The Story Behind an Untitled Painting and a Portrait of a Hoarder

My studio is small. It is a 8 X 16 foot area converted from a porch on the south side of my house. The space is packed full of random scraps of material that at one time I deemed might make a good art project.

Untitled I

 Down the Great River; Embracing An Account of the Discovery of the True Source of the Mississippi by Captain Willard Glazier

Down the Great River; Embracing An Account of the Discovery of the True Source of the Mississippi by Captain Willard Glazier

The piece is divided into two parts and instead of creating a single composition with a break, I took the task making the project in 2 parts. I feel they are two separate works of art that reference the same source. To aptly depict the mighty river, I alternated layers of articulate illustration with more atmospheric washes of diluted color. I worked on each piece simultaneously, using the same painting style, but approached them individually with a slightly different palette and application of painting. I think of them as a series of two. Two sisters: one from the north, the other from the south.

 

I often feel the need to purge the precious square footage of the salvaged table tops and rusty pieces of tin, but then every so often I'm able to take something that has been sitting around and turn it into a great piece of art.

Untitled I and II, recently exhibited at Council Member Amy Brendmoen's Office, started as two rough scraps of Masonite. Two scraps that I slapped with a layer of gesso and then set aside. Fortunately, the urge to throw out the things in my studio was just that. Nearly a year later I found my self drawn to a unique old book that had a pull out map of the Mississippi River. It was then that my tireless devotion to hoarding paid off. Idea met medium. The Masonite proved to be the perfect dimensions to recreate the vintage illustration in my 1891 copy of Down the Great River; An Account  of the Discovery of the True Source of the Mississippi.

Untitled II