Saturday, May 9, 2009

sorry tom, I chose this shot of melissa

Tom D. is the reason we stopped in Grand Rapids  (well, East Grand Rapids technically) but the work he does these days is often done in collaboration with his lovely bride Melissa.  And frankly, we've had enough pictures of men on here lately.  Let's mix it up a little.  
Tom's a Dutch Calvinist by birth and a socialist agnostic through years of practice, making art without any training, but steadfastly resisting the path to easy sales--i.e. doing the same thing over and over.  His "vixens" for example are interesting to him lately, as are tin sculptures and some colorful  "wraps" that he makes from duct tape and other pliable scraps.  Sometimes he adds photos of Melissa in some "semi-erotic" pin-up poses to layers of text and weathered wood.  Often, when he's hit the end of the line on an idea, he'll hand it over to her (or vice versa) and they'll discover a way to finish it up.  They're even in a band together, though Tom's growing guitar collection (17) is a small bone of contention.
The daughters Duimstra, Ruby and Evee, peppered Don with good questions--"why's the camera so big?" and "what do you need all those microphones for?"  The latter was all too pertinent, since recurring audio issues were the bane of our existence today.  We also met their dog Larry, but failed to encounter Jessica the Hamster, probably due to our focus on those same audio problems.
Maybe they stemmed from the rain that fell upon us on the way over from Lansing, when we stopped to see a tiny church in Lake Odessa.  Size-wise, it was just a couple of pews--roughly the same square footage as ones we've seen in Oklahoma and Arizona, but the lake view out the cross-shaped window in back was much nicer.
After our visit with the D's, we rolled around Grand Rapids a bit, eyeing the Sanctuary Folk Art Gallery on Division Street just minutes before closing time, and the Heartside Gallery a block or so down.  Also some nice murals nearby, in a part of town that's got the art vibe going pretty strong.
Which left us with one task still on tap, Nunica's Stonehenge.  Nunica is a small town to the west of G.R., with a half-size foam Henge (more solid looking than it sounds) in someone's very nicely manicured yard.  No signs, and no signs of life either.  Nor room to play catch.  So "rock and fire" had to be nixed this time. 

Music In the Van "Somewhere" Eva Cassidy, "Workingman's Cafe" Ray Davies
Don's $$ Count--44 cents today, plus 2 I missed last night=$5.46 for the trip so far.

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