Matt Kirby’s Lunch and Learn at Block

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While I was in CA, good old Matt Kirby taught a Lunch-and-Learn at H&R Block regarding his sculpture, The Bean Counter.  How did this piece come into being?  Well I mentioned to Matt, “Why don’t you make some Rube Goldberg thing that counts a bean when you turn a crank?  I mean it’s an accounting firm basically; they’ll love it.”

He said, “Great idea.  How will I do it?”

“I ain’t gotta clue.  You’re the genius, not me.”

As I’ve said repeated times, any bonehead can come up with an idea.  It takes true talent to make the idea work, as in this case. 

The piece is far more complex than it looks.  Every object, whether sculpted or found, has meaning.  The beehive is an ancient Egyptian symbol for prosperity.  The antlers are a similar symbol from Nordic culture.  The quote from Emerson speaks for itself.  The random journey that the bean takes with each revolution is like life itself.  The numerical sequence that the bean drops through adds up to pi.  And all this just scratches the surface.  Also note, the piece is 5′ square, same proportions as the Block logo.

I gather they loved the performance.  I was at Stinson Beach digging the water and avoiding Great Whites about the time he gave it.  Oh well, I’ll be sure not to miss STRETCH’s gig in two weeks.

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