Foundations for living

In an attempt to keep me and my brother and sister out of the streets and off drugs, my mother signed us up for art classes at the Cleveland Museum of Art. At first, I probably considered this the cruelest joke you could play on a 10-year-old boy, one that stood to rob me of my summer vacation… until I got there. I wandered the rooms and eventually settled and spent the afternoon drawing what I saw. The teacher would occasionally pass by and say, “Oh yeah, that’s cool man.”

Thinking back now, I’m sure she was stoned. My aunt stopped by one afternoon. We walked around together. They had a big room full of armor and they had a large selection of swords and spears. My aunt looked at me and then she looked at the spear and then she looked at the security guard in the corner. She then said, “How far do you think we could get if we grabbed one of these?”

That afternoon, I did a painting of my aunt spearing the security guard. Unfortunately, it did not get saved, but this oneĀ (below) is still in my parents’… attic.

I have never aspired to be a “painting-drawing artist.” I have always tried to express myself through music and eventually the teaching of yoga. It’s interesting to me, all these years later, to see how the early days of your upbringing can impact your place in the world.

I cannot go to a museum without considering grand theft. Or a stoned art teacher walking around with no bra on.