Assignment: Ukiah - Home is where the art isn't

Full story: The Ukiah Daily Journal

Ukiahans love to think of themselves and their neighbors as terribly gifted and artistic.
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1 - 20 of 32 Comments Last updated Sep 27, 2013
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reformed uki basher

United States

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#1
Feb 16, 2009
 
Jeez Tommy, don't you know it's wrong to make fun of retarded people.
Right on

Oakland, CA

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#2
Feb 16, 2009
 
It is very refreshing to see someone actually call these frauds out for their junk they push on the community! Keep it coming Tommy!
what

Marina, CA

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#3
Feb 16, 2009
 
One could say the same thing about the quality of reporters working here. You insult the quality of others work while doing a poor job at your own. If you were to open a National Enquirer you would find more truth than this article and better quality writing. At least they use complete sentences and a human checks there work not just a spell checker.
not to smart

Marina, CA

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#4
Feb 16, 2009
 
Nice job. In one article you insulted our friends, family and children. Doesnt most the local galleries, UPT, and SPACE all advertise in this paper?
So What

United States

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#5
Feb 16, 2009
 
Ha! "What" criticizes TWK for not using a human spell checker, but can't get the correct "their" there! ;-) Go figure.
Blah

Calpella, CA

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#6
Feb 16, 2009
 
Simply, awesome.
what

Marina, CA

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#7
Feb 16, 2009
 
I don't claim to be a professional writer. I didn't get paid to write that. He did. lol Maybe I should apply for a job at the journal, seems I would blend right in.
Good news

Larkspur, CA

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#8
Feb 17, 2009
 
This article is going with me in laminated form when I move away from Ukiah.

I'm a locally-based artist who exhibits elsewhere. I would be terribly embarrassed to be personally associated with the dreams-will-make-it-happen Ukiah art scene.

I've been peripherally involved with local arts councils, the college, and other local for- and non-profits that deal with the arts. What I've found is that Ukiah hosts a lot of people who see unrestricted personal expression as the one great amibition. Their iron-clad rule seems to be "the more diverse, the better." I've even heard some members of the community announce with a straight face that diversity should be the *main goal* of a great community.

What this tells me is that our artists are highly obsessive, haunted by fears of a future wherein someone proves beyond a doubt that there is a value system that can be applied generally. They have become stuck, as happens to obsessive people. Their compulsive answer is, "I may not be right, and I may not act the way you think I should, but at least I'm me. At least I'm special. At least I'm not a sheep."

When confronted with rules, guidelines, and a model for progress, obsessive types are overcome by the idea of being compared to one another and eventually go back to their old, obsolete habits, when even a failed attempt to compete would have put them somewhere on the curve.

In the end, what we have is a community of black sheep who create retrograde art as a way of downplaying the idea of a truly progressive art concept. They would like "progression" to mean something akin to "in the end we all win because every answer is correct," while history shows us the opposite. This is true whether we track culture in general, technology, politics...sigh.

Enough for tonight. One last prediction:

Our local artists are not competing. The first creative social group that attempts to simultaneously reside in this community and develop its own competitive art culture will turn the area upside down within the space of a few decades.

Ciao everybody
Dick WizMore

Hollister, CA

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#9
Feb 17, 2009
 
Yeah! Someone else can see what I see. I appreciate the candor (especially with SPACE etc advertising in your "paper") I also see this in the local music scene. Amateurish is too nice a word. Thatís fine, but letís call it what it is. We are not even close to "Broadway" or "New York" but as long as the silver hairs dish out the money to support the "arts" let them have there fantasy. I believe in a thriving art community, but pretension drives me out. Also, as much as I appreciate this column, the editing and reporting of drivel in this newspaper is an issue also. I long ago ended my subscription when my bird died. Let this article be a wakeup call for your profession as well. We can all use more professionalism and honesty in Mendocino County.
Mendo Local

San Martin, CA

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#10
Feb 17, 2009
 
Wow the great writer of satire wrote a non-fiction article, TWK, You could now go to work for 60 minutes or 7 on your side....great job!!!
Calvin H Johnson

Napa, CA

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#11
Feb 17, 2009
 
It appears that Mr. Kramer is a bit jaded. I cannot speak to most of what he says, but I have to take issue with his comments on SPACE. I wasn't that active in SPACE, but my son, Ryan N. Johnson, was from 2000 until 2008. During that period, I saw several shows, and while they were not exactly "Hollywood", they did accomplish something that is indelible: bringing art and dance to children who would not, perhaps, have otherwise had it. There was such talent there, and such great heart and spirit. And truly wonderful stuff. No, I am not a professional singer, though I have had classical training. Some might say I would not see good art because I'm not a master. Posh. A master is only a master if he or she can control his or her ego long enough to produce art that touches people. It seems so easy to sit back and criticize what is available. If SPACE or UTP are so very bad, maybe Mr. Kramer should volunteer as a teacher or a participant, to help improve the level of talent in these groups. If there is such a problem with the arts here, why not contribute some of that "stunning mastery of visual arts" to help these old roaming hippies trying to reinvent themselves. Or is he to busy to do anything but talk? Just wondering.
mendogrl

Healdsburg, CA

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#12
Feb 17, 2009
 
What is art? I agree that some folks in Ukiah like to control the mediums, but I also think we should appreciate the process and progression of artists. Not everyone is a prodigy, some of us take years to become mediocre. I plan on improving my skills through hours of practice and pure enjoyment of what I do.
ukiahbob

Ukiah, CA

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#13
Feb 17, 2009
 

Judged:

1

1

Never in my life have I met a more self-absorbed group of people than our local actors. Maybe it's an actor thing, I don't know, but sweetjeezus are they annoying. Takes "look at me, look at me" to a whole new level.

I think maybe they all went to the same assertiveness-training life coach.

Yawn.
Local Artist

Ukiah, CA

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#14
Feb 17, 2009
 
I read Tommy Wayne Kramer's article about the arts in Ukiah, and I am really disappointed that The Ukiah Daily Journal would print this. I am all for freedom of speech, but what is the point of kicking people when they are down. I am an artist, and I will tell you it is not an easy thing to do and make ends meet. During the holidays the community was very supportive and I did better then I would have hoped, but with the economy taking a turn for the worse, what money was made will be quickly be eaten up just keeping the doors open. There are no bailouts for artists like there is for fat cat bankers who did their part of putting the whole world in a financial tail spin. When the economy goes bad, art is the first to suffer. The Galleries that are in town are a community or individual effort. The co-op galleries business plan has a little bit of advantage when times are hard because, the burden of carrying the overhead is spread out over many people, and at this time of year and with this economy as bad as it is, people are dipping into their savings just to keep the doors open. Yet on "First Fridays" the artists have been digging a little deeper to put out what food they can afford and stay open late to entertain and give a free place for the community to come together, out of their own pockets.

One would think that the local paper would be more supportive of it's own community.
Contumacious

Sunol, CA

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#15
Feb 18, 2009
 
Dear Mr. Kramer,

You are achieving the true goal of a satirist - infuriating when being a Richard (defined as goring MY ox) and hilarious when it's someone else.

Thanks.
rock n roll

Sunnyvale, CA

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#16
Feb 18, 2009
 
Maybe Tommy is right. Where else could a complete moron get his own article and be paid by the Ukiah Daily Urinal.
Tristram

AOL

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#17
Feb 20, 2009
 
Wow. Since virtually all of today's personality realities will be forgotten and practically inconsequential in (historically speaking) a very few years, why is it important to control the short term personal reality of a small group of people who enjoy feeling creative and unique? Tolerance is more fun and less hostile.

If you don't like the book, put it down and find another one. Don't burn the book.
supporter of the arts

San Francisco, CA

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#18
Feb 20, 2009
 
I am dismayed that our local paper would continue to print such damaging, mean spirited rantings. Kramer's articles do nothing positive for our local community but instead insult and undermine all local creative efforts. Our area is rich with talent in both the visual and performing arts. It's too bad that Kramer can't see it and doesn't promote it. If his articles are supposed to be funny, they totally miss the mark. I strongly suggest that the Journal consider discontinuing Kramer's nasty, negative column.
Noni

Fort Worth, TX

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#19
Feb 20, 2009
 
Ouch. This is what art critics do for a living folks. But the guy should have been reviewing a major ballet company works or museum collections in a large cosmopolitan area rather than small local fun loving shows.
Hmmmm

Ukiah, CA

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#20
Feb 22, 2009
 
So true. Same bunch of people performing at the Ukiah Players. - - SPACE is a glorified day-care facility. The awful truth is: if you are truly gifted as an artist or performer, you move away from Ukiah, and especially Willits, as quickly as humanly possible.

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