Monday, September 28, 2020

" Connoisseur"

6 x 8"
oil on panel
sold


I had started a smaller study for Penguin Zen and decided to finish it because you have to find joy wherever you can.  Painting an animal does it for me.

Someone let me know the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Missouri also invited some penguins as guests to browse their galleries during their shutdown, like the Art Institute of Chicago had.  The most charming result is these penguins stopped and seemingly took in many of the works of art, much like this little guy.  Claude Monet's Water Lilies spoke to him.  Or her.



Saturday, September 26, 2020

"Penguin Zen"

 
9 x 12"
oil on panel
sold
 
 
I needed to paint something fun and recently read about Chicago's Shedd Aquarium's penguins being guests at the Art Institute of Chicago while the museum was closed to the public.  Here's one of the guests admiring Claude Monet's Irises, 1914/17 seemingly recognizing familiar elements.
 
Soon after I posted my painting on social media, Shedd Aquarium responded how much they liked it and even have a penguin named Iris!
 
Please click here for a larger view.


Thursday, September 17, 2020

"Face the Music"

 

 
6 x 8"
oil on panel
sold
 
 
Personally, I have a love/hate for Picasso's art.  I favor most of his Cubist style, top of the list being Guernica and the featured painting Three Musicians.  They are jigsaw-puzzle-like, flat planes of solid colors, overlapping like cutout paper making sense in the end.  

Three Musicians is a complicated composition, so much so, this study may have convinced me to not tackle a larger painting.  Don't know yet.  I find Picasso's painting just plain fun.  You see a recurring figures, a Harlequin and a masked Pierrot - both familiar characters in the old Italian theater stories. You see sheet music on a stand, a clarinet and guitar and even a dog's paws stretched out on the bottom left corner.  

When I paint these reproductions of artworks, there's always a deeper understanding of each piece - a valuable lesson every time.  

From the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

~ Stay healthy, stay safe and wear your mask.


Friday, September 11, 2020

"Pull Up a Chair"

 

 
9 x 12"
oil on panel
sold
 
 
Two of our country's best art museums are in Washington DC and often overlooked.  The Smithsonian American Art Museum, conveniently connected to the National Portrait Gallery, which is located on F Street, not in the National Mall with all the other museums - where I want to stand and scream "go a few blocks down to the best two museums in the city!".

American art and American artists are my jam.  Top five personal favorites include Edward Hopper. This gem I featured is People in the Sun.  A perfect description, on the museum's website,  says this painting "suggests a crowd of tourists who feel obliged to take in a famous scenic view, but do so with little pleasure."  That makes me laugh.  Hopper traveled the American West, taking in motel scenes, landscapes, lonely tourists and a whole different light and brought it back to New York City.  He didn't paint out West, he found himself unable to deal with what he called the harsh light and monumental landscapes.  Many of his paintings are a result of sketches and memories, including People in the Sun.

Please click here for a larger view.

Stay healthy, stay safe and wear your mask.
 


Thursday, September 3, 2020

"Freeze"

6 x 8"
oil on panel
sold


I've written about Andy Warhol, the famous Pop artist, and his fascination with idols like Marilyn Monroe, Jackie O, Mao Zedong and yes, Elvis Presley.  With movie stars, he was enamored with the oversize posters promoting the films, selling these celebrities like Campbell Soup labels sold soup. Warhol produced multiple silkscreens of Elvis, in many different ways - this one being two color silkscreens next to two grey-scale screens titled Elvis I & II.

Speaking of the King of Rock n' Roll, the image Warhol used was from the western Flaming Star that came out in December 1960.  His first "serious actor" role was void of any musical numbers.  A month, a month before, G.I. Blues came out and diehard Elvis fans LOVED it.  Plenty of music in that film satisfied audiences but the comparison was inevitable when Flaming Star premiered - proving his fans didn't share his dream of becoming a serious actor.  Another western was in the works, but the Colonel made sure he wouldn't attempt that again.