27 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
Finally, my wife gave me her dirty undergarment to use as a model and I could finish my Used Panties International. She was just in the ovulation process of her menstrual cycle and the underwear was stained with heavy white fluid - just as I saw in the Akihabara sex shops. The problem was that the spot became more yellowish and transparent when it dried. How can the genuine Japanese panties have dry white fluid? Maybe it's a racial difference between Mediterranean and Asian women. I painted also some brown of the metabolic waste. I wanted to be a real expressionist painter and use the whole spectrum of the palette.
My best friend Jani and his fianceé Anna are coming to visit us this week. Now Jani is my curator too - he's doing a big show in Mänttä, Finland, next summer - and I'm nervous like before any curator meeting. I hope that my panties excite him.
CONFISCATED & REPATRIATED?
23 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
I'm doing work for too many projects at the same time: Animal drawings for Zoo, Kippenberger collaboration for Mänttä, ceramic Talavera plates for Bar 9 intervention, still continuing the Japanese drawing series, and the most urgent thing are the drawings for Beijing.
I'm a bit confused with China . What can I show there? Raúl wants hard core political stuff. Do they let me enter to the country with the "Human Rights Damage Our Economy" drawings (and with a tourist visa)? If they do, the drawings will be consfiscated before the opening and I'll be repatriated. Does it make any sense? At least, I'd have a good story to tell.
I e-mailed to the fantastic Spanish painter Judas Arrieta living in Beijing - I didn't know him personally before - and he offered me to stay in his place. Still, no news from The Artist Network, if they have money for my traveling. I should be in Beijing in four weeks!
21 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
I reserved many flights. I'm going to Finland in May and June and I asked prices for my possible trip to Beijing in April, too, but the best thing was that I got flights to Helsinki for my parents-in-law. We are all going there in August.
My father-in-law is a Spanish 75-year-old cowboy and he has never been abroad. He's a bit worried for eating in Finland - he has never tasted any foreign food, not even burger or pizza. I think there's no way to get him naked in a sauna with me. I promised him that there are bars in Finland and they serve wine from our province.
GIVING UP AT 35
16 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
Talking with my mother clarified my ideas about my life and work. I give up doing art when I'm 35, if still I can't earn my living with it. I don't want to live all my life on my wife's teacher's salary and I definitely don't want to be a pitiable resented middle-aged artist. 35 is a good age - then the football stars retire as millionaires - to start something new and completely different from art.
I'm now 30 years and eight months old, so I have four years and four months left to fight in the art world. I say what the sportsmen say: I'll do my best and we´ll see if it's enough.
Eight Do's and Don't's
13 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
My mother is visiting us this week and I'm on holiday. We do barbecues and sleep siestas and celebrate fiestas. Anyways, I'm thinking of People's Republic of China where I do an installation in April - if The Artist Network finds enough money for my traveling.
These are Chinese Communist Party's (or government, I've never understood the difference between the party and the government in single-part states) recommendations or rules for good citizens. Maybe they serve for other countries too - we consume mainly things made in China.
1. Love, do not harm the motherland.
2. Serve, don't disserve the people.
3. Uphold science; don't be ignorant and unenlightened.
4. Work hard; don't be lazy and hate work.
5. Be united and help each other; don't gain benefits at the expense of others.
6. Be honest and trustworthy, not profit-mongering at the expense of your values.
7. Be disciplined and law-abiding instead of chaotic and lawless.
8. Know plain living and hard struggle, do not wallow in luxuries and pleasures.
HAPPINESS & HEROES
09 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
Liliana asked me about being happy. Maybe I don't have any money but I've fulfilled many of my dreams.
I've strolled down Shibuya under the cold lights of the plasma screens. I've eaten Whataburger's Triple Meat in San Antonio. I've sung karaoke with Shenzhen sweat shop workers in their dormitory. My name has been printed in The New York Times. I've got married and my daughter looks like me.
Now I'm about to realize an impossible dream: I'm doing collaboration with the late Martin Kippenberger - my idol and my hero. Jani is curating a big show in Mänttä, Finland, and he wants to have a wall painting and drawing installation by Kippenberger and me. Kippenberger's drawings come from Julie's collection, I think she was dating him in the 80's. Our work will be titled Monument for the Brotherhood of Arms of Finland and Germany. That was Martin's idea - not mine.
Vicente Verdú wrote yesterday in El País that he sometimes believed being the only person understanding Jean Baudrillard, who died on Tuesday. I've never even tried to understand Baudrillard nor Kippenberger. I've enjoyed of them and used my heroes for my own purposes.
USED PANTIES INTERNATIONAL
06 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
In Japan, used panties are no longer available in the famous vending machines but you can buy dirty school girl and office lady underwear in any sex shop in Akihabara.
Inspired by my stay in Tokyo, I'm doing now panty art work. They will look very much like genuine stuff but my wife is not willing to collaborate and use them (she thinks my project is disgusting), so I have to imitate female bodily fluids with acrylic color - then my panties can be seen in the tradition of painting.
I LOVE VOTING AND BEER
04 March 2007, Cervera de los Montes
I've voted always. This week, I should go to the Embassy of Finland in Madrid to vote in the parliamentary elections.
Representative democracy is a beautiful idea but it doesn't work. The voters seem to think more of their own interests than their ideologies. If they have children, they vote the party that promises more money to the families, and if they have money, they vote the party that promises lower taxes.
I've voted always against my personal interest. For an artist, the ideal society would have a huge gap between the rich and the poor - the middle class doesn't buy art - but I've thought more about building a fair world globally for everybody.
After all, I'm not sure if believe enough in the democracy to spend one day for traveling over a hundred kilometers to Madrid. In Torrevieja, the Finnish ballot box is in Restaurante Los Arcos (seriously, it's not a joke). It sounds awesome to sip beer and vote at the same time but, unfortunately, Torrevieja is much further than Madrid from my village.