Day 360- Marcel Duchamp- You Cannot Define Art

It’s Day 360 and now I actually have 5 left to go.  I’ve been putting off today’s artist for a long time because he’s one of my favorites, but I was so nervous about tackling his style.  I’m glad that I waited until the tail end of my project because I feel like I’ve learned/experienced enough to mildly pull it off.  Please join me in honoring Marcel Duchamp today.

Marcel Duchamp

Marcel Duchamp

 

Marcel Duchamp, French  (July 28, 1887- October 2, 1968)

“You cannot define electricity. The same can be said of art. It is a kind of inner current in a human being, or something which needs no definition.”

Chess Players- Marcel Duchamp

Chess Players- Marcel Duchamp

Few artists can boast having changed the course of art history in the way that Marcel Duchamp did. Having assimilated the lessons of Cubism and Futurism, whose joint influence may be felt in his early paintings, he spearheaded the American Dada movement together with his friends and collaborators Picabia and Man Ray. By challenging the very notion of what is art, his first readymades sent shock waves across the art world that can still be felt today.

Duchamp’s ongoing preoccupation with the mechanisms of desire and human sexuality as well as his fondness for wordplay aligns his work with that of Surrealists, although he steadfastly refused to be affiliated with any specific artistic movement per se. In his insistence that art should be driven by ideas above all, Duchamp is generally considered to be the father of Conceptual art.
His refusal to follow a conventional artistic path, matched only by a horror of repetition which accounts for the

Parva Domus, Magna Quies - Marcel Duchamp

Parva Domus, Magna Quies – Marcel Duchamp

relatively small number of works Duchamp produced in the span of his short career, ultimately led to his withdrawal from the art world. In later years, Duchamp famously spent his time playing chess, even as he labored away in secret at his last enigmatic masterpiece, which was only unveiled after his death in 1968.

Coined by Duchamp, the term “readymade” came to designate mass-produced everyday objects taken out of their usual context and promoted to the status of artworks by the mere choice of the artist. A performative act as much as a stylistic category, the readymade had far-reaching implications for what can legitimately be considered an object of art.
Nude Descending a Staircase- Marcel Duchamp

Nude Descending a Staircase- Marcel Duchamp

Duchamp rejected purely visual or what he dubbed “retinal pleasure,” deeming it to be facile, in favor of more intellectual, concept-driven approaches to art-making and, for that matter, viewing. He remained committed, however, to the study of perspective and optics which underpins his experiments with kinetic devices, reflecting an ongoing concern with the representation of motion and machines common to Futurist and Surrealist artists at the time.

A taste for jokes, tongue-in-cheek wit and subversive humor, rife with sexual innuendoes, characterizes Duchamp’s work and makes for much of its enjoyment. He fashioned puns out of everyday expressions which he conveyed through visual

King and Queen surrounded by swift nudes - Marcel Duchamp

King and Queen surrounded by swift nudes – Marcel Duchamp

means. The linguistic dimension of his work in particular paved the way for Conceptual art.

Marcel Duchamp was raised in Normandy, in a family of artists. His father was mayor of Blainville and his mother raised their seven children and painted landscapes depicting the French countryside. Family time was spent playing chess, reading, painting, and playing music.
Fountain 1917, replica 1964 Marcel Duchamp 1887-1968 Purchased with assistance from the Friends of the Tate Gallery 1999

Fountain 1917, replica 1964 Marcel Duchamp 1887-1968 Purchased with assistance from the Friends of the Tate Gallery 1999

One of Marcel’s earliest artworks, Landscape at Blainville (1902), painted at age fifteen, reflected his family’s love of Claude Monet. Marcel was close to his two older brothers, and in 1904, after both had left home to become artists, he joined them in Paris to study painting at Académie Julian. His brother, Jacques Villon, supported him during his studies, and Marcel earned some income by working as a cartoonist. Duchamp’s early drawings evince his ongoing interest in visual and verbal puns.

After he withdrew from the art world, Duchamp remained a passive, if influential, presence in New York avant-garde circles until he was rediscovered in the 1950s by Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns. Duchamp’s insistence that art should be an expression of the mind rather than the eye or the hand spoke to Minimalists and Conceptual artists alike.
It ushered in a new era summed up by Joseph Kosuth’s claim that “all art (after Duchamp) is conceptual (in

Yvonne and Magdeleine Torn in Tatters- Marcel Duchamp

Yvonne and Magdeleine Torn in Tatters- Marcel Duchamp

nature) because art only exists conceptually.” The seminal concept of the mass-produced readymade was eagerly seized upon not only by Andy Warhol and other Pop artists who claimed Duchamp as their founding father but also, owing to its performative aspects, by FluxusArte Povera and Performance artists.

Portrait of Chess Players- Marcel Duchamp

Portrait of Chess Players- Marcel Duchamp

Duchamp’s radical critique of art institutions made him a cult figure for generations of artists who, like him, refused to go down the path of a conventional, commercial artistic career.

Though his work was admired for its wide-ranging use of artistic materials and mediums, it is the theoretical thrust of Duchamp’s eclectic but relatively limited output that accounts for his growing impact on successive waves of twentieth-century avant-garde movements and individual artists who openly acknowledged his influence.

On his attitude about art: “It is paradoxical. It is almost schizophrenic. On one side I worked from a very

Portrait of Dulcinea- Marcel Duchamp

Portrait of Dulcinea- Marcel Duchamp

intellectual form of activity, and on the other de-deifying everything by more materialistic thoughts.”

On the readymade: “The readymade is the consequence of the refusal which made me say: There are so many people who make pictures with their hands, that one should end up not using the hand.”

On chess: “I am still a victim of chess. It has all the beauty of art, and much more. It cannot be commercialized. Chess is much purer than art in its social position.”

Biography is from The Art Story website.

I hope you enjoy my tribute to the great Marcel Duchamp today.  I had a surprisingly relaxing time creating it today!  I wanted to incorporate his love for chess.  I will see you tomorrow on Day 361…I’m going to try and have a relaxing rest of the day now. 🙂

Best,

Linda

Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Side-View Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Side-View
Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Close-Up 2 Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Close-Up 2
Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Strategy- Tribute to Marcel Duchamp
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Crackle paint on Canvas

Day 358- Mark Ryden- “True Magic is All Around Us”

It’s Day 358 and I can’t believe my project is coming to an end.  It’s also Christmas eve and I think my plan is to try and relax tonight!  My arm is hurting and last night we had a holiday get together with friends.  I’m ready to give my elbow a huge rest in the new year!  BUT today I spent a large portion of my day tackling my painting.  It was extremely challenging and difficult.  One of my favorite artists and one of the most difficult in my opinion regarding his style and the materials I dealt with.  Please join me in honoring Mark Ryden today.

Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden (born January 20, 1963) is an American painter, part of the Lowbrow (or Pop Surrealist) art movement. He was dubbed “the god-father of pop surrealism” by Interview Magazine. Ryden’s aesthetic is developed from subtle amalgams of many sources: from Ingres, David and other French classicists to Little Golden Books. Ryden also draws his inspiration from anything that will evoke mystery; old toys, anatomical models, stuffed animals, skeletons and religious ephemera found in flea markets.

Ryden was born in Medford, Oregon on January 20, 1963, but raised in Southern California. Ryden is the son of Barbara and Keith Ryden. His

Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden

father made a living painting, restoring and customizing cars.  He has two sisters and two brothers, one a fellow artist named Keyth Ryden, who works under the name KRK. Ryden graduated from the Art Center College of Design inPasadena, in 1987.

From 1988 to 1998 Ryden made his living as a commercial artist. During this period Ryden created numerous album covers including, Michael Jackson’s Dangerous, Red Hot Chili Peppers’ One Hot Minute, and Aerosmith’s Love in an Elevator.

Fur Girl- Mark Ryden

Fur Girl- Mark Ryden

Also during this time, Ryden created book covers including Stephen King’s novel Desperation and The Regulators. Ryden made a living as a commercial artist until his work was taken up by Robert Williams, a former member of the Zap Comix collective, who in 1994 put it on the cover of Juxtapoz, a magazine devoted to “lowbrow art”.

Ryden’s solo debut show entitled “The Meat Show” was in Pasadena, California in 1998. Meat is a reoccurring theme in Ryden’s work. Ryden observes the disconnect in our contemporary culture between meat we use for food and the living, breathing creature it comes from. “I suppose it is this contradiction that

Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden

brings me to return to meat in my art.” According to Ryden, meat is the physical substance that makes all of us alive and through which we exist in this reality. All of us are wearing our bodies, which are like a garment of meat.

A midcareer retrospective, “Wondertoonel,” which refers to a cabinet of curiosities or Wunderkammer (“wonder-room”), was co-organized in 2004 by the Frye Museum in Seattle and the Pasadena Museum of California Art. It was the best attended exhibition since the Frye Art Museum opened in 1952, and also broke attendance records in Pasadena. Debra Byrne, curator at the Frye at the time of Ryden’s exhibition, placed Ryden’s work in the camp of the

Yoshi the Forest Spirit- Mark Ryden

Yoshi the Forest Spirit- Mark Ryden

carnivalesque—a strain of visual culture rooted in such works as Hieronymous Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights. According to the Russian author and literary critic Mikhail Bakhtin (1895–1975), there are three forms of carnivalesque art—the ritualized spectacle, the comic composition and various genres of billingsgate (foul language)—all three of which are interwoven in Ryden’s work.

In 2007, “The Tree Show” opened at the Michael Kohn Gallery, Los Angeles. In this show Ryden explores the modern human experience of nature.  Ryden explains “Some people look at these massive trees and feel a sort of spiritual awe looking at them, and then other people just want to cut them up and sell them, they only see a commodity”. Ryden has created limited editions of his art to raise money for the Sierra Club and Nature Conservancy.

In 2009, Ryden’s exhibition “The Snow Yak Show” was shown at the Tomio Koyama Gallery in Tokyo. In this

The Butcher Bunny- Mark Ryden

The Butcher Bunny- Mark Ryden

exhibition Ryden’s compositions were more serene and suggestive of solitude, peacefulness and introspection.

In 2010, “The Gay 90’s: Old Tyme Art Show” debuted at Paul Kasmin Gallery in New York. The central theme the show referenced the idealism and sentimentalism of the 1890s while addressing the role of kitsch and nostalgia in our current culture. Here Ryden explores the line between attraction and repulsion to kitsch. According to The New York Times, “Ryden’s pictures hint at the psychic stuff that pullulates beneath the sentimental, nostalgic and naïve surface of modern kitsch.”

Ryden’s “The Tree of Life” painting was included in the exhibition “The Artist’s Museum, Los Angeles Artists 1980-2010” at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA). The exhibition showcased artists who have helped shape the artistic dialogue in Los Angeles since the founding of MOCA over 30 years ago. Ryden hung on the same wall as Robert Williams.

Mark Ryden

Mark Ryden

On May 13, 2014, Ryden released an album entitled ‘The Gay Nineties Old Tyme Music: Daisy Bell,’ that features Tyler the Creator,Weird Al, Katy Perry, Stan Ridgway of Wall Of Voodoo, and Danny Elfman, Mark Mothersbaugh of Devo, Nick Cave, Kirk Hammettof Metallica, and Everlast, all giving a different rendition of the same song, Daisy Bell (Bicycle Built for Two). The proceeds from the signed and limited edition record, benefited Little Kids Rock, a nonprofit that supports musical education in disadvantaged elementary schools.

Ryden has two children, Rosie and Jasper. In 2009 he married artist Marion Peck in the Pacific Northwest rainforest. He currently lives in Eagle Rock, California, where he shares a studio with his wife.

Biography is from wikipedia.

“There is a very dark and painful side to life, but that is natural. People in our culture think they should never be unhappy. They think that being unhappy is unnatural. They try to make it go away. They take pills or they go to therapy to “fix” themselves. They blame themselves or others for their suffering. We need to understand that sadness is as much a part of life as joy. It would be easy just to get bitter and cold while focusing on the dark side, but there is also an amazing, wonderful side of life. If you look for it, there is true magic all around us. Maybe that sounds trite to the hardened, self-protective modern ego, but there is magiv in this miraculous life. If you open yourself up, you do make yourself vulnerable to pain but the deeper the pain you experience, the deeper joy you have.”   ― Mark Ryden

I decided to do a simple Mark Ryden tribute…painting on the wood was a little more challenging than I expected.  Again, I’m using acrylics and not oils so blending was hard and I don’t think I primed and prepped the wood as good I as I could’ve.  His paintings have such a soft look to them which for me is especially hard to emulate.  But I did something!  I think it turned out okay.  🙂  I’m sad, but also kind of excited to have this project end soon.  I think my body and brain need a rest and to get back to doing some of my other passions…like writing!

I will see you tomorrow on Day 359!  Best, Linda

Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Wood Panel

Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Wood Panel

Side-VIew Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Wood Panel

Side-VIew
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Wood Panel

Close-Up 1 Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Wood Panel

Close-Up 1
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Wood Panel

Close-Up 2 Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Wood Panel

Close-Up 2
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Wood Panel

Close-Up 3 Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Wood Panel

Close-Up 3
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Mark Ryden
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Wood Panel

 

Day 354- Mark P. Wilson- For Your Amusement

It’s Day 354 and I am so excited to pay tribute to another close buddy of mine…one of my bestest friends!  I’ve known him for years and we used to draw together all the time when I lived in Seattle and I couldn’t believe how hard I laughed at the characters he used to come up with.  I am constantly pushing him to do more art, draw comics and eventually make cartoons because I truly believe it’s one of his greatest talents.  Please join me in honoring Mark P. Wilson today!  I asked him to write his own biography as well.  It’s kind of short and I also wanted to pack his art into it.  Hope you don’t mind!

Mark P. Wilson

Mark P. Wilson

Magical Unicorn Tea Party- Mark P. Wilson

Magical Unicorn Tea Party- Mark P. Wilson

Biography, huh?  Well, I was born in March 13, 1976 and raised in Cedar Falls, IA.  I watched a ton of cartoons growing up and always enjoyed them all, even the crappy 70s low budget corner cutting ones and the weird asian import ones with bad dubbing.  I also really love the really old ones the Ub Iwerks, Max Fleischer, and Silly Symphonies stuff.

When Pee-wee’s Playhouse came out, I totally freaked out and was an obsessive fan.  Loved reading comics

Space Gramps- Mark P. Wilson

Space Gramps- Mark P. Wilson

(from Donald Duck and Harvey comics to Archie comics to superhero stuff) and satire magazines like Mad and Cracked and was very inspired by my older brothers attempts at this style of satire, which consisted mostly of poop jokes.

My Uncle Bruce was an abstract painter and his pieces hung around our house.  They were an influence throughout my childhood.  Also, our Grandma used to wear these wigs to work and she gave her old clothes and wigs to my mom for dress-up clothes for the daycare and those got a ton of use and appear in many of our movies as well.  I think that inspire some of the outfits my characters wear.

Mark P. Wilson

Mark P. Wilson

I was also really into sugar cereal mascots and marketing and McDonald land and all that Sid and Marty Krofft stuff.  I liked making up continued stories using these characters that seemed so obviously limited and disposable in nature.   I think my work is very crude/unpolished but the ideas are fun and the emotion comes through.  I tend to use bold black lines and bright colors because I’m a big fan of stain-glass windows.  I try to make my work have that same luminescent feel.

I think that I make art now for the same reason that I started doing it, to amuse myself and others.    I moved to Seattle

Karmic Vortex- Mark P. Wilson

Karmic Vortex- Mark P. Wilson

when I was 19 and eventually met Linda Cleary there and she showed me Michael Kupperman’s work and forced me to do a bunch of drawings and that started setting some things in motion.

I need to work more consistently, recently I’ve been into the idea of animating some of these creatures and hopefully that will actually happen (I have the software).

I currently live in Seoul, Korea and teach kindergarten.  I love encouraging

Mark P. Wilson

Mark P. Wilson

the kids with art projects inspired by their individual creativity.  In Korea there tends to be an element of conformity and I try to get the kids to trust their own artistic instincts.

~

I hope you enjoy my tribute today.  I had a ton of fun painting it.  It brought back memories and inspired me to get back into doodling and creating some fun absurd characters.

I will see you tomorrow on Day 355!  Only 10 more left!

Best,
Linda

How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Side-View How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Side-View
How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Close-Up 1 How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Close-Up 1
How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Close-Up 2 How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Close-Up 2
How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Close-Up 3 How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

Close-Up 3
How 2 Be Cool- Tribute to Mark P. Wilson
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic & Pen and Ink on Canvas

 

 

 

Day 350- Salvador Dalí- Overdose of Satisfaction

It’s Day 350 and I spent forever today painting and making sure I did a wonderful tribute to today’s artist since he’s been one of my favorite artists since high school!  Please join me in honoring Salvador Dali today.  I’m posting this kind of late since I was rushing around doing holiday stuff this evening!

Salvador Dali

Salvador Dali

Salvador Dalí Painter (1904–1989)

Spanish artist and Surrealist icon Salvador Dalí is perhaps best known for his painting of melting clocks, The Persistence of Memory.

Still Life Moving Fast- Salvador Dali

Still Life Moving Fast- Salvador Dali

Salvador Dalí was born on May 11, 1904, in Figueres, Spain. From an early age, Dalí was encouraged to practice his art and would eventually go on to study at an academy in Madrid. In the 1920s, he went to Paris and began interacting with artists such as Picasso, Magritte and Miró, which led to Dalí’s first Surrealist phase. He is perhaps best known for his 1931 painting The Persistence of Memory, showing melting clocks in a landscape setting. The rise of fascist leader Francisco Franco in Spain led to the artist’s expulsion from the Surrealist movement, but that didn’t stop him from painting. Dalí died in Figueres in 1989.

Salvador Dalí was born Salvador Felipe Jacinto Dalí y Domenech on May 11, 1904, in Figueres, Spain, located 16 miles from the French border in the foothills of the Pyrenees Mountains. His father, Salvador Dalí y Cusi, was a middle class lawyer and notary. Salvador’s father had a strict disciplinary approach to raising children—a style of child-rearing which contrasted sharply with that of his mother, Felipa Domenech Ferres. She often indulged young Salvador in his art and early eccentricities.

It has been said that young Salvador was a precocious and intelligent child, prone to fits of anger against his parents and schoolmates. Consequently, Dalí was subjected to furious acts of cruelty by more dominant students or his father. The elder Salvador wouldn’t tolerate his son’s outbursts or

The Persistence of Memory- Salvador Dali

The Persistence of Memory- Salvador Dali

eccentricities, and punished him severely. Their relationship deteriorated when Salvador was still young, exacerbated by competition between he and his father for Felipa’s affection.

Dalí had an older brother, born nine months before him, also named Salvador, who died of gastroenteritis. Later in his life, Dalí often related the story that when he was 5 years old, his parents took him to the grave of his older brother and told him he was his brother’s reincarnation. In the metaphysical prose he frequently used, Dalí recalled, “[we] resembled each other like two drops of water, but we had different reflections.” He “was probably a first version of myself, but conceived too much in the absolute.”

Salvador, along with his younger sister Ana Maria and his parents, often spent time at their summer home in the coastal village of Cadaques. At an early age, Salvador was producing highly sophisticated drawings, and both of his parents strongly supported his artistic talent. It was here that his parents built him an art studio before he entered art school.

The Burning Giraffe- Salvador Dali

The Burning Giraffe- Salvador Dali

Upon recognizing his immense talent, Salvador Dalí’s parents sent him to drawing school at the Colegio de Hermanos Maristas and the Instituto in Figueres, Spain, in 1916. He was not a serious student, preferring to daydream in class and stand out as the class eccentric, wearing odd clothing and long hair. After that first year at art school, he discovered modern painting in Cadaques while vacationing with his family. There, he also met Ramon Pichot, a local artist who frequently visited Paris. The following year, his father organized an exhibition of Salvador’s charcoal drawings in the family home. By 1919, the young artist had his first public exhibition, at the Municipal Theatre of Figueres.

In 1921, Dalí’s mother, Felipa, died of breast cancer. Dalí was 16 years old at the time, and was devastated by the loss. His father married his deceased wife’s sister, which did not endear the younger Dalí any closer to his father, though he respected his aunt. Father and son would battle over many different issues throughout their lives, until the elder Dalí’s death.

Day 342- Odilon Redon- Ambiguous Realms

It’s Day 342 and I had a good time with today’s piece.  I was torn on what style I wanted to paint in because the artist did so many styles.  I decided to do a charcoal based piece because I wanted to experience charcoal a bit more before this project ended. 🙂  Thanks to my friend Mark Rachel for recommending today’s artist.  Please join me in honoring Odilon Redon today.

Odilon Redon

Odilon Redon

Cyclops- Odilon Redon

Cyclops- Odilon Redon

Odilon Redon (born Bertrand-Jean RedonFrench; April 20, 1840 – July 6, 1916) was a French symbolist painter, printmaker, draughtsman and pastellist.

Odilon Redon was born in Bordeaux, Aquitaine to a prosperous family. The young Bertrand-Jean Redon acquired the nickname “Odilon” from his mother, Odile. Redon started drawing as a child and at the age of ten he was awarded a drawing prize at school. He began the formal study of drawing at fifteen, but at his father’s insistence changed to architecture. Failure to pass the entrance exams at Paris’ École des Beaux-Arts ended any plans for a career as an architect, although he briefly studied painting there under Jean-Léon Gérôme in 1864. (His younger brother Gaston Redon would become a noted architect.)

Back home in his native Bordeaux, he took up sculpture, and Rodolphe

The Winged Man (The Fallen Angel) - Odilon Redon

The Winged Man (The Fallen Angel) – Odilon Redon

Bresdin instructed him in etching and lithography. His artistic career was interrupted in 1870 when he joined the army to serve in the Franco-Prussian War.

At the end of the war, he moved to Paris, and resumed working almost exclusively in charcoal and lithography. He called his visionary works, conceived in shades of black, his noirs. It was not until 1878 that his work gained any recognition with Guardian Spirit of the Waters; he published his first album of lithographs, titled Dans le Rêve, in 1879.

The Eye- Odilon Redon

The Eye- Odilon Redon

Still, Redon remained relatively unknown until the appearance in 1884 of a cult novel by Joris-Karl Huysmans titled À rebours (Against Nature). The story featured a decadent aristocrat who collected Redon’s drawings.

In the 1890s pastel and oils became his favored media; he produced no more noirs after 1900. In 1899, he exhibited with the Nabis at Durand-Ruel’s.

Redon had a keen interest in Hindu and Buddhist religion and culture. The figure of the Buddha increasingly showed in his work. Influences of Japonism blended into his art, such as the painting The Death of the Buddha around 1899, The Buddha in 1906, Jacob and the Angel in 1905, and Vase with Japanese warrior in 1905, amongst many others.

Baron Robert de Domecy (1867–1946) commissioned the artist in 1899 to create 17 decorative panels for the dining room of theChâteau de Domecy-sur-le-Vault near Sermizelles in Burgundy. Redon had created large decorative works for private residences in the past, but his compositions for the château de Domecy in 1900–1901 were his most radical compositions to that point and mark the transition from ornamental to abstract painting. The landscape details do not show a specific place or space.

Only details of trees, twigs with leaves, and budding flowers in an endless horizon can be seen. The colours used

Portrait of Violette Heymann- Odilon Redon

Portrait of Violette Heymann- Odilon Redon

are mostly yellow, grey, brown and light blue. The influence of the Japanese painting style found on folding screens byōbu is discernible in his choice of colours and the rectangular proportions of most of the up to 2.5 metres high panels. Fifteen of them are located today in the Musée d’Orsay, acquisitioned in 1988.

Domecy also commissioned Redon to paint portraits of his wife and their daughter Jeanne, two of which are in the collections of the Musée d’Orsay and the Getty Museum in California. Most of the paintings remained in the Domecy family collection until the 1960s.

Le Silence- Odilon Redon

Le Silence- Odilon Redon

In 1903 Redon was awarded the Legion of Honor. His popularity increased when a catalogue of etchings and lithographs was published by André Mellerio in 1913; that same year, he was given the largest single representation at the New York Armory Show.

Redon died on July 6, 1916. In 1923 Mellerio published Odilon Redon: Peintre Dessinateur et Graveur. An archive of Mellerio’s papers is held by the Ryerson & Burnham Libraries at the Art Institute of Chicago.

In 2005 the Museum of Modern Art launched an exhibition entitled “Beyond The Visible”, a comprehensive overview of Redon’s work showcasing more than 100 paintings, drawings, prints and books from The Ian Woodner Family Collection. The exhibition ran from October 30, 2005 to January 23, 2006.

The Fondation Beyeler in Basel, Switzerland is showing a retrospective from February to May 2014.

Redon’s work represents an exploration of his internal feelings and psyche. He himself wanted to “place the visible at the service of the invisible”; thus, although his work seems filled with strange beings and grotesque dichotomies, his aim was to represent pictorially the ghosts of his own mind. A telling source of Redon’s

Little Flowers (Human Heads), 1880. Charcoal on paper- Odilon Redon

Little Flowers (Human Heads), 1880. Charcoal on paper- Odilon Redon

inspiration and the forces behind his works can be found in his journalA Soi-même (To Myself). His process was explained best by himself when he said:

“I have often, as an exercise and as a sustenance, painted before an object down to the smallest accidents of its visual appearance; but the day left me sad and with an unsatiated thirst. The next day I let the other source run, that of imagination, through the recollection of the forms and I was then reassured and appeased.”

The mystery and the evocation of Redon’s drawings are described by Huysmans in the following passage:

“Those were the pictures bearing the signature: Odilon Redon. They held, between their gold-edged frames of unpolished pearwood, undreamed-of images: a Merovingian-type head, resting upon a cup; a bearded man, reminiscent both of a Buddhist priest and a public orator, touching an enormous cannon-ball with his finger; a spider with a human face lodged

Head on a Stem- Odilon Redon

Head on a Stem- Odilon Redon

in the centre of its body. Then there were charcoal sketches which delved even deeper into the terrors of fever-ridden dreams. Here, on an enormous die, a melancholy eyelid winked; over there stretched dry and arid landscapes, calcinated plains, heaving and quaking ground, where volcanos erupted into rebellious clouds, under foul and murky skies; sometimes the subjects seemed to have been taken from the nightmarish dreams of science, and hark back to prehistoric times; monstrous flora bloomed on the rocks; everywhere, in among the erratic blocks and glacial mud, were figures whose simian appearance—heavy jawbone, protruding brows, receding forehead, and flattened skull top—recalled the ancestral head, the head of the first Quaternary Period, the head of man when he was still fructivorous and without speech, the contemporary of the mammoth, of the rhinoceros with septate nostrils, and of the giant bear. These drawings defied classification; unheeding, for the most part, of the limitations of painting, they ushered in a very special type of the fantastic, one born of sickness and delirium.”

Redon also describes his work as ambiguous and undefinable:

“My drawings inspire, and are not to be defined. They place us, as does music, in the ambiguous realm of the undetermined.”

Biography is from wikipedia.

I was really drawn to Redon’s charcoal or “noir” drawings.  So I decided to focus on that style.  I hope you enjoy my piece for today and I’ll see you tomorrow on Day 343.

Best,

Linda

Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon Linda Cleary 2014 Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon
Linda Cleary 2014
Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Side-View Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon Linda Cleary 2014 Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Side-View
Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon
Linda Cleary 2014
Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Close-Up 1 Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon Linda Cleary 2014 Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Close-Up 1
Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon
Linda Cleary 2014
Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Close-Up 2 Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon Linda Cleary 2014 Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Close-Up 2
Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon
Linda Cleary 2014
Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Close-Up 3 Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon Linda Cleary 2014 Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Close-Up 3
Chefs sur Arbres et de Fleurs- Tribute to Odilon Redon
Linda Cleary 2014
Charcoal, Ink and Graphite of Canvas

Day 337- Daniel Higgs- Art of the Cosmos

It’s Day 337 and I am a huge fan of today’s artist/musician.  His art is amazing and I love the band Lungfish.  Please join me in honoring Daniel Higgs today.

Daniel Higgs

Daniel Higgs

Whale- Daniel Higgs

Whale- Daniel Higgs

Daniel Arcus Incus Ululat Higgs is a musician and artist from Baltimore, Maryland on whose behalf superlatives are destined to fail. It’s not that his artistic output – spanning three decades, numerous albums, books of poetry and collections of drawings – simply eludes classification, it defies it.

Often we hear that a true work of art is meant to speak for itself, and with the work of Daniel Higgs the maxim rings truer than ever. His art is of the cosmos,

DANIEL HIGGS "Cryptozoomorphic Hierograms" Exhibition

DANIEL HIGGS “Cryptozoomorphic Hierograms” Exhibition

we on Earth merely lucky that it happens to be confined to our atmosphere, in our lifetime.

Higgs is known primarily for his work as the sole lyricist and frontman of the band Lungfish, a four-piece dedicated to charting, in this listener’s estimation, nothing short of the evolution of all species, known and unknown.

Daniel Higgs

Daniel Higgs

That the band has undertaken this pursuit in the guise of a humble rock outfit, in the absence of any public relations fanfare, metanarrative, or manifesto has been enough to endear them to tens of thousands. They are enshrined as one of America’s last true folk bands, and Higgs anointed as a patron saint to artistic purity.

In recent years, Higgs has released a number of solo outings that can only be described as the ultimate in isolation, worlds away from the hypnotic, communal rock of his band. On Atomic Yggdrasil

Daniel Higgs

Daniel Higgs

Tarot, Higgs weaves meditative, casually ruptured drones using acoustic and electric guitar, upright pianos, banjo and jew’s harp, recorded entirely at home on cassette recorder. He pairs the music with a series of paintings that call to mind religious iconography passed through the disfiguring surrealism of Miro.

Stay Cold- Daniel Higgs

Stay Cold- Daniel Higgs

Higgs has wedded his music and his visual art into a singular being, meant to be encountered as a conjuring force similar to that of the tarot experience. The yggdrasil is the great tree of Norse myth that connects all worlds of cosmology.

Passing into Christian folklore, the tree is said to connect heaven and earth. In his relentless pursuit of the indivisible, Higgs travels

The Hieroglyphic Ideal- Daniel Higgs

The Hieroglyphic Ideal- Daniel Higgs

up and down this spine and hatches a new transubstantiation of sound and image into life-form.

Biography is from Thrill Jockey.

I wish I had room to put more of his art!  I hope you also enjoy my tribute piece as well!  I will see you tomorrow on Day 338.

Best,

Linda

The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View
The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1 The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1
The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2 The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2
The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3 The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3
The Rebirth of Yggdrasil- Tribute to Daniel Higgs
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Day 333- Bridget Bate Tichenor- Spiritual Guides

It’s Day 333 and I really enjoyed creating today’s piece.  I was stumped at first at what I wanted to paint, but when the ideas started flowing, I had a great time.  I also wanted to keep it somewhat simple, but also really capture the artist’s essence so to speak. 🙂  Join me in honoring Bridget Bate Tichenor.

Bridget Bate Tichenor

Bridget Bate Tichenor

Bridget Bate Tichenor

Bridget Bate Tichenor

Bridget Bate Tichenor (born Bridget Pamela Arkwright Bate on November 22, 1917 – died on October 20, 1990), also known as Bridget Tichenor or B.B.T., was a Mexican surrealist painter of fantastic art in the school of magic realism and a fashion editor. Born in Paris and of British descent, she later embraced Mexico as her home.

The mesmerizing story of the Magic Realist painter Bridget Bate Tichenor has never been told.  It is a riveting revelation of an extraordinary female artist who impacted the 20th Century world of fashion, art, and society, with enormous contributions.  Revealed are the intimacies and secrets of an outwardly beautiful, exotic, bold, and courageous, yet painfully shy and reclusive woman, who lived in extraordinary times, yet was unknown to her peers, colleagues, and the world at large.

Bridget lived in an astonishing way, in many contrasting countries, and in many revolutionary platforms. Her personal code of excellence has yet to be recognized or acknowledged, outside small and eccentric art circles. Bridget adhered to rarefied and noble standards of human pride, integrity, respect, discipline, and compassion.

Bridget Bate Tichenor, Líderes (Leaders) Close Up

Bridget Bate Tichenor, Líderes (Leaders) Close Up

She honored these humane traits above all else in life.  Bridget’s impeccable values, in tandem with her determination and prioritization to execute her artistic vision, are the essence of her story, and substantiates her historical value.

Bridget inherited a peripatetic world from her self-absorbed, famous, and creatively gifted parents. It fueled deep insecurities, and was equally fed by fears of abandonment. Subsequently, in order to survive, she reinvented herself by necessity, and chose to mold herself into whatever she needed at any given time.

Bridget’s mother, Vera Bate Lombardi (Sarah Gertrude Baring Arkwright Fitzgeorge Bate Lombardi) was an indomitable combination of beauty and bravado with the highest connections. From 1925-1939, Vera became Co Co Chanel’s muse and Public Relations liaison to several European Royal Families.

BRIDGET BATE TICHENOR (1917-1990) Gusanos y caracoles

BRIDGET BATE TICHENOR (1917-1990) Gusanos y caracoles

Her demeanor and style influenced the ‘English Look’, the very foundation for the House of Chanel. Vera Bate Lombardi’s mother was Rosa Frederica Baring of the Baring Banking family, who had rescued the British Royal family during difficult economic times. Vera was allegedly an illegitimate descendent of George III, through her reputed father, HRH Prince Adolphus Cambridge, 1st Marquess of Cambridge Duke of Teck. She was presented socially as Fitzgeorge, as she was the unadopted daughter of her stepfather, the morganatic and bastard Colonel Fitzgeorge, son of Prince George, Duke of Cambridge and his mistress Sarah Louisa Fairbrother.

Chanel craved Vera’s immense popularity and privileged patrician heritage, however shrouded in controversial

Bridget Bate Tichenor

Bridget Bate Tichenor

royal illegitimacies. Chanel came from humble beginnings, and was decidedly uneducated. She looked to Vera as a ‘social advisor’, who would be responsible for her societal launch and business triumph. It was evident that Chanel’s personal identity had been tragically dehumanized and shamed as an orphan, and she systematically absorbed Vera’s exotic mannerisms, from gestures to stance, with Cambridge and Oxford intonations, in a scheming and arrogant self-reinvention of entitlement.

Lombardi was a flawless British Royal Fashion icon to Chanel, and Chanel shamelessly used her to establish her fashion-identity-template, which became the legendary Chanel brand. Years later, Vera, retaliated against Chanel’s ruthless jealousies and manipulations, and exposed her as a Nazi spy to her cousin Sir Winston Churchill in Spain circa 1944. This disclosure shattered Chanel’s reputation for many years.

La Caja de Cristal- Bridget Bate Tichenor

La Caja de Cristal- Bridget Bate Tichenor

Until now, Vera Bate Lombardi has been relatively obscured in Chanel’s literary and film biographies. Chanel cunningly perpetuated her adapted character identity, and concealed the truths of her business cornerstone. What had begun as flattery for Vera, terminated in disgust.

Bridget’s father, Frederick Blantford Bate, was born in Virginia but lived in England for over 20 years, working as a British representative for NBC during World War I. Bate was a Mechanical Officer in the US Army, who, in 1916, was instrumental in establishing The Field Service of American Ambulance in Paris. Bate was an intimate friend of Vera’s cousin, the Duke of Windsor. He was the first news correspondent to receive the story of the Duke’s abdication and marriage to Wallis Simpson, and contacted his associate, Alistair Cooke, in the UK to broadcast it.

The beautiful, noble, artistic, and rich are patently different, often misunderstood or condemned, yet granted societal privileges few receive. These very qualities that embodied Bridget’s unique style, influenced and were

Bridget Bate Tichenor

Bridget Bate Tichenor

copied by some of the greatest names of the 20th century such as her rivals Diana Vreeland and Frida Kahlo. She was loved and envied, but most importantly, awe-inspiring to Man Ray, Diego Rivera, Ernst Lubitsch, James Whale, Laurence Olivier, Anais Nin, Greta Garbo, and Joan Crawford.

Bridget had an amazing, yet tragic, multidimensional life, which included an arranged marriage, true love, romantic and professional rivalry, artistic achievement, mysticism, fantasy, perfectionism, and shattered dreams. All of which were played out in the most glamorous settings, with famous personalities and eccentric nobility that she orchestrated in a dramatic metaphysical theater of remarkable relationships.

She was difficult to get to know, guarded, and very secretive. She revealed certain things to socially survive, while withholding her poetically rich emotional and spiritual communications to focus through her dedicated relationship with her sacred and sovereign art. She had a genius gift of observation and execution in cryptic detail, both in her character and painting.

Bridget Bate TIchenor

Bridget Bate TIchenor

Her controversial royal illegitimate background overshadowed her profound artistry and her sense of self worth.  In her era and society, it was important to be of royal lineage. Her achievement in the art world was diminished by who she was as an illegitimate royal family member, her ravishing beauty, her refined intelligence, and her commanding personality. Her controversial background was more important and interesting to her friends, which graciously made her celebrated and received on one hand, yet made her hide how great an artist she was on the other and never acknowledged. This is why she was so shy about showing who she was as a superlative painter.

She compartmentalized her life. She was deathly afraid to remove her complex multiple masks and reveal not only her precious art, but also her deepest intimate feelings to others. She was validated only by those relationships that had a higher profile than she, so that she could retreat behind her provocatively mysterious and seductive persona to hide her acute vulnerability.

She was difficult to get to know, guarded, and very secretive.  She revealed certain things to socially survive, while withholding her poetically rich emotional and spiritual communications to focus through her dedicated

Bridget Bate Tichenor

Bridget Bate Tichenor

relationship with her sacred and sovereign art.

Bridget spiritually adopted me and I became her protégé in 1971. Among her many gifts, she benevolently trained me in painting and introduced me to ancient occult religions, which included many lost esoteric sciences of Egyptian, Tantrika, and Mesoamerican Magick and Alchemy. She fed my hunger to learn, and I became her consummate student in a world that had received a death rattle to classically trained artists.

Just before her death, I promised my dear friend and genius mentor Bridget that the world would know who she was. One of the legacies she gave to me were her life stories. I began to document Bridget’s life in 1990 shortly after her death, recording her extensive and detailed personal accounts that she imparted to me over the nineteen years of our relationship. The following biography is a small part of my promise that perpetuates the significance of her life.

-Zachary Selig-

Biography is from www.bridgetbatetichenor.com.

I hope you enjoy my piece today!  I really had a blast painting it.  I will see you tomorrow on Day 334.

Best,

Linda

Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View
Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Bienvenidos a mi Reencarnación- Tribute to Bridget Bate Tichenor
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

 

Day 329- Doze Green- Infinite Perspectives

It’s Day 329 and I had a fun time with today’s piece.  Please join me in honoring Doze Green today.  I love his style.

Doze Green

Doze Green

Doze Green

Doze Green

Doze Green translates complex metaphysical concepts through his paintings, such as the possible manipulation of energy and matter to create a timeless space. He explores meditations on matter and anti-matter, layers of consciousness, and different possibilities based on cosmology.

Through stream-of-consciousness painting, Doze Green creates fractured imagery to convey infinite possibilities. His intention is to reveal works with an ever-changing narrative. Multi-dimensional planes and illusion of time are presented through fragmented, incomplete figures.

He believes by depicting beings that are not fully materialized, these beings are not of this realm. He presents

DOZE-GREEN-Luminosity-preview-14

DOZE-GREEN-Luminosity-preview-14

possibilities of immortality through paintings where narratives are interminable. His collection of paintings is an extension of this metaphysical concept.

Cubist influences include ascending and descending planes and repetitive, overlapping, and concentric lines in an otherwise undefined landscape. For Doze Green, this energy and motion of created forms exist in a visual meeting place of ideas.

Doze Green

Doze Green

Influenced by Edo period paintings, Doze Green mixes black gesso with Sumi ink and applies “creatively chaotic, and intuitive brushstrokes,” in a calligraphy-inspired and graffiti aesthetic. Doze Green translates these primitive markings as “biological entities, a swarm of arrows coming in from infinite perspective.”

Doze Green is also known for his live painting performances. Doze Green’s work is in many public and private collections throughout the United States, Japan, Europe, and Australia. His works have been published in

Detail of painting- Doze Green

Detail of painting- Doze Green

BlackBook, Anthem, Juxtapoz, Tokion, and­­ Vibe and reviewed on CNN.

Biography above is from www.dozegreen.com.

Below blurb is from http://www.artsy.com.

In the 1970s, Doze Green was a Hip-Hop pioneer. A member of the legendary Rock Steady Crew—the group that pioneered breakdancing (also known as B-Boying)—the subway-tagging graffiti artist often participated in breakdance performances at SoHo and Lower East Side galleries.

Doze Green

Doze Green

Moving from walls to canvas, Green’s recent paintings, influenced by the art of the Edo Period in Japan and created with gesso and sumi ink, incorporate his signature style of figurative abstraction and use of letterforms while at the same time posing metaphysical questions about the nature of narrative, the physics of time, and the possibility of immortality. He calls them “biological entities, a swarm of arrows coming in from infinite perspective.”

~

I hope you enjoy my tribute today and I’ll see you tomorrow on Day 330!  35 to go…I almost can’t believe it.  I’m

Doze Green

Doze Green

happy, proud and sad all at the same time.

Best,

Linda

Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green Linda Cleary 2014 Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green
Linda Cleary 2014
Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green Linda Cleary 2014 Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View
Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green
Linda Cleary 2014
Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green Linda Cleary 2014 Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green
Linda Cleary 2014
Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2 Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green Linda Cleary 2014 Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2
Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green
Linda Cleary 2014
Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green Linda Cleary 2014 Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Eye Contact- Tribute to Doze Green
Linda Cleary 2014
Ink & Acrylic on Canvas

Day 327- M.C. Escher- Absurdly Impossible

It’s Day 327 and I got nervous last night when I saw today’s artist.  Well, most of the artists coming up are quite intimidating!  I really wanted to honor his style, but also have fun with it.  Join me in honoring M.C. Escher today!

M.C. Escher

M.C. Escher

M.C. Escher Co. B.V.  Baarn, The Netherlands

M.C. Escher Co. B.V.
Baarn, The Netherlands

Maurits Cornelis Escher  17 June 1898 – 27 March 1972), usually referred to as M. C. Escher, was a Dutch graphic artist. He is known for his often mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, and mezzotints. These feature impossible constructions, explorations of infinity, architecture, and tessellations.

Maurits Cornelis was born in Leeuwarden, Friesland, in a house that forms part of the Princessehof Ceramics Museum today. He was the youngest son of civil engineer George Arnold Escher and his second wife, Sara Gleichman. In 1903, the family moved to Arnhem, where he attended primary school and secondary school until 1918.

He was a sickly child, and was placed in a special school at the age of seven and failed the second grade. Although he excelled at drawing, his grades were generally poor. He also took carpentry and piano lessons until he was thirteen years old.

In 1919, Escher attended the Haarlem School of Architecture and Decorative Arts in

Bond of Union- M.C. Escher

Bond of Union- M.C. Escher

Haarlem. He briefly studied architecture, but he failed a number of subjects (partly due to a persistent skin infection) and switched to decorative arts. He studied under Samuel Jessurun de Mesquita, with whom he remained friends for years. In 1922, Escher left the school after having gained experience in drawing and making woodcuts.

Cycle- M.C. Escher

Cycle- M.C. Escher

In 1922, an important year of his life, Escher traveled through Italy (Florence, San Gimignano, Volterra, Siena, Ravello) and Spain (Madrid, Toledo, Granada). He was impressed by the Italian countryside and by the Alhambra, a fourteenth-century Moorish castle in Granada. The intricate decorative designs at Alhambra, which were based on geometrical symmetries featuring interlocking repetitive patterns sculpted into the stone walls and ceilings, were a powerful influence on Escher’s works. He returned to Italy regularly in the following years.

In Italy, Escher met Jetta Umiker, whom he married in 1924. The couple settled in Rome where their first son, Giorgio (George) Arnaldo Escher, named after his grandfather, was born. Escher and Jetta later had two more sons: Arthur and Jan.

In 1935, the political climate in Italy (under Mussolini) became unacceptable to Escher. He had no interest in politics, finding it impossible to involve himself with any ideals other than the expressions of

Sky Water- M.C. Escher

Sky Water- M.C. Escher

his own concepts through his own particular medium, but he was averse to fanaticism and hypocrisy. When his eldest son, George, was forced at the age of nine to wear a Ballila uniform in school, the family left Italy and moved to Château-d’Œx, Switzerland, where they remained for two years.

Escher, who had been very fond of and inspired by the landscapes in Italy, was decidedly unhappy in Switzerland. In 1937, the family moved again, to Uccle, a suburb of Brussels, Belgium. World War II forced them to move in January 1941, this time to Baarn, Netherlands, where Escher lived until 1970. Most of Escher’s better-known works date from this period. The sometimes cloudy, cold and wet weather of the Netherlands allowed him to focus intently on his work. For a time after undergoing surgery, 1962 was the only period in which Escher did not work on new pieces.

Eye- M.C. Escher

Eye- M.C. Escher

Escher moved to the Rosa Spier Huis in Laren in 1970, an artists’ retirement home in which he had his own studio. He died at the home on 27 March 1972, aged 73.

In his early years, Escher sketched landscapes and nature. He also sketched insects, which appeared frequently in his later work. His first artistic work, completed in 1922, featured eight human heads divided in different planes. Later around 1924, he lost interest in “regular division” of planes, and turned to sketching landscapes in Italy with irregular perspectives that are impossible in natural form.

Escher’s first print of an impossible reality was Still Life and Street, 1937. His artistic expression was created from images in his mind, rather than directly from observations and travels to other countries. Well known examples of his work include Drawing Hands, a work in which two hands are shown, each drawing the other; Sky and Water, in which light plays on shadow to morph the water background behind fish figures into bird figures on a sky background; and Ascending and Descending, in which lines of people ascend and descend stairs in an infinite loop, on a construction which is impossible to build and possible to draw only by taking advantage of quirks of perception and perspective.

He worked primarily in the media of lithographs and woodcuts, though the few mezzotints he made are considered to be masterpieces of

Hand with Reflecting Sphere- M.C. Escher

Hand with Reflecting Sphere- M.C. Escher

the technique. In his graphic art, he portrayed mathematical relationships among shapes, figures and space. Additionally, he explored interlocking figures using black and white to enhance different dimensions. Integrated into his prints were mirror images of cones, spheres, cubes, rings and spirals. Escher was left-handed.

Although Escher did not have mathematical training—his understanding of mathematics was largely visual and intuitive—Escher’s work had a strong mathematical component, and more than a few of the worlds which he drew were built around impossible objects such as the Necker cube and the Penrose triangle. Many of Escher’s works employed repeated tilings called tessellations. Escher’s artwork is especially well liked by mathematicians and scientists, who enjoy his use of polyhedra and geometric distortions. For example, in Gravity, multicolored turtles poke their heads out of a stellated dodecahedron.

Relativity- M.C. Escher

Relativity- M.C. Escher

The mathematical influence in his work emerged around 1936, when he journeyed to the Mediterranean with the Adria Shipping Company. He became interested in order and symmetry. Escher described his journey through the Mediterranean as “the richest source of inspiration I have ever tapped.”

After his journey to the Alhambra, Escher tried to improve upon the art works of the Moors using geometric grids as the basis for his sketches, which he then overlaid with additional designs, mainly animals such as birds and lions.

His first study of mathematics, which later led to its incorporation into his art works, began with George Pólya’s academic paper on plane symmetry groups sent to him by his brother Berend. This paper inspired him to learn the concept of the 17 wallpaper groups(plane symmetry groups). Using this mathematical concept, Escher created periodic tilings with 43 colored drawings of different types of symmetry. From this point on he developed a mathematical approach to expressions of symmetry in his art works. Starting in 1937, he created woodcuts using the concept of the 17 plane symmetry groups.

In 1941, Escher summarized his findings in a sketchbook, which he labeled Regelmatige vlakverdeling in asymmetrische congruente

3 Spheres II- M.C. Escher

3 Spheres II- M.C. Escher

veelhoeken (“Regular division of the plane with asymmetric congruent polygons”). His intention in writing this was to aid himself in integrating mathematics into art. Escher is considered a research mathematician of his time because of his documentation with this paper, in which he studied color based division, and developed a system of categorizing combinations of shape, color and symmetrical properties.

Around 1956, Escher explored the concept of representing infinity on a two-dimensional plane. Discussions with Canadian mathematician H.S.M. Coxeter inspired Escher’s interest in hyperbolic tessellations, which are regular tilings of the hyperbolic plane. Escher’s wood engravings Circle Limit I–IV demonstrate this concept. In 1959, Coxeter published his finding that these works were extraordinarily accurate: “Escher got it absolutely right to the millimeter.”

Belvedere- M.C. Escher

Belvedere- M.C. Escher

Escher was awarded the Knighthood of the Order of Orange Nassau in 1955. Subsequently he regularly designed art for dignitaries around the world.

In 1958, he published a book entitled Regular Division of the Plane, with reproductions of a series of woodcuts based on tessellations of the plane, in which he described the systematic buildup of mathematical designs in his artworks. He emphasized, “Mathematicians have opened the gate leading to an extensive domain.”

Overall, his early love of Roman and Italian landscapes and of nature led to his interest in the concept of regular division of a plane, which he applied in over 150 colored works. Other mathematical principles evidenced in his works include the superposition of a hyperbolic plane on a fixed 2-dimensional plane, and the incorporation of three-dimensional objects such as spheres, columns and cubes into his works. For example, in a print called “Reptiles”, he combined two and three-dimensional images. In one of his papers, Escher emphasized the importance of dimensionality and described himself as “irritated” by flat shapes: “I make them come out of the plane.”

Escher also studied topology. He learned additional concepts in mathematics from the British mathematician Roger Penrose. From this knowledge he created Waterfall and Up and Down, featuring irregular perspectives similar to the concept of the Möbius strip.

Escher printed Metamorphosis I in 1937, which was a beginning part of a series of designs that told a story through the use of pictures. These works demonstrated a culmination of Escher’s skills to incorporate mathematics into art. In Metamorphosis I, he transformed convex polygonsinto regular patterns in a plane to form a human motif. This effect symbolizes his change of interest from landscape and nature to regular division of a plane.

His piece Metamorphosis III is wide enough to cover all the walls in a room, and then loop back onto itself.

After 1953, Escher became a lecturer at many organizations. A planned series of lectures in North America in 1962 was cancelled due to an

Drawing Hands- M.C. Escher

Drawing Hands- M.C. Escher

illness, but the illustrations and text for the lectures, written out in full by Escher, were later published as part of the book Escher on Escher. In July 1969 he finished his last work, a woodcut called Snakes, in which snakes wind through a pattern of linked rings which fade to infinity toward both the center and the edge of a circle.

The special way of thinking and the rich graphic work of M.C. Escher has had a continuous influence in science and art, as well as being referenced in popular culture. Ownership of the Escher intellectual property and of his unique art works have been separated from each other.

In 1969, Escher’s business advisor, Jan W. Vermeulen, author of a biography in Dutch on the artist, established the M.C. Escher Stichting (M.C. Escher Foundation), and transferred into this entity virtually all of Escher’s unique work as well as hundreds of his original prints. These works were lent by the Foundation to the Hague Museum. Upon Escher’s death, his three sons dissolved the Foundation, and they became partners in the ownership of the art works. In 1980, this holding was sold to an American art dealer and the Hague Museum. The Museum obtained all of the documentation and the smaller portion of the art works.

The copyrights remained the possession of the three sons – who later sold them to Cordon Art, a Dutch company. Control of the copyrights was subsequently transferred to The M.C. Escher Company B.V. of Baarn, Netherlands, which licenses use of the copyrights on all of Escher’s art and on his spoken and written text.

Biography is from wikipedia.

I hope you enjoy my M.C. Escher tribute today.  My arm has been hurting the past couple weeks…probably due to painting, drawing and also the change in weather.  I really need to rest it once this project is over AND get some acupuncture done!  Whew.  It was a challenging piece and I kept changing my mind about the background.  I finally decided on what to do because of the pain…ha.

I will see you tomorrow on Day 328.  Best, Linda

Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Side-View Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Side-View
Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Close-Up 2 Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Close-Up 2
Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Q-Bert- Tribute to M.C. Escher
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas