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Big as Night, Too


Text + Photographs ©2006 by J R Compton. All Rights Reserved.

Four Painters in Action - copyright 2006 by J R Compton. All Rights Reserved.

Four Painters in Action - left to right: Nancy Ferro, Kristen Erwin, Rebecca
Boatman and Chris Fulmer. Art Shirer brought the big ladder earlier.
Others who helped Saturday included Rita Barnard, Elisabeth Schalij,
Anna Palmer, Kristen's friend Mike and J R, who took this photograph.


Art Delivery
from 2-6 pm Wednesday

Thursday is too late. If you can't make it on time, email J R.

new Pick up work after 10:30 Saturday or noon-2 Sunday

Nothing else on this page is in any order. This is stuff that used to really matter, now it's been plucked from the Organizing Page and stuck here.

3 pieces are probably enough to show who you are and what you are up to in your art. You are welcome to show fewer, if you like. Or one larger, more complex piece like the mini installation incorporating a half dozen journal drawings Chris Fulmer plans. More than three are welcome, especially if they are smallish, but the hanging committee will decide what will be included in the show.

new My best advice is, if you have it, bring more than you expect to show. You never know what will happen.

We will strive for equal presentation for each artist. We will attempt to keep work by each artist together. Beyond that, we'll do what we think looks best.

Large works are encouraged and will be hung high in the front room and along the Left Wall. I had earlier described that wall as white, but now that the green and brown walls opposite are white, it looks gray). We didn't do much to change its appearance, since any small change there would require major change to keep everything the same color over that huge space. It's still rough, but art will look good on it, and art there will draw viewers deeper into the space.

All work must be wired (wire screwed securely into the frame/stretcher) and ready for hanging. Don't decide that your piece is special and doesn't need wires. If it's got any kind of frame or stretcher, it needs a wire. No sawtooth hangers or anything involving nails in just the right places. If we cannot easily hang it, we won't.

If you don't know what "wired" means, ask an artist friend. It's easy to do, and I don't want to have to do it for you, like I had to at Tranquilla. Large works still need to be wired. If it goes on the wall, wire it. It is much easier and quicker to hang work that's wired.

new If your piece(s) need any special installation, be sure we have all the parts and full instructions — and you there to help.

A few risers are available. Most are not pedestals, although a couple people said they'd bring some of those. If your work requires pedestals, you probably should bring them. I only hope they're white (preferably), black or gray.

Smelling Feet - copyright 2006 by J R Compton. All Rights Reserved.

Smelling Feet - a friendly neighborhood dog wandered in while we were painting

new info Who showed up there became the Hanging Committee. I brought five gallons of white primer and way too much spackle (mostly because we didn't want to attack that big long gray wall). We covered the green and brown walls and other places that weren't or weren't quite white.

The earlier art is delivered, the better placement it will get. The Hanging Committee will place and hang and light the show.

Do not let this intimidate you. Part of having a DallasArtsRevue show is giving young (nothing to do with age) artists opportunities to learn first-hand how art shows are done. After helping with one, you'll know how and will be able to go out and make more.

Beginners and intermediate artists help show what DARts is all about. Your work will not be shunted to a far-back dark corner — unless of course, you bring it in late.

At Tranquilla, we hung art in closets and in the bathroom. The work in there sold first.

Note: Whether you believe in astrology or not, the 28th marks the official beginning of Mercury Retrograde, and the J R believes in Mercury Whiplash, which has already begun, which means that all appointments, schedules and events need to be triple-checked and tied down with chains, so mis-information and mis-takes and mis-understanding do not take over. Be forewarned. Check everything thrice.

Mike at Ceiling - copyright 2006 by J R Compton. All Rights Reserved.

Kristen's boyfriend Mike tests the
ceiling in the small room Saturday



419 in the Dark

On the evening of Sunday October 22, Anna and I visited the space to see what it looked like at night with the existing lights. It was much brighter than EASL's Heist — bright enough to see art but not enough for a good art show. We need more light.

There's 13 bulbs hanging down from the ceiling, counting the four in the ceiling fan up front. I suspect they are the same wattage as the ones in the ceiling of the little white room. There, it's intimate. Hanging from the ceiling with nothing to reflect it down, it's just not enough.

Art Shirer told us earlier that 100-watt floods bulbs would be better, and I'm wondering whether a little more wattage wouldn't hurt. Art's usually right, though. Luckily, he'll be helping us later this week.

On Security

When I asked Steve Cruz about the security of this space — about leaving our art in this space overnight or over a couple of nights, he said, "It is safe." Well, actually he said a lot more than that, but that's what he meant


One artist gave me a check for $50 that nearly covered the cost of the paint — of course, I bought more once I had it, although I'm not sure we could have covered all of the gray wall... Another handed me some cash at the cleanup Saturday. Someone else says theirs is in the mail. Right now, I'm about $20 down but still need to buy nails, little bottles of water and a bunch of light bulbs.

Early Brown - copyright 2006 by J R Compton. All Rights Reserved.

Kristen Erwin attacks the brown wall early Saturday


Frequently Answered Questions

Any art form is fine. Sculptures that don't demand wall space are especially welcomed. Sculpture that does take up wall space is okay, too. We got some big walls.

Artists decide what art to show (to a point). I earlier suggested "edgy" work, because that's what Big As Night I seemed to be about. Those were were young artists, and I've since found it difficult to find edges in my own work, but I think we get in ruts and tend to keep showing the same old stuff. Then I wrote My Edgy about that sort of thing.

Here's a chance to show art that isn't trying to please someone else and that might frighten us a little to show — stuff that expresses who we really are. Or that we find strange that it came from us.

Please yourself, not some juror or curator.

Yes, art will be for sale. Invite your collectors. Anna will collect titles, mediums, sizes and prices at delivery Wednesday.

Artists who show need to be there that night to help us secure the place and answer questions. We will probably need to each bring something for visitors to snack on. We'll organize all this as we go.

Instead of sending out email every 20 minutes, I'll post all the latest info on this page, and update it often.


I'd expected to maybe get the show partially placed (pieces leaning up against the wall in the places where they'd hang), a process that almost always changes when the work is actually put on the wall. But to have more than 3/4 of the art nailed or screwed to the walls by ten o'clock Wednesday night was very happy-making.

The space still needs a thorough cleaning, however. That's Friday day.

I'd mentioned privately that most of the work at last Saturday's clean-up and paint-on was done by women, although some of us guys helped, certainly. But tonight (Weddy), the yang balanced the yin when two guys led the way with work and placement decision-making. Watching old friends Norman Kary and Art Shirer working together was some sort of amazing.

A lot of other people helped, including James Michael Starr, Elisabeth Schalij, Anna Palmer, Barbara Mabli, Kristen Erwin, Bob Nunn, Nancy Ferro, Heather Gorham, Rebecca Boatman and me.

The first room to near completion was the Little Room (number 3 in the Spaces List below), which we think is exquisite now. Then came the formerly Green wall up front. Then we realized we needed to use the room upstairs, so we made and remade it art habitable.

But we still need to figure out some aspects there. More people helping solving the problems there could hep us make that a safer, more habitable space.

Then we hung the kitchen area, on the formerly brown wall up front, and along the long gray wall, which still has a way to go.

We'll hang the rest of the show and light it Thursday night when it's dark outside, like it will be at (I keep wanting to say the opening, but since it's also the closing, I'm just calling it) the show this Saturday night. We've got some lamps and extension cords coming (we hope), and the people who own the building are helping with the bulbs, and someone else is bringing a shop vac.

We'd welcome help from other exhibiting artists. We'd also love the company. Someone to talk with during the down times is fabulous. Whoever is around will get asked to help us decide things. The wider that perspective, the better for all.

Wednesday was both educational and entertaining to the artists who stayed to help after delivery. Nothing strenuous, but we've still got a bunch of decisions to make, need help doing that and moving things around. If we have enough volunteers, we'll probably fine tune some of the art we've already got hung.

Painting the Little Room - copyright 2006 by J R Compton. All Rights Reserved.

Rebecca Boatman, Chris Fulmer, Mike, and
Kristen Erwin help paint the small room Saturday.



We still need lighting equipment — lamps for little rooms, aimable lights for the front and left wall spaces. This place needs lots more light than it has at night. Please let me know if you have anything at all that might work. At Tranquilla Art Shirer brought a halogen torchiere that really brightened the place. A couple of those could raise the overall light level along that long gray wall, and make the whole place more inviting.



It seems like whenever I get a little behind on expenses, someone hands me money. I like that, of course. But every time someone gives me money, I've already got a list of more stuff to buy, and so it goes. Right now (early Thurs ayem), I'm right on the... uh... money. But I still need to get some stuff.

In the end, so far, it came out even. Like within a few dollars.

I figure if you worked on this show, you shouldn't have to pay, but some of those artists already have. I have not yet demanded payment, and I'd prefer not to. But if you haven't helped physically, you should help us with expenses. $10-15 each would cover almost everything.

More information under Participation, below.

Each artist is requested to bring a snack for the opening. Finger food. Keep it simple. Feel free to go in with someone or several other artists. Chips, cookies, whatever you want or is easiest. Anna is coordinating snacks. Email her if you need any assistance whatever about what to bring.

If you want wine there, bring some. I'm not opposed to you bringing it, but I've seen people steal whole bottles (plural) of the stuff from openings when there's no bartender, and we will have no bartender, although we should all keep our eyes open for various forms of idiocy.

  Kristen Erwing and Elisabeth Schalij

Kristen Erwin and Elisabeth Schalij
lk in the front gallery Wednesday



new While we greatly appreciate everyone who has or will have participated in this show — either with cleaning paintiing, organizing, placing, hanging, lighting, being company and sitting with us through the long ordeal and/or with refreshments or your presence at the opening, there is no requirement that members participate.

If you want to show your work, show your work. If you want to help, help. If you want to send or hand me a few bucks for the expenses, do that. I have been careful not to insist on any level of participation from anyone, although we appreciate every iota we get.

Some of us like to do this stuff. Some of us feel guilty if we don't. Some of us are good at what we do and feel a sense of belonging and or accomplishment when we do it. Some want the social interaction. Some want to learn. Some want to teach and learn. Some of us think this is fun. Some think it's work but fun, too. Obviously, some feel it's just a big drag.

I don't care what your motives are. I want to show members and subscribers' art. Whatever that takes. As usual in life, there are fewer rules than we think. The few rules we had are now listed on the Other Page.

So far, enough people have showed up to do what needed doing when it needed doing. We hope that luck continues.

Front Window

Front Window with gallery lights blazing and reflecting the
blue, green and yellow lights across the street Weddy night.



Finish hanging and Light the show Thursday night October 26 from 7 pm. Yes, we still need help and company then. E-mail me, and I'll keep you up to date on any changes.

Cleanup Friday day. Email me when you can come by for about an hour of vacuuming and sweeping and figuring out where all the snacks will go during the show.

√ Delivered artwork 2-6 Wednesday October 25. More info on the Other Page.

√ We cleaned, spackled and painted the space at 419 North Tyler from 10 ayem till 3 pm Saturday October 21 at 419 North Tyler.


Both current Supporting Members and Subscribers were eligible to exhibit work in this show. New members were also eligible, but new subscribers were not (Especially since Subscribers are no longer being sought for an interactive complexity of reasons. More info concerning consideration of this issue are in the current Midnight Ramble.

Email me.

Big As Night, Too



Recent Feedback

new I've been remiss in keeping up with the flow of emails, so I'm including some more recent communications here at the top. There's been 158 emails to and from me, so far, and I know I'll never quite catch up. But these last few are some of the more interesting ones, with scattered tidbits from talking with some people who don't do email via phones.

I have some ribbed plastic anchors that require a 3/16 hole (1) drilled (2) insert anchor and handles a size 4 thru 8 screw.

Short sheet rock screws will also work in these anchors and they only require a hole 7/8" deep, which I believe will quicken the process.

I have to look, but I should have the right sized drill bit and definitely screws and a cordless drill. A small diameter 1" hole should not require a hammer drill to be effective.

If we used concrete nails there is always the chance that the wall will chip away, so screws will be our best choice.

What time are you thinking about starting? I Need to go by ___'s in the morning and I haven't had a chance to clean up sculpture yet.


Bob Nunn and Nancy Ferro are going to bring my art work on Wednesday.

I put the titles and the hanging instructions inside the little box the sketches are in.

Since I won't be there to help hang the show, I decided that the easiest thing for others would be just to cut a piece of tar paper for each sketch to be thumbtacked into. Then they can be arranged as a group as best fits the space.

Other than being arranged in even rows grid-like (tar paper with white lines showing if possible), I trust you all to make any decisions you need to in order to hang it, the order, etc.

If you need me to hang it, I am available on Friday or Saturday.

In fact, if you all need any last minute help on Friday or Saturday, just let me know.
If not, I'll see you Saturday night.

Chris Fulmer

Kristen Erwin installed it. J R's hands can't do thumbtacks for awhile.

J R.
would like to include a couple of pieces by _____ _____ [name withheld] for the membership show on Saturday. He will be contacting you. My membership.


Who is _____ _____? If he's not now a member, he is not eligible. That's clear. Your membership what?

Cool deal. I will come by around 3:00 or 4:00... Will help out for a few hours.
Norman Kary


When contacted by phone well after the delivery deadline had passed, one member said they weren't bringing their work, because the show would only be up one night.

I will be there Saturday morning, but can't guarantee the entire day because friends are coming in town. I'm bringing the boyfriend, Mike. I figure an extra set of hands for "fixin' stuff" couldn't hurt.

We'll stop by Home Depot on the way for supplies. Are others emailing you to tell you what they will be bringing? If so, let me know, so that I will know what we need/what we don't need.

Oh, I met a woman at the White Rock studio tour who warned me about you. She seems to think you are somewhat of a grinch.

Anyway, it made me laugh, because in Houston where I went to art school, everyone had something nasty to say, and if you didn't grow some thick skin, you wouldn't survive. I think people in this art community are way too nice. It's kind of fake. Yours is the only critical writing I've found. Someone has to be honest — How would anyone grow as an artist? There are things that need to be said even if some toes get stepped on. That's what art is about.

I think Dallas needs a few more Grinches and a few less Cindy Lou Whos.


I am somewhat of a grinch, but not at show installations. My self-promo brochures prominently mention curmudgeonosity. Amy "Moonlady" Martin says I'm "moody." D-Magazine said I was opiniated. -JRC

I spoke to Kathy Boortz who is email impaired, but she will put some piece in.

I read more! I can help Saturday.....and I have some of those silver clamp-on lights ....I will put them in my truck Saturday. See you at 10

Rebecca Boatman

j r,
sorry I took so long to respond, thought I was going to be out of town, but looks like I will be here, I am a ne wish subscriber and I am checking to see if you still have room. Congratulations on getting this together.

kathy (Robinson-Hays)

Hi JR- I've been out of town and just caught up with my emails. If there's still room I'd love to put a piece in the "Big As Night" show.

Let me know.
Heather Gorham

Bob and I are in. I can help hang or shuffle stuff around. And /or if Anna needs help, let me know. Thanks for the invite,


Email letters in response in chronological order, and I'm way behind, but I'll catch up soon.

JR. It sounds good to me, but...and you know I have to ask is my work Edgy (you know, outside the lines?)  :) :) :)

A *

Thanks, J.R. I pass on this one, but have a great time!

I have some nice things. Is it a theme show? N

I'm always ready to exhibit something * although "edgy" probably doesn't describe my work and Oct 28th is SOON.

maybe--if logistics permits.

I am interested.
Sheila Cunningham

Awesome JR!
I am in! ...Whoa! I will have a Little show somewhere else at the same time but I'll manage!
Thanks a lot, :-)

JR, I can help. I have several days a week free or partially free now. This sounds great. N

J R,
Is this in the town of Tyler or on Tyler Street in Dallas? I am not familiar with this show. I am confused by the round trip transportation part of this email. Also, I am not sure what kind of art you are requesting.
Thanks for the info.

Sounds good. Should be fun or at least interesting and very um quick eh? I'm game.

I'd like to participate in this celebration.
When do we deliver? Where....What time.
I have my Trick Art Treat Happening on Oct. 27. So, need to know
when I can drop off. Thanks
Looking forward.
Gaby Pruitt

Hi, JR,
I would be interested in participating if I can finish up one of the pieces I have in the works. I am teaching a couple of workshops this month but I would like to try to get something into the membership show. Thanks for getting this together.

Yes, very much so. Edgy, I like.
George (who's sending me a CD after I couldn't find his house in Arlen, Texas, so we'll have a page for him soon, finally - JRC).

Yes, I will be in the show.

J R,
Can I put a stone sculpture in the show in Oak Cliff? I'm a bit confused.
Thanks, Carolann

You can put in anything you want, big or small. Several, if you like. I'll put you in the yes category. can do due to a gallery obligation....thanks....Bonny

I'm accepting for sure.
Thank you.I'll bring my work on
And I'm mailing you a check for membership renewal.
gaby pruitt

Would like to ad a piece to this event, jrc. Partially, scary. Approximately 20x24. medium - painted glass
Sincerely, Marty Mitchener

J r,
I would like to participate, but have a previous commitment for that night.
Is it mandatory that we be there that evening?

We'd like as many participating artists as possible to show up. At the Tranquilla show, who sold the most art were the artists who were present to answer questions and tell stories. But not mandatory, no. - JRC

Dear JR:
Lyle is out of town — in Greece with the students till the 8th — who knows if he will enter anything. Is about finished with a church in Coppell which has some amazing stations of the cross which are wonderful drawings and fine stained glass — but neither are right for the show you plan — and he
couldn't very well take them out of the church anyhow! but it is good to know about these things. Cheers,


[Saturday morning, I spoke extensively with Paul Harris, who's out of rehab after six months but has not done any art lately, so he doesn't want to be in the show, even though I told him his work is always edgy.] -JRC


Hi J R: This is the first I've heard about this. Haven't gotten an email from you in ages. Would love to hang one of Jim's mobiles in this show. I will be out of town from Oct. 16th-25th. Would it be possible for me to participate in this knowing my limitations on time? Let me know if this would work. I would need help in the hanging. Thanks! Carol [Crowe]

Yes. - JRC

J R:
I'd put off responding till now because I was packing for a show at a university outside L.A. and hadn't yet determined if there would be anything left that I could commit. But at this point it appears I'll
have 3 or 4 sculptures I could consider, although all are prior to 2006. My only remaining question relates to the expense we'll be taking on, and I suppose that's going to be hard to determine until you know how many artists might are committed and how many walls you'd want to paint. Any guess at this point?
James Michael

My best guess is that any expense would be less than $25 each, probably a lot less for paint and caulk. Mostly we need sweat equity. -JRC

Hi JR,
Bill and I won't be able to participate in this exhibition, sorry. Susan

I have not read any of the info about the show - as I am coming down from the Heist and in the middle of turning my studio inside-out for this week-end - and I have a show opening at Craighead on Dec. 1 and have so much more work I want to do.

Plus - I have a grand surprise - related to a mural that will go up in the Arts District this month - the dedication is Oct. 26 - my design has been chosen to be the lst Art featured on the new Catholic Foundation Art Wall - in the New Art Plaza across from the Meyerson!

I'm running from one thing to the next and not sure I am really getting anyway in my chase.

And ... the Pilot Point gallery wants Richard and I to bring in new work for the Fall Show which opens in Nov.

So - I may not take part in this show that you are organizing - unless Richard wants to carry the work over and take care of helping you - this is one time, I can't say Yes - too many things stirring in my mind to try and add another thing!
Hope you understand.
Thanks for organizing this J R - and I will try to at least "see" the show.

Hey, I like the space! Your photos really made it seem like a good place for an exhibition.

I have one reservation. For a one day exhibition, how much time and money is reasonable to fix up the walls? I'm on a very limited budget right now, but I can donate Friday and Saturday to doing any mental, physical, or secretarial help.
Best, Chris

I agree. I'm for absolute minimal expense. I now think the long "white" wall can stay as it is, no paint there. Maybe some cleaning. I'm only concerned with the dark brown and baby-shit green walls up front. - JRC

Hi, JR,
I'll have to pass on this one but thanks for the invitation. I look forward to coming by and seeing the show.
Peter Ligon

[Peter's the latest new artist at Dahlia Wood Gallery, where he'll soon be part of a show.]

Bob and I are in. I can help hang or shuffle stuff around. And /or if Anna needs help, let me know. Thanks for the invite,

Hi JR- I've been out of town and just caught up with my emails. If there's still room I'd love to put a piece in the "Big As Night" show. Let me know.
Heather Gorham

Kristin's Hand with Wad of Blue Tape

I really liked the thin blue line of (the other kind of) painter's tape
that stretched along the top of the formerly baby shit green front
wall between our new white below and the remnant of green above.
But when both Norman and Kristen insisted that it needed to come
down, I suggested that they do it. Kristen did and handed me the
wad of partially white painted blue tape. My Wednesday night prize.


The first letter to members & subscribers:

with corrections to make it clearer:


I got the email below from Steve Cruz (director of MFA) today.

We had talked very briefly at Satty night at the EASL Heist benefit about the possibility of showing some DallasArtsRevue members in a warehouse space his landlady owned.

He invited me to help fill up some space at the studios adjacent to his gallery in Oak Cliff, and I suggested a DallasArtsRevue membership show.

His letter:
> hi j.r. my landlady is amenable to letting me use those
> tyler st studios for another one night art show to
> coincide with my mfa opening on sat. oct 28th. did
> you want to use some of those spaces to do a dallas
> arts revue show? let me know and we can work out
> particulars....steve

Email me back, if anyone is interested.

Like the recent Big As Night event in the buildings adjacent to MFA (photo story will be on the cover next week), this will be one-night only. The Big As Night extravaganza featured very edgy work, so I'd kinda like to do that here, too, if possible. Whatever edgy means to you and me.

This is an opportunity to show that stuff that scares the pooh out of you and/or that you haven't showed anybody yet. That would be in keeping with the flavor of Big As Night. ...

I got the email from Steve only a few minutes ago. We'll work out the details once we see who's interested in being a part of this. A LOT of people came to Big As Night September 23.

Everybody is welcome to participate, members and subscribers. I figure one or two pieces each, depending upon size. No real size limitation, but the bigger, the fewer.

Free-standing would trump wall space — larger chunks of art, like sculpture, won't take up wall space, so we could have more of that ...
; j r

Followed 3 hours later with:


No, it is not a theme show.

No, edgy was just a passing notion. Although ...
No curating, it'll be an open show. (See below.)
No size or number limitation, although we'll struggle to be fair to all.
I sure hope some of our sculptors will participate. I'm sure we could round up transportation to deliver large objects.

When we find out how much space we'll have, we'll attempt to "fill" it.

Yes, October 28 is soon.

I've got four positive and one iffy responses, so far, three hours later. Listed in order above.

Careful re-reading of Steve's note indicates "spaces," so perhaps more than one room, maybe a suite, so more pieces will fit. The Tranquilla show didn't have any limits, and that worked out very well indeed.

Steve's publicity last time was plenty good. Plus, i know a guy who does a website...

I'm thinking now, three hours later, that members/subscribers should bring some very recent work they're eager to show, and we'll work it out when we place the show what goes where. If you have any questions, we'll help you decide.

Please raise any question or concept or idea you have. we'll need 'em. Anyone else want to volunteer to help run the show? Anna says she'll do labels.

Long-time members may remember, but for those of you who don't, there's a whole suite of pages about our first show, Tranquilla, linked from the index of them online at:

I'll probably do a page or two similar to that extravaganza, to keep everybody up to date.
only one "no thanks," so far.

More as this goes on. I'm excited.
; j r


My Edgy is now on the latest Mightnight Ramble page.

Information about helping support DallasArtsRevue —
including a new, Easy Guide to Joining this site
is on the DARts Member Page Index.