CRUNCH TIME

Crunch time means devoting an inordinate amount of mental space and physical exertion to “stuff” for a while. One function of the Incarnation, I’ve been thinking, is that we are constantly constantly carrying stuff from one place to another. Take a look around next time you’re out. Guys with plastic bags dangling from their handlebars, kids with backpacks, mothers with strollers, pickup trucks laded with rakes, shovels, trash barrels, all of us hauling bags of groceries into the kitchen after a Trader Joe’s run.

BEHIND THE SCENES WITH AN ART INSTALLER

The real thrill is getting to put (gloved) hands on these works. “In a gallery there’s often a stanchion or a tape line on the floor. We have the luxury and honor of being the people who are actually allowed up close. Are these D-rings strong enough? What if a viewer inadvertently jostles this pedestal: is the work sufficiently secured?”

MORNING LIGHT

Every once in a while I end up at some strange, random church and hear a homily that makes me sit up straight. The priest at the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in Nogales, AZ, in the gentlest possibly way, pointed out that every one of us is exactly like Judas. How many times have we sold him out for thirty pieces of silver–or, for that matter, way less?…

COCKTAIL HOUR AT THE FRICK, COVID-STYLE

“Why these vegetables together? This is the artist, sending someone to the market and presenting everyday objects in a new light.” What’s wonderful is on the one hand “the simplicity of the depiction combined with the incredible beauty, the sort of poetic feeling. You can feel the texture, the surface of the porcelain, the fabric, the wood, the glass.”