robert spellman

Best Stories of 2017 from Mountain Water Ranch

Dear Friends,

The Lunar New Year is here,
the Year of the Earth Dog has arrived.
Deep winter, the time of stories in the northern hemisphere,
gives way to the intimations of spring.

We’d like to share with you
two of the best Mountain Water stories of 2017:


The day the contractor and his crew came to stake out the site,
they said they suddenly heard the sound of rushing water.
There in front of them, from a clear blue sky, a long banner of red and white triangles streamed to earth
and landed right in front of the building site.
The coincidence of this remote place, the timing, and the three witnesses is strange enough.
Add to that the insignia that we use for Mountain Water
—a small diamond made of a red triangle over a white triangle—
and we’re left speechless with wonder.


Mountain Water Press,
our nascent interdependent imprint,
is making news with its first published novel,
written by Meredith Ann Fuller, designed and illustrated by Joan Anderson.
Kirkus Review named Quarry to its
100 Best Indie Books 2017.
Wow, are we excited about that!

Meredith will be reading, accompanied by Joan, 
at the Boulder Bookstore,
February 28th, 7:30pm,
1107 Pearl Street, Boulder CO

If you’re on the east coast, keep an eye out for April readings in
Boston, Quincy, and Falmouth, MA,
the “home town” settings of the novel.  

This is a novel to share with your book club!
You can even order a copy directly from Mountain Water Press.

Wishing you this New Year the best the Earth Dog has to offer.
Stay glad, dream good*, be the Earth’s best friend.

Build Mountain Water with us by making a non-tax deductible contribution to
Building Mountain Water

Love to you all,
 from Mountain Water
Laurel, Samagra, Emily,
Joan & Robert

* excerpts from Woody Guthrie's 1943 New Year’s “rulins"

BOMBERS, BOOKS, and BUGS: New and Old Work from Robert Spellman

A favorite among websites to visit is Trend Tablet, the site founded by Lidewij Edelkoort, who, as the site claims, is “a trend forecaster, curator, publisher, and educator who constantly lives in the future.”

A circuitous amble across the site links me to the work of the Piecework Collective, and from there to the Mississippi-based quilting workshop, YaloRun Textiles. At the YaloRun site you can find packs of pre-cut quilt scraps curated by Susan Cianciolo.

Using scraps dawned on Robert Spellman, too. Look closely at the surface of his paintings and you’ll see them.

A ladybug’s carapace, the fuselage of a bomber, the elements of a sofa (or davenport if you are from Ohio). Many of his paintings present one thing. It helps us see, as he seems to, the beauty of what we forget to notice. Since I’ve written the word forget, it occurs to me that Spellman’s paintings startle recollection and seem to portray what has happened to these things in the time that elapsed since we last noticed them—they’ve become iconic, wizened, perhaps a little melancholic and ghostly.

Paintings by Robert Spellman.

Paintings by Robert Spellman.

For the optimists among us, the paintings give us another chance for sweet regard, before old things disappear altogether in the constant renovation of the future.

BOMBERS, BOOKS, and BUGS: New and Old Work from Robert Spellman

January 16—March 2, 2018   

Opening Reception: January 26, 5-8pm

Naropa University, Nalanda Gallery, 63rd & Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder CO