Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Small Show

Gail wrote the following press release, and Tuko created this card to announce our "summer of Small Paintings." We decided not to have an actual opening since the body of work will (we hope) keep expanding and changing. Personally, I am still gessoing and preparing my batch of tiny boards to paint on. I think I will do a series of botanicals, playing with metallic textured backgrounds behind studies of native Hawaiian plants. The irony with small paintings is that they really take almost as much time and energy as big ones, but we charge less for them.

Small Paintings for a Shrinking Economy

The Arthur Johnsen Gallery believes just because oil has gone crazy it doesn’t mean you should give up beauty and an opportunity to invest in the best of local art. How many million dollar homes have we seen with bare walls? Does your home have that feng shui problem? To remedy this unbalanced situation, the artists of the gallery realized that smaller, more affordable paintings are just the ticket. Beginning June 1st and thru the summer, small to tiny paintings will be offered by a medley of artists on the Big Island. The gallery located at 46 Waianuenue Street in Hilo is open Monday –Friday 11-5.

Let’s not forget to remember, art is an investment in the Connection between the universe and mankind.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

A Commissioned Painting

I've been working on this commissioned piece for some nice folks in Kona. They had seen my paintings in Mary Philpotts' book "Hawai'i: A Sense of Place"
and wanted something with a similar feeling. But after a number of sketches they settled on a composition that smacks more of 18th century European landscape painting than the orientalist/deco of the previous triptych. So I got to try my hand at these somewhat doll sized figures in a stylized Kona beach scene. The big tree is a milo, which is one of my favorite Hawaiian coastal plants. I'm using acrylics with metallic areas and a few textural passages. It's all quite a challenge for me!

Friday, May 09, 2008

Painting with Mark Brown

I spent the last week of April on O'ahu's windward side, courtesy of a dear family friend Barbara Bahnsen in Lanikai where I used to live three decades ago (yikes!) and where my grandfather lived even further back. Lanikai of course is that amazing little enclave of paradise perched just east of Kailua, where mega-mansions have been edging out the sweet little bungalows of yore.

Right away I was swept into the intense painting life of Mark Brown, the lovable big plein-air prince of the island, who tackles huge canvases on location while at the same time nurturing the skills of dozens of other artists. It is such a pleasure to join him on these daily adventures in O'ahu's most beautiful spots.

One afternoon on the windy white sands of Lanikai we were joined by Debby Young and Franco Salmoiraghi, good friends who happen to be royalty as well in the artistic world of the islands.