Archive for April, 2014

Artist of the moment……James D. Brooks


James D. Brooks was an American Abstract Expressionist painter born in St. Louis Missouri in the year 1906. For his artistic and collegiate education Brooks attended many institutions including the Dallas Art Institute, Southern Methodist University, and later the Art Student’s League of New York City.

Brooks used staining instead of painting as a favorite technique.

Here we view a great interview with the artist:

Brooks worked with oils and acrylics.

James D. Brooks worked as a mural painter and his works during this time were of the social realist realm. Brooks had a lengthy and successful career as a commercial artist.

Brooks was also a college professor teaching at the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University.

The artist was married to fellow artist Charlotte Park, a post from the previous day.

James Brooks passed away in 1992.

Price range information: The artist worked as a printmaker and prints start around $1,000. Originals in oils can reach as high as $125,000.







Artist of the moment…..Charlotte Park


Charlotte Park was a leading Abstract painter born in Concord, Massachusetts in the year 1918. For her collegiate education Park attended Yale University located in New Haven, Connecticut.

Park also studied with Wallace Harrison in New York City.

Park was married to an artist named James Brooks. James Brooks is also an important artist for he was one of the first painter to employ staining as a method in his painting process. Brooks will be a future post by himself.

Charlotte Park was a teacher at the Museum of Modern Art.

Charlotte Park is included in the collection of the Corcoran Gallery of Art.

Charlotte Park passed away in 2010.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

What an outstanding husband and wife painting team!


Artist of the moment…….Lamidi Fakeye



In addition to checking out the Shona art movement of Zimbabwe and the surrounding area, lets take a look at another ethnic group of people called the Yoruba. The Yoruba can be found in Nigeria and Benin, in the Western area of the continent of Africa.

Lamidi Fakeye was an internationally collected and possible the most famous artist in Africa during his lifetime. Lamidi Fakeye was born in Orangun,  Nigeria in the year 1928. Fakeye was renown for his sculptures and carvings of people and religious themes.

In 2010 a documentary was completed about Lamidi Fakeye. Here a quick trailer for the movie including many works of art:

Fakeye comes from a long line of artists. Like the Ashevak’s of the Inuit, the Wyeths of the United States, of the Nyanhongo’s of Zimbabwe, Fakeye’s family is renown for the artistic ability and Lamidi was a fifth generation artist.

The artist was apprenticed to a master artist named George Arowoogun.

Lamidi Fakeye passed away on Christmas Day of 2009.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

In this clip we view the artist at work and view some already completed carvings:

If you are in Washington D.C. be sure and visit the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and see the doors on the African Room which were carved by Lamidi Fakeye.

A very interesting note is that much of Fakeye’s work had to do with Christian art and religious themes. Fakeye’s work was in huge demand for church doors and panels. Fakeye had a great knowledge of this subject even though he himself was a Muslim.


Artist of the moment…….Bertram Brooker


Bertram Brooker was one of the first Canadian Abstract painters to earn international acclaim. Bertram Brooker was born in Croydon, England in the year 1888. This area is now part of London, England. His family moved to the country of Canada in 1905.

The artist was part of World War 1.

Brooker worked in the newspaper and magazine industry working as an editor. Brooker also published some books.

Bertram Brooker is seen as the first Abstract Expressionist painter to hail from Canada.

Bertram Brooker passeda way in 1955 at the age of 66 years old.

I am most impressed with this artist for his diversity of mediums. The artist was also a writer and one book he wrote won a Governor’s Award for best fiction work.

Price range information: Works range from $5,000 to $40,000.


Artist of the moment…….Paniluk Qamanirq


Paniluk Qamanirq is a wonderful Inuit artists who is one of few working in an abstract manner, only occasionally producing works of animals and sea life. Paniluk Qamanirq was born in Pond Inlet, Nunavut Territory, Canada in the year 1935 and now hails from the region of Arctic Bay, Nunavut Territory.

The artist’s husband, Philip is also a professional artist.

The artist is part of the collection of the National Gallery of  Canada.

Price range information: Works range from $500 to $3,000.

Qamanirq was included in many of the top art exhibitions that brought Inuit art to the international art scene back in the 1970s.




Artist of the moment……Jan Vormann



Jan Vormann is a wonderful street artist who incorporates lego’s into decaying houses or buildings giving the works a humorous and artistic vibe. Vormann was born in Bamberg, Germany in the year 1983. Vormann attended Otto Friedrich University and also in Russia where he studied how to preserve and restore public monuments.

Vormann is based out of Berlin, Germany, but has worked in St. Petersburg,  Zurich, Amsterdam, and Tel Aviv among many other locations.

Vormann had his first solo exhibition in 2009.

In this clip we view Vormann in action.

With the success of the Lego movie this year I thought it was important to use how various artists use Legos as their medium of choice. Other artists working with the medium already profiled here include Nathan Sawaya and Matteo Negri.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

What a creative way to use Legos and what an artist!




Artist of the moment…….Willard Grayson Smythe


Willard Grayson Smythe was an American painter renown for his abstract style of painting. Willard Smythe was born in Bellefontaine, Ohio in the year 1906.

For his artistic education Smythe attended the Art Institute of Chicago. After graduating he joined the staff as an instructor and stayed for 31 years. Smythe was a pioneer in abstract art and he taught the first class of abstract art at the Art Institute of Chicago.

Smythe called his own style scattered balance by design.

Like Kandinsky Smythe was great at mixing the basic shapes of a circle, triangle, or square with other organic shapes that gives his work movement and vitality.

Smythe worked as a commercial graphics designer and even worked as an art director for the Encyclopedia Britannica company. Before Google this was how research was done! Smythe was responsible for inserting pictures into the book.

Smythe was a member of the American Society of Arts and Letters.

Willard Grayson Smythe passed away in 1995 at the age of 89 years of age.

price range information: Sorry none available.




Artist of the moment…….Street artist MTO


MTO is a street artist who was born in France, but is now based out of Germany. MTO might be called a photorealist when it comes to painting street art.

The artist works quickly finishing smaller pieces in less than 6 hours with larger pieces taking up to one week.

Celebrities play a key role in his work and some artists he has captured include Louis Armstrong the jazz great, singer Ray Charles, and Jimi Hendrix.

In this clip we view many portraits of MTO:

MTO usually signs his work in red and sometimes outlines his work with a red line.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

In this clip we view a work that shows the most remarkable thing about this artist, his ability to draw hands very large and with great perspective:


Artist of the moment……Street Artist Escif


Escif is a fantastic street artist from Spain. Escif is not looking to make decorative art, but rather to wake people up and open their minds to his reality.

Escif tries to think about concept rather than shape in his art. His concepts are very unique and my favorite work in the gallery shows an automobile falling to the ground and landing on it’s roof. The execution of the work was great and looking at on a computer screen is still great when you realize the entire work is 4 to five stories tall.

Escif is based of Spain. Much of his work can be found in Valencia, Spain.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

In this very brief clip we see a timelapse of the artist in action. Its great to see the fun he has created abstract shapes in the fence:

Here we view a very large mural completed in Spain. Many closeups and different angled views are shown:



Artist of the moment…..Shibata Zeshin


Shibata Zeshin was born in Edo, Japan in the year 1807. Edo is now called Tokyo, Japan. Zeshin was a world renown painter and printmaker. Zeshin produced a great deal of prints with birds and plants as his main subject. The artist also completed many screens using lacquer.

The father of the artist was a sculptor.

Zeshin Shibata was able to study under some master artists where learned the skills of painting and also working with lacquer.

The artist was given an appointment to work on the Imperial families Are Committee. This is a huge honor for someone in the Japanese culture.

Zeshin Shibata passed away in 1891.

The artist was very diverse in his output. Shibata’s work can be found on screens, silverware, panels, boxes, and cups.

Price range: Works range from $500 for a woodcut t0 $80,000 for an original in ink.

I enjoy the Eastern way of painting for the empty space on the surface. The artist isn’t trying to capture a specific location, but rather a feeling or an emotion.



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