30 June 2007

"Red Griffin"

I bought this painting in 1968 for $50. it was part of the Kent State masters thesis exhibition of Michael Parkes. currently it hangs in my bedroom so I see it everyday.

for most of the nearly 40 years I've lived with this painting I didn't know what had become of its creator. Michael drove into Kent on a motorcycle   wow'd the ladies &  made some good paintings   then disappeard. then some years ago Alicia Metcalf Miller gave me an article abt him in one of those expensive design mags. it sd he lived in Spain & was the world's most famous Magic Realist.

yesterday he had an opening right here in town & I went. I remind'd him of the painting which he didn't remember. I also suggestd that I probably was the first person to publish him. his seriograph "Six" (which is now on the wall of my guest room) appeard in the Winter 1968 issue of Toucan. it depicts a naked lady riding some sort of beast.

Michael sat down to sign posters & books. so I startd a conversation with his beautiful wife Maria. turns out they met in Kent where she was the roommate of printmaker Peggy Freemon (whose work also appeard in Toucan). as I steppd back so that others cd chat with her a woman in red came up. I cd see from a distance that they were having quite the lively discussion. in a bit they both came over to me. Maria sd that when they returnd to the States for openings they never encounter people from their Kent past. but this time there were 2. it turns out that the woman in red was a local artist by the name of Dona Calles. & that she'd been Michael's girlfriend before Maria.

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