Vignettes Regarding the Artwork of Brendon Kotes
Brendon Kotes grew up in a small house in rural Maryland, just a few miles from the bay, but on the wrong side, where the money landed in patches rather than wide swatches of world. He hadn’t landed in money, per se, but he had landed with something infinitely better: two loving parents and a couple of straight-laced older siblings who gave him just enough rope to explore, but not enough to hang.
Not like Casey Mattingly, whose older sister introduced him to drag racing and the smoky after parties that tasted more of rubber and pisswater beer rather than the freedom he claimed. Casey fell, again and again, like a rock desperate to sink into the bay. And when that first crevice did not go deep enough, he’d find a new one, a better one, a darker one, until he settled in the deepest trench and no amount of hands could drag him out.
Where there’s one side, there’s always another.
Robbie Frey lived in one of those patches of wealth, with a boat slip and a jaguar under his own name before he turned eighteen. Possibly a bit overboard in terms of spending at times, with a dabbing of debt to hang on his kitchen corkboard, but all in all, a good fellow with a decent job who only stayed up too late on the weekends sometimes, who had only skipped his homework occasionally, and tried his best not to be late to work, but traffic happens.
A good sort. A balance to Casey’s insistent calls of freedom and open road. For who needs traffic at seven thirty in the morning on a bright spring day when one could have long stretches of tarmac to squeal down during moonlit hours of humid glory?
Robbie did, that’s who. But not Casey.
And not Brendon either, but it was years before he realized he didn’t need that long stretch of tarmac either. Didn’t need the car, the drive, the steady job or the transient races.
Just a good sable brush and the inkling of an idea.