Monthly Archives: December 2010

The Professor

Recently one of Seattle’s most celebrated artists had yet another big gallery show. He has been a UW professor for over 40 years. His artwork has been admirable and adventurous, and he remains prolific and diverting.

However the Good Doctor’s personal experience of his teaching back in the 60’s was disconcerting. The professor was so focused on a raven-haired, hawk nosed co-ed wearing low-rise bellbottoms that barely a dozen words of instruction could be spared on other students during the quarter. The Doctor took no further courses from the esteemed professor, but has, nevertheless, been a great admirer of the artwork and the many stylistic variations. On the other hand, several of the more conscientious and informative instructors have not had art careers of much distinction. Being a good teacher and being a serious creative force are often two mutually exclusive paths.

Dr. JohnnyWow! will be 70 in August, and has been involved in the arts for 50 years. One of the few pleasures of advanced age is the vision that long observation yields. Only a tiny number of creative people will prosper in the arts. “Many are called, but few are chosen”, is an old adage. Persistence does not lead to fame and fortune. The various Life Passage Trajectories often bemuse the Good Doctor.

An aspect of the state of the Arts

“The thing I hate most about advertising is that it attracts all the
 young, bright, creative people, leaving us with only the slow and 
self-obsessed to become our artists. Modern art is a disaster area.  
Never in human history has so much been used by so many to say so 
little.” – Banksy

Banksy voices a common lament and he is recycling ideas from the previous century. Ironically his artwork is a coy recycling of old visual ideas as well.

When times are good, a person with very modest abilities can make quite a nice living in the sales-support industries. The wheels of commerce must be kept decoratively greased. However, in the best of times barely a soul can make anything resembling a career within the Arts.

There is no shortage of talent. Talent is as common as salt. There is not a lack of talent, but within the Arts there is a lack of support. Talent is a commodity, and just like oil or electricity it is distributed to those that are willing to pay for it. There is so much talent in the Arts and so little support for creative endeavors that only rare individuals can attract sufficient supporters to survive. Sooner or later, most of the successful will drift into other areas of endeavor to make a living. Most employment opportunities don’t require talent, they require showing up on time and going through the repetitive daily routines of industry.

Only the most neurotic and driven individuals will persist in the Arts. These quirky personality disorders are not necessarily connected to talent and internal turmoil often stifle growth and development.

Angels Sleep with Dogs

This painting was created in 2009 by the outrageous Dr. Johnny Wow ™. Very few men are admitted to heaven, whereas most women have immediate access. The gods determined that it was fruitless to have men in heaven, they were unable to add to the accumulating wisdom of the Universe.

Very few men are admitted to heaven, whereas most women have immediate access. The gods determined that it was fruitless to have men in heaven, they were unable to add to the accumulating wisdom of the Universe.

Improving Humanoids

The human race has multiplied numerically, but has yet to evolve into a sustainable life form. Time is running out and genetic revisions are necessary. As the Good Doctor initiated his research into making the world a better place through simple choices, it became apparent that men are doomed to standing around as the world is destroyed by male cultural inertia.

It is time for a transformation.

There is no point in enhancing men. If we are to start to perfect the humanoid life forms of this damaged planet we must avoid using such hopelessly flawed source material. Every child begotten with the seed of man is doomed to a role of inferiority and unrealized potential. Every birth mother soon realizes that her best efforts in child rearing are wasted on the product of an inferior sperm donor. It is time to initiate a new reproductive program introducing inter-species dna for indeterminate and random genetic variations.

The Good Doctor presents a few of his new proposed species variations.


Researchers assure us that all humanoids have dreams. We share this trait with a wide variety of other creatures as well. Many of our dreams are quite disturbing and some people remember them in great detail. Other dreams fade upon awakening.

Often our perceptions are colored by the apparent reality of vivid dreams. It has been hypothesized that some mental disorders, such as schizophrenia, provoke behavior patterns based on the inability to distinguish between dreams and reality. The dreams continue while awake, and dreams become a living nightmare.

There has been much thought and study given to the shapes and forms of dreams. These fragmentary images have been analyzed for meaning since earliest humanoid history. Our major religions are based on little more than dreams, fantasies, hunches, and wishful thinking. The lack of evidence of any tangible reality has not lessened their impact on behavior in our culture. Perception of reality can be so tainted with the power of dreamy myths that facts and logic become irrelevant. We are encouraged to participate in the splendor of cultural diversity, but when others conduct their lives based upon bronze-age campfire stories, it becomes difficult to respect their beliefs and opinions.

The Good Doctor has often included dream imagery in his work. Please share your dream images, which he may shape into artwork.

Tea Bag Terrorists

Artists need not be so involved in the pursuit of Truth and Beauty that they ignore the world around them. Dr. JohnnyWow! has little interest in producing graphic blandishments to comfort and amuse the middle class.

In America a political movement referred to as the Tea Baggers is swelling in the underground, fanned by the popular media. A bit of background research into this phenomena – going behind the superficial coverage of the press, reveals a very disturbing trend of discourse. The press reports what the Tea Baggers say in public, which is far removed from what they say in private.

The Good Doctor had the good fortune to be married for two decades to a full-blown schizophrenic. He is familiar with many aspects of what is popularly referred to as ‘crazy’. Psychiatrists, psychologists, and philosophers can slice and dice the subtleties of the human psyche by defining and re-defining the manifestations of the irrational, but the term ‘crazy’ is convenient shorthand. In the real world, ‘crazies attract crazies’. This is an interesting phenomenon to observe. It has not been determined whether this is accomplished by aura, scent, or hidden signals, but ‘crazies attract crazies’. The various memes of terror, conspiracies, visions, nightmares, and anxieties are wildly contagious. It is a rare individual that is immune. After all, some of our world leaders believe in Jesus or Mohamed without a shred of evidence and are seemingly unaware of the hilarious contradictions inherent in such beliefs.

The elections approach, and the economy will continue to sag. As the weather improves, we will be inundated by the fears and nightmares of the Tea Bag Terrorists polluting our collective mental space. The Good Doctor has been sketching a few of the memes that are sure to surface. Irrational fears and weirdly disjointed narrative structures will predominate as the national consciousness is contaminated with vile discourse.

As citizens we have been fertile ground for the seeding of Fear. We can now foresee endless fear of Terrorism. Our tax money is squandered overseas, chasing a rag tag bunch of zealots. Meanwhile, at home, our financial institutions and capitalism have done vastly more damage than a handful of Terrorists could ever do. We reward the Bankers while they foreclose on the workers.

Rather than living in terror of the followers of Islam, we should live in Terror of our fellow citizens that claim to be doing God’s work.

“We live in a time where there are no shortages of opinions and an incredible deficit of facts.”