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Guest Blog: Michael Krueger

Written by Michael Krueger   
Wednesday, 17 February 2010 03:15
Kansas based artist and professor, Krueger blogs his trip to Scotland to participate in a 3 person show and to teach a silkscreen t-shirt workshop at the Edinburgh College of Art. Check out this blog about my trip to Scotland, where I spent time shuttling between Glasgow and Edinburgh. I jumped over the pond to attend the opening reception of Three Americans, Randy Bolton, Michael Krueger & John Schulz at the Glasgow Print Studio. The show features new prints by each of us. The Glasgow Print Studio is a dreamy print facility located in the heart of the Glasgow city center. I also got to meet a bunch of great Scottish artists and visit their studios. And I taught a down and dirty silkscreen t-shirt workshop at the Edinburgh College of Art. I am an artist living in Lawrence Kansas and teaching at the University of Kansas. I travel quite a bit for shows and lectures and things. It was a hoot to put this blog together, I hope you enjoy it! -Michael Krueger

'Scroggie' vision! I landed in a haze of crystal fog and jet leg. Somehow I dodged every winter storm between Kansas and the UK.

The first thing I did was 'scoush' over to the Glasgow Print Studio and Gallery where they were setting up the show – Three Americans, Randy Bolton, Michael Krueger & John Schulz, 8th January - 27th February 2010, 97-101 Trongate, Glasgow, UK

As we were unpacking the art, I found out that my cohorts (John Schulz & Randy Bolton) were stuck in airport hell in Heathrow. Thank goodness I flew via Amsterdam. Dank u, Netherlanders, for being organized.

I had a bitchin' crew setting up the show so all I had to do was layback. I did turn them on to mighty magnets and hanging the work. It was the way to go for unframed prints. Jo Ganter and Ros headed up the exhibition installation.

John Mackechnie the director of the Glasgow Print Studio put the final touches on the show. John is a super swell guy and one hell of an artist, as well as the mastermind behind the Glasgow Print Studio.

Three American Artists, Randy Bolton, Michael Krueger & John Schulz. Two prints are color woodcut prints by John Schulz.

Exhibition shots of 'Hippy Papers', Michael Krueger. These are color lithographs, 34" x 22" created in late 2009.

Exhibition shots of Randy Bolton's color screen prints.

This is my favorite Randy Bolton print in the show. His work has all of the cheery traits of the appropriated children's book imagery and all of the deeply rooted psychological dementia of a world gone wrong.

'Hippy Papers' print, "Freethinker". This past year I started making these prints with an interested in recreating ephemera from the late 60's & 70's. I like the idea of recreating something that was originally created for the 'moment', and ruminating on the failed or perhaps flawed utopia ideas of this time period. I started taking my own photographs for these prints instead of appropriating old photos of hippies. This one is of my friend Adam.

'Hippy Papers', "Feed Yer Head".

'Hippy Papers', "I'll Be There for You".

Michael Krueger with 'Hippy Papers', "Yippy". My son Jasper is featured in this print. Jasper Michael Spicero, AKA Emperor Moth.

'Hippy Papers', "Gone".

The opening was a smash despite the 'harr' and 'ourit' Scottish night.

The next day in cheery old Glasgow I spent the day of visiting studios and museums. This photo was taken near the Trongate Artspace, where the Glasgow Print Studio is located. It is a tower that they once hung people from. The last man to be hanged in Glasgow was Dr. Edward William Pritchard, on 28 July 1865. 100,000 people attended his hanging. And as the story goes his brothers jumped up and swung on his legs as he fell so as to break his neck quicker – at least that's what I heard.

First stop was Jo Ganter's studio. She is a celebrated talent in Scotland who teaches at the Edinburgh College of Art and a longtime member of the Glasgow Print Studio.

Jo shared a few of her giant etchings with me. These things are incredible in person. There is so much detail and nuance to these prints.

Jo etches steel. Yeah! She is tough like that. She combines photo etching with line etch, aquatint and whatever it takes to make these images sing.

The People's Palace! What a trip. This place is one of those weird European museums that have everything rolled into the collection, from torture devises to comedian's banana boots. I loved it.

This is a circa 1970 portrait of the comedian Billy Connolly and next to that his banana boots. Banana' grams baby!

Day 4, Edinburgh! My friend Gordon Brennan took me to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. We also went to the Dean Gallery where we saw this outdoor piece by Scottish artist, Nathan Coley.

Gordon Brennan's studio at the sea. Gordon is Associate Head of the Schools of Drawing & Painting & Sculpture / Head of Drawing & Painting at the Edinburgh College of Art. I hope I never have a title like this one. Even with a title, Gordon finds time to restore old cars and make art.

Gordon showing me some of his new wee paintings.

An array of Gordon's amazing altered found objects.

Gordon was stoked to show me his cheapo collection of crap tin cars that he scored at Uncle Fun in Chicago.

After a quick tour of the studio we headed down the alley towards the sea.

And ended up at a local pub for a pint and some lively Scottish folk music. Perfect!

The next day I went over to the Edinburgh College of Art to visit some artists' studios and set up for my workshop. This is Jamie Kinroy showing me his drawing helmet. As you can see it is a little on the snug side.

Jamie is a wildly talented young artist, DJ and zine'ster. This is a shot of one of his new zines.

And another shot of the folksy and nightmarish zine art of Jamie Kinroy.

Alexa Hare, was there to share her psychedelic party time paintings.

Alexa's tutors told her that she was spending too much time in the pubs so she turned her studio into a bar, complete with a disco ball.

Alexa is a mega talent who is going to be exploding on the scene real soon. She is a painter and a musician. I was totally absorbed by her day-glow landscapes and mindscapes. This painting is a recreation of the psychedelic visions in Stanley Kubrick's, 2001: A Space Odyssey.

This one is a portrait of Butthole Surfers lead singer, Gibby Haynes.

Next studio stop, Kit Leffler.

Kit is completing her MFA at ECA. Her cute and grisly work charmed my senses and frightened my soul, just a little bit.

Recycled hippo mask!

Kit's puppets and masks are works on their own and also remnants of past performances.

Okay, now down to brass tacks! It was time to make some t-shirt drawings and get set up for my silk-screen workshop. Woo hoo.. I love making t-shirts.

Bringin' the freethinking mock history for the flawed utopia to the people!

Break time. Enjoying a pint with Kit and Jamie.

One by one the ECA students rolled down the printshop for a free t-shirt and some tutorin' on making 'art merch' for the hell of it.

I made this design for the school.. whether they liked it or not.. HA!

Those art kids loved getting free junk and put that cotton on the body pronto.

uurghh.. A dirty hippy has some lunch.

Painted lady getting ready for some funhouse swag at the Laugh-in? These t-shirts and others by my wife Donika Wiley and myself are for sale at Needles & Pens, SF, SooVAC, Mpls, (11), NYC and Wonder Fair, Lawrence, KS.

Alas the sun does shine occasional in Scotland, until next time, save me a room at the castle. "Och Aye, Hoots the Noo" – Michael Krueger {moscomment}

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