Curiosities, quirks, oddites, and items from around the Bay and beyond
I was reminded of the words of visionary architect and late SF resident Achilles Rizzoli – who spent his life drafting gorgeous symbolic portraits of friends, family, and loved ones as fantastic buildings, the cornerstones of which would never be laid – when I saw this Wired video that Boing Boing posted about Rohnert Park artist Scott Weaver's enormous sculpture of San Francisco done entirely in toothpicks.
Weaver has been at work on his creation for nearly three decades, having turned down multiple offers last year from Ripley's Believe It or Not! Museum to buy what he views as an example of, as he told KGO at the time, "what can be done in life if you create and use your imagination."
"But is toothpick art woodworking?" asks Fine Woodworking Senior Editor, Tom McKenna, in an article from last August about artist Steven J. Backman, who he describes as, "perhaps the preeminent toothpick sculptor in the country." If Weaver's accomplishment evokes Bosch's Garden of Earthly Delights by its fantastic condensation, Backman's pieces – many of which are based on local landmarks and attractions, such as the Golden Gate Bridge or a trolley car – go the route of Picasso's early still life paintings, their forms connoted through pared down lines and simple, pronounced shapes. Even SF Mayor Gavin Newsom gave his seal of approval back in 2005, proclaiming January 11th of that year to be Steven J. Backman Day.
Backman's art is a wonder of engineering. But Weaver's is simply wondrous.
But what wonders of mental engineering also lurk in the virtual-pet analogue world?
And now, again, just in time for Easter, we turn to an Andy Rooney-inspired feature I'd like to call: "You got my goat!"
"Do you Want Men Dressed as Women Teaching Your Kids?"
But listen up, Traditional Values Coalition. We need to talk about your look. It's busted. Don't you know ominous, dark clouds went out of fashion after everyone and their mother mocked the National Organization for Marriage's "Gathering Storm" ad? Weak. Sauce.
What you need is some drag queen valkyries or some shit like that thundering out of the heavenly maw, ready to swoop down and piss on the souls of those studious young folk, whose preciousness is so inviolate as to make Justin Bieber look like the next jailbait-hungry mark to get punked on To Catch a Predator (just give him time).
If you want fierce, bitch, you gotta go Wagner.