“TEMPS” TAKE THE STAGE

Below are some pictures of progress on my diorama of the Temptations, now that I’ve completed the bandstand. Since the entire piece, when broken down into its individual parts, has to fit onto pages in FOLKTALES, the trick has been to keep everything properly proportioned to meet the restrictions of a 7X9.5 page. As confounding as that task has been, I’m finding the challenge to be extremely satisifying. More satisfying, though, is the eeriness created by the diorama. I’m not sure that translates into the pictures as evidently as it does in real life, but the happy, pastel colors and the general joyfulness of the scene has a ghostly quality to it. One of the things that attracts me to pop music of the 50′s and early/mid 60′s is its concentration on harmony and slick pop song lyrics that are fairly simplistic rather than emphasizing depth and profound meaning. Doo-Wop music has the same allure for me: I think of it as a tonic, but that simplicity and bubble-gum joy ocassionally leaves me baffled that there was ever really a time when things were so simple and optimistic. That’s what makes it ghostly: That loss of innocence that was never really there to begin with – no more than Norman Rockwell’s deptictions of America were a complete document of the generation from which he came. That ghost, you might say, is largely what keeps me searching through the complicated and nuanced layers of the American myth. Or maybe it’s just my imagination running away with me. Anyway, now to complete the backdrop and enthusiastic fans. Take a look:

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