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The Museum Of Bad Art (MOBA) Newsletter, Issue #25
Excerpted from the August issue

The Museum Of Bad Art transported the entire MOBA permanent collection to the woods of Cape Cod in August for an alfresco exhibition.


  Woods of Cape Cod plastered with ignoble MOBA paintings and sculptures
The Gallery in the Woods, above. The forests of Cape Cod plastered with ignoble MOBA paintings and sculptures
Crowds mulling around the picnic table and computer display
Crowds viewing the MOBA Virtual Museum CD-ROM, above

The first annual MOBA Gallery In The Woods this past weekend was a spectacular success. Friends Of MOBA began arriving at Paines's Campground in Wellfleet on Thursday afternoon including Chuck Forbush who brought the massive (temperature controlled) MOBA canvas tent. By Friday evening the MOBA Group Encampment was set up and the entire MOBA permanent collection was transferred from the MOBA van into the MOBA tent in time for a fine bluefish dinner for 25 or so. Friends Of MOBA continued arriving up until about 1am.

The next morning about 11am the work began in earnest. The entire MOBA exhibition was built in the woods over the next 6 hours by an exuberant crew. 100's of feet of electrical cable and audio cable were run through the woods. Banners and flags were hung. Three complete computer systems were set up. Refreshments tables, and the MOBA Gift Shop were built. The Gallery In The Woods was hung. Ollie Hallowell's guest exhibition was hung.

Midway through the afternoon the Australian Broadcast TV crew arrived to capture the construction effort as part of their story about the MOBA Gallery In The Woods. Only minutes before the 5pm opening, the final touches were completed just in time for the MOBA crew to quickly change in to their finest attire. By this point the eagerly awaiting crowds wound down the dirt road from the entrance rope, back to the campground parking lot.

After brief welcoming remarks by Jerry Reilly, MOBA's Executive Director, our esteemed curator, Mr. Wilson cut the rope and the crowd poured in. Just inside the entrance three computer systems, set back in the woods, displayed the Virtual Museum CD-ROM. Many in the crowd quickly took to the computers and began wandering around the Virtual Museum while the rest of the crowd continued down the dirt road past the MOBA encampment to the Gallery In The Woods.

The Gallery itself was breathtaking. The entrance was marked by MOBA's two most well known paintings -- "Lucy In The Field With Flowers" and "Eileen" hanging from trees on opposite sides of the dirt road. Once through the entrance, the road took a quick turn to the left then the right and descended straight down a hill for maybe an 1/8 of a mile. A painting hung from every tree on each side of the road all the way to the bottom of the hill. The entire MOBA permanent collection, 85 paintings and sculptures, were displayed proudly in this unique outdoor gallery.

As the crowd meandered down the hill sipping their wine, bad music (Sam Saxx courtesy of Tom Stankowicz, Smooth Music courtesy of Monitor Radio) played from hidden speakers along the road.

About half way down the hill, in a clearing off to the right, Ollie Hallowell presented prized pieces from his renown collection as a special guest exhibition. The Hallowell collection featured spectacular pieces that are outside of MOBA's realm -- including a number of choice velvet paintings. The highlight of the exhibition may have been a portrait of Ollie himself, that he commissioned on the streets of Paris -- featuring a poodle, very large eyes, and a single tear.

The crowd numbered between 100-150 and was as striking as the paintings -- it was an eclectic mix, aged from 1 to 83, of Friends Of MOBA, Wellfleet artists and others, and curious campers. The attire was as diverse as the crowd itself -- tuxedos, gowns, suits, gold lame, party dresses, t-shirts, jeans, bathing suits. They came from Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, Connecticut, Vermont, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, Illinois, France, Italy, Austria and England.

Among the guests were Bonnie Daly and family. Bonnie is one of the few known MOBA artists. She painted Pablo Presley which hung in a place of honor at the entrance to the Gallery In The Woods.

Both Susan Lawlor and her nephew attended -- they are the granddaughter and great-grandson of the woman portrayed in MOBA's "Lucy In The Field With Flowers". Susan brought one of the two photos that was used by the artist to paint the portrait of her grandmother. She will be donating a copy of the photo to MOBA in the coming weeks and is trying to locate the other photo. Susan's nephew accompanied her to the event, and this was the first time he had ever seen the startling painting of his late great-grandmother.

Later in the evening, our esteemed curator unveiled two new paintings (one of which was described in the last edition of the MOBA News) to much fanfare. First came the painting described by Mr. Wilson as "Tinkerbell in a Time Tunnel". Judging from the crowd's reaction, this should be a fine addition to the permanent collection.

The final unveiling was a huge painting which our esteemed curator referred to as "Bachula" (now called "Inspiration"). The piece, which originally hung in a Lutheran church, depicts a very long fingered stern organist in the foreground, a monkey faced angel with sheep on his legs in a window, a mysterious monk emerging from a tunnel in the background, and organ pipes everywhere that closely resemble newly sharpened #2 pencils. By any measure, this is sure to be an important piece in the MOBA collection.

After the unveilings, MOBA's tunesmith, 11 year old Sheila Reilly, led the assembled multitude in a rousing rendition of the anthem from the CD-ROM -- "MOBA MOBA" to close the exhibition at about 7pm.

Within an hour, The Friends Of MOBA had completely disassembled the Gallery In The Woods and the entire permanent collection was safely back in the temperature controlled tent. 50 or so people then relaxed for a wonderful dinner catered by Aileen Cormier, MOBA's cook extrodinaire.

After dinner people continued touring through the Virtual Museum CD-ROM on computers in the woods. The flicker of silhouettes against computer screens in the dark put the final surreal touches on this unique event in the woods of Wellfleet.

MOBA would especially like to thank every one who helped put on this most memorable event -- the Paine Campground and Paine Family, all the Friends Of MOBA -- especially Aileen Cormier for the fine food, Glenn Meader, Alan Pullman and Jim Fee for the computer equipment, Chuck Forbush and Bob Jackson for work well beyond the call of duty and of course our friends at Backyard Computing.

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Admission to MOBA is always free, with significant discounts to anyone who has published a book or article that mentions MOBA. | All contents ©2004 The Museum Of Bad Art. All rights reserved. | Updated 03.15.2004 | Contact MOBA