Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Mortimer Jones Ponders the Void

Mr. Obsolete: I was supposed to get off at the last stop.

Mortimer Jones: Well, get off at the next one.

Mr. Obsolete: I could do that, but then I'd have to walk back.

Mortimer: So what's the problem? Just walk back.

Mr. Obsolete: Yes, but I hate to retrace my steps.

Mortimer: If you're walking back to where you meant to go then that will be the first time you walk that direction.

Mr. Obsolete: Yes, but I missed my stop yesterday too. And that was the direction I walked.

Mortimer: So walk a different direction to where you meant to go, then the direction you walked yesterday.

Mr. O: I think it's better to walk a direct route then change direction to avoid the same direction to the place I meant to go.

Mortimer: So walk directly in a different direction than the direction you walked to the place you meant to go.

Mr. Obsolete: I can't indirectly choose a direction, directionless as it may seem, in a different direction to the place I meant to go. I'd have to change direction, meaning, direct myself beyond my own directioning.

Mortimer: I see, so why not change your plans altogether then? Go somewhere else.

Mr. Obsolete: I could change my plans, but I don't know what would happen.

Mortimer: You won't know what would happen regardless of your plans.

Mr. Obsolete: I suppose I should just stay on the bus then.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

We've Even Got an Imposter Now!

I'm proud to annouce we have our first imposter! (Kind of like losing one's virginity!)
Apparently when people run out of intelligent arguments, they resort to pretending to be me!
Quite flattering really. There's someone currently posting online claiming to be Mortimer Jones saying The Parts and Labor Collective is a hoax dreamed up by a graduate student. I couldn't ask for a stranger form of support, because it has caused our log-ins to shoot through the roof! So, let's all thank my own personal Unibomber for spreading the word about us even more! If you wish, you can send him a message yourself

@ comm-23862917@craigslist.org

Monday, November 20, 2006

Recent Hate Mail

Here are some of the highlights:
"Mortimer Jones is a bit naive......I have my pride, perhaps you don't.....ooooo Mr. Raw Loft! Aren't you special, big fucking deal.....as an established artist I have no respect for you or your stupid movement.......Mortimer is fictitious.....delusions of grandeur....ego driven....stereotype of the young male artist.....poor pathetic little bitch....anything is better than a dumbass name like Parts and Labor.....I think if you fix your name, you'll have less people calling you a Communist......go to hell.......Maybe I'll just incorporate under your name, since I'm sure you haven't made it legal.....are you suggesting free art?.......are you suggesting a barter system?......I suggest you get a real space rather than that rat-hole......as for the pinko that runs The Parts and Labor Collective, take all that shit on your wall, douse it in kerosene, and set it aflame......The less art the better."
Ahh yes, all the brilliant minds of Chicago converge in my inbox.
Signed Mortimer Jones
The Dvine Order of the Grease Monkey
Parts and Labor Collective

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The Ghost of Malachi Ritscher

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(Subtitle: The Problems of Martyrdom)
It happened and barely anyone noticed. A few weeks ago, a grown man set himself on fire along the expressway in Chicago to protest the war in Iraq. He did it during the morning rush hour and beneath the Chicago Flame sculpture. On his website, he left an obituary and a suicide letter that rambled on about the injustice in the world, his struggle with alcohol, and some failed relationships in his life. So, to what end? I'm sure he horrified some accountants on their way to work, no doubt some daytraders, some secretaries, some janitors, some highway workers, some soccer moms.
I'm of the bizarre opinion that we are born as pure as we will ever be, and everything we add to that afterwards is just an insult to that life, including belief systems. And yes, I know, people hold dearly to their belief systems because they have convinced themselves that they are what they believe. It seems people live more in their mind during their lives than they do in their bodies. That's why the progression from belief system to suicide bomber, or soldier, or mass-murderer, or man-in-flames can be so easy for some.
The brain is a fragile thing and can be convinced of almost anything with enough repetition and emotion. Brains can turn against other people and against oneself. So....Malachi Ritscher commits an act of unspeakable violence against himself to protest the unspeakable violence in the world, therefore becoming the unspeakable violence himself, and adding one more drop of unspeakable violence to a world overflowing with unspeakable violence all for the fickle, unspoken opinions fluttering through a speechless mind. Brilliant.
It's a terrifying world. Take care of each other out there.

Signed, Mortimer Jones
The Parts and Labor Collective

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Secret Meeting Topics

This just in from the formica table of Mortimer Jones:

Topics to be discussed at the top secret summit meeting:

1. When to stage the overthrow of the gallery system as we know it.
2. Methods of undermining current artistic sterotypes.
3. How to properly harpoon a cuttlefish
4. Ways of disregarding delicate social traditions
5. What madness does Mathias St. John have in store?
6. Who the fuck is Mortimer Jones?
7. Who will shampoo the crowds at our next event?
8. The Mystery of Lily Mayfield.
9. Amelia's recent expedition to the Amazon.
10. MDF vs. Charlie D.
11. Proper protocol for social revolution.
12. The recent night tremors of Mortimer Jones
13. Fried Egg vs. Scrambled Egg
14. The Void and what to do with it.

Signed Mortimer Jones
Weak Muscled Acrobat of the Void
The Parts and Labor Collective

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Must-Have Words For Your Artist Statement!


AMBIGUITY -When you really have no idea what you're talking about

REPRESENTATION - Cus you gots to represent. Word.

CHIAROSCURO- Going Italian on yo ass!

STRATUM - Yes, ladies and gentlemen, it's getting deep!

CONTEMPORARY - Kind of like IKEA furniture, but nice!

INTERACTION - The only action that counts!

FIGURATIVE - Just so everyone knows you're still drawing naked people

TECHNOLOGICAL - Sound authoritative and still not understand your VCR!

CULTURAL STEREOTYPES - Yes even phrases can be stereotypical

ABSTRACT - just so everyone knows you're still drawing naked people ( but in secret)

DYSTOPIAN - It's more than a bad mood!

NARRATIVE - So you can tell people that you're telling people when you tell them.

ICONOGRAPHY - Cause things can get so iconoclastic sometimes!

SUBTEXT - When the real text just isn't enough.


-Signed Mortimer Jones
An Interactive Socio-Political Narrative on the Distopian Tendencies of the Contemporary Aesthetic
The Parts and Labor Collective

Friday, November 10, 2006

Naming Your Chicago Gallery 101!

1. Use your Name! Yes that's right! It's not just your name, it's an art gallery!
Show off your vanity and narcissism with style! Go with the obvious!
Let everyone know you have absolutely no imagination!
People won't know if you are a perfume brand or a gallery!

(Blake Palmer, Russell Bowman, Roy Boyd, Lisa Boyle, Shane Campbell, Aldo Castillo,
Melanee Cooper, Wendy Cooper, Douglas Dawson, Caro d'Offay, Carl Hammer,
Rhona Hoffman, Gwenda Jay............wow, just too many to list.....but wait....Stephen Daiter,
Kasia Kay, Rowley Kennerk, Gosia Koscielak, David Leonardis, Liz Long, Thomas Masters,
Thomas McCormick, Monique Meloche, Peter Miller, Ann Nathan, Navta Schulz, Thomas Robertello,
Byron Roche, Judy Saslow, Carrie Secrist, Linda Warren, Zolla/Lieberman, Catherine Edelman)

Brilliant and soooooo original!

2. Go futuristic! People have not evolved enough yet to pronouce your gallery's name!

(Ai, Cyt.O, Teti, Zg)

3. Abbreviate! When you can't think of anything....abbreviate!


4. Be Clever! That's right everybody let's get cute, let's get wild, let's get clever!

(4Art, Habatat)

5. Use a Stripper's Name! They're not just for lapdances anymore!

(Finestra, Lydon, Madron, Vespine, Prism)

Thursday, November 09, 2006

The Smallest Moment Can Be a Crisis

The smallest moment can be a crisis.
Isn't that what great art captures?
That moment of crisis, that singular moment that
turns everything on end, that decision, that direction,
that darkness in the eye, that dream that is still dissolving
from your memory, that memory that chases your heels
your entire life. The smallest moment can be a crisis.
You pass someone on the street, and inside they're exploding.
Everyone is an deaf explosion. We're all exploding.
People only find the pieces of scrapnel in your wake.

Who the fuck is Mortimer Jones?

So I started giving myself strange titles in all Parts and Labor correspondence...why?
Not sure really, just wanted to stretch my imagination a little.
Anyway, it has led to some strange and often funny aliases.

Here are a few of my favorites thus far....
Cosmological Orphan
CEO Invalidato
Darwin's Primordial Leg-Fish
Malformed Partial Sputnik (My personal favorite!)
and last but not least...
Seasonal Migratory WaterFowl #56

A Few New Ones:
The Semi-colon, Period, & Apostrophe S (I like it!)
The Improbable Impossibility
Precursory Wristwatch
Toll Booth Operator on Route Zero
Misinformed Accountant of God's Bastard Payroll (wow.)
Purveyor of Fine Meats
Plastic Inflatable Lover
Supposed Southpaw
Weak Muscled Acrobat of the Void
Cuddly Fuzzy Love Nugget
Proud Parent of a Unibomber
Subliminal Staff of Ra
Implausibly Plastic Army Man in the Battle of Synthetic Wits
El Communista Peachy
Smothering Grandma Since 1972
Canine Fitness Club
Post-Communist Fondu
Demoralized Chipotle
Hypothermia, Heartache & Hydroelectrics

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Change the Rules.

Artist goes to overpriced school.
Artist spends all their money.
Artist graduates from college.
Artist has huge student loan.
Artist can't find job as artist.
Artist starts waiting tables.
Artist wants to sell their work.
Artist goes to gallery to show their work.
Gallery charges artist to look at their work.
Gallery takes artist's work and puts it in a flatfile
Artist sells three pieces a year.
Gallery takes half of artist's sales.
Artist lives in ghetto and paints on plywood.
Gallery Owner lives in mansion and drives a Porsche.
People come to gallery and nibble cheese.
Gallery owner is fabulous. Artist eats Raman noodles.

Dec. 16th: We're Putting the Schvitz Back in the Pushke!

This just in from the folding card table of Mortimer Jones:

The Parts and Labor Collective will be following up our debut with a second remarkable event on Saturday December 16th.
New work from all the Collective artists plus exciting
new members showing for the first time with Parts and Labor. Painting, photography, sculpture. Save the date! Plus, the triumphant return to the turntable of destiny for DJ Brett Sweeney.
Stay tuned for continued bulletins.....

-Mr. Obsolete
Supposed Southpaw
The Parts and Labor Collective

Collective Members

The Parts and Labor Collective

Founding Members:
Daniel Gerdes : photo, mixed media
Leah Schrieber : painter (www.leahshreiber.com)
Charlie De Leonardis: painter
Josh Shelton: painter
Amelia Kiera: photo, mixed media (www.ameliakieras.com)
Dorian Allworthy: painter (www.dorianallworthy.com)
Meghan Stran: photo, mixed media

Satellite Members:
Stephen Eichhorn: installation, mixed media (www.stepheneichhorn.com)
Bruce New: collage, mixed media
Lily Mayfield: photographer
Mairead Case: words (www.maireadcase.blogspot.com)

Dissecting the Scene.....

So when you really start dissecting the art scene in Chicago.....you know....

Columbia vs. The Institute, you know the whole 2D vs. installation/performance, but we all end up waiting tables anyway. Seriously....no one should be paying 40 grand a year for the chance to gather change from between the ketchup bottles and the ashtrays. Stop paying art schools...it's just another corporation.....I mean have you driven through University Village?

River North vs. Pilsen, I mean can Pilsen really be that different when they're using the same lame model as River North. God save me from that sterile sophistication all galleries strive for. Can we ever escape the Nibblers? Will there ever be enough cubes of cheese?

Pilsen vs. River West, same thing here....I'm starting to think the same thing that is wrong with politics is what's wrong with art. All the wrong people seek out the power so all you end up with is bad policy.

And then the whole Lumpen crowd where you can't really tell if there is any real work happening beyond the Happenings....and the drugs...and the cartoons.......and the overpriced pretensions at Sonotheque........and the PBR endorsements. Probably not.

I mean making T-shirts has suddenly become a important pursuit?
We'll file that under Bicycle Messenger, and DJ and Graffitti Artist......
Maybe.... but where does commerce end and art begin, or vise versa? If art is just one more form of commerce then how can we defend it as a noble pursuit? We may as well spend our time counterfeiting money.

-Mortimer Jones
Malformed Partial Sputnik
Parts and Labor Collective