Art Lies, Volume 2, May-June 1994

From Michael C. Troy
Congratulations on your new magazine. I
only have one problem with it. It is full of
junk. Art-Lies seems to me a noble effort, if
only you would get rid of the artspeak. Your
"letter from the editor"-are you being cute,
or what? It was full of the most overwritten
junk I've seen in a long time. Any college
sophomore could do something more
readable, and anyone seriously interested in
doing something with that magazine should
know better! Who is in charge down there?
Also, I couldn't read the Gael Stack article at
all. Your Fonts must have been invented by
the Devil, for they made reading an infernal
task. My advice is that you get control of
your design, get better writing, and stop
printing so many overlong articles about Lord
only knows what. Put some punch in it!
Houston, TX.
From M. Marifa
I have read your
editorial about
artists getting
together and
finding better way,
to make bread and
steering ships, and
sharing neat little sugary parables about
tautological bloodsucking demons in our
midst. You know, if you cook alphabet soup
long enough, all of the letters melt together into
a homogenous, mediocre, and melodramatic
mush!
Of course it isn't simple to set up a dialectic
with preposterous components and
nonexistent polarities. Just look at yourselves,
and get better jargon than this imitative jive
slip you think is clean jazz. Don't you realize
that juggling paper apples with paper pears
can give you paper oranges? If art lies is a
story about making maps, the way out from
your fantasy land of savory theatrics is
quickly! I am going back into the sea for even
greater distortion! Who ever heard of artists
taking sides in "exciting" battles? And does
individuality have to exclude cooperation?
Galveston, TX.
From T. J. Richter
Hey Mack! This stuff really sucks, man! Do
you expect anybody to read your magazine
except your local art cliques? What poverty of
ideas, what drab and derivative conundra of

irresponsibility! Reading "artless" is like
forging your way through enigmatic blobs of
swamp drool. Unerudite, unlogical, unedited,
uncohesive articles, made up stuff just to look
better, but you do not fool me!
Ft. Worth, TX.
From Bill Thomas
Is Harvey Bott another sour-grapes artist who
didn't get into Texas/ Between Two Worlds, or
just the latest dilettante to jump on the cheap-
shot bandwagon? I refer to his I'm-more-
intellectual-than-thou review "CAMapalooza,"
in ARTlies #1. I won't bother taking issue
with the self-indulgent way he dismisses the
work of other artists in the show. But, I will
respond to his flippant comments about my
work. Bott my think whatever he wants to
about my photographs, but his statement that

they "depict an existential fascination wih
death that seems to follow Albert Camus,
book by book," reveals his shallow
understanding of Camus, particularly with
regard to his writings about suicide. I would
refer him to the classic essay, "The Myth of
Sisyphus," for Camus's elucidation of his
thoughts on suicide. Perhaps, though, the
Camus comment was a "red herring," and
Bott's veto of my and Greg Reuter's work is
more related to his own denial of death. Wait,
I have another possibility: it's a suicide just for
you, Harvey. Picture this: you are standing,
suspended high off the ground, on one end of
a seesaw. The other end is anchored by the
weight of a large tub filled with your abundant
bullshit. Around your neck is a taught noose
attached to an overhead beam, and your hands
are tied behind your back. So, if the bullshit
evaporates, you will be slowly hanged. Guess
what, Harv - you live a long and happy life.
Now this is a scenario that Camus could ie with.
Houston, Texas
art ies LETTERS

H.J. Bott responds
Bill, you are not the only one wanting to write
the editor. Actually there were many "editors"
mucking with that copy. But first, as a sour-
grapes dilettante, my intellectual bullshit must
inform you that your letter needs at least three
paragraphs. And your "...more-intellectual-
than-thou..." phrase is but a simplistic defense
cop-out.
However self-indulgent I am as an artist, you
can bet your sarcastic projections I have never
knowingly "dismissed" ANY artist. Check it
out. My appreciation paradigms are
extravagantly catholic, to a fault, as your
"seesaw" attempts to measure my "bullshit."
Reread the first 'graph (condensed from
many) on page 13 {ARTlies #11, not just your
shared one and seven-eighths inches of copy.
The edited distortions diminished the original
intent to share experiential
insight on suicide, both
personal and implied. The
horrifies of death are well
known. Camus, and
particularly "The Myth,"
are steeped with deep
personal reverence. If you
need reference books on any
of the above, let me know.
Get the message: the
T/BTW premise in its wandering generalities,
and its blimp-hangar/MTV scatter-shot
installation in particular, was the turn-off, not
the artists' work. I was not trashing anything,
even though intentionally implied by the
"editors"- trading my copy, especially about
this message, for the CHEAP-SHOTtrash photo.
Houston, TX.
From Jenny Herema
You know those little ties which you get at the
grocer's? Sometimes they wear out, like in
tying and retying the cellophane around my
breadloaves. Well, when that happens, doesn't
it bother you to have to borrow one from that
larger bunch of which you just do not need all
of them, from the bunch you get inside the
garbage bags' box? Yuck just think! Those are
meant for tying garbage bags' necks and not
for food I will have to eat!! Dear, what will I
do? Oh, artists please save me!!!
Brooklyn, NY

Chandler, Wade & Schwab, Eric Jonah. Art Lies, Volume 2, May-June 1994. Houston, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth228035/. Accessed July 25, 2014.