Taylor during the Confine period.
artist the Poet Spiel
was actively writing poetry and painting intricate, symbolic pieces commenting on polite society and the so-called American Dream, he was a young hotshot — who then went by Thoss W. Taylor
— in Los Angeles
. He partnered with luminaries like Dalton Trumbo
and T-Bone Burnett
on his definitive work of the late 1960s and early 1970s, Consider Your Confine
If nowadays he lets his works boil over in anguish
, as the name would suggest, is more structured, though no less questioning.
is an intimate, cerebral work that outwardly appears more like the plans
of an art piece than an actual piece. But then, that's what Confine
is all about; how confined are your thoughts and assumptions? This is conceptual art after all, an idea that emerged in full in the ’60s.
The collection consists of 100 pieces of 8- by-10-inch photographic or offset reproductions of thoughts, ideas, drawings, things
, 69 of which Taylor made with collaborators: "his companion, his doctor, the director of a major L.A. art museum, a high fashion model, a stage actor, his maternal grandmother, an entomology illustrator, a controversial screenwriter and a major etiquette guru," reads Spiel's Confine page
on his website. All were made between 1969 and 1971, and each is signed and numbered.
debuted on May 2, 1971 at the Eugenia Butler Gallery
in L.A. and went on to travel to other institutions in California, including UC-Davis
and UC-San Diego,
as well as in San Francisco
, Washington, D.C.
, Conn., New York City
and Nova Scotia
However, Spiel has long wanted to contribute work to the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center
's permanent collection. Finally, he will get his wish. The museum just accepted the Confine
"Spiel has led an amazing career as a painter, graphic designer, poet, and conceptual artist," museum director Blake Milteer
writes via email. "Consider Your Confine
is accordingly a work of art, an extended poem, and an intensive inquiry into the meaning of who we are and how we're limited (or not) by confines imposed by ourselves, others, and society.
"This body of work is also now a snapshot of the west coast art scene of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Consider Your Confine
is a big idea presented in an intimate form with a lot of heart and a bit of humor."
Milteer says it will join other "important holdings of conceptual art" that the museum has, citing the Vogel
and Kramarsky collections
. Given how new it is to the museum, it likely won't be on display for some time, but you can glean a lot of information from the Confine page
, where the images below came from.
A Confine piece with a drawing from memory of the family farm by Amos Taylor, the artist's father.
Made with companion Bob Arnett, this Confine is "a consideration of the possibility of the misrepresentation of a confine."
A Confine made with T-Bone Burnett.
A Confine made with Dalton Trumbo.