Good artists borrow, Great artists steal
wotan everistus drakaso (né drakasso). from as soon as anyone can recall, drakaso was making art. from any medium at hand. his parents would find him shaping his blanket into sculptural marvels. little drakaso crawling to the wood-burning stove each morning to help himself to the cooled charcoal, drawing obsessively on the floor and walls until mother learned to simply place him on the back porch, where the pounding rains of their climate provided clean canvases. a master of charcoal by age nine. his need for tools grew and his parents barely surviving on the farm, created crude brushes of bird feathers and hair from father’s mustache and the llama and pig. berries, eggs, beets, and leaves for paint. feed and sugar bags for canvas. homemade hemp paper from the crop on the back twenty. a solitary childhood, home schooled before it held the chic imprimatur of today. he made friends with all the local woodland creatures, who posed for him for hours. alpacas, were-wolves, chupacabras, rabbits, wolverines, aardvarks and tortoises. his output so prodigious, no room in the barn, his parents discovered that they could trade his paintings for services and food and clothing and his work appeared in the general store. the townspeople were so moved to have such talent in their midst, they took up a collection and sent little wotan everistus to the accademia europea firenze where he was momentarily astonished and paralyzed by the beauty of the masters. momentarily. no sooner had he inhaled their individual essences, than a more elegant, fierce, wild and sophisticated imagery and style poured out of him. it was during these school years that he rediscovered earlier techniques that he thought he himself had invented on the farm- collage, wood and linoleum cuts. his invented techniques crashed up against the established, time-honored ones with spectacular results and these early experiments, clumsy and elegant, inter-dimensional, are some of the most desirable among today’s collectors. as the result of the group show that got him expelled, he took up with a society matron who wished to nurture his… gift…the exposure to the ‘good life’ and subsequent cataclysm of cultures defined the next phase of his life. he traveled on the arm and the dime of the richest and most beautiful women in the world. aerospace heiress sally winkelmeyer was his… ‘benefactoress’ during the time of his first manhattan solo show at the now defunct lazarus lair gallery on the 5th floor of 520 west 20th street. he traveled non-stop for twenty years, and even the casual observer of modern art is familiar with the notable locations of his most infamous gallery happenings and dalliances: the ‘twin gaudi’ incidents in san sebastian and barcelona; the self-imposed exile in katmandu; the hospitilization in nepal, the cult-like madness he sowed in the congo. countless hotels and lonely rich older women abandoned in the middle of the night. abandoned paintings. returning to the states from vancouver, sailing to avoid customs, on board… the famed “orca” series – a few dozen whale paintings he’d finished that summer when he wasn’t drinking or satisfying the depraved needs of the older woman we will not shame by naming here. of course, the ship sank, drakaso swam to shore and the story ends that this scorned woman spites him by refusing to share the few exquisite precious surviving ‘orca’ paintings with anyone. it is rumored that her former housekeeper’s upcoming memoirs “what i saw” fetched a three million dollar advance. but, these stories are well known. in the midst of six running series, wotan everistus drakaso shows no sign of slowing down. on the contrary, his work grows more urgent, immediate and relevant with every line and stroke. the work continues. the story continues.