Friday, November 20, 2009

This Won’t Fly

AKA: Have Art Will Travel

My eldest son, Josh, and I share a love of art, and we especially like creating it from unlikely everyday things. When it comes to art, I’m a late bloomer. The extent of my childhood exposure to it was flour and water paste, crayons, and homemade paper dolls. In school it was drawing lollypop trees and coloring within the lines.

As an adult I worked as day care teacher whose job it was to set up art projects for children. When my sons came along they benefited from my background and, unlike me, were exposed early to a variety of art mediums. Josh especially took to art like he was born to make it, experimenting with different mediums since he was old enough to hold a…paintbrush, crayon, bottle of glue, or scissors. Today, as an adult, he’s primarily a potter, but he continues to explore his artistic expression through a wide range of mediums, such as photography, printmaking, journal collage, and street theatre. Recently, he found a new medium, and he phoned to tell me about it.

He began the conversation by saying how cool the IPOD he got with his Christmas money was before moving on to the real reason he called…to tell me about his favorite new artist's toy given to him by a friend. “A label maker! You would love this, mom!” he exclaimed.

On the same day he got the label maker, he had an art show to set up at his school. “I found the room but it was locked, so I printed out a label that said “art show” and stuck it on the door,” he said.

The story went on… When the janitor came with keys to open the room, he saw the sign and became disgruntled. “This won’t fly,” he said. “It’s going to rip the paint off the door,” he suggested as he tore the label off.

“THIS WON’T FLY,” Josh emphasized as he set up the scene for me.

After the janitor unlocked the room and left, Josh printed up a label that said THIS WON’T FLY and stuck it on the door. “And guess what? The name of the art show is now THIS WON’T FLY,” he said.

Note: The above was originally posted on Looseleafnotes on January 23, 2007.

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