Artist of the moment…..Robert Irwin….

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I know you have seen the news clips featuring artist Jose Villareal and his light exhibition adorning the San Francisco bridge. Its awesome and costs only $30 per night to operate. I hope more light artists produce works similar in manner! I have blogged about Villareal already, but wanted to make sure you saw the bridge now that it is finished.

Price range information: Of course no prices on the installations but collectors are fond of his older works in oils which range $40,000 to $400,000. Acrylics range $30,000 to $300,000.

In this clip we visit the site of the permanent indoor display featuring Robert Irwin.It is located at the Indianapolis Museum of Art and was installed in 2008.The name of the art is Light and Space III.

Robert Irwin was born in the year 1928 in Long Beach, California. For his artistic education Irwin attended the Chouinard Institute, the Otis Art Institute, and the Jepson Art Institute. Irwin was even part of the teaching faculty at Chouinard and later the University California, Irvine. Irwin is renown for working with light and space.
Like many abstract painters Irwin lists John McLaughlin as a major influence. McLaughlin lived from 1898 until 1976. As the son of a judge he was exposed to many artistic styles and fell in love with Asian art. He would go on to serve in the military as an interpreter. He was nearly fifty years old when he took up painting on his own. When he started out he was one of few artists working abstractly. Here is an example of McLaughlins abstract style.artwork_images_79_792917_john-mclaughlin
Irwin began as a painter of realism in the late 1950s and in the early 1960s started to make the move to abstraction with paintings of lines and dots. He continued this method of painting and joined the University of California at Irvine teaching faculty in 1968. In the early 1970s the artist quit working in his studio and started to explore works that were enginered for specific locations. At the beginning these installations used steel wires and very thin woven fabric used in theater set design. Later, the artist would add light to these works. Another recurring theme for these works is a feeling of being isolated and inhabiting a very sparse and empty space. With his technique of the viewer taking up space I am reminded of installation artist James Turrell, who is best known for a volcanic crater in Flagstaff, Arizona. James Turrell’s goal is to form an environment so that the only focus is light and sky. Roden’s crater from inse is pictured below.25finklarge2
If you enjoy the work of Robert Irwin make sure and check the art of Olafur Eliasson. Eliasson hails from Denmark and incorporates light and elements of weather in his art.
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