January 28, 2023

At this point just about everyone has heard of the guy that started trading with a paperclip and managed to get a house…I’m not above trying it myself…in fact it sounds fun. I wrote about some similar ideas in Rough Living: An Urban Survival Manual , however, I freely admit that I was lacking in the mentality of abundance that the paperclip man has exhibited. So anyway…I would Like to trade my skateboard for a house….
How it Works
We all saw that guy that traded his paperclip all the way up to a house and I would like to do the same thing only I don’t have a paperclip so I am starting with my oldschool Variflex skateboard pictured below. Help me do the impossible by helping me trade up…somebody out there must have something that is unique and cool that they are willing to trade for this bitchin old skateboard…Maybe you have some obscure original artwork or some funky old thing that has been around for years because it is just too strange to part with…I’m not looking for tupperware or a broken moped…I’m looking for things that are ‘interesting’ like a fancy stapler or an oil painting of a drunk…or if you have a house…I’ll take that straightaway…
Chris Damitio
Trade #1 Variflex Skateboard for R.A. Miller Folk Art Red Devil

I’ve just approved my first trade to Bryan for this Red Devil by R.A. Miller, a folk artist that recently passed away and painted his work on the tin from old chicken houses. This is a very kick ass first trade. Bryan is going to use the skateboard for some art and tells me it will never be ridden again. I am totally stoked to think of it becoming immortalized in one of his pieces. I will post some links to Bryan’s art soon. In the meantime, here is the Red Devil and a picture of R.A. Miller with some other devils.
For those of you following my quest to trade my old veriflex skateboard for a house, the trade for four medium size moving boxes full of unopened Pez has fallen through…. so to sum up….I traded my old veraflex skateboard
….to Bryan Dodd, an artist living in Georgia who is using the skateboard in his art for this incredible piece of folk art by the famous American Folk Artist R.A. Miller. I have included a short biography of this American Icon below the piece of art I have for trade.

I was going to trade this piece for a huge collection of Pez dispensers but details of the trade changed which caused us to mutually cancel this trade. The upshot is that this incredible piece of art was not ready to leave me. So the question is…what will you give me for the Red Devil?

R. A. Miller (1911 – 2006) – Biography
Considered to be one of the prominent “Elder” American Folk Artists his work can be found in the Museum of American Folk Art in New York. R.A. Miller lived on the same property he was born on although not in the same house. The original family house was destroyed by the tornado of 1936 that killed many people. He later married and found religion and started preaching at Revivals all over Northwest Georgia.
He started to create art while in his late ’60’s after experiencing problems with his eyesight. He is best known for his tin cut out figures. His subjects include flags, devils, roosters, and Uncle Sam. His paintings on wood or masonite often include dinosaurs along with a religious message. Some of his artwork has also been used in the music videos of the group R.E.M.
R.A. used a hammer to flatten discarded gutters and cuts out pieces of tin roofing to make his cut-outs. His unique contribution to American art is well covered in the books Light Of The Spirit, portraits of Southern Outsider Artists (1998) Goekjian/Leacock and Fine Folk: Art’n’Facts From The Rural South (1990) Perryman/Smith.
Miller’s work has been included in such exhibitions as Outside the Mainstream: Folk Art in Our Time at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta (1988) and Passionate Visions of the American South at the New Orleans Museum of Art in Louisiana (October 1993-January 1994). Further exhibitions, the inclusion of his work in museums’ permanent collections, and articles in such international publications as Raw Vision have contributed to Miller’s status as an elder statesman among Georgia’s self-taught artists.

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