Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Feature on Richmond Arts Coalition

I'm showing this painting from my "City Evening" series as it is one shown on this week - where I am the "featured artist" with a bio and a few paintings showing. Richmond Arts Coalition works to promote the arts in Richmond. They were the sponsor of the "ArtRich" exhibition in Richmond Art Gallery this past December --- where my "Sandpiper Time" was shown. The Arts Coalition publishes a monthly list of upcoming events in Richmond - a good way to keep up on happenings. Take a look at the website!

Friday, February 23, 2018

Smartphones and Art

I've been reading a lot lately about smartphone addiction, effects on the eyes, interest in art and so on and wondering - wither painting in modern world?  The above is a "long pose" in pastel where the challenge is to draw from a model, capture the pose, capture a likeness, fit it on the page, consider lighting- and then wind up with something that may never be seen again ! I love drawing and painting people but mostly I work on paper now for our long poses. The paper stack takes up less room than a pile of canvases. Here in Vancouver there is not much market for "people paintings" so some of these works may be shown at "DoorsOpen" and that is about it... and yet we keep doing it for the challenge!  Russell Smith,  in the Globe and Mail, was writing about the availability of artwork from museums that means that a flat screen on the wall could provide a changing exhibition of high definition on our wall. He concluded that these will be useful reference but they won't have the draw of objects.  "Screens, no matter how advanced, will always screen. What you see on them is mediated by pixels. You will always know they are not real."  Well, that gives some assurance that there will continue to be interest  in the unique and original, but it isn't just what to do with the works- it is also whether there will even be any interest in painting in the future. Since using ones' eyes has to be "learned", what will happen when distant vision and peripheral vision is not well developed?  Will it just seem too hard to paint a landscape? Will just snapping a "selfie" satisfy rather than struggling to paint a self-portrait? Will museums continue to attract those actually interested in the art and not just those snapping selfies to say "I was here"? Some public  galleries are already moving away from displaying paintings to having more in the way of installations and "experiences". Where will this leave art and artists?
     On the other hand, some of the approaches to art in today's world of videos can be very interesting as well as fun- I recommend looking at a video on the eating habits of Van Gogh - but I also think it helps your enjoyment if you at least know something about him and his works. Here is the link:
..and if you want to find me, I'll still be painting.....

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Year of the Dog

February 16th is the Lunar New Year this year and it will usher in the Year of the Dog. International Gallery in Vancouver's International Village will have a special Year of the Dog art show from February 10th to February 23rd. You can see the details by going to - click on the poster and then scroll down the list of the artists exhibiting. As you click on each artist's name, you will get a brief biography and also an image of the painting or paintings that they are exhibiting. I am showing the painting above which I call "Best in Show". It isn't Westminster, but a smaller show in a smaller venue - but of great importance to the participants. I had a lot of fun with this. You will see that the owners and dogs bear a certain resemblance to each other. I don't own a dog (just two cats) but I've always been fond of dogs. What would be my favourite? If I had unlimited time and money, maybe I would choose a glamorous Afghan. I've always liked Bedlington terriers for their lamb-like noses, the Japanese dogs for their wonderful thick pelts, Labradors for their good natures, sheep dogs and St.Bernards for great size and personality, some little dogs for their cuddly nature, poodles for their intelligence - well, you can see I'd have a hard time picking a "Best of Show"!  There will be a show preview - with some refreshments on February 9th from 6 to 9 pm and an Opening on Saturday the 17th at 2pm. There is parking at the mall, underground, and there will be  two hours free parking for those attending the gallery. This should be a fun show to see. Other Richmond Artists Guild members in the show are Margreth Fry, Eileen Fong and Larry Tillyer.