Mike Portrait No. 7 June 2017 – Fear

This may be the last portrait in the June 2017 series of portraits of and about my older brother Mike.*  I don’t think there is much more for me to say, visually, about Mike at this time. Forcing the issue is not a productive endeavor, so for the moment I will put it to rest. […]

Mike Portrait No. 6 – Hiding

Yesterday’s portrait showed my brother Mike’s* rage at himself. His self harm would usually involve hitting his head, biting his hand and slamming his arm into his chest. I mentioned yesterday that, when I was growing up in the 1950s and 60s, I was not frightened of him.  Maybe I should have been. Mom told […]

Mike Portrait No. 5, June 2017

The fifth of this series of portraits of my brother Mike* is a bit different than the others. Mike would often display fits of rage, directed at himself. Some docs thought he was Tourettic, others thought it was a behavioral issue. The point is, Mike could be frightening. I weathered the storm and didn’t believe […]

Mike Portrait No. 4, June 2017

I began this fourth portrait of my brother Mike*, with frisket squiggles to sketch out an eye and lips. Jarring the paper side to side and up and down created traces, traces that have meaning. This is almost a double portrait. Possibly it is a portrait of the space between two people, the channel that […]

Mike Portrait No. 3, June 2017

I began today’s study with compass and ruler, Kandinsky’s work in mind. Usually I have a couple of paintings going at the same time, so I had not planned this one to be part of my current portrait series. I’m not quite sure how it became one. I drew on symbols and visual elements I […]

Mike Portrait No.2, June 2017

For a change of pace, I will return to portraits of my brother Mike for a while. He is autistic, low functioning and nonverbal. Mike currently lives in a geriatric group home back east.  I took photos of him for many years; since I moved away I’ve been painting compositions related to my experience with […]

Now What?

I get in a creative rut every now and then. I can’t seem to think of anything new to paint or draw. Sometimes, looking at my books about art by my favorite artists, and essays by knowledgeable critics, gives me a boost. What I seek from my readings and reproductions of art from the masters, […]

Early Music Exposure

I’ve mentioned before that both my parents loved music. Dad let my older brother Mike* play on the piano and I’m sure they played classical music records all the time when he was around. For a time Mike responded. I’m told he could hum entire movements from symphonies. By the time I came on the scene, Mike […]

Dad Playing the Violin for Mike

My brother Mike is autistic, low functioning and nonverbal. He was diagnosed shortly after autism was classified in 1952 DSM. Mike was at home until I was 10 years old. My parents then made the decision to send him to Willowbrook where they thought they would take care of him. We visited just about every […]

Eye and Body

I seem to be creeping back to the icons I developed whilst sorting out my relationship with my older brother Michael. Mike is autistic, low functioning and nonverbal. Eyes play an important part in attending to other people. I could never seem catch Mike’s eye. Here is a list of some of the posts in […]