The terror strange children feel

“I don’t see what you mean,” said Henrietta, distracted— in fact in a quite new kind of pain. She saw only too well that this inquisition had no bearing on [her] at all, that Leopold was not even interested in hurting, and was only tweaking her petals off or her wings off with the intention of exploring himself. His dispassionateness was more dire to Henrietta than cruelty. With no banal reassuring grown-ups present, with grown-up intervention taken away, there is no limit to the terror strange children feel of each other, a terror life obscures but never ceases to justify.

— from The House in Paris, by Elizabeth Bowen

Those chosen childish children with whom he played made a crook of him, and all the time he impressed them he despised them for being impressed; he wanted to crack the world by saying some final and frightful thing.”

— from The House in Paris, by Elizabeth Bowen

A drawing from my 2010 series of Victorians; Angry boy tramples flag

Scenes from the Bushwick Country Club

Bushwick Country Club interior
What was intended to be an excursion into Bushwick yesterday afternoon left us stranded in Williamsburg as the L train chose to go no farther than Lorimer. So we began with a beer at Union Pool, into which I’ve not stepped foot in many years, and whose backyard has greatly improved.

We followed that with a visit to Bushwick Country Club, new to us both. Not in Bushwick, nor a country club, but a cheeky dive bar, where plastic dinosaurs serve as proxies for the second of each two-for-one happy hour drink. The tall narrow window that looks onto the yard brightens the otherwise cave-like interior during afternoon hours.

(Dr Who was on the television)

In the yard, a petite mini-golf course crumbles voluptuously, having seen better days before the ravages of seasons. No doubt it retains some of its erstwhile cheer on sunnier days.
mini golf Haunted House at Bushwick Country Club
mini golf slide at Bushwick Country Club

A stark row of inky trees

ink drawing of treesI’d thought this drawing may have wanted some watercolor while I was working on it, but I’m fond of it as a spiky monochrome. Maybe instead I’ll go back in with graphite and make it a misty, foggy view.

A treasure from Berlin!

Yesterday I received a wonderful surprise in the mail— this gorgeous piece of artwork by Luiza Mogosanu! This piece is in a celluloid frame from 1930s Germany, she told me in her note on the little card (a print of the same piece). I have already put it on the wall, next to another vintage oval frame. Thank you, Luiza!

This was a volley in return for some art I sent her a few weeks back. It’s such a delight to meet a fellow artist, and now I have an art pen pal in Berlin. Check out Luiza’s other artworks at her website! She is a gifted visualist, and full of light, of joy.


It fits in very well as I have a small collection of insects and bones on the shelf below all my paintbrushes.

Adventures in Light: Charm City

Lanterns above illuminated hand-cranked animation machine by Elizabeth Whitmore Crankie
Ceiling of Penn Station Baltimore
The beautiful skylights inside Penn Station Baltimore

Here are some selects from my photographs during Light City Baltimore 2017. Attributions of the various installations (as many as I could gather) are listed in the photo captions. There were many more installations than shown here, but some of them simply don’t convey well in still images.

Baltimore
View above the courtyard of UMBC’s Spark Gallery at Light City 2017
Looking toward the harbor from UMBC's Spark Gallery
Looking toward the harbor from UMBC’s Spark Gallery
“The Divided Line” by the RE/PUBLIC; a VR experience
“The Divided Line” by The RE/PUBLIC; In the googles, a stunning  VR experience that reimagined the harbor in 360º
Illuminated umbrellas
Illuminated umbrellas
“Light Happenings Part II” by Labbodies
“Light Happenings Part II” by Labbodies

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LEDs and the dancing fireplace wall


Some fun lighting at Kelley’s house in Baltimore. Mini Light City right in the living room!

I got loads of photographs from installations around the Inner Harbor last night. I’ll be posting some of those soon.

In the halls of UMBC Visual Arts


It’s disconcerting to run into an oversized facsimile of my own stylized face in the halls of the university. Giving my talk on Saturday evening. Super nervous! But looking forward to it, and seeing the illuminations of Light City around the Inner Harbor.