my birthday in 1999, I was hanging out on the east coast with a buddy
of mine, free from the activities of our west coast lives. I've known
Brian since High School, and we were both complaining about the passing
of another decade without putting a dent on our own creative endeavors.
The idea of putting work on hold, and purely pursuing un-commissioned
artwork, seemed the fiction of
fairytales. But finally, the thought of having this conversation ten
years from now, with the same unfulfilled ideas, seemed more tragic
than the current situation. This time the seed was firmly planted.
It germinated while I was working at an Internet startup, near the
end of a steep twenty-month climb. When the Tech Sector bubble burst
in the second quarter of 2000, I was already prepared for my leave.
The groundwork for this personal sabbatical had been finalized, and
I was finally comfortable with it. By this time, everyone that I spoke
with had supportive and envious comments, encouraging and calming
my demeanor. The fact that my family and friends did not freak about
my four to six month plan only confirm my decision (and put the blame
squarely on them.)
The tree of personal accomplishment grew strong. It flowered first
on May 5th, when I was quoted in the NewTimes paper as "sculptor Eddie
Wizelman." I finished almost a project a month, in the order of 'Circular
Saw', 'Precisely inaccurate clock', '4pipes', 'Circa 2000', 'Quickgold',
and 'Browsing.' In the fall, a golden leaf of opportunity allowed
for my first piece on public display. 'Circa 2000' was exhibited for
six months in the Museum of Neon Art's "CARnucopia" show, then for
four months at the Palos Verdes art center. All of these works are
on display here, but are much more interesting in person.
At the two-month point, I realized that four seemed too few, and the
goal was extended to half a year. As expected, that added time was
quickly passing too. So I began to read more of the trade papers and
attend technology related social groups. I can't say that I ever left
computer systems, having three servers in my home, but I was able
to use them as a tool for producing my own art, rather than supporting
a specific business need.