Tuesday, July 29, 2008

The Kerlan Collection

Farm scene draft for The Day the Cow Sneezed (1957), Flora's second children's book. The landscape image is one of 80 scans Barbara and I recently acquired from the Kerlan Collection at the University of Minnesota. We plan to reproduce a number of these early work pages in our third book of Floriana, currently being compiled and written.

Among the artifacts — donated to the University by the artist — was an eye-popping version of Flora's first children's book, The Fabulous Firework Family (1955). At first glance, we thought it was a badly preserved first edition because the pages were detached and stuffed between covers. Upon closer inspection, we discovered that Flora had reconstructed the book by sequencing his original drafts of each page, which were rendered on various types of paper in pencil, pen and watercolor. He then trimmed text sections from a printed edition and glued them in position on each page.

The one-of-a-kind copy was inscribed with affection to Dr. Kerlan.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

elemental train

Detail, untitled tempera on paper, 1970

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Deeper into Flora

This is a test.

Go here.

In the green menu at the left, click "request a song."

Select a letter (or a number) at the top — any one.

Select an artist — any artist. One you know, one you don't — it's just a drill. (Caveat: a band whose name begins with "The" appears under "T." Hence, there are more "T" artists than any other letter.)

Click on album title (not cover thumbnail).

Request a song -- any song. It's just a drill.

Note pop-up window illustration. Smile a little. Please?

As long as you're Deeper Into Music, stick around and listen. Is there another station in the galaxy where "The Death of Ferdinand De Saussure" by Magnetic Fields and "Shang a Dang Dang" by Lambchop are in heavy rotation?

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Fauna by Flora 2

Draft illustration, The Day the Cow Sneezed (1957)
Flora's second children's book
That goat gets around.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

night rider

Top section of untitled three-tiered tempera and pencil, from sketchbook, ca. early 1950s. The two lower tiers, using the same color palette, are no less comically inscrutable.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Taken Before His Time

Pen and ink, 1998. One of several works by Flora with this title, in various media, rendered in the final years of his life.

On this date ten years ago, James Flora passed away at age 84. Nine days later the New York Times published an obit by Steven Heller.

I posted a tribute at the WFMU blog, citing Flora's posthumous contributions to the station's visual identity.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Refresh at your leisure

We don't change header images at JimFlora.com every week; headers change as often as you refresh the page. There are more than a dozen frisky images in random rotation, with two new ones added — and two old ones shelved — every couple of weeks. They don't rotate in sequence; you might have to refresh 50X to view them all.

There's also a half-dozen footers, in case you're inclined to scroll downward.

Detail, Saturday Night at Stonington, tempera, ca. late 1960s

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

You = target

You will buy Jim Flora fine art prints. You are powerless against our superior weaponry. We hope.