Feb 16 2009

update: Museum Of Broken Relations inspires a new tradition!

Just followoing up on the “Misery Loves” post a few weeks back.

The Museum Of Broken Relationships had its opening on Valentine’s Day here in San Francisco. It was pissing rain that night and the opening was PACKED. Apparently a lot of people thought this was the perfect way to spend a romantic holiday. They were right.

The exhibit is INCREDIBLE – and I’m not just saying that because I’ve got a piece on display. The objects themselves were interesting, but the stories – THE STORIES – behind all those objects! I live for stories, and I want to meet each and every person behind those stories behind those objects, so I can hear the long version. They were heartbreaking and hilarious and innocent and cruel, but all painfully honest. I’m going again (when the place isn’t packed wall to wall) so I can read all the stories and weep without witnesses. I’m honored to have my own story be included in this collection.

The collection is up in SF until February 28 at Root Division; from there it goes to Stockholm, Sweden. From there, I guess it’s going home to Croatia. I wish it was doing a US tour, because so many people I know would love this exhibit.

But, I have an idea: Because mama loves a good ceremony, I’m going to start a new tradition: from now on, every Valentine’s Day I’m going to host a Party of Broken Relationships! Bring a bottle of champagne and an object — preferably one whose clutches you need to break free of (darts, lighter fluid, and carving utensils optional) — along with the story behind it. We’ll come up with a nice exorcising ritual for each. God, I can’t wait.

Feb 6 2009

February: Mojo? Check.

So many past projects that I was fortunate to have worked on are getting their due this month, and it’s exciting!

1.“What does a photograph mean if the image is a lie?” STEPHANIE’S IMAGE is an official selection of NewFilmmakers Los Angeles and will have its LA premiere at Sunset Gower Studios in Hollywood on Wednesday, February 25. This the latest feature from Coffee and Language Productions, and stars (as Stephanie) Academy Award Nominee (for Best Lead Actress) Melissa Leo. Congrats Melissa, and to the filmmakers,  J.P. Allen and Janis DeLuca-Allen.

2. In addition to the 2 screenings (February 8 & 15) at San Francisco Independent Film Festival, BACK ISSUES is also screening this Saturday at Los Angeles’ Show Off Your Shorts Festival.

3. What better way to spent St. Valentine’s Day than at the SF opening reception for Croatia’s Museum of Broken Relationships at Root Division Gallery? Especially since yours truly will have an installation making its premiere there. I want all of you to come out and be my date!

4. The Independent Feature Film THE SNAKE maked its premiere at SXSW this March! The filmmakers, Eric Kutner & Adam Goldstein, were so amazing to audition for that I was flattered when they asked me to be Ugly Town Woman #1 (I’m in the same scene as Margaret Cho!). Check out the trailer at

Jan 22 2009

Multiple Choice: Misery loves…

A) Company

B) A second life as an installation in a touring museum exhibit!!!

That’s right, don’t be so quick to throw out those old mementos and relics that only serve to remind you of the broken heart you’ve suffered (or caused).

Come to think of it, Who is quick to throw this stuff out? A lot of people save this stuff: old photos, old gifts, old stuffed animals won at the state fair. Some save them for the happy or bittersweet memories they conjure. Some save them as a badge to remind themselves of the pain they’ve survived and learned from. And others never throw anything away and their homes look like the inside of a junk drawer.

I had one such of these relics. But of course, I love a good ceremony. So years ago I had my way with my memento.

It was a letter I wrote to a certain someone, about 15 years ago. I never sent it. I’m not sure I ever meant to send it. Sometimes I just write a letter to gather my thoughts, and then just keep it. It was a sort of “I love you this isn’t working why can’t we make it work blah blah blah” letter. Not a breakup. But not a lot of hope left in them there words either. But then… the guy beat me to the punch. And I didn’t protest. I knew it was the right thing to do. So we split and he moved to LA and I got my own flat (still here — GOD BLESS RENT CONTROL) but refused to give him my new address & phone numbers because though, on occasion, I may cave and dabble in martyrdom; ultimately, It Ain’t Me, Babe.

I kept the letter. It got old. My life changed. I moved on. I moved. Moving means shedding belongings — at least when you live in the Tiny-Apartment-World that is San Francisco. I was also getting rid of a mirror. Say, there’s an idea.

I saw it. Didn’t know if it would work, but I saw it. Shards Of A Broken Loveletter. So I glued it to the back of the mirror… then shattered the motherfucker. Whipped out my X-acto knife to finish the job, put the shards of broken mirror/loveletter in this glass column, to sort-of give it that natural history “preserved specimen” presentation… And that was it. It’s lost all emotional impact for me. I just thought it looked cool, so I kept it.

So if you are going to hang  onto your badges of heartache, why not reinvent them? Got T-shirt with a logo on it (maybe from the first show he/she took you to)? Stretch it over a canvas and presto! A new dartboard! Seriously, go out and get some darts — that would be awesome if I ever saw that in someone’s home! Maybe you can even make them functional? Decopage your garbage can (or toilet seat)  with old pictures of or associated with him/her? I don’t know, get creative! Have fun!

But back to my object. When I saw that the Museum of Broken Relationships (based in Croatia) was on tour and stopping in San Francisco, I thought “why not?” It deserves a good home. I never dreamed they’d get back to me within 2 hours. But… hey, it was just hours after President Barack Hussein Obama (God, my four favorite words right now) was sworn into office. I just fell head over heels in love with 2009 on that day. And most fittingly, the museum makes its San Francisco debut on St. Valentines’s (reception from 7 – 10pm) day at Root Division, an arts & education non-profit organization that does some amazing work here in San Francisco.

Feel free to bring a date.