Friday morning in the Slab

November 15th, in the snowy capital city, listening to some 10cc while I pack my art gear, getting ready for an art show and sale:  Roncesvalles, tomorrow, Toronto.  We’ve been happy vendors at Roncesvalles going on, has it been 5 years?  Those folks at Roncy take good care of you: both the vendor and the visitor!

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twinravens on November 5th, acrylic on canvas board, 8×10 inches.  We might have a few of these coming along to the show!  This is one of the pieces we had at the sale last weekend in Perth, many thanks to the hosts and the other artists, for a great time, some fun “art” conversations and of course the vin!

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Power Bird, acrylic on canvas, 22×28 inches.  Private Collection.  At the event in Perth, I walked in the front door and the first thing I saw hanging on the wall was my old buddy, the Power Bird.  Nice to see you again!

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Title unknown, acrylic on canvas, 30×30 inches.  Private Collection.  Also crossed paths with this golden oldie, in the library at the event in Perth.  That is Stevenson Professional acrylic, made in Toronto…  Too bad for me that Stevenson called it quits.  (I’m learning a new brand:  Golden Heavy Body)

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From the pages of:  Cruising Back to the Ranch with My Young Friend, a book of poems and photographs by yours truly, which I also happened to come across in the library at the event last weekend.  Hey I remember when I wrote that!  And here is a photo from around that time:

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Back home at mom and dad’s, the super wild summer of 1995!  That’s in the sun room on the west side of the house: you can see the last of the July day coming in those windows. Like in the novel: “over there it is day, above us is night.”  And truth is, that little typewriter I’m working on, that is when and where I wrote “Sun”, from Sun Infinity Moon, back in the days before word processors and the internet.

That twinravens summer mission statement was inspired by the poem in the liner notes of the album “Starfish”, by the Church, one of my fave albums from that time.  And let me tell you that mission statement still stands, right here in 2019!  We still cover all of those bases even though we’ve had some wild high jinx along the way this past summer:  one dead moose, one dead deer, two totalled cars, and we’ve switched out the Nikon F2 with the 16 mm lens set at infinity, for an apple iPhone!  But we still have the little black bikini, ha ha!  And of course we are still firm believers in getting a really good tan.  Well.  All of what is written in that mission statement, we follow that to the letter to this day.  If we were to add something it would be:  wear heels that are 6 inches or higher.  Ha ha.  Yes indeed!  It was fun to cross paths with that mission statement, over there in Perth, on the table in the library.  Fun stuff.

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At the beach, sweet summer time, Providence Bay, Manitoulin Island, Canada.  We’ll get back there some day.

Sun Infinity Moon Book Review

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“I finished the book yesterday, I couldn’t put it down! The sex scenes were hot, humorous and I loved Mark’s rawness, his truth, the details, the characters, journeys, their thoughts: so real!

I could hear his voice and the way he talks, and jokes, telling the story!

The history and raw truth are so touching, I wanted to hear more. I felt a deeper compassion hearing his experiences. The “nish” accent was hilarious but true to our men. I laughed a lot and ohh that ending made me cry!

His detail is impeccable. I wanted more about their journeys. So many more avenues: more books, a play, a movie!

His readers will want more.

So glad I went to the book launch and got my copy. I can think of so many that would enjoy this book and could relate: namely native males I know, with similar tough journeys.”

M.D., Manitoulin Island F/N.

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Back cover of the artist proof:  filled with typos and layout errors!  Ah well.  The reprint will be here soon and hopefully bug free…

I have a couple of more book reviews coming in soon!  But I’ll tell you this:  writing a story like this and having folks give it the once over, the response is SUPER telling!  i.e.:  one gal was all friendly and happy and poops and giggles before, after…  she wouldn’t even look at me!  I mean she would cross over to the other side of the street when she saw me coming along!  WOW!

I get that this IS a tough sell.  We’re a long way from the Disneyland and Hollywood Indian stereotypes.  But I’m not a Joseph Boyden or an Archie Grey Owl!  Ha ha.

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twinravens on November 5th, acrylic on canvas board, 8×10 inches.  One of the 25 or so pieces we have ready for this weekend’s pop up art show in Perth, Ontario!  Details are on the Facebook page.

November 4th

Halloween has come and gone!  it is one of my favourite dates on the calendar: we get to dress up and go out, see some fun shows and see some amazing costumes!  right up my alley!

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the gal next to me is a serious costume artist!  she was amazing.

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the artist:  in crazy Halloween wear!  i love this dress up bizz!

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the “well heeled Indian”, ha ha!  (they might look like they’d be tough to walk in but the truth is i can get around in those and for hours at a time!  8 hours on Saturday night!)

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funny stuff: serious attention getters!  nothing like standing out!  my thing is: if you’re going to go out:  go out!

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recent work:  acrylic on canvas board, 8×10 inches.  the next event for us is a pop up art show and sale coming up this weekend in the town of Perth, Ontario.  we have a stack of paintings in various sizes and quite a few of them in this new idea:  black framed originals.

and so it is November 4th, autumn has fallen from its place in the trees.  its life in the city, not sure when i’ll be going back home.  over here: we see many strange things.  but here inside this little apartment-its all artwork, paintings in progress, waiting for paint to dry.  wish me luck!

Life and Times of a Famous Native Canadian Artist, Vol. 3

ha ha!  joking of course.  we’re not booked to be at the MET any time soon nor do we have important pieces over at the NGC.  we are the classic:  legends in our own minds!  and so yes, with a chuckle:

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the “Black Framed Originals” we’ve been working on this autumn, preparing for a pop up flash art show in November.  that is an 18×24 inch canvas board, Mother Earth sketch,  and it is one of 20 we have ready go!  the painting just above it i have been looking at for about a year.

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the painting just above, Detail: Who Is She?, 30×48″, on canvas.  the original painting of the girl on the lake, winter, 1990, yeah it was a peaceful scene but i just had to HACK it!  5 years ago it came back from where it was on display and by that time i had opened up the “art bridge” and re read a few articles on Jackson Pollock!  so this canvas was just begging to be re worked.

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yes yes it is not the classically painted face but that wasn’t what we were going for then nor is it what we’re going for today!  fact of the matter is: hey i like this one.  like i said i’ve been looking at it for a year, hanging on my wall over here in Ottawa, and i’m starting to think maybe i’ll keep that one.

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Striking a Pose, in Whitedog, Ontario, sometime in the spring of 1991.  that was on the Toronto at Dreamer’s Rock National Tour, Debajehmujig Theatre Group, and we’re about half way into that tour.  i had friends who are now long dead and gone, dust and bones, from up there, who hadn’t been home in years, and when i told them i might be passing through their old starting point they told me to get some pictures.  this of course was not the photo they were expecting!  (story of my life, ha!)

i recently saw this old photo and others when muddling and “muggling” the idea about the next writing project:  Fighting In Hell, an anishnabe’s art journey.  the title for that writing project is still in the works and the stories within: an artist story, what to leave in, what to leave out?

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that is the great Gabor Mate and his lad, in Toronto on Friday night, October 18th.  they were in town to make a presentation on parents and their adult children and the business of healing.  very interesting!  but my question was and is this:  what if the adult child has had several sets of parents from bio parents to foster parents to adoptive parents of a different culture, all within the first 7 or 8 years of life?

175 participants signed up for that 3 day presentation and you can bet any time Gabe opened the floor for questions about 80 hands shot up, and usually the same 80 hands!  so i didn’t get to ask my question.  you see Gabe is a genius.  you have questions along these lines, he has answers.  google his name if you’re not in the know.

175 x 350 = 61 250.  nice work!

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half of the “artist uniform”, at the conference, front row.  you can bet the other half of the artist uniform had things to read/say and that place being 98% women participants, there certainly were a few readers!  Nature.  Cheaper than Therapy.

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back in Markham before the bug out: wiggling the toes!  the boss man is up on the 9th chilling and i’m in the lobby switching out of the artist wear black boots for some basics: the new car has a standard transmission and folks i like to have my barefeet on those three peddles.  this being mid October, black socks will have to do!

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blazing down the 401, east bound, Sunday night alone, in the brand new limo:  put the radio on and up came 10cc, I’m Not in Love.  it being the oldies FM station they weren’t cheap and played the 6 minute version.  sweet.  kooky too, riding through the mild autumn night, all those heavy duty thoughts from the conference stewing, all those heavy duty memories from what seems like another life time ago, stewing, the open road, the wiggly toes, and the here and now…

kind of peculiar how things work out…

as a refresh: here are the opening few lines of the original life and times of, Vol. 1, posted way back in the autumn of 2017.  ah but what a beautiful September it was in 2017:  6 weeks of Indian Summer on the open range, a paint brush in my hand during the day, a glass or a key pad at night.  30 C during the afternoon, 20 C at night, for 6 wonderful weeks, down in the cosy back country of Tehkummah: no light or noise pollution.  no neighbours.  nothing but a suitcase full of 20 dollar bills and the artist with an agenda.

Life And Times Of A Famous Native Canadian Artist…

ha! i say that jokingly! because i’m out here on the range, going on 21 days now without a note of art conversation, idea expressed verbally, or hint of a hand to hold while under the mighty Milky Way. she’s new moon boys. and so, alone under the almighty, with eagles roosting down by the river (what music they make first thing in the morning!) and the great wide open: there is room to stretch the “art making arms”. we have some good looking pieces but we’re also getting down to the bottom of the paint barrels.

so last night around 7 i stowed the gear, set a table for one, lit a candle, cracked open a Paul Jaboulet Aine Cornas Domaine de Saint Pierre (2012), sparked up the youtube for a little dinner music and instead got attracted to a documentary about alien abductions. i watched the nutty scenes, heard the kook house stories, heard the so called experts blabbering on about all this stars and moon and space stuff and…

From the twinravens blog:  September 2017.

now i have no idea what i did to the comments section here,  see it is turned off.  but you can always email at twinravens at hotmail or twinravens at gmail.

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Paintings by Mark Seabrook

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Power Bird, acrylic on canvas board, 18×24 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Available for purchase as of Oct. 3/019.

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Power Bird No. 5, acrylic on canvas board, 9×12 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Available.

I have to admit I’m having fun with these pieces in frames!  Normally we sell them as unframed canvas boards but I decided to switch things up last summer, and so here we are in October with a sizeable collection, getting ready for that show in November!

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Power Bird No. 6, acrylic on canvas board, 8×10 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Available.

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Tehkummah Scenes, acrylic on canvas, 8×10 inches, from the original run in 2013, artist collection.

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Twinravens, Winter Scenes, acrylic on canvas board, 5×7 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.IMG_8998

Tehkummah Scenes, acrylic on canvas board, 5×7 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Available.

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Big Bucks!  Acrylic on canvas board, 5×7 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Available.

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Power Bird, acrylic on canvas, 8×10 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Available.

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Visiting from Over Seas, acrylic on canvas board, 14×18 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  Available.

We ship anywhere.

And so yes:  I’m having some fun here framing up these new pieces and going through the collections, framing up a few of the war horses, pieces I just couldn’t part with, playing with a new look.  And it IS fun.  We’ll be ready for that show in November!

 

HACKED paintings No. 1 and 2

after seeing that young lad’s HACKED artwork on CBC a couple of weeks ago i was inspired!  of course it helps that i’m always rooting around at the Goodwill looking for any long lost and authentic Tom Thomson sketches on 8×10 inch panels or anything along those lines.  i did come across an original and authentic Daphne Odjig at a garage sale!  you can bet i snapped that up for the cool 20 bucks they wanted for it.  i put that in a bag and ran like a bank robber!  same with the Martin Panamick i found in a junk shop on Queen Street West, Toronto, all those years ago.

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Hacked Painting Number 1:  the before photo.  found it in the goodwill, 16×20 inches, on canvas, dated 1975.  Googled the artist name and up came the obituaries.

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HACKED painting No. 1: the after photo.  New title:  “I acknowledge that I live and work on the unceded territory of the Algonquin nation.”  (Remembering the Trail of Tears)(we might go back to work on this one and add a few more “things”…   )

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HACKED painting Number 2: before.  found this one on the street!  a vendor had something going on, over there on Bank Street one Sunday afternoon, not far from Beaded Dreams.  i said i love the picture but i hate the price!  he sold it for 3 bucks!

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HACKED painting No. 2:  after.  New title:  “The Starlight Tours, the early years.”  on canvas board, 8×10 inches.  if you don’t know what the “star light tours” are, just google them up.  they’re now famous Canadian stories.

and so!  we’re on the look out for more of these which means we’re going to have some fun, Indiana Jones style.  stay tuned as we’ll be posting more photos of the before and after, numbers 3 through 13.

and i want to say thanks to that writer/reader who emailed from the USA and asked about a detail in the INFINITY section of my debut novel: SUN INFINITY MOON.  you asked:  what is an LCBO box?  answer:  LCBO is Liquor Control Board of Ontario and an LCBO box is a heavy duty cardboard box in which they ship 12 bottles of wine, the 750 ml variety.  they’re pretty common to see at the LCBO store front, free to take for anyone moving out or in need of a little old school storage.  closer to home, on sweet and beautiful Manitoulin Island, LCBO can also stand for:  Little Current Band Office, hackney backwoods Indian humour for those in the know.

as my old comedy buddy, Mr. H.B. would say:  if you can’t laugh with them, laugh at them!

more to come!

September 11, 2019

oh the dates in history…  i remember it well 18 years ago:  we were deep deep deep in the bush, far from any radio, TV, internet, completely unaware of what was happening south of us.  as far as i could see on that morning:  the big woodland skies were blue, the land was filled with greens and the waters were dark and mysterious, the sand was warm to the bare feet.  our jungle gear was brand new, untested, like us.  i managed 7.5 years in that jungle, but my gear was pretty much worn out by the time i came back.  i think i came out of there in November 2008, darn near crawling on my hands and knees!

but as my old buddy Sallah would say:  life goes on Indy!

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we’re getting ready for a reprint of Sun Infinity Moon!  now…  yes.  i do know there are some spelling errors and layout problems in the first run.  the folks at the printers gave my project to some junior whoever, not sure how new they were to the layout position but anyway the man in charged assigned the young lad and away we went.  the problem of course is we were in a time crunch situation.  we had booked our little release party for July 20th, and there i was still fussing with the writing of it, on the morning of July 2nd, WHEN we sent it to the printers.  as far as i was concerned, when i saw those layout problems within the text, in particular, the business of paragraph indents, in the e version proofs, i was okay to run with as time really was running out.  (we had already missed a dozen deadlines.)

how i did not see:  “course language”, on the cover, i do not know.

where we really in that much of a time crunch that i missed that?  well anyway there are only 150 of them out there with that on the cover, so if you have one, you have the collector’s edition.  when we had the little release party we joked that yes, it is course language, university course language, not meant for high schools…  (ha!)

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Beaded Dreams, on Bank Street, just north of Gladstone, in Ottawa:  i dropped off a fresh bundle of books to these good folks so if you’re in the area, you can get your collector’s edition, first run copy of SUN INFINITY MOON over there.  same with Huron Island Time down on Providence Bay Beach although i imagine these days, this far into September, things might be a little slow in downtown P.B.  now sure of the hours they might be keeping.

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The Atomic Rooster, Bank Street, Ottawa:  the show is still up but your chance will soon be gone to see “For MMIWG” by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook, up close and personal.  the canvas is 36×60 inches, Stevensons acrylic, and after this show, that painting is going into the Artist Collection, never to be seen in public again!

that is the great Peter Purdy’s artwork hanging next to mine.  title unknown, price unknown, 36×48 inches or there a bouts.  First Nations artwork.

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Mother Earth sketch, acrylic on canvas board, 18×24 inches, by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  we continue to play with the idea.

Found Poetry:  The Clone Trees, as read by anishnabe artist Mark Seabrook.  The Found Poetry idea has been a lot of fun, we’re coming up with some mighty strange poems and artsy little books.  The starting point is of course you take a hard cover book from the goodwill, one with quality paper, toss the paper cover, and go to work:  much like you see here with the Clone Trees.  A book of found poems can be pretty telling as the days go by: it is not a quick fix project, book 3 was started in early May 2019 and finished just last week.  Very telling indeed…

Book 4 is in the works.  Fun stuff, crafty, artsy, and one of a kind.  And oh yes:  you’re suppose to pick a book with a title that says it all for you…

Let me know how it goes.