The Starving Artist Blog...
by Bruce Gray


27 Feb 2005:
I have just returned from the renowned TED (Technology Entertainment Design) Conference 2005. This annual 4 day event is held in Monterey, California each year at the Monterey Convention Center and features talks by dozens of the world's greatest minds and talents. The event kicked off with Nobel Prize winning scientist James Watson describing his adventures that led to his co-discovery of the structure of DNA. Other speakers included Bono from U2, Thomas Dolby, inventor Ray Kurzweil, comedian Ze Frank, and architect Thom Mayne. I even got to play drums in a drum circle on the beach at night with Mickey Hart, legendary drummer from The Grateful Dead. How cool is that! The event is by invitation only and costs $4400 per ticket, and includes all meals and great parties each night. The first night party featured sushi and cocktails at the world class Monterey aquarium which has the only great white shark in captivity. I spent a lot of time photographing the jellyfish, and was very happy to have brought my digital camera along. For my photos and more details on the TED speakers and links, go to my TED page here. The starving artist was invited to display his mobile sculpture Woka Woka One at TED, and was how I got into an event that I could not normally afford. The event was without a doubt one of the most inspirational of my entire life. I just hope they invite me back sometime. Very highly recommended! I was also inspired to start this blog after talking to the nice folks at Blogger.com who had a booth set up at the event. The starving artist in me had to wonder what happened to all the leftover food after those parties.

12 Mar 2005:
The starving artist donated a Cigar tabletop sculpture to the Artseen benefit auction for aids research. This upscale event featured artists like David Hockney, Keith Haring, Charles Arnoldi, Laddie John Dill, and photographers including Herb Ritts and William Wegman. The auction and party was held at the beautiful and historic Union Station building in Los Angeles. it was catered with yummy delictables from local restaurants including Cafe Pinot, Zucca, Angelique Cafe, Nick & Stef's Steakhouse and Spring Street Smokehouse. I was enjoying a cosmopolitan and talking to my friend artist Andre Miripolsky when I noticed actress Lauren Ambrose from HBO's Six Feet Under standing about six feet away. HBO had used a lot of my sculptures and paintings in this seasons episodes including using my name on the wall at "Claire's" art opening, and major features of my Big Cheese and Click Clack sculptures in the season finale. With this in mind, I introduced myself to the lovely Ms. Ambrose, and told her about my involvement with her show. She was very sweet, and said that everyone on the set was raving about my sculptures. For stills from the show featuring my sculptures click here.

16 Mar 2005:
The Dave Matthews Band was filming outside my sculpture studio for an upcoming video. This entitled the starving artist access to craft services and having a tasty lunch of prime rib and shrimp cocktail with the band and crew.

19 Mar 2005:
Just got back from a group show where I have some sculptures and paintings exhibited. The gallery is Studio Channel Islands Art Center on the campus of California State University. The show titled "The Brewery comes to Camarillo" is curated and hung by Michele DePuy Leavitt, who did a great job all around. The works look great, and the opening reception was very nicely put together. It is amazing how much better artwork looks when they are lit well and given some breathing room on a wall. I went up to the show with my artist friend Jim Hill in a beefy Mustang he got in a trade for his artwork.

22 Mar 2005:
Oh great, more rain! I have already had rainwater flowing across the floor of my studio like a stream three times this year, so I am ready for the usual summer with 6 months of no rain typical of Southern California. I still don't understand why we let all our rainwater flow directly down the LA "river" into the ocean, instead of allowing some of it to flow into large resevoirs we can use in the summer when its super dry.

27 Mar 2005:
I headed out this afternoon with my friend artist Michael Salerno to an opening at the Finegood Art Gallery in West Hills. We were both featured as part of a very cool group show titled "Music in Art - Shall We Dance." My Giant Guitar sculpture, Morphology wall sculpture, Cheborgie #2 rolling ball machine and High Heel Shoe sculpture #2 were all on display. Also featured in the show was my friend Guillermo Bert, another Brewerianian. Its always more fun to do shows where you have some of your friends showing too. Loved the brownies!

2 Apr 2005:
I had three of my metal high heel shoe sculptures featured at an Innocent Angel event at the Beverly Hills Country Club this evening. The DJ was playing the gig with a pair of ipods. There were some very foxy models working there which reminded me that I need to get out of the studio more often.

3 Apr 2005:
Today I received some photographs of my mobile sculpture "Mobile Alabama" hanging in it's new home at the Student Life Center at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. Click here for photographs. The purchase of this sculpture was sponsored by the Chi Omega sorority.
Thank you ladies!

4 Apr 2005:
I just had the renowned comedian Ze Frank visit me at my studio today. I had seen his killer performance at the TED (Technology Entertainment Design) Conference in February and had sent him an email about how much I enjoyed his work. It was very cool to meet him in person, and I look forward to following his career for many years to come. He combines humor with technology in a lot of varying and interesting ways as well. Check out his website and great sense of humor at www.zefrank.com.

5 Apr 2005:
This morning I was interviewed on the radio show "Coffee with Caryll" on All Talk radio.net. You can listen to the hour long interview on the Coffee with Caryll website by clicking here. Click on episode dated 04-05-05.

This evening I had a couple of beers with my artist friend Richard Ankrom and we went over to the Church of Art where we played various musical instruments including several Tibetan singing bowls along with legendary artist Lynn Foulkes who was playing his incredible musical one man band "Machine." Very fun!

6 Apr 2005:
Today the starving artist will have to make another futile attempt to get a certain Palm Springs gallery to cough up at least some of the $4100 they have owed me for years. What a nightmare getting paid by these jerks! Its hard enough making a living as an artist, but having to deal with people who owe you money but ignore your calls, and have a new excuse every time you get through to them is without a doubt the worst part of the art business.

9 Apr 2005:
Just got back from a group show at M.J. Higgins gallery that featured one of my mobiles. This new art gallery is showing some very cool work. The gallery is in a building in downtown LA that used to have a "speakeasy" illegal underground nightclub accessed by a hidden doorway underneath a hollow staircase. Very cool.

19 Apr 2005:
Today I met with someone from ABC TV about my appearance in an upcoming new TV show. They will be filming me at my studio next week. Details coming soon!

My sculpture "20th Century Icon" appears in the movie "Meet the Fockers" which came out on DVD today. Here is a link to a still from the movie featuring my sculpture in a scene with Robert De Niro, Ben Stiller, and Dustin Hoffman. I also just added stills from the movie "Raise Your Voice." Here are links to stills featuring my "High Heel Shoe sculpture #1" with Hillary Duff, and my "Click Clack" kinetic sculpture with Rebecca De Mornay. I gave Rebecca a private sculpture lesson and was interviewed by her in preparation for her role as a sculptor for this film.

21 Apr 2005:
Just finished building a couple of small shoe sculptures as a commission for The High Tea Society. They are to be given out for the 2005 High Tea Society's Style Maven Awards. Click here to see this award sculpture.

22 Apr 2005:
Went to an art opening at the Brewery Projects which featured some interesting sculptures incorporating video in various ways. Pretty cool show John. They ran out of beer right before Spanky walked in.

26 Apr 2005:
Got a call today from the other Bruce Gray who is an actor. We have become friends over the years after meeting because of his interest in the same domain name I bought for my website. He was in the area, so he dropped by the studio and took me out for dinner and brews at Barbara's. Bruce was descibing what it is like to do love scenes in front of a camera as he had to do on the popular series "Queer as Folk." I also hear that there are many fringe benefits to being a famous actor.

27 Apr 2005:
I have preparing my studio and doing drawing concepts for the ABC TV show "Ex Wives Club." They were scheduled to be filming me in my studio this Friday when the dreaded "sorry dude" call comes in. Seems they decided to switch to using an artist with a more feminine style. Oh well. I was looking forward to it, but that's Hollywood. Least they coughed up a kill fee.

Think I will mix up a nice glass of Kaluha and grapefruit juice. I call it a "paint remover."

2 May 2005:
I had a meeting today to discuss a large scale sculpture project that I am very excited about! I may have to learn how to operate a crane or something for this gig, as this piece is going to be seriously heavy. This could be the coolest and largest sculpture of my career so far. Details coming in the future!!! I am also talking with a museum in another country who is interested in a large scale kinetic rolling ball sculpture. If both these projects happen, I will be swamped for a solid year.....

Meanwhile back in the desert, those bonehead people who swore they were sending me an extremely long overdue check 2 weeks ago did not send it, once again, and are totally dodging my calls. You won't see me selling my work at that gallery ever again. I guarantee it.

14-15 May 2005:
I don't know how many of you have ever had a few thousand strangers walk through your home over the weekend, but that's what I did again for the annual spring Brewery Artwalk, which features the open studios of around 100 artists, sculptors, painters, photographers etc right here in beautiful downtown Los Angeles. If nothing else, this gives me the incentive to do a major cleanup of the studio. It is fun meeting lots of new people, getting lots of positive comments on my work, an occasional sale or 2, and its fun having a few pretty ladies flirt with me now and then.

4-5 June 2005:
One of my best friends and old college buddy from UMass, (formerly SMU) Steve Murphy (I won't mention his nickname) an accomplished potter from Boston came out for a visit. We sailed over to Catalina for the weekend with my brother Eric and one of my other best friends from UMass as well, Scott Bremner who is an in demand ad guy specializing in cars. Three of my best friends, great food, perfect winds, lots of tasty brews, a major dolphin sighting, and a great time had by all. Probably the first entire weekend I have taken off in years. My brother got chased down the beach by a sea lion in the dark, and all you could see is his flashlight bouncing around as he beat feet away from the disgruntled beast.

17-18 June 2005:
I was invited to display my sculptures at the Deviant Art Summit 2005 at the Hollywood Paladium for a couple of days. There was some very interesting displays from such computer and software companies like Adobe, Corel Painter, Wacom, etc, and I was wishing I could have attended a few of the training seminars offered, but I had to man the booth. I am so used to working at a fast pace, that sitting down at a booth for 2 days is difficult for me. At least the large quantity of free Red Bulls kept me going. Here is a link to the Deviant Art website.

20 June 2005:
Oscar Albuerne
, production designer from Discovery Channel's Monster House tv show stopped by my studio to say hi. Whenever the episode I was on re-airs (Retro Future House) I get a few emails or phone calls from old friends I've lost touch with, and even had an old Coast Guard friend drop by the studio for a couple of beers. I had not seen him since 1979. Here is a link to my Monster House photos and stuff.

29 June 2005:
I had two attractive Italian ladies come by my studio today to interview me for a TV show on MTV in Italy, called Loveline. They were mainly interested in my high heel shoe sculptures, but seemed to find many of my other sculptures interesting too. This should be airing on Italian MTV around September. I will be adding links to stills from the show in the future. Thanks MTV!

3 July 2005:
Today I saw my large standing man sculpture constructed of railroad spikes appearing on HBO's hit show Entourage. It is featured in the reception area for the office of director James Cameron, and Eric (actor Kevin Connolly) walks by it and takes a long look at it. See the stills from this scene here.

15 July 2005:
The set decorator from the WB TV show "Charmed" came by my studio today. It looks like my sculptures may be featured in quite a few upcoming episodes. More details soon.

16 July 2005:
I was just interviewed in my studio today by a group of folks from Hong Kong for a Chinese TV show called World Cultural Venues. This should be airing in China this September. You will also be able to view this show online. Photos and links coming soon!

3 August 2005:
The nice folks from Spelling Television's TV show "Charmed" came by today and rented my giant red shoe sculpture, large magnetic Suspension sculpture, a musical sculpture in progress, a paper plane sculpture, the Euphoria mobile, a table in progress, and a large stabile with circular balancing ring. They will be appearing in 2 upcoming episodes. Photos here now! Thank you Charmed!!!

5 August 2005:
Just recieved a copy of Lifescapes magazine featuring my Form Table. See the article here.

15 April 2006:
I was at the home of legendary rock star Gene Simmons from Kiss today. They requested 3 of my sculptures and 2 of my functional art chairs to appear in the upcoming reality TV show titled Gene Simmons Family Jewels for the A&E network. They filmed me bringing in the sculptures, setting them up and such for the day, so I may be appearing in an episode. It should be out this August. The show is about the day to day life of Gene, his longtime girlfriend model Shannon Tweed, and their 2 kids. Gene's a nice laidback kind of guy, but says he doesn't understand modern art. Won't hold my breath on a sale, though I did leave him with a set of my photographs. Photographs from the show coming soon.

I recently had my 4 skylights covered over by my landlord. This is because my roof leaks every time it rains, and has for 16 years +. I guess it was cheaper to cover the skylights over than replace the clear plastic roof material. Now I not only have no windows but no more natural light whatsoever. Who takes away an artists skylights, I mean seriously?! Now I live in a dark cave like scenario, and tend to wake up an hour later every day.

5 May 2006:
I was photographed today by renowned photographer Vern Evans. We did a series of photographs with me at work in the studio, making lots of sparks. Check out the photos from this shoot here.

6 May 2006:
Its the first Saturday of the month, and that means open art galleries at The Brewery artist complex. I was at Raid gallery and ran into actor Laurence Fishburne who was there to support an artist friend of his in the show. I mentioned to him that I have a great shot of him sitting in one of my chairs in the movie Biker Boyz. See that photograph here now.

20 May 2006:
I went to the Venice Family Clinic Artwalk benefit at Track 16 this evening where one of my wall sculptures was in the silent auction. As usual there were a lot of great artworks up for bid. My friends Scott and Derek joined me for the festivities, and lots of free tequilas. I ran into several of my artist friends there, and realized that after living as an artist for 18 years in Los Angeles, I knew most of the artists in the show. Two thumbs up for this event.

5 June 2006:
I installed my sculpture at Edwards Air Force Base today. It is a hanging mobile with 6 of my large aluminum paper plane sculptures. See photographs here now.

Another year goes by and I'm still not getting paid by that gallery in the desert.

Will Bruce land a big new commission?
Will Bruce be able to pay his ever increasing rent?
Will those dasterdly demons from the desert finally pay Bruceman?
Stay tuned as these fascinating topics and more will be detailed on the Starving Artist Blog.

Same blog time, same blog channel.

3 June 2010:
OK, so I got bored with this and skipped the last 4 years. If you want to keep up with what I am doing currently, check out my Facebook page by following this link.

Comments on this blog? Send them to the Starving Artist Blogmeister here.


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