New Years, Mayans Running Amuck Taking Back the Spirits of the World, the Universe Spins at Infinitum and I Just Keep on Doing my Thing!

This is a repost from my piece for today on the http://artnowsf.com site, but I really can’t think of anything to add off top, so I will get back atachya tomorrow, but until then… “So here we are.  One day until New Years Eve 2011.  We are about to enter what the Mayan Calendar deems to be the end of the world as we know it.  If anything 2011 has been a harbinger of drastic change, a platform from which “globalization” seems to be working for the iron fist of the wealthy elite as usual, but is starting to be a very powerful tool for the rest of us in the world to share ideas and develop tactics to fight “the man” so to speak.  We definitely exist in a world that is going through some very dramatic changes, hurtling forward technologically faster than ever before, and  increasingly  environmentally unsustainable (for us) due to our reliance on consumerism.  There is war everywhere, and the gap between the rich and the poor continues to grow on a scale never before seen in history and we are all at the mercy of totally failed and rapidly disintegrating economic system. (Pretty soon we’ll be trading labor for crafts and goods again and making trade with things that are actually worth something, hrrmmmmmm, sounds like what America was like before the settlers got here)  All this being said, I for one am actually very excited about living in this time and seeing what 2012 will bring.  It could be a violent hurricane of revolution and mass destruction, it could become an even more sterile society of ownership and apathy, or it could erupt into one of the most beautiful eras of human history where people farm for themselves and each other, where a mass consciousness overtakes us and we can all break bread together.  Probably non of those things to that degree will happen, but 2012 will most definitely mark a series of sprouts to seeds that have been planted in 2011 in a broad range of societal changes.

We have seen some amazing steps in the past few years in terms of art, design, information technology, communication tools, food, music, creativity, and new creative ways of living as a whole.  We are truly starting to see the ability of art and artists to free themselves and those around them mentally and spiritually in the face the stifling hand of consumerism and the culture it has created.  To the same effect we are also seeing the commercialization of art like never before through a new generation of advertisers and marketers. We are seeing an influx of DIY culture resurging and growing larger than it has ever been to try to combat the ills and destructive nature and soullessness of mass production and an obviously failed economic system.  And still again on the same token we are seeing whole communities being owned by companies like Monsanto and WalMart, and are living in a time when the power of branding and “the Brand” has become one of the most important aspects of our lives.  Despots and violent dictators are being toppled but we are all concerned with who will replace them and who will actually control those replacements and for what reason.  While we don’t seem to have any Martin Luther King Jr.s or Ghandis at the moment, we are seeing groups of people coming together as one in larger numbers on a global scale and acting as a unified voice so that one person does not have to.  But damn it would be nice to have a leader that cannot be bought again, too bad Obama couldn’t seem to fit this part of the bill.

So I guess my point here in is this.  We are all just humans.  While we have evolved in so many ways, we really haven’t even begun to scratch the surface on what it takes to truly be highly evolved beings with an understanding of consciousness and can’t agree on the right ways to move forward, but within in this mess we find beauty.  Without pain there is no pleasure, and peace and serenity are only truly understood when one has been far far from them.  Without the world I live in I can’t make the art I make and send out a message of life as I know it.  So tomorrow night, spend it with people you love and love you, do something good for someone else, and don’t forget to laugh and make love, because according to the Mayans this is your last year to do any of it in this life.  Yep stay positive, it will pay off for you when the shit hits the fan!  While this era of civilization is on its way out, we definitely are moving quickly into the next chapter.  Be happy you are here to witness it.

In passing this photo below is of a new painting so far entitled “A Conversation With Coletrane About Spirituality…”, it is in progress and is will face opposite the “Conversation With Charles Mingus…” piece in the Altar/ Installation at Queens Nails Projects on February 4th.

Text, Art, and Photos by John Felix Arnold III         Middle Photo By Shaun Roberts

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Happy Holladays!!! Thank You to Everyone for Your Support!

 

I just sent this out as a mass thank you email, but it really doesn’t need any altering, it rings true here just as well. : During this holiday season I want to send everyone a huge thank you and a huge hug and much love for all of your amazing support and input.  This has been the best year artistically and otherwise yet and I couldn’t have made it all happen without you.  From last December’s Unstoppable Tomorrow Vol.1 show, to Past From the Blast with Japanther, to In the Moment at the Luggage Store, it has been a wild ride.  There is a huge and epic “to do” list coming up in 2012 with Queens Nails in February, Littlefield NYC in March, a Solo Show at Old Crow in July, and then a tour in Japan immediately after Old Crow.

So today my prayers and thoughts and love goes out to all of you far and near who help the arts and continue to support.  I’m in the kitchen cooking up a huge and delicious feast and I wish I could send you all a plate. Much Thanks again, and Happy Holidays Always!!!!
-John Felix Arnold III

” A Conversation With Charles Mingus About the Inevitable End of the World as we Know it From the Standpoint of a Historian Way Later”

So I am about to put the finishing touches on what I feel to be the most fulfilling piece of mine to date.  It is a culmination of specifically the past five or six years of foresight into what I want to make art about and how I want to make it tuned with the vivid memories or rust and decay I experienced throughout my child hood and my overall view on the progression of humanity in the world we live in presently.  The piece is an 8’x3′ panel made of all found pieces of debris creating an assemblage canvas which I then attacked with a multitude of media.  In short I put a lot of heart and soul and love and inspiration, a lot of life experience and happiness and anguish all rolled into it, and long hours at night into this baby.

Not only is it a painting but it is also an integral component to the Altar Piece Installation I am making in Queens Nails for the awesome show I have coming up entitled “The Love of All Above”.  A new installment in the Unstoppable Tomorrow : The World of Future Antiquity Series, “The Love of All Above” aims to integrate the paintings and detail work into the actual installation more so there is really no distinction between the Installation Piece and the indiviual paintings that can exist outside of it while it is presented as an environment.  This will in turn create a truly more realized piece of my imaginary future world for the viewer to experience.  Also the performances will be conceptually and aesthetically streamlined with the art piece in a true collaborative effort creating a page out of the graphic novel future/past world of Unstoppable Tomorrow, that I set out to have the audience revel in.  There will be performances by Joel and Rhea St. Julien, the Daylight Curfew Crew, and Kool Kid Kreyola who will also be helping in the production of the installation piece.

This new panel has been an enormous breakthrough in that I have realized the culmination of concepts,ideas and techniques I have been trying to bring together and they are all finally working to create this world in the eye of the viewer on many levels.  It can exist on its own as an art piece, but will truly be understood when it is seen built into one of the flanks of the installation, as a narrative, historical and mythological story telling device to aid in the full experience of praise and performance for “The Love of All Above”.  If you think back to ancient Japanese wall tapestries or screens depicting battles, and daily life, or back to Durer with his prints of biblical monstrosities or the four horsemen, or even back as far as the cave paintings, then you look at comic books, and and super hero related material, or even sports memorabilia with its larger than life, almost Greek God qualities, you will see the common threads things being depicted that one day have an importance and a legend or mythology behind them that is highly influential and sometimes God like.  Taking this into consideration one will begin to understand that by creating this piece in the way it was realized, I am making my own epic, narrative stamp to be translated into myth hopefully a thousand years from now, but in the present it acts as a cohesive story telling platform through a multi media art practice that can exist on many levels for a wide range of audiences and demands thought and interaction in some form wherever and however it is encountered in its lifetime.  It was derived from all of the eight million stories in my mind while listening to a documentary about Charles Mingus and how his music is all about the conversation he is having with his fellow players and the audience.  Nuff Said.  “The Love of All Above” , February 4th, 2012, Queens Nails Projects, more to come…Felix


Pretty Stoked on Life

I kind of just wanted to say, yeah, I’m pretty stoked on life right now!   I am starting to see that the more hard work I put into this art thang, how much truly better and more fulfilling my life becomes.  It is pretty refreshing to wake up in the morning and be excited to go and tackle the day that chock full of eight million different things and details to take care of but all for one basic goal.  TO MAKE AWESOME STUFF FOR YOU TO CHECK OUT AND HOPEFULLY ENJOY OR AT LEAST MAKE YOU THINK.  That being said, someone that I have been really stoked on lately and really inspired by their raw creative energy and I don’t give a fuck for conscious reasons attitude is definitely the homie Kool Kid Kreyola or Erlin Geffrand.  I just had the pleasure of being in a group show at the Luggage Store Gallery called “In the Moment” and he is going to be helping me with a project at Queens Nails in February, as well as performing inside of it.  Like I said, life is good, here me Rooaaarrrr! Check out my favorite K.K.K. video by Spencer Keaton Cunningham and some random photos of Japan because I feel like showing you them for no apparent reason other than I am stoked on them.

KOOL KID KREYOLA – Dance On The Moon from Spencer Keeton Cunningham on Vimeo.