Friday, October 2, 2020

2020 Politics and Prints

The 2020 presidential election is upon us in the United States. The candidates have debated and bantered back and forth for month now, and soon election day will be here. As in past elections, printmaking has been a vital visual component for the public to see the portraits of the candidates, and the posters crested over the years have become popular collector items.
I have chosen a sampling of different campaign posters and political candidate portraits for this post. The bright, vibrant work of Andy warhol has been popular since the 60s. Other artists have chosen more descriptibe portraits, those of Abraham Lincoln and Stephen A. Douglas.
The importrant thing to do is exercise our right to Vote for the candidate we each feel is best suited for the presidency. Every vote counts. Let's see what the next month brings....VOTE!

Monday, July 27, 2020

2020: A Summer of Protests and Marches


Indeed, 2020 is proving to be a unique year. This summer has shown itself to be unique as well. Since the pandemic began last spring, people are quarantined, families are isolated and going to a beach or to a barbeque seems like a dream from a bygone era. Instead this summer is one full of marches, protests, gatherings of people, with voices raised in frustration, unified to find justice and overdue recognition. In a few short months of pandemic shutdown, people have come together and have voiced their concerns over health, equality of the races, police brutality, etc., etc. These are not new themes, but ones carried over half a century - really, much longer than that.



There are too many statistics of people (mainly of color) having been brutally murdered, beaten, wrongly shot. It needs to stop. It needs to stop. It needs to stop. Period.



I have selected several images detailing protest from the web. Many thanks to everyone included here, but there are so many images to choose from. A sad state of our time where so much pain needs to be addressed. These images cover a number of issues, but the common element is one of protest.









John Lewis, the great Civil rights era leader from Georgia who recently lost his battle with cancer was memorialized this week. I came across one of his quotes which I think bears repeating...“Go out there, Speak up, speak out! Get in the way, get in good trouble! Necessary trouble! And help redeem the soul of America.” Go forth, my inked up friends, and speak the truth as only we can - through great works.


Saturday, May 23, 2020

Memorial Day Greetings


Greetings to everyone this holiday weekend. In the present circumstances this day takes on a significance as we remember those who lost their lives in service of their country, but also the global loss of life due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Be safe, and stay well.

Friday, April 10, 2020

Blessings to All this Easter


Blessings to all this Easter weekend. Praying that everyone is safe and that we get through this troubling time of pandemic. Take Care.

Friday, January 3, 2020

Aaron S. Coleman: A Printmaker for Our Time


The prints of Aaron Coleman give rise to the old claim that art can change the world. Indeed, the work of Aaron Coleman brings together different factions of philosophy, religion and hip hop culture to make very strong messages about the artist's feelings on society today. They are so strong in fact that they proclaim a day of reckoning is upon us.


This work is bold, colorful and poignantly creates messages that hit the viewer like a lightning bolt. Here is an artist who is fearless, who deftly blends together images of saints, silhouette beating of Rodney King, graffiti and much more. Coleman is using all imagery at his disposal to create striking and effective work that reflects our fears and hopes. He mashes it all together and through the chaos we will hopefully find redemption and be saved. Let us all revel in his glory, for this is an artist worth watching.





Coleman is a mixed media artist/printmaker whose works focus on political and social issues. He combines imagery from comic books and stained-glass windows to raise questions concerning misconstrued belief systems and twisted moral values in our society. Coleman’s background in hip-hop culture and street art is also a major influence in his work.


Born January, 1985, in Washington D.C.

MFA, Northern Illinois University, DeKalb IL
BFA, Herron School of Art and Design
Assistant Professor of Art, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
Also taught at California State University, in Fresno and Northern Illinois University, in Dekalb.


Public collections:
Ino-cho Paper Museum in Kochi, Japan
The University of Colorado, CO
University of Tennessee Knoxville, TN
Wichita State University, Wichita, KS
Yekaterinburg Museum of Art, Yekaterinburg, Russia
and many other public and private collections.



Thursday, July 25, 2019

Prints of True Americana: The Work of Ralph Goings




Ralph Goings (1928–2016) was an influential artist and teacher associated with the American Photorealism movement of the 1960s and 1970s. He was best known for his highly detailed images of diners, ketchup bottles, and salt & pepper shakers and pick-up trucks.


Born in Corning, California, Goings grew up during the Great Depression. His first exposure to art was in high-school, and he was inspired by the work of Rembrandt from books in the local library. His aunt encouraged his artistic interests and he began painting using paint from the local hardware store and old bed sheets.



After he served in the Army, Goings briefly enrolled in Hartnell College, and was quickly encouraged to attend art school. He studied art at the California College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, and while there, he met other artists like Robert Bechtle and Nathan Oliveira. He received his MFA from Sacramento State College. Later on, he taught art in Crescent City, and was the head of the Art department at La Sierra High School in Sacramento.



He was inspired by the realistic artwork of Wayne Thiebaud and Thomas Eakins. With artists like Robert Bechtle, Robert Cottingham, Audrey Flack, Don Eddy and Richard Estes, Goings helped establish the Photorealist Movement.

"It occurred to me that projecting and tracing the photograph instead of copying it freehand would be even more shocking. To copy a photograph literally was considered a bad thing to do. It went against all of my art school training... " (edited quote from Realists at Work)


In the mid 1970's, Goings and his family relocated from Sacramento to upstate New York so he could be close to, but not in, the New York City art scene. He enjoyed a long relationship with OK Harris Gallery. In 2006, he and his wife chose to permanently relocate to Santa Cruz.


Remembered as a highly skilled artist, Goings’ work portrayed everyday objects with such a purposeful and distinct realism that their extreme details amazed and fooled the eyes of his audience. His prints compare very favorably with his other media. They are a marvel to behold with their rich surfaces, and numerous reflections. His compositions are intimate and tightly woven. The ketchup bottle and sugar dispenser images are as one would naturally experience them in a restaurant, or a roadside diner. They are cool, clean objects neatly lined up on the countertop, accessible and always ready to pick up.

Going’s affinity for the everyday subject was a step up from pop art that preceded his work. He left out the novelty and Americana glam that one finds in a Warhol or a Lichtenstein. His was a down to earth, real version of American culture. His work reflected an aura of honesty and no-nonsense unmatched in his colleagues’ work. Goings was a true American artist.


Education
MFA - 1965 Sacramento State College, Sacramento, CA
BFA - 1953 California College of Arts and Crafts, Oakland, CA

Public Collections
Benedictine University, Lisle, IL
Boca Raton Museum of Art, Boca Raton, FL
Flint Institute of Arts, Flint, MI
H.J. Heinz Company, Pittsburgh, PA
Lucasfilm, San Anselmo, CA
Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
Portland Museum of Art, Portland, OR
Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA
Sheldon Art Museum, Lincoln, NE
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY
Tampa Museum of Art, Tampa, FL
Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, VA
Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Celebrating the 4th of July!


It's that time of year my friends, when we set our work aside for a day or two, (or three) to celebrate our independence, our way or life, and remember the sacrifices of the many before us so we can live our lives today. It is the 4th of July for America, and that means families gather, they barbecue, go to the beach, or the movies, or the races. It means a good time to be had by all as we go see small town parades, baseball games, fireworks, and eat, drink and be merry. There is more to the story, of course, but we are truly blessed to live in a country that lets us be ourselves, and do what we choose. The same cannot be said of other nations. So, think on the history of this great country and celebrate. Below are a few prime prints by some amazing artists on the theme of Lady Liberty. Enjoy, and be safe!