Apr 29, 2014

Bricolage Realism: Show Opening on May 1st, 6-8 PM

Bricolage Realism

Thursday night, May 1st from 6-8 pm, there will be a wine and cheese reception for my show at the Coldwell Banker Caine Real Estate Gallery on Main St. in Greenville. Thank you to CBC Realtors for this wonderful opportunity to exhibit my work in the "Bricolage Realism" series, plus one other work in the "Grounded Skies" new series.

Bricolage Realism is a term I use to describe the combination of on-location, direct observational realist landscape with found object assemblage. Bricolage is originally a French term used to describe the use of immediate, at hand multiple processes or materials. While there are elements of traditional realist landscape painting and found object assemblage art methods here, their combination is somewhat unique. Robert Rauschenberg, George Herms and Jasper Johns have all experimented with using objects in their abstract or expressionist compositions. In Rauschenberg's series of Combines (his own bricolage work), one of his better known pieces is "Canyon". You'll see an obvious allusion to this in one of my works in this exhibit.
Robert Rauschenberg (1959) Canyon

These compositions reflect explicit and sometimes personal and more hidden messages about location, history and people. In painting the "urban landscape" it is hard to maintain distance from social and cultural reality. In the bricolage work, I intentionally subvert the traditional aesthetic of landscape as a stand-alone work of art and treat the painting as just another "found" artifact, representing a particular time and location. I invest time and inquire about the site, walk around, have a good long look and find things; sometimes about other people, sometimes about myself.

Bonus: The one newer work from the "Grounded Skies" series is indulging my love of sky painting and low-horizon landscape. This work pairs the openness and inspirational effects of clouds and light with a reality grounded in familiar scenes in and around Greenville. The piece "Poinsett Highway Bridge" was painted on location over several weeks.

Apr 4, 2012

Cornejo Rojo

Just finished this piece for the Open Studio Retrospective show here in Greenville at the Metropolitan Arts Council. All the pieces in the show are 12 x 12. My friend and fellow artist, Joel Wilkinson, recently commented on the Red Dogwood blooming now. He brought this to my attention, and I discovered that of the 4 red dogwood trees on our property, we have at least two different cultivars with different shades of red. This painting incorporates a twig with blossoms off the deeper of the two reds. The Mexican Peso reminds me of the shared economies in this region, in which gardening and landscaping plays a big role. The frame, still in its corrugated paper wrapper, was also interestingly assembled in Mexico. In Spanish, Cornejo Rojo (red dogwood). "Spring Object Series: Cornejo Rojo" 2012 Oil on panel, 12 x 12 inches.

Jan 10, 2012

Group show with the Fine Art Ramblers moves to NC

Coming up, opening on Jan. 27th, is a group show with fellow Fine Art Ramblers Patti Brady, Jim Campbell, Bob Chance and Phil Garrett at the Upstairs Artspace in Tryon, NC.

Dec 29, 2011

Commission piece

Titled by the client, "The Last Fall", documents a view looking north towards the North Carolina / South Carolina border. 15 x 48 oil on wood panel. Completed with Williamsburg Oils.

Jun 24, 2011

Near complete, just as studio is damaged.

Well, I was nearly finished with the still life when a heavy wind storm blew two large pine trees onto my studio roof and nearly demolished it. Had it not been a Wednesday evening, I might have been inside working on the painting, just under one of the large cross ties supporting the roof. These are now all down and all of the objects on the table were swept away. Lucky me! Insurance should cover most or all of this, I hope.

Weather is OK now, so looks like I'll be working out doors for awhile. I added the Hohner harmonica in an old style case, which they no longer make. This is the type of small cardboard box the harmonicas came in when I was much younger.

This piece was a particularly difficult exercise in exact realism, using personally significant objects from my youth. The tandem forces of music and painting, and the reference to religious indoctrination hang in the balance here. My fascination with light effects, particularly ultraviolet light, and my experimentation with DayGlo tempera paints are recorded in this autobiographical still life painting. I have submitted this to the Oil Painters of America Eastern Regional Juried Exhibit. Let's keep our fingers crossed.

Feb 5, 2011

Progress on Black Light Confirmation.

Current state of "Black Light Confirmation". I have been working on this auto-ethnographic still life for a little over 2 years, off and on. I intend to finish it up in the next couple of weeks in time for submission to the Oil Painters of America national show. I am balancing natural light, artificial light from outside the picture and the glow of the UV lamp I used when I was 12 or 13 and started painting with Day-Glo tempera paints. The lamp glowing under the reflection in the dark purple/red glass lens came out pretty well. I still have the remainder of the cornet, small jars of paints and the lamp base, bracket and bulb cover to bring to a finished state.

Jan 15, 2011

Back in the studio.

Back to work on the still life oil (16x20) on panel in the studio. The heater I installed last winter works like a charm, and will do so even better when I finish insulating the remaining 2/3 of the walls and ceiling. This is a picture of the studio interior. Making good progress on the painting itself and will feature that when I am done. I also have several notes about the process and will share those.