I will be shipping "Young Innocent with No Left Arm and Giant Duck Footprint" to the Museum of Bad Art tomorrow. It will bring to end an incredible journey that began back in 1976 when my mother attempted to do portraits. Her niche, you see, had been autumnal landscapes with covered bridges or windmills. Occasionally there was a double masted ship on a turbulent sea. Once or twice, a winter scene that was really just a white canvas with lines.
When she turned her thumb to faces, well...whole other story. She did a fairly decent job of a pained Jesus on a cross for an amateur art competition held at the GM Tech Center back in the 70's. The close-up of the religious icon showed a man in great agony yet held compassion in his eyes. I remember being terrified by it. I know someone in the family somewhere has it- more than likely my art starved sister. But before there was that award winning moment, for she received 3rd Place Honorable Mention, there was "Young Innocent with No Left Arm and Giant Duck Footprint", a remarkable execution of a little girl in a peasant dress holding a daisy in a vast field with what looks like a giant duck foot print behind her. (Where did the duck go? It surely passed right behind the child for one can see the footprint.)
On my mother's 59th birthday, my roommate and I held an unveiling of several of her paintings. We hosted a "Name It" party. In addition to "YIWNLAAGDF", we were able to christen other classics such as "Variations on Bleak". Early last week I received notification from the Museum of Bad Art that my mother's painting of the child and duck track would hang along side the piece of bad art that started the MOBA.
At long last, ma, you're getting the recognition you deserve.