Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Lonnie's Bulldog Diner "Dining for those off the leash!"

This piece was inspired by my grandfather Lonnie James Bates. He and my grandma ran a series of small diners and restaurants in the Detroit area. From the 50's through the 80's they struggled to maintain them through collapsing industries, cycling economies, and eight children. My grandpa suffered from the maladies of many WWII veterans and picked up a few habits. After weeks of labor, it was said "he snapped the leash" and "off the chain"...Lonnie was gone. From the stories I'm told he was quite a character. And so I tried to imagine one of his diners part-conjecture, part-character, and all "Lonzo".

The summer sky was based on astronomy charts detailed from the summer of 1958. It began as a simple road side diner and after days of listening to "Oldies but Goodies" on my portable record player, it snapped the leash and took on a life of it's own.