This past week, I started out trying to finish a 2'x2' panel of Blue Cheer, in my home studio. Blue Cheer was a three-piece rock group that performed at the Crystal Ballroom in 1967. "Blue Cheer" was the name of a particular LSD, created by Owlsley Stanley, a friend of the Grateful Dead, and the band used it for their name.
Anyway, I was closing in on the grand finale of the painting and having a lot of fun with the panel when we got a message from the management at Old St. Francis School hotel in Bend, Ore., that a painting in the lobby of the theater had been keyed, or vandalized. This is sad, it was one of my favorite panels and refers to a legend about how St. Francis tamed a wolf that had been terrorizing a small village in Italy. The panel shows St. Francis and the wolf having coffee around the campfire with some shepherds. There were many Basque shepherds in Eastern Oregon with very remote camps.
The motivation behind this kind of careless destructiveness eludes me. It's important not to let this kind of damage stay unrepaired for long because it seems to convey the message that "we don't care." Luckily, the mountain road was passable and I was able to go to Bend, repair that painting and a portrait of Sister Sebastian in the Nunnery House as well. Restoration can be satisfying, but now I need to get back to painting Blue Cheer.
BTW, Blue Cheer's biggest hit was "Summertime Blues," written and performed by Eddie Cochran and also performed at the Crystal by the Black Keys, both of which are referenced in the painting.