Hart Island still haunts me. Today I am planning my next project about it. I found these HO scale figures in Denver. They have a bit of a problem standing, so I am experimenting with creating glue bases (that are supposed to dry clear). I am hoping I will be able to then place them in bottles to create some vignettes.
Correction: for the record, this is not an exact representation of how the prisoners work or bury the dead on Hart Island. After an extensive talk with Melinda Hunt, I feel I must add this information and admit to my artistic license in this depiction. No disrespect was meant in the interpretation.
I am also working on a project that was inspired by le petit journal des refusées a wonderful piece of artwork printed on wall paper. I have some generous friends, who, when I told them that I needed some old wall paper, went through their stuff and gave me more than I could have hoped for. One of the pieces that I got from Elizabeth was from a Frank Lloyd Wright pattern, with his signature printed on the back. For whatever reason, this made me think of forgeries and handwriting analysis. The writer who created le petit, Frank Gelett Burgess (hmmm, another three-named Frank) also wrote a book called Vivette. In the the chapter entitled "At the Old Stand," Vivette offers a solution to a beggar's plight:
'Look at the advertising pages,' said Vivette; 'there's more fun there than in a county fair! Listen here – I'll present you with a capital of one dollar, that you are to invest as the 'Twocenter' bids you. Do you see the free samples that are to be had for the asking? Do you see the illustrated catalogues? Do you see the agency offers? Here's work to keep your mail-carrier running for a year! Now this is what you are to do: you're to answer every blessed one of those advertisements and you'll have amusement enough.'And that is why there will be an old girdle ad in the print. Does this make sense to anyone but me?