Homeless Furniture in West Oakland


You’ve seen them, the derelict couches on the side of the road. We get plenty of them here in West Oakland.  One of the options when circumstances keep you from getting “on the road” is to see Home as a visitor might.  So Oola and I have been wandering around taking pictures of the abandoned furniture waiting to be picked up by the City.  After a while, the couches seemed to have their own personalities;  they become members of the homeless community of an area.

I wanted to make a book of the homeless furniture, a book that would express those personalities, but it wasn’t working.  Until one day I combined some of my figure drawings in a (nearly) life-size scale with the photographs, and something clicked “ON”.  The “ghosts” in the furniture jumped to life — on the page as well as in my head.  Since the images are about 80″ tall I thought they are too big for a traditional bound book — until I thought about books very ancient and almost as old as the midden.  I thought of scrolls on aged and yellowed paper.

These pages are digitally printed on asuka, a natural warm white Japanese paper that I got from Hiromi Paper on a road trip many months ago.

Here are a couple of the images from my newest artist book called Homeless Furniture.

eARTh

and

Exempt

In Exempt is was happily surprised to discover references to cave painting and drawing, probably because I have been fascinated by a wonderful interactive website site about the Lascaux caves recently.

If you want to see more images (and larger) of my newest, click onto http://www.jandove.com/pages/homelessfurniture.html.

One thought on “Homeless Furniture in West Oakland

  1. Jan,

    I cried when I saw the scrolls combining the old furniture and
    figure drawing. They are so excellent, and so like you to find a
    hole in the defensive, intuitively respond to it and be goal bound.

    Love,

    Bob

    Like

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