Monday, January 30, 2012

My Regret

I notice, particularly on facebook, that people like to mention their regrets. Aside from an invitation "regrets only" here or there, I thought I didn't really have any regrets. I'm happy to say that I live my life in a way where I know there have been challenges, mistakes, and major triumphs, and a lot of those have to do with my own decisions. My favorite quote is "Build yourself a life, and live with it." However, I learned today that I have one official regret. It's nothing life-changing, but it's so annoying that I truly do regret it. Here goes the long and (maybe, sort of) interesting story...

I hope a number of you are familiar with the art of Reverend Howard Finster. I was introduced to his work back in college, probably because he did the covers for albums by REM and Talking Heads.

When on a road trip in 1994 or 1995, I stopped by Finster's home ("Paradise Gardens") in Summerville, Georgia for a visit (it was open in the back for people to see his work). You can view pictures of it here, and they make it look much busier and fancier than it was when I saw it. On my visit the only people there were me and my traveling companion (a college ex-boyfriend). We were able to roam freely and take pictures of the wonder, with no one else around to interrupt or explain the beauty. Those pictures are now in the garbage, alas, along with a lot of other stuff of mine from that era (Oh, where have you gone, Monkees Tour t-shirt from 1986?). On our way out of the Gardens, there was a shed (as I recall) filled with Finster's art that you could purchase on the honor system. They had a little birdhouse-type thing, I think, where you could put the money. I remember being all, "Twenty dollars?!" or "A hundred dollars?!" about the works, and I wasn't about to spend my meager greens that needed to be saved for the next Guided by Voices album or whatever. Such are the spending habits of a college sophomore.

Fast forward to me being a grown-up. My family has a lovely collection of original and limited edition art, many from comics artists and children's book illustrators. And here we were yesterday, at a gallery show for Howard Finster's work. Finster passed away in 2001, and I guess the price of his art skyrocketed. A ritzy-looking couple walked into the gallery, and I heard them say that they paid $900 for a piece that was being sold for $500. Apparently they bought it right after his death. Matt and I ended up buying a piece (so awesome!!!), but I couldn't help thinking about if I had only been savvy as a twenty year-old. I could have bought something for under $100 that at this gallery was selling for, no joke, thousands. Sigh. Double sigh. And now you know my regret. What are yours?

Don't you regret not entering the ANOTHER BROTHER CONTEST! You can win a signed copy of Matt's new book, in stores tomorrow!

1 comment:

The Erratic Blogger said...

Every time I buy art (this rarely happens) I always think how cool it would be to have it be worth a lot of money later. Although, I also wonder if I'd really want to sell it.

That is also a fine looking cat in the picture.