Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Joseph Cornell 1903-1972

I write today to say a few words about the artist Joseph Cornell. A man who I consider to be the Godfather of Assemblage Art. Though he wasn't the first artist to work in assemblage, (Marcel Duchamp lays claim to that distinction), he was the first artist of any note to base his entire career on assemblage and collage. Cornell's art was included in and accepted by several art movements as they came and went over the years. He was included in shows as, and influenced fellow artists in: Surrealism during the 40's, Abstract Impressionism during the 1950's and Pop art in the 60's. No other artist I know of has spanned so many art movements. The funny thing is, he never really thought of himself as an artist, he was just compelled to create. It was his way of communing with his desires and expressing thanks and homage to those people and things he admired and dreamed about. I recently was sent his biography by a friend of mine (and fellow artist) who told me my pieces brought to mind Cornell. I have since read about this fascinating man and can safely say, it is impossible not to admire and be influenced by his work.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Visual Food For Thought

I think we are influenced by everything we see, whether we are conscious of it or not. But as far as people who I am consciously influenced by I would say Jasper Johns had a major impact on me, perhaps because when I first saw his work up close and personal at the Whitney back in the late 80's it made me realize that found objects were an exciting and acceptable part of creating art. That's when I took a course at Santa Barbara City College with another artist I admired Ron Robertson,, who taught me his techniques of transforming found objects to art. I hadn't done anything for quite a while when I started doing these boxes again a few years back, but it was then that I realized it was part of who I am. Painting with objects is a language I speak.