Sunday, September 3, 2017

2017 deMeng and Engen (deMEngen) Present: Beautiful Beasts ArtVenture Workshop in New Orleans, Day Seven and Eight

deMeng and Engen (deMEngen) present:  Beautiful Beasts ArtVenture

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Today I had breakfast at Vacherie with Lynn, Kelley, and Christine.  Then I was off for a private critique with Michael deMeng about all things art related.  

I had finished yesterday and cleaned up last night but many of my classmates were busy trying to finish their efforts before the impending deadline. 

At 11:00am, it was time for the Beautiful Beasts “The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly” Critique.  I say this every time but if you have never been to a Michael deMeng workshop, one of the major highlights is the critique.  (If you attended the workshop and do not see your art, my apologies.  If you attended the art and your picture is not here--it is because I spared you the embarrassment of my inability to show pictures of people.  Trust me--you do not want to see your face in my picture!)



Me during my critique ([photo courtesy of K. D. Duncan)

Lunch today was at the Green Goddess with Kelley, Katherine, me, Deb, John, Lynn, Marilyn and Christine.

Despite the workshop have drawn to a close, the activities are not over.  The Beastly Farewell Tapas Party took place in the Vacherie’s Courtyard Dining Room.  Some people just need to stand out in NOLA.

I think I have cds by this band

As a group, we all headed over to Graphite Gallery which was featuring Michael deMeng’s Shadowlands exhibition.  It was very hot and crowded in the gallery but it was good to see a large crowd for Michael's work.

The last official act of the workshop is to attend the Krewe du Vieux Parade which is the first parade of the Marde Gras season.  It is a small neighborhood parade that starts in the Frenchmen area and works its way down through the French Quarter.  When I say small, I mean small in comparison because it is still quite the event.  

The guy who got hammered this year in the parade should be no surprise to anyone.

Here is where the night got weird.  From the eighties through the early 2000s I was heavily invested in crime fiction fandom.  I got so I was pretty familiar with some authors one of whom was Laura Lippman.  Laura's fiction writing career started in Baltimore but once she married David Simon she developed a connection to NOLA because of HBO's Treme.  Anywho--who should go walking by during this night's parade but Laura herself.  I yelled (a lot) but she did not hear or see me.  Next day I was able to verify via Facebook that indeed--crime fiction writer extraordinaire Laura Lippman walked pass me during the parade.  How weird is that?

After the parade I sat in the Vacherie bar with Christine and Kelley until exhaustion took over and it was off to bed.  

Sunday, February 12, 2017

This last day for me was a slow finale to a busy week.  I had breakfast in the Vacherie and then talked with Leslie in the Caf√© about the world’s troubles.  Before departing, I had a chance to say goodbye to Kelley, Lynn, Christine, Sue, Tara, and Michael.

After flying to Atlanta and then on to Milwaukee, I was on the ground at Mitchell Field at 9:00 p.m.

It was another fun trip to New Orleans with Katherine Engen, Michael and Andrea deMeng and all the usual suspects.  I am signed up to return in 2018 because why would I not go?


  1. Great blog post, Gary!! So fun to look back at the great times we had in NOLA!

  2. Looks like a blast! I need to find a broken cuckoo clock and more Aves Apoxie clay, and get back to work. Have spent time making art journals and teaching. looking forward to the October on line class.