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INTRODUCTION

I have lived through the Great Depression, World War II, the Cold War, the Korean, Vietnam and Gulf Wars. Our Times right now in America are the worst and best times I have ever experienced, the most scary, and they are the times of greatest opportunity.

There has never been greater uncertainty about the future or even about the present. All that happens today is immersed in a fog of media illusion, virtual reality, spin, and counter-spin, truths and counter-truths. We hardly know ourselves, let the world around us. Are we bringing Democracy to Iraq and Afghanistan or have we plunged those countries into unrecoverable chaos? What are our strengths, illusions, blindness,and how will history judge us, if indeed there will be history?

I find myself angry, disturbed, excited and hopeful, some times all at once. I would like to speak out to help open the eyes of our culture, so we can see what is real from what is not real, so we can see ourselves in the perspective of present and future history. Like many others, I have been struggling with how I can convey my truth how I see things. And to do that without falling into the usual thought patterns dictated by politics or ideaology. Clearly, that kind of communication has to reach the heart as well as the mind. Art is one vehicle for doing so.

In this context I have created Our Times, a set of multimedia shows that convey how I see things. My vehicle is my art, presenting collages drawn from the thousands of photographs and art works I have created in Our Times. Many of the images are immediate and personal. Some of the art pieces are based on news photographs, which also affect me in a personal way. I put these together here to represent five theme areas which I call : Pumpkin Pie, Illusion, Dissonance, Denial, and Possibility. Each theme area consists of a short essay on the subject, and a dynamic show of changing images.

To proceed, please check on the Viewing Requirements described below, and then click on the To Shows button above.



VIEWING REQUIREMENTS

Our Times is a series of multimedia presentations using the Macromedia Flash technology. It is designed for users with broadband Internet connections, i.e. cable modems or DSL. Images should zip by to music at about one per second. Using a plain old phone modem there is a completely different experience. Things are much much slower to load. You can still read the text but the music will not come through and the images will show only in a very slow meditative pace.

You can read what I have to say about the happenings of Pumpkin Pie, Illusion, Dissonance, Denial, and Possibility in our society by just proceeding. For the multimedia presentations to work on your computer, however, please make sure:

  • That you have the latest Macromedia Flash player installed on your computer. You can download it free here.


  • That your computer's screen resolution is set to 800 by 600. To do this on most versions of Windows, right-click anywhere on your desktop where there is no icon. Then click on Properties on the drop-down list. When the Properties box comes up click on the Settings tab. A slider will let you set your screen resolution, then click OK.


  • That your browser or popup blocker are set at least temporarily not to block Flash shows, or allow this one when prompted.


  • That you set your web browser to full screen presentations. To do that on Internet Explorer, click View and then Full Screen on your toolbar, or simply hit your F11 function key.


  • That your sound system is turned up.


  • Finally, once the pictures start to go by, use the sliders on the right and top of your full-screen browser to center on the pictures. You need do this only once per presentation.

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