Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day Entry - June Gloom is a Wonderful Thing

OK, I'll be the first to admit it, despite my own best efforts, today's post is not about prints or printmaking so... mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. Instead, I'm chronicling my late morning adventures at the "Long Beach Outdoor Antiques & Collectibles" an absolutely staggering visual smorgasbord of everything from the ridiculous to the sublime. Not for the faint of heart or weak of limb, it covers over 20 acres of macadam & occurs on the 3rd Sunday of each month. This event takes place at Long Beach Veteran's Stadium, which seems to be a part of Long Beach City College. The entry fee is $5.00, well worth the cost of admission, if only for the excellent people-watching aspects. The next one occurs on July 17th, but the better half swears that when he goes again, he'll wear his L.L. Bean day-pack loaded with water & fatty snax.

My first spot of something that had everything I want in the way of a "collectable" were the 2 hairdressing/barber signs below. The proprietor of the stall must have been off to the rest room, so I couldn't put my evaluation of these wonderful paintings to him or her, but I'm guessing that they were made by Joel Adjame of the Ivory Coast, or created by someone who has gotten his style down pat. (An adherent of the "Adjame School,"one might surmise.) I base my assessment on the use of a white background, simplification of style, placement of text, profile format, & the use of linear heart-shaped enclosures around each head depicted. Of course, I'm certainly no expert in these matters, as my only 1st-hand experience with this art form was merely having had the good fortune to view the exhibition at the Fowler Museum (back in '95), titled: "Crowning Achievements: The African Arts of Dressing Hair." A knock out!

Many of these house-painted signs are found hanging on buildings, or just tacked up to trees & over a chair in parts of Africa. Judging from the rough appearance of the plywood backs of these, I'd warrant they had a similar past life. I've always imagined that Botswana's #1 female private eye, Maa Precious Ramotswe to have a similar sign that advertises her considerable prowess in her chosen field.

Elsewhere, Daisy Mae Duke's (or Daisy Mae Abner's) Dogpatch denims were available for sale, & if those didn't suit every occasion, Miss Havisham's wedding weeds were also available.

The African trade beads from Nigeria were fabulous studies in both color and texture.

My modest purchases could all be carried in my pocket...3 new marbles to add to my collection!

It really wasn't cool enough today to warrant wearing the yeti's coat, but it helps to look like a fashionista while you attempt to figure out how to fit that overly large purchase into your somewhat smallish car. Roof rack & bungee cords?