Venice, California, 1978: The day had warmed up to about five below, but snowy when I hiked through the three gates to the mailbox at Gilt Edge and opened the letter from California Arts Council informing me that I had been awarded a special projects grant in the amount of $4,800 to paint a mural in Los Angeles. At the same time I was working with “Crazy Dave” Brown building an attached garage for Stevenson Angus Ranch in Hobson, Montana (pop. 200). When they heard the news, son Wesley came outside to congratulate me. “That’s great”, he said. “What’s the first thing you think when you hear the word ‘artist’?” Pausing, he answered his own question – “UUNNNEMMPLOYEEED!!! CONGRATULATIONS.”

I came upon 48 Market Street almost by accident. Fern Violette had been a garment factory in a previous incarnation of Venice Beach. I was a bit hungover when I knocked on the door, and surprised when it opened on a film production studio. “Can I help you?” inquired the production assistant. “Got this painting I’d like to put on your wall, won’t cost you anything.” I stammered. “It’s about the apogee of civilization and out tendancy to fall back on the known after, based on the fable of The Fall of Icarus, an allegory of our time…Steven, the producer, looks at the desert drawing and points, “What’s that?” “Joshua Trees.” I reply. “They grow in the Mojave and…” “Hey, my son’s name is Joshua. I’ll talk to Carl.”