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Archive for July 2nd, 2013

Join the Tuesday Slice of Life

Join the Tuesday Slice of Life

Motel Beau Sejour by Paul Schexnayder

Motel Beau Sejour by Paul Schexnayder

On Friday, I joined a group of teachers from the Acadiana Writing Project on a writing marathon. I took two other teachers with me to show them my friend and colleague Paul Schexnayder’s gallery. I sat next to the above painting and wrote him a letter. Paul was dubbed “Art Man” some years ago when he taught at the school my children attended. He has become the Art Man of New Iberia promoting local artists in an old historical building known as A&E Gallery after the original owner, August Erath.

Serendipitously, Paul posted his before and after paintings on Facebook and gave me permission to post them here. This painting is one of his Hometown Series. Residents remember this motel that stood at the western edge of town in the 1960’s and 70’s.

Click here to visit Paul’s website.

Dear Art Man,
I’m here in your gallery today. Like Goldilocks,
I sit in your chair. You know the one:
an old metal stool with the white vinyl seat
splattered with paint, just-right
for reaching the easel. Your apron is draped
over the back. I try it on, pretend
to be you.

Here is an aerial photograph of your subject.
Did you use it to lay out your design?
Are you finished yet? I’m not sure.
Are you?

The sky is a deep dark blue stretching to near white
in the far right hand corner. The sun, perhaps, is rising.
A line of trees defines the horizon. In the foreground,
a sign:

Motel,
Free TV,
Beau Sejour,
Swimming Pool, Restaurant

I recognize the Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser
I had as a child, fake wood on the side.
Does this one have a sunroof or an AM/FM radio
like ours?

I want to go jump into the motel pool
alluring me with a curvy white slide.
I see your foam plate palettes still full of paint.
Do I dare dip a brush in?
Make my mark on your developing masterpiece?
I can hop into the station wagon,
ride to Motel Beau Sejour—
uninvited.

–Margaret Simon, all rights reserved

Motel Beau Sejour finished by Paul Schexnayder.

Motel Beau Sejour finished by Paul Schexnayder.

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