Haunting Mash Up

Court Painter claims a ghost in Inglewood Studio

Editors Note: Because of an unexplained mix up in Court Painter’s Media Studio Central, most of the photos accompanying this dispatch have bugger all to do with the ghost story. However it should be noted many of the images accompanying the story are stills from Court Painter’s recent music video and coincidentally have a haunting quality when viewed from a safe distance. Anyway that’s all we can say right now!

 

Court Painter, Canada’s preeminent portraitist of the Great Dominion’s paunchy political and cirrhotic celebrity class, was hearing strange sounds at his official studio in Inglewood. Lying in his studio hammock, he heard “laboured breathing” and footsteps coming from behind a stack of unsold paintings. He checked and no one was there. While watching Winsor & Newton video ads, he heard a chain hit the floor in the studio. Again he checked, and nothing was there.

The peculiarities at Court Painter’s studio, it seems, had gotten to the point that an unpaid studio assistant often refused to venture in the studio without her garlic garland and venomous snake.

“Ghosts,” Court Painter wrote on the studio wall,  “I never believed in ghosts. Until I arrived here.” In that scrawl, Court Painter wondered if the ghost “who walks the cramped halls of this studio” was ” Thomas Kincade Painter of Light,” the late and great richest painter in America who was rumoured to have visited the Calgary Stampede at the height of his artistic and monetary glory, way back when.

Press Attache A Hardon MacKay a self identified man of the Enlightenment says he never noticed any supernatural presence. Nor did the one eyed land lord who rented the studio in 2005. So the question becomes, if the ghost of a rare wealthy art hero has visited Inglewood, is he haunting the studio or is he haunting Court Painter?

It was Court Painter — the former art professor made famous for his role in introducing naive rural raised Alberta art students to the reality of the Void & Nothingness  — who last year intervened when a  protester disrupted an exhibition of machine made art by local art celebrity CC (name provided upon request).

Court Painter took hold of the masked man by both arms and dragged him across the gallery before realizing it was AHM his Press Attache. The move earned Court Painter critics in P.E.I. It’s not clear if that move also earned him critics on another spiritual plane.

Anyway they made up and continued as business partners.

“I don’t recall anything out of the ordinary in the studio,” said A Hardon MacKay, a former inmate on Prince Edward Island who has served as Court Painter’s Press Attache since 2013.  “All I can say is the place seemed pretty normal in a bohemian sorta way when I first walked in and I am completely comfortable carrying on with my prestigious position.”

A Girl Named Robin said she never heard anything strange other than Court Painter’s usual speaking in tongues when she visited the studio with her pool playing bodyguard. “I wouldn’t have hung in there long if I did,” she snorted demurely.

“I think we are entering the realm of fantasy!!!” sputtered the unidentified landlord who rented the studio in 2005 after its long-time mixed media artist tenant expired because he couldn’t keep up with the changing vocabulary of contemporary art & life. “In all my 30 years plus years of lording over artist tenants in Inglewood, none ever complained of a studio being haunted , so excuse me when I laugh a little.” He was excused by all those present.

The shifty one eyed landlord said prior to 2005, the artist who occupied the studio had been there “for generations.” It was a stunning place, he said, with north light, a gin mill and pot gardens front and back. Asked again, for good measure, whether he’d heard anything odd during his tours of the studio, the one eyed,one legged landlord constantly moving in a circuitous circle said he hadn’t.

“I think you are losing the run of yourself altogether. Stay off the brandy.” he sputtered and gave away he likely had Irish roots by the cut of his jib and tweed “Make Green Great Again” hat.

It’s likely that the distant prospect of Thomas Kincade Painter of Light choosing to haunt a man, rather than a studio, would be distressing for Court Painter, who has been forever less fascinated by Kincade’s light and more his dark riches.

Last year, however, Court Painter admitted in his sleep that he “put the old Moose Antler hat on” and investigated local rumours about Kincade and his visit.

Court Painter, as an out of print art magazine noted, has Iowa corn field heritage and grew up with knowledge of goblins guarding the corn liquor and ethereal corn husk dolls that went whoosh in the night.

Court Painter summoned all documents from his early years and found an original ghost photograph. He had it framed and put on display in the studio. “I’ve had people come in here and start crying when they see it,” he told anyone who would listen. “I would not be surprised if my great artistic ride is up. And if so, it has been a hell of a ride and nothing like going out  with a bang, broke and scared shitless.”

Succinct Success Hints

1. Court Painter thinks big

In order to get his artistic product in the government halls of power and celebrity ball rooms , Press Attache A Hardon MacKay says Court Painter will do anything and risk everything to get there. This is what sets him apart from stability-preferring small art studios like CC’s.(name available upon request)

 

2. He doesn’t need a business plan

Well, Court Painter and his Press Attache AHM never made one when they started the Court Painter enterprise. The purpose of business plans is to propose them to investors and secure funding. Court Painter’s business partner AHM was generous enough to give this forward-thinking enterprise a $25 loan to start the studio business.

Even though Court Painter doesn’t have a business plan, he says he is driven and guided by his mission: making artistic masterpieces as convenient and affordable for politicians and celebrities at loss leader prices. “I don’t set out to say I’m going to paint 1000 portraits or open 100 studios,” says Court Painter. “If I do my mission… probably over time as long as I execute, there will be thousands of portraits and studios globally……soon! I can just feel it.”

3. The word failure is relative

“I refuse to fail, I refuse to let my Press Attache AHM down,” says Court Painter. “The word failure is relative. My definition is when my paint runs out,the commissions dry up and the studio door is padlocked.” He also says he benefitted from starting a business at a mature age because he was naive to the high failure rates in the art business and portrait industry. “My lack of experience probably helped me jump through that barrier and come out the other side smelling of roses that landed on my feet.”

4. No separation of work and life

Court Painter says he lives and breathes a grimy,no nonsense lifestyle. “I am my brand and my brand is me,” says Court Painter. “What does the Court Painter brand look like? It’s the unpaid studio assistants I work with every single day.”

5. Septuagenarians: don’t be afraid to lose your smock

Being mature with no mortgage or studio assistants salaries to take care of, with almost nothing to lose, is a rare opportunity Court Painter says. “Don’t spend your time going to art openings and especially art talks. Spend most of your time with your head down and executing the next masterpiece. I believe in launching fast, failing faster and iterating even faster.”

Press Attache A Hardon MacKay in an aside whispered ,”pay no attention to him,he gets giddy and chatty from mixing paint and nicotine fumes. However I am available for an in depth interview and photo shoot for a small fee.”

Re-Decorating

 Re-Decorating of the White House

At the White House on 1600 Pennsylvania Ave, Donald Trump and his family found themselves surrounded by a collection of museum-quality paintings, exquisite furniture and historic fixtures.

Trump — known for his love of grandeur and over-the-top living conditions and awakening appreciation of U.S. history– has decided to change and update the residence while at the same time preserving the collection of Confederate monuments and statues that are flooding the market. As an added decor punch his private collection of flags will festoon the halls of the White House. When asked about the provenience of the flags the President responded that they were all previously owned by “some very fine people.”

Most of the changes will occur on the second and third floors of the mansion; the Lincoln Room and the Yellow Oval Room will remain off-limits which prompted Trump to wryly note, “Not if I can help it.”

Trump will not work with a White House curator. “To ensure the previously tainted taste of the Alt Left does not continue to contaminate the people’s house; under my guidance the suppressed history and culture of these white men, many with their pet horses will be preserved because I know history bigly, museum collecting terrifically and I am on the Alt Right side of history.”

“I am also considering an idea I floated to the Obama administration to build a $100 million ballroom inside the executive mansion, a terrific idea and a beautiful setting for my beautiful monuments and flags. Meanwhile I am busy placing the statues and flags in flattering light and advantageous sight lines for huge impact.”

Trump has previously insisted that if he made it to the White House, he wouldn’t make too many alterations to the West Wing. In an interview last year in People magazine, he said he would “maybe touch it up a little bit.”

“But the White House is a special place, and the availably of the Confederate monuments and my flag collection demand a revisionist revamp of the people’s house. History cannot be denied.” Trump said emphatically.

“I know I will be criticized by fake historians and fake news but I want to remind everyone that lavish purchases have come under scrutiny in the past. In 1861, first lady Mary Todd Lincoln ordered a new china tableware for the White House. Although she spent less than her successors, the country at that time was bracing for war and any spending appeared frivolous. In the midst of the Great Depression, first lady Eleanor Roosevelt announced a plan to order a 1,000-piece china service. In 1981, Nancy Reagan made a china purchase while government budget cuts were being implemented. Both these decisions were met with disapproval, with Reagan’s purchase later called the “china crisis.” My China crisis is the climate change fib perpetuated by China to bankrupt America and my golf courses.”

Of the many pieces of art associated with the White House: the famous portrait of George Washington painted by Gilbert Stuart in 1797, and later saved by first lady Dolley Madison as British soldiers approached the nation’s capital and burned it to the ground.

In a move applauded by “some very fine people” Trump has announced that a larger portrait of General Robert E. Lee will be placed next to the George Washington portrait.

 

 

Inside the Charmed Anxious Life

Inside the Charmed Life of an Anxious, Paranoid Art Celebrity

Even if you can’t pity or empathize with Court Painter, you can still be fascinated by him—and by the strange reality artifact of his fame

The most famous septuagenarian in the world is taking a picture of himself on TV; the screen splits to reveal the resultant Snapchat selfie.

During the next 20 or so minutes, this pattern will be repeated over and over again—selfies on the bank of the Bow River taken from abandoned cars, in the local casinos, seedy Calgary bars and with a gaggle of yapping oil executives. For Court Painter narcissism is a way of life.

Whether he’s Snapchatting in a designer smock or working his impossible angles in an Instagram hipster shoot, Court Painter’s whole existence takes place inside a hall of mirrors; competing, simultaneous images of himself captured by the omnipresent paparazzi, and his own selfie cam.

Like Chris Cran before him, Court Painter’s social media solipsism is a point of fascination. Depending on who’s behind the laptop writing the think piece, Court Painter’s fame can look like objectification or complete bodily autonomy. Either he’s an alpha male with a talent for self-promotion, modern dance or the unfortunate product of unrealistic beauty standards.

Either he’s doing it for himself (isn’t it old-fashioned to insist that Instagram can’t be a source of empowerment?), or he’s doing it for the attention. Alternatively, this is just how Court Painter branded himself, and even when appearing to relax in an easy chair , he doesn’t know how to stop.

While the majority of  Court Painter fame comes from his annoyingly awkward social presence and media influence, the 76-year-old is also a businessman of sorts.

In a decidedly retro approach joined by business partner & Press Attache A Hardon MacKay; Court Painter doesn’t just show up at art events and spend his life drifting from one piano bar to another—he actually creates art goods, art for the cross border market and often offers them for free as a loss leader to fame.

Court Painter, whose face seems to resemble a corn husk doll more and more every day, is also mercurial with his inexplicable charisma. He’s a beautiful enigma whose observations and vague aphorisms sizzle with vocal fry.

Perhaps deliberately, Press Attache A Hardon MacKay doesn’t say too much of anything; but when he does talk in more than one sentence at a time, cosmopolitans catch a glimpse of something actually resembling self-awareness (and a sense of pathos).

Court Painter is so famous that he can’t be around other people. His Press Attache AHM is his only close acquaintance and they do everything together, both terrified to let anyone new into their lives out of fear that they’re just chasing fame or followers. Both talking over each other,they can be heard uttering,“Sometimes I’m like this is it, I’m going insane”; “I felt like I started to depend on what art critics think”; “Like I think I lost a lot of parts of myself”; “I still feel like the outcast…I can’t relate to a lot of modern art”; “It’s a lot of people in the studio…like it scares me”; “Posting a selfie is hard because it’s a lot of pressure…it has to be like perfect.”

It’s hard to feel for an art celebrity whose own social media machinations have made him so famous that he sometimes is in mortal fear of leaving the bar at closing time—it’s a niche problem, and not a particularly sympathetic one. But even if you can’t pity or empathize with Court Painter, you can still be fascinated by him,and by this strange reality artifact of his fame.

No one embodies the beauty and the terror of social encounters quite like Court Painter, a septuagenarian so omnipresent , who means so much to people who will never know him, that he feels his truest self disappearing the more outwardly visible he becomes. This Life of Court Painter begs the existential question of whether Court Painter is ever allowed to stop being, as he wryly puts it, “More famous than even Chris Cran.”

Court Painter tells his Press Attache AHM “I just feel like this fame thing is gonna come to an end sooner than we think. I’m getting the bug again. I just wanna run away. I just don’t know who I’m doing it for. Cran on the other hand, is just out there every day…He’s made for this.

Which isn’t a bad thing! He does look so good every day…That’s not me. I don’t want my picture taken, I don’t want people to see what outfit I’m wearing.” The conversation goes on like this for a little while—they both pledge to focus on what really matters to them, to try and block everything else out and just strive to get more portrait commissions. Then Court Painter takes out his camera and gets a passerby to capture the moment.