Goodbye Anna Valentina Murch

It is with great sadness that the Agents of the Poorly Kept Secret Society bid a final farewell to Anna Valentina Murch.  Our organization had the pleasure of working with her briefly in the recent past, and we can confirm that she was a delightful person and an insightful artist.




The pleasure was all ours, Anna.  Thank you.


Anna Valentina Murch – teacher created oases of art – SFGate.


New Assignment: Bot Joy

Agents of the Poorly Kept Secret Society have been approached by [name redacted] to assist in the covert deployment of Bot Joy onto the unsuspecting residents of a peaceful Colorado community.


Through Bot Joy, artist Gary Hirsch has invaded communities like London, Austin, and his own Portland, OR with the charming army of tiny robots painted on Dominoes.  Read more:


Agents of the Poorly Kept Secret Society are fascinated with this nexus of social media, urban life, and the chance encounter with art.  It’s also worth discussing Hirsch and his artist-ilk: those that produce images motivated by the nothing more than spreading of joy.  Much needed, these days.  But, not always so easily accepted in the closed loop of art patronage, surprisingly.  Friends With You is a team that comes to mind, and one that has had some association with The Society in the past.  I wonder what you all in internet land think of these types of artists?


Anyhow, our agents will update this website with details on this mission at the end of May.  Stay tuned.

List of Things That Are Not Going Away

The following is a list of things that are not going to go away, no matter how hard you clap:


  1. Hippies.  Dreadlocks, tie die, sandals; how is it that this, among all the cultural fashions that ebb and flow, this is the timeless aesthetic that people can continue to which old and young alike can commit?
  2. That cricket that keeps you up at night.  It will outlive anything global warming can throw at it.
  3. The internet.


Digital technology has opened up so many fascinating landscapes for artists to play with.  The one big hangup was always the wires.  You had to be plugged in to enjoy the art.  But, the web is just now going wireless; no longer so web-like.  As the wires that once held artists to the wall, and kept our lazy butts in our seats, are cut, what frontiers are open to the geniuses of this next great medium of art history?  And, more importantly for our purposes, how can artists motivate people to get up, get out, and get talking?


Here’s a few of the artists and organizations that we at the Poorly Kept Secret Society think are poised to exploit the wireless future.  Some of them have not quite yet ventured outside their parents basements and delivered us our wireless future, but these are some of the minds who will do exactly that.


Dina Kelberman, who curates marvels from the milieu of the www.  Her presentation still very much works in the realm of screens, mice, and cables.  But her mindset is miraculous, bridging the most intriguing corners of the internet.


Mary Miss.  Her little ditty for the Indianapolis Museum of Art seamlessly weaves a smartphone app with a walk down the river.  An elegant cross between public and virtual spaces.


Mark Amerika.  His Museum of Glitch Aesthetics project asks you to rethink the visual implications of contemporary technological fails.  He frames up the digital version of reverb, and it turns out so pretty!  What he could do to your iPhone…


Denver Digirati.  Plus Gallery serves up video and animation for the town square.


Ben Rubin.  Working in reverse, his public artworks are re-imagined human interface on an urban scale.  King of the new breed of data mining artists; look out for this guy.


Halsey Burgund.  Fucking up your mobile device, directly.



Secret Assignment Complete

Agents of the Poorly Kept Secret Society, working under cover, just completed the installation of artwork by Sam Flores, Dave Choe, and Highraff at the Cherry Creek Arts Festival in Denver. This clandestine graffiti installation brings three murals originally created at 2012’s Terminal Kings event back out on the streets.


Go see it.

Tell no one.

“David Choe” and “Denver, Colorado” Share the Same Initials

David Choe can’t seem to get enough of D Town.  He passed through last week while filming his latest installment of “Thumbs Up”.  Remarkably, not a single Denver resident lost a limb, or karma-points, during the course of his stay.

Some may recall the Terminal Kings event held in early 2012 in which Choe joined street artists Highraff and Sam Flores for some good natured and propellant-powered live painting.  Agents of the Poorly Kept Secret Society, then a better kept secret, were on hand.  During that event, Choe decided to donate a mural to the City and County of Denver (with the help of his cohorts DVS-1 and Joe To).  Those outstanding, towering paintings have lived at 13th and Champa for the past 18 months.  Lo and behold, upon Choe’s latest arrival in Denver he decided to improve his mural. 


There are Agents in the Poorly Kept Secret Society who continue to be dubious of Mr. Choe’s work.  He is an accomplished technician, no doubt.  If you gave a can of aerosol to both Choe and an automatic David-Choe-Aersol-Contest-Winning Machine (I believe this is under development by NASA), David Choe wins, hands down.  He is also graced with a marvelously ludicrous imagination.  But, he is also in that cadre of artists who have come to represent much more than the sum of their craft.  Along with the other superstars of the art market, Choe is a symbol of that unattainable corner of the aesthetics.  His work is for the wealthy.  He, himself, is a multi-millioinaire.  He gets lumped with Hirst and Koons and the rest of the superstars.  Snore.  He is also crass.  Or, at least the character of himself that we see on Thumbs Up is.  Exclusive and glib; these two traits conspire to make his art feel a bit unapproachable.

In real life, Choe is very friendly.  The Agents of the Poorly Kept Secret Society who have spent time with David Choe have reported that he is a warm conversationalist.  He also commits fully and completely to his art, no pretense.  And, the simple, streetwise nature of his aesthetic and the honesty of his narrative are engaging.  He seems to resolve any discomfort we may feel with his lifestyle by simply making amazing, beautiful, and engaging works of art.  They are indeed for everyone.

And, never is that more obvious than in the fact that he has once again given a gift to Denver.  If you have not been by the Denver Performing Arts Complex in a while, make the trip.  13th and Champa.  Go in disguise, if possible.

(Photograph courtesy of Jacquelyn Connolly, Co-conspirator to the Poorly Kept Secret Society.)