20x24 resin coated
One of the best shows I ever went to was the Yeah Yeah Yeahs at Logan Square Auditorium in Chicago. It’s a small venue - I was in my mid-twenties and true to form we decided we’d just wait in line for tickets at the door (I’m dating myself here.)
The very first time I saw the Yeah Yeah Yeahs was on an HBO special - YYY live at the Fillmore. My friend Phil said, “Squirrel - prepare to fall in love.”
Which is exactly what I did. Karen O- one of my modern-day rock heroes and frontwoman for the band - had on this disco ball-like blue half dress with giant shoulder pads, her eyes painted like the hamburglar, and one black glove with sparkly black fringe down to the floor. I’ll never forget hearing the opening riff of “Black Tongue'' for the very first time - or the way that Maps made me cry for the first time. Back then I didn’t know how to paint anything - but people that created brilliant music and knew how to perform showed me what it is to create and be brave enough to put it out there.
The show at Logan Square was in February. We figured we’d get there at 5 to get tickets at the door by six and be in by seven. It was sideways rain sleeting as it does in Chicago in February. It was the early 2000s so I had on a slip dress over jeans with a giant belt and sweater sleeves covering my arms. I remember this because I didn’t wear a coat.
We froze in line outside until 10 pm. That was the day I learned to drink johnny walker black - running to the bar across the streets to take shots of whiskey to keep warm. There's something magical about the memory of waiting in a line outside in the miserable cold to go see a concert with my group of friends - all in different cities and lives now. Chain-smoking cigarettes & talking shit about going to burning man someday. Remembering a person I was that I’ll never not be, but never be again. We were the very last section of people they had enough tickets for. We made it in.
That night they had so many tracks from their brand new work, Show your Bones, with the first single, Gold Lion, in their set. I had not listened to any of it yet and didn’t know many of the songs. But it is a body of work that will follow me for decades to come. That album to me defines one of the most formative relationships I’ve had in life. A moon without a tide is a metaphor for a relationship that lost all of its emotions and feelings. There was so much there but the partying kind of took its place.
This painting is about the time in my life when I didn’t know the difference between what was magic and what was pain - and I could still see in tiny intervals only pain or only magic. This canvas is a glimpse of what I thought that magic was.