Tag Archives: artist

Caleb says the BIG BLUE thing in the middle of his mural is a happy feeling or maybe a beloved pet …

 

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By Rosalie Tirella

… if that’s what I see (my suggestions to him).

He says it’s up to us to get what’s up on the wall of the Denholm Building in downtown Worcester.

We don’t exactly get it. But it’s cute! Very smiley face! Very Harvey Ball-like!

I asked Caleb what he was thinking about when he painted his mural…. What was he trying to depict/feel…

Much hemming and hawing. He did say, very clearly:  “My wife works in Worcester.” He also said he’s been trying to paint murals in Worcester for years…

That told us:

1. He may be kinda “connected” – very important in  Worcester – meaning InCity Times’ former illustrator and TOTALLY TALENTED AND INTELLECTUALLY HONEST muralist, Pito, the Latino wonder, had no fucking chance of getting this gig…

2. and Caleb was/is gonna try to keep the powers that be in Worcester happy (slap happy?) so that they can keep giving him work – the chance to do more cute art in Woo …

Here’s the rub: Worceter’s the second largest city in New England!

We have a heroin problem! Nine maybe 10 bodies dead due to drug overdose in 8 days!

Our economy is a tad better than most Gateway cities, but we need more jobs. We’ve got tons of poor folks. PLUS: There was a NOOSE found in the US post office branch in the DENHOLM building where Caleb painted his mural!!

Art can be fun and cute and pretty .. . It can be soothing …. it can be political ….

This mural seems fun and cute…Still what do the down, battered buildings mean on the left? Why are they up straight to the right? What was Caleb’s point??? We suggested to Caleb, when we pounced on him this afternoon and took pics of him and his mural, that the blue fuzz ball he painted in the middle was happy postive feelings and maybe this was gonna make downtown Worcester strong and  happy again. He said his blue fuzz ball was a female, as it was sporting a ribbon.

Wish the ribbon-sporting blue fuzz ball  hadn’t been painted on such a big prominent spot in the city!

But it does pretty things up!

Now if it had been Pito: Pito would have shared more than Caleb: Pito told us and would tell you, anyone – that he was arrested years ago and thrown in jail for a crime he did not commit. It fucked him up. Left him angry and sad. His illustrations for InCity Times showed that. Some of his murals were a tad foreboding… but they could also be light and happy! Pito painted, among other walls,  the former COW JUMPING OVER THE MOON MURAL at the Corner Grille over on the West Side – up on Pleasant Street, by Richmond.

BEAUTIFUL!

Pito could be moody,  sensitive, tough … real. He didn’t kiss up to anyone!

If the City of Worcester big wigs AND THE ARTS “COMMUNITY” wanted something cute and frivolous Pito would have obliged and come up with something great. AND they would have been supporting a WORCESTER ARTIST, a WOO PERSON OF COLOR whose friends and relatives would have flipped! Somone whose former teachers and co-workers, etc etc could have crowed about to EVERYBODY!! A guy who is challenging! TRUE…

Oh, well. More buildings in Woo that need more public art.

Gary, Main South street artist

Gary at work – clean and sober!

Some of Gary’s paintings! If you would like to own any of these paintings and/or want to support a guy trying to stay in recovery, please BUY A PAINTING! You can call InCity Times editor Rosalie T. for more info: 508.963.8386.

Story and photos by Ron O’Clair

Today is the 11th of February, and it marks the 30th day of sobriety for Gary Osher.

He lives in a room on Main Street in Worcester overlooking “ground zero” the neighborhood adjacent to the location that formerly housed the “PIP Shelter”.

Gary accompanied me one night some time back when a friend was moving, and I needed some extra hands to help. I was not aware that he was so inebriated that he could barely function. He was a huge embarrassment for me, and said some inappropriate things to a mutual woman friend while there.

Really raunchy things; and the woman he said them too is a married woman.

My friend who was moving was beside herself, and justifiably upset with me for bringing a drunk to a moving party.

Gary was so drunk; he slipped and fell on the stairs, not once, but twice, the second time kicking out one of the balusters in the hand rail going down the stairs.

Gary and I had an interesting conversation on the way home after that. I have a number of years in recovery from alcoholism myself, and I urged Gary to consider stopping his drinking, and concentrate on his artwork, as he is a very talented painter when not under the influence of alcohol.

I am pleased to report that perhaps that was the incident that finally got through to Gary, because he has been sober for 30 days as of today.

He goes to the street ministry that comes to our neighborhood every Saturday, and the Reverend Richie Gonzalez has been helping Gary with inspirational messages and counsel from the good book.

When Gary drank, he drank Vodka, and lots of it. It was so bad, that his hands would shake uncontrollably and he could not hold a paintbrush steadily in his hand to paint. I have a couple of his paintings, and they are very well done, he even made the frames that they are in.

Turns out the woman he accosted with vile language is an artist of some renown who has her own gallery on Greenwood Street and is like me, a friend of Bill W. and is more than willing to help Gary with his addiction problem. She has consented to display some of his paintings in her gallery.

Worcester is full of people in the throes of addiction, like most large urban areas throughout America of this day and age, and there are a surprising number of people like the woman and myself who are willing to help people into recovery from drug and alcohol addiction.

In fact the woman who was moving was also concerned about Gary’s well being and sent him a gift bag with some nice presents in it.

The outpouring of concern and caring shown by all of us had a lot to do with his decision to stop drinking and concentrate on creating beautiful paintings. At least I believe that to be the case.

It took a concerted effort of many people to influence Gary in a positive way to stop killing himself slowly with alcohol, and start on the long road to sobriety.

It was not simply the talk I had with him, or the embarrassment he felt when told how he acted inappropriately the day of the move, or the Reverend Gonzalez and his counsel, but rather a combination of support from all these people to show Gary that life is worth living, and you can live better sober than you can when inebriated to the point that you cannot function normally in society.

There are lots of Gary’s in our society that could benefit from intervention from concerned citizens that are willing to take the time to try and help someone for the sake of helping them, if for no other reason.

We all see what happens to people like Gary when left to their own devices.

I am going to be there for Gary when he needs help overcoming his alcohol addiction, it is part of my own recovery process to help other people achieve sobriety. It helps me to help others, the more I do, the more I get, not in monetary gain, but in spiritual progress.

If you know someone who is struggling with an alcohol or drug addiction or a combination of both, reach out to them with an offer of support by being there to listen to their problems, counsel them in the fact that none of their problems will get any better by continuing to drink or drug, and call someone to offer help. There are several organizations that are there for people like Gary, you can call A.A. or N.A. You can talk to the people that answer those lines about having someone come to see the individual and do what is known as a 12 Step call on them.

It may not work, but it is worth a try. Doing nothing is not a viable option.

I am pleased at Gary’s progress, Gary himself is pleased that he has had the ability to put down the vodka, and be sober for the last month. One day at a time, things get better.

We thank the Occupy Movement …

… for opening the country’s eyes … for changing the political discourse (made a big difference election time!) … for advocating for the poor, the dispossessed, the average guy/gal, the working class bloke/blokette, the middle class … . For showing the world the USA is more liberal, more multi-voiced, much more INTERESTING than Romney and the Republicans want to admit. … Love this Shepard Fairey … R. Tirella

 

Shepard Fairey images: The Protester

The work of Shepard Fairey

The Protester (2011)

“I really identified with the Occupy movement when it began. So when Time magazine came to me at the end of 2011 and said: ‘We’d like you to do our Person of the Year cover, which is about The Protester,’ I only really wanted to do that if I could make as much about Occupy as possible. They sent me a lot of reference images and this photograph of [Occupy LA protester] Sarah Mason was really powerful.” – Shepard Fairey

We also love these silk screens. This guy is political – a street artist.  Spread his messages around. Maybe make some cool holiday cards …   R. Tirella: