Time and Time Again
Thanks to everyone that came out to the opening of Once Upon a Time. It was a larger crowd than we imagined. It was also quite a mixed audience, from infants in parents' arms through senior citizens. Of course, as could be expected, I spent the night answering many of the same questions and finding myself leaping into many of the same stories. In a way, that's sort of fitting. The show was all about childhood stories that you hear or tell repeatedly. I'm not sure the stories I told were quite the same as the fairy tales we illustrated, but after a while, they probably sounded very similar.
There are a few people that I really need to thank for making this a success. Everyone at the Arts and Cultural Council was fantastic to work with. In addition to welcoming us into their space, they helped with all sorts of last minute things that came up, including finding a replacement DVD player 15 minutes before the show opened. The guys from Zugibe Vineyards were very generous in providing enough wine for the huge crowd that showed up. Sally Cohen, did way more than her job as our publicist by handling all of the event-related details of the evening, including making sure there was enough food for everyone. Pat St. Clair, a truly phenomenal photographer, not only took amazing photos all evening, but taught me everything I've needed to know about photography to make the work for this show possible. Pat has done the photography for many of my projects and books and I can't thank him enough for all the support. Rose Hasan is a local balloon artist that has jumped in to help numerous times lately when we've needed an extra set of hands. We couldn't have done this without this great group of friends.
Check out the images from the show:
More temporary art
After months of work on the new series, we needed a break after the opening, and yet, it's hard to get the stuff we've been working on out of our minds entirely. Kelly woke up the morning after the big event, got a request from the kids to make breakfast, and managed to blend that request with the balloons of the previous night. For several months now, Kelly and I have been making designer pancakes for the kids. (We're making even more temporary art. In this house, pancakes have an even shorter life than balloons.) This time, a pancake rendering of a balloon dog showed up. Read Kelly's blog if you want to see more of the pancakes.
Balloons are everywhere
A couple of interesting things are happening in the world of balloons and art these days that I couldn't resist mentioning quickly.
Artist Jeff Koons is known for, among other things, his stainless steel reproductions of balloon dog sculptures. He's been in the news recently because of those balloon dogs. It seems that he (or at least his lawyers) weren't happy with another artists rendering of a completely different style of balloon dog. Park Life, a gallery in San Francisco, was selling balloon dog bookends that didn't in any way resemble a Koons dog. Lawyers for Koons, however, claimed that Park Life was infringing on Koons's intellectual property rights. After a few days of articles about this and protests from quite a few people, including balloon artists that were happy to point out balloon dogs of this style have existed since the 1960's, the whole thing seems to have been dropped. I've seen the Koons dog sculptures. I think they're beautiful pieces of art. I'm glad the claims from the Koons side have been dropped. I respect Jeff Koons for what he's created. I hope this was really all just a misunderstanding.
Going in a completely different direction, there's The Unpoppables, a new show on TLC that's starting this week. Three of my friends, Addi Somekh, Brian Asman and Katie Balloons are creating incredible balloon installations as event decor. You can watch the show to see what goes into creating these kinds of events. I can't wait to see it myself.