Artist of the moment…..Mark Grotjahn….

Mark Grotjahn was born in 1968 in Pasadena, California. He is best known in the art world for his abstract style. He sometimes paints in a manner in which shapes radiate from the center. The shapes are usually long triangles and the paintings are either done in black and white (this is the case for the butterfly series) or using bold and explosive color. In the latter stages of his career he has moved onto installations and sculpture works.

Price range info:  Grotjahn has worked in graphite and colored pencil works that can range from $20,000 to $1.37 million for a work from his butterfly series. Paintings in oils can be found from $1.43 million for a work from the butterfly series, down to $20,000. Grotjahn has occasionally worked in acrylics and gouache but not enough works have been made to get a consistent price list in these mediums.

In this clip we go along with our great art lover friend James Kalm to view a show by Grotjahn.

In this clip you can view a show given by the artist at Gagosian Gallery in New York. The theme of the show was masks, the artist created a variety of masks using found and recycled materials.

Below is a clip from another Gagosian Gallery show with theme being black butterflies. The show was given in 2008.

In this clip visit the artist in his own studio as he works on some “mask” style art.

Grotjahn now lives and works out of Los Angeles, California.

For his artistic education Grotjahn attended the University of Boulder in Colorado earning a bachelor’s degree. He went on to the University of California at Berkeley earning a MFA. After this he became artist in residence at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Art in Maine.  Grotjahn moved from Maine to Los Angeles and opened up a gallery with a partner. The gallery showed his own works as well as other artist’s.

The artist got into graphic design by making art out of the signs he saw in storefront windows. He then would exchange his artwork with the owners of the store for the original signage.

In his current method the artist doesn’t map all the colors out at first. He does make a drawing in black pencil. Grotjahn then lays the colored pencils out on floor and he starts working on filling the paper with colors.

When I think of Grotjahn I think of a spiral or radial form. A spirograph base, but a more modern and contemporary finish.

In this last clip let us smile and relax and sit back as we see the artist dance in front of one of his own paintings.

For your art homework today how about cutting a rug, (dancing), in front of your favorite painting.


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