mirrored glass (it's actually pretty cool to take a pee where you can see out 360 degrees, but no one can see in), and a community gallery. The owner, very friendly, was sitting with other artists outside and offered us free cold drinks. She hosts an opening every month.
You just never know what you'll find out here!
Anna does most of the writing. Ted does most of the photos. But sometimes we switch. We are repairing a distressed property in 29 Palms, California, and eventually hope to run an artist residency there.