Like Andy Kaufman, He Is A Tremendous Chaotic Force That Causes Calamity Simply Because He Exists.

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Hello again dear readers,

Unless inspiration strikes, this may be my last blog post before the holidays, so I’ll say now that I hope everyone who celebrates has a great time.  I pop’d out the image above as a way to visually convey the  sentiment.  As for me, well, I’m remaining hopeful.  Last year around this time, I was in Los Angeles among the Krampus celebrants watching the general weirdness unfold while simultaneously exhibiting art at Copro Gallery with some very talented artists.  At the moment, I’m in Texas, braving the states shifty weather, avoiding tea party members and examining the DC character Bizarro.

That being said, I do most of my reading digitally these days, but I was going through my stash of tangible reads a while back and rediscovered SUPERBOY #8.  This isn’t an award-winning story as far as I know, but the sheer humor in the tale forced me set it aside for future use.  Fast forward a month later, and I found myself scanning my favorite parts of the issue.  The event was timely considering 2014 Miami Art Basil was just winding down and as usual, many people were complaining online about the content of the festival.

I have used the “Bizarro” symbol and mentality  off and on in my work for the last two years.  The symbol is often a backward “S” but for some reason in this issue the “S” is correct.  I don’t pretend to know why and I’m certainly not a Bizarro historian, so I won’t guess.  Anyway, in case you are unfamiliar with the lovable character, I’ll fill you in on my interpretation.  Bizarro is the complete opposite of Superman.  Bizarro isn’t really a villain, but like Andy Kaufman, he is a tremendous chaotic force that causes calamity simply because he exists.

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Andy Kaufman

The above explanation is only my interpretation of the character.  You can probably find conflicting information on Bizarro.  With that being said, I’ve posted my favorite scans of the issue below for your enjoyment.  I also posted my most recent piece of art where I appropriated the Bizarro symbol.

It’s titled “The Problem With Getting Bigger & Stronger Is Your Dick Stays The Same Size”.

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“Yes, But Am It Art?”

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“Bizarro On Picasso”

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“Bizarro On Abstract Expressionism”

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“Bizarro Post Basil”

bigger_stronger_sub_b“The Problem With Getting Bigger & Stronger Is Your Dick Stays The Same Size”

Until next time,

Happy holidays to you.

Ckirk

ckirkart.com

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I’m A Thief And A Shitkicker, And, Uh, I’d Like To Be Famous

Hello again dear readers,

I hope everyone had a good weekend.

I did.  I was pretty busy.  I finished up a few pieces I’d been working on for a while.  I also picked up a very interesting commission recently and acquired the imagery for the upcoming work over the last few days.  I’m now tasked to produce a composition featuring and focusing on five separate vaginas.

I’ll post some photos when the commission is complete.

In other news, I decided a while back that I wanted to reproduce a few of my minotaur as avatar-themed pieces from 2013.  The original three that I presented to the world were watercolors.  Two sold quickly, so I only have one left. I suppose the concepts aren’t through bouncing around in my head just yet because the new, reworked pieces simply HAVE to be part of my ongoing series “Apoko – Lips”.

Anyway, like Picasso, I’ve always been fascinated with Ovid’s minotaur from Greek mythology but I’m not sure how important the bull-headed creature actually is to the composition.  I feel like the idea embodied in the work could be more important.   Speaking of, the concept behind the painting “One Day There Will Be Theme Music Everywhere I Go” reminds me of

Devine’s line from the John Waters Film “Female Trouble”.

The line is

“I’m a thief and a shitkicker, and, uh, I’d like to be famous.”

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Picasso wearing his minotaur mask.

That being said, the original 2013 piece was created using only watercolor and micron pen.  The current reworking was came to fruition by way of acrylic, emulsion, micron pen, oil pastel and Elmer’s glue, but photography played a huge role, as it always does with all my new “Apoko-Lips” pieces.  Without shooting the photographs of my pose, my paint covered pallet and the green oil paint smeared across canvas, it wouldn’t be the same.  I also made a composite from a handful of re appropriated photos to create the balloons and boom boxes.

 The original was extremely popular.  It was even selected for The Bombay Sapphire Artisan Series last year.  The event was held in the African-American Museum in Dallas, Texas.  You’d think the piece’s popularity would’ve cast a huge cloud of doubt in my brain when I first decided to recreate it, but fortunately it didn’t.  I posted the insanely popular 2013 version of “One Day There Will Be Theme Music Everywhere I Go” and the current embodiment of the concept below.

I hope the new version is received as well as the original but who knows if it will be?  I sent an image of the new painting to the collector that purchased the original and he fucking loved it!  He’s attracted to the “Explosive” quality the 2014 version exudes.

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“One Day There Will Be Theme Music Everywhere I Go” 2013

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“One Day There Will Be Theme Music Everywhere I Go” 2014

Feel free to let me know which version you like better and why.

Until next time,

Ckirk

ckirkart.com

I Heard Painting Is Dead But Couldn’t That Just Be “Shit In The Pool Mentality”?

Hello again dear readers,

For quite a while now I’ve read many articles with a common theme; painting is dead.  The article content has ranged from painting greats like David Hockney discussing the changes he’s seen over the course of his career, new painting schools opening up to oppose conceptual art’s heyday, beloved art critics throwing in the towel, and finally people covering the angle of prestigious art universities who lack painting instruction.  Despite the different angles, all the articles have one common battle cry.  Artists should learn to draw.

I know how to draw, paint with various media, make prints, video, sculpt,  and do assemblage but I don’t believe someone should learn to draw in order to be considered an artist.  After all, in a traditional sense, Pollock was a horrible draftsman and so was Basquiat.  On the flip side, both Picasso and Willem de Kooning were extremely gifted at drawing but chose to throw draftsmanship out the window.  Andy Warhol wasn’t too bad with a pencil either but chose printmaking as his primary medium.

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De Kooning drawing before abstract expressionism

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De Kooning drawing after abstract expressionism

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David Hockney

In A BBC documentary “Secret Knowledge” David Hockney even damn-near proved that Renaissance artists such as  Lorenzo Lotto and  Jan Van Eyck used a form light projection with sunlight and concave mirrors to copy their subjects to canvas.  These works have been admired for ages in art history books.  With this new knowledge that Hockney presented, should we now throw out our old ideas about these beloved Renaissance paintings and their importance?  Does it matter if the underdrawings were traced?  

Are the works not still beautiful?

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Van Eyck’s The Arnolfini Portrait

Whether an artist can draw or not isn’t really relevant.  It hasn’t been for a very long time and I don’t believe it should be now.  The rise of iconoclasts and the art movements they championed in the 20th century should prove that point without a doubt.

Anyway,  The alleged problem in this topic isn’t new.  After all, conceptual art isn’t new and as we’ve just discussed above, neither is breaking the rules in art.  Conceptual art is just believed to be dominating the high-end areas of the art world and it is.  That being said, I have to say that I still see a lot of really great painting happening.  I also know several painters who attend the Frieze Art Fair and Miami Art Basil.    There are also still plenty of great galleries that continue to exhibit paintings.  I don’t think Painting is dead at all.  I’ve made way too much money off of painting for the skill to be deceased.  I think we’ve just been witnessing resurgence of an old movement similar to that of cubism, abstract expressionism and pop art.  Everything has it’s day in the sun but I’m sure something else will come along eventually to steal the spot light.

 Considering the fact that history often repeats itself,  that something may be a collective renewal of technique in painting but maybe not.

I think the trick is to try to stay positive, experiment and grow.  I see how this could prove difficult if you’re a painter with the Popeye motto of, “I am’s what I am’s and that’s all that I am’s”.  I think this is the Stuckist’s problem.  I’ve visited their websites and read their articles.  For the most part, all they seem to do is to pick things apart and complain.  Their attempt to compare Damien Hirst’s work to some of his less successful contemporaries was laughable in most cases.  There were certainly similarities and influences apparent, but most of Hirst’s work was more impressive and he greatly expanded on the idea.  He made something new and unique out of it.  He made the subject matter his own.

7-Cow

This is the type of mentality that insists that because someone else painted spots, no one else should be allowed to do so.  Or because an artist used a goat in an assemblage, no one else can.  Well, what about Raushenberg?  As far as I know, he was the first to use a goat way back when.   Does that mean the fellow Damien Hirst supposedly ripped off, first ripped off Raushenberg?  Who cares?  What’s the harm in building on something else?  There’s an artist named Gavin Turk who has made a very successful career off of building upon existing works.  Turk imitates legendary artists but he slightly modifies or adds to the famous works of art.  He makes them his own.

It’s absolutely brilliant!

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Gavin Turk

My point is, all this complaining and closed mindedness is something I’d like to call… shit in the pool mentality.  Basically, someone isn’t allowed to swim anymore and they shit in the pool so no one else can swim either.

Pool Turd

It doesn’t serve anybody and doesn’t change anything.  It just makes you look like an asshole.

You could always try to think of the situation from the curators point of view as well.  One possible view-point is, large sculpture that creates spectacle is making them huge amounts of money.  Naturally, they will continue to exhibit and sell as much as they can while the work is lucrative.  I mention the next possible view-point of the curator only after reiterating that I am among other things, a painter.  Here it is.  It could prove very difficult to find just the right paintings to hang in the vicinity of a giant, reflective balloon dog or large, ominous Tiger shark  contained in a tank.  The paintings would probably need to be very large and very stimulating in order to even attempt to hold their ground against sculptures of the above mentioned magnitude.

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Jeff Koons

This post could go on and on but I’m not going to bother with much more typing.  It’s possible plenty of folks who read this may pick the post apart and insist that my view-point is flawed.  My view-point may be flawed.  That’s entirely possible.  I’m diplomatic about the topic, most likely because I work with many different mediums and have an eclectic tastes. There are lots of different types of work that I believe are beautiful.  Even then the beauty of an art work depends on each viewers interpretation of beauty.  Because of this simple fact, there can’t  be an absolute in art; only personal opinions and preferences.

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Art VS Reality

I have many different opinions on what good art is and occasionally, it’s rather bad art that I like.  I enjoy painting, sculpture, installations, multimedia, even artists like Mike Kelly.  I still admire Rembrandt.  I even enjoyed the popular video series “Art VS Reality.  I like to do different things and experiment with different media art.  I love old traditions and techniques, but I’m kind of glad that Jeff Koons giant, reflective balloon animals exist in the world.

Life is absurd even when it’s tragic and as they say, “Art imitates Life,” so there you go.

Feel free to let me know what you think in the comment section.

Until next time,

ckirk

ckirkart.com

This is Modern Art episode 1

Hello again everybody,

I’m back again with another entertaining art documentary.  This time it’s “This is Modern Art” episode 1.  90’s Cool guy art critic Matthew Collings discusses  Picasso, Pollock, then Warhol, the impact their work had during their own time and how the work was relevant to the contemporary art of the 90’s.  I’ve seen most of this 6 part series, but went back and watched again not long ago.  I like the way Matthew Collins discusses the works and though the production is dated, the documentaries are still very entertaining and educational.

Maybe you guys will enjoy it to.

Until next time,

ckirk

ckirkart.com

Commission + New Work + Blowing Off Steam With Spray Paint & Oil

Hello again,

The Schoch commission is going well.  I have two of the monkeys painted.  Next up I need to paint the soda can, the grass, and start on the little girl.  Considering the monkeys are monochromatic, I think painting soda can, grass and girl in color will really move the viewer’s eye around the canvas.

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In other news,  in my down time I created a video featuring some of my new works.  They’re mostly done in watercolor, but they’re a few mixed media pieces where I used primer and marker.  Check it out.

Also, the last few weeks have been pretty stressful.  I may be moving studios and there’s some other stuff I won’t mention.  Anyway, I was hanging out with my son a couple of days ago and decided to blow off some steam on an old practice canvas.  I hadn’t used spray paint in a while and had some oil left over on my pallet from a commission, so I decided to fuck around.  The piece wound up looking like a emo high school student!  This piece isn’t going on my website, but feel free to check out current available work at ckirkart.com

Until next time,

ckirk

ckirkart.com

New “Warm Up” Paintings That Found Their Way On To My Website

Hi again,

I’m just finishing up the “Bear Beast” commission and soon I’ll be set to begin a  40 x 30″ piece for Mr. Alexander Schoch.  I’m proud to have another piece in his contemporary art collection.  Alexander’s collection is impressive to say the least.  Anyway, like I mentioned in my last blog, I have been doing daily “Warm up” pieces, mostly in watercolor, before heading downstairs to the studio to paint with oil. These works are quick, loose, and a lot of fun.  They really loosen me up.  For me, the warm up pieces have become like the first drink an alcoholic takes to steady the shakes.  That being said, a handful of the small works have found their way onto my website.  Check out the selection below and to view more, just visit the “Selected Works” section of ckirkart.com.

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“I’ll Eat You Up”

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“Fall From Grace”

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“Ed Harris As Picasso Playing Popeye After Whalloping An Obey Street Crew”

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“The First Of Seven Angels Blasting The First Of Seven Horns”

Until next time

ckirk

ckirkart.com