Skip to main content

MOBA gives me Eliana in exchange for Creepy Rhinestone Baby

Traded With: 
Creepy Rhinestone Baby at Museum of Bad Art
Eliana at Museum of Bad Art
Man and Woman Holding Bad Paintings
Man and Woman Holding Bad Paintings
Musuem of Bad Art - The Book

Sometimes fate comes together to save things worth saving.

It also sometimes steps in at just the right moment to save stupid projects that I'm working on. After I accidently deleted my bARter Sauce mailing list and then pieced it back together email address by email address based solely on my immaculate memory, I sent out a threat about the potential demise of The Sauce.

I somehow inadvertently had left my good friend Ryan Hamilton off the original list but then added him back on to the "new and perfect" list. He responded to my email with some information about the Museum of Bad Art. Check out their website. I love them.

I immediately sat down to compose an email to the curator of the Museum of Bad Art. Here it is in it's entirety:

Dear Curator of MOBA,

You rule. I'm so glad to have found your organization.

I run an art trading project called bARTer Sauce (you can read about it here: where I trade for art and odd objects. It started with a laptop that I traded for two pairs of boxing gloves and a digital camera. I trade whatever I get for something else odd and useless. And I'm doing it for one year.

I currently have a portrait up for trade that I purchased at a friends garage sale to reinvigorate The Sauce (I traded myself into a corner and had to sweeten the trading pot). It's a portrait of a baby that my friend had originally named: Dead Baby. Then, when that seemed to affect the potential sale of the item, she changed it to: Creepy Baby. I'd like you to know that she also kept the original price tag on the item -- $6.99 -- but charged me $15.00 for it. Granted, this information means nothing to you. I just like to tell people about how cheap my friend is.

Now, I was, for some reason, inspired to glue rhinestones on to the Creepy Baby portrait. Now I call it: Creepy Rhinestone Baby. I offered it up for trade on bARTer Sauce and was disappointed by the results. In fact, I have threatened to stuff The Sauce into a weighted sack, punch it in the face and then throw the whole works into the Puget Sound (that's a body of water) unless I receive 10 trade offers for Creepy Rhinestone Baby by midnight Saturday 9/8/06. I currently have 9 trade offers. You may be able to Save The Sauce. You, Curator of MOBA. You.

I have attached a photo of Creepy Rhinestone Baby (against the advice of my husband who says it is bad form to send an unexpected attachment. What does he know -- you and I, Curator of MOBA, have a connection. A shared interest. Unexpected attachments will not come between us).

Perhaps he would fit in with your collection? Perhaps you have something that you would like to get rid of in exchange. Perhaps you will read this email before midnight Saturday 9/8/06. Who knows! What I do know is that I'll be in the Boston area mid-October and could bring you Creepy Rhinestone Baby.

1. I'm trading for art and odd objects. The weirder the better. Think giant inflatable pickles. Think art. Most importantly, think of something you want to get rid of.

2. You have to submit a story with the item. Just a little anecdote. It doesn't have to be a novel. Just a little piece of your experience with the item that you can share with the person who ends up with it.

3. You have to agree to let me borrow the item back for the duration of an art showing in about a year and provide twelve different ways for me to contact you. Then you can avoid my calls.

Thank you for your time,

Okay, so I didn't hear from the Museum of Bad Art right away. In fact, I didn't even hear from them by the "deadline." I am persistent though. I am really, really persistent. In fact, early this week, I emailed The Curator of the Museum of Bad Art (heretofore referred to as MOBA) a second time with the subject line: DEADLINE EXTENSION. I explained in my email that I hadn't taken into consideration that the aforementioned Curator might be on vacation -- that he might in fact be on a cruise boat surrounded by fat Texans -- and would therefore be unable to respond. He must think Texans are annoying too, because he wrote back right away and offered me a trade.

He said he could part with Eliana. He also said she could use a rhinestone necklace. I could not agree more.

Here's my response:

Dear Mike,

Excitement abounds here, sir. I just ran around in a circle. Twice. If you can work out the details on your end, I would love to trade Creepy Rhinestone Baby for Eliana. My husband and I will be in the Boston area October 12-17 for our wedding reception. I will, of course, have many questions to answer from my new inlaws if I bring Creepy Rhinestone baby on the trip....but I'm willing if you are.

Many thanks,
"bARTer Sauce"

Who cares what anyone thinks. The important thing is that Creepy is making the trip. It makes me happy knowing that others will be horrified by him, perhaps on a daily basis.

You'll remember that I have arranged a trade with The Museum of Bad Art. They are taking Creepy Rhinestone Baby and giving me a painting they named "Eliana." They say Eliana could use some Rhinestones, but I may have another plan. You see, it was my birthday recently and my mother sent me a wig with no explanation. She can always be counted on for odd packages. See evidence: Box of my dead grandmother's bras sent to me at work in or around 2001.

I am thinking of stapling that wig on to the painting of Eliana. It's an evolving plan, but that's where I'm leaning. Doug and I are headed to New Hampshire for our wedding reception (note to self: Even if you run away to Vegas and get married in a helicopter on New Years Day by Reverend apparently still have wedding receptions...I had no idea.)

Anywho, we're taking a side trip to Boston to trade with the MOBA folk. Assuming they haven't forgotten. Or changed their minds. I hope they put Creepy Rhinestone Baby into their permanent collection and do many more trades with bARTer Sauce in the future. I love their website. You do too, you just don't know it yet.

I was sad to find out that Creepy Rhinestone Baby is not actually a painting (something I probably should have been able to figure out on my own) but is instead a colored commercial photograph. Mike said that the rhinestones are what make it "art" enough....but still...I don't like to disappoint.

Oh, and if you're wondering why the pictures are so bad, stop. I forgot the camera AGAIN. These were taken courtesy of Doug's camera phone. Bah!