Posts Tagged ‘ken price’

Artist of the moment………….Dewain Valentine



Dewain Valentine is an American artist renown for his minimalist style. Dewain Valentine was born in Fort Collins, Colorado in the year 1936.

The artist was inspired by modern painters including Larry Bell and Ken Price.

Many sculptures are made of fiberglass and/or resin. For subject matter Valentine often refers to skies. Valentine is sometimes associated with the Light and Space movement.

Valentine helped to develop a special resin that for the first time allowed artists to work with sculptures larger than 50 pounds. Valentine also prefers a very smooth finish, to give the appearance of being new and machine built.

Below the surface of Valentine’s work is discussed in further detail with more examples shown:

The artist is based out of Gardena, California.

Valentine is part of the collections of the Honolulu Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City,  and the Denver Museum of Art.

The artist is a past recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship.

Price range information: Large disks by Valentine can reach the $1 million dollar mark. Smaller table top size works range from a few thousand to $35,000.

Valentine gives the viewer a wonderful combination of basic geometric shapes with cutting edge materials that he helped to invent! A wonderful example of modern art.



Artist of the moment…….Peter Voulkos

Peter Voulkos was an American artist born in Bozeman, Montana in the year 1924. Voulkos was a renown sculptor and taught many students who went onto professional careers including one of my favorite for both sculpting and wonderful prints of interiors, Ken Price. He was one of five children.

For his artistic education Voulkos attended Montana State University at Bozeman. Voulkos went on to earn his masters degree from the California College of the Arts.

Began his professional career by designing dinnerware.

price range information: Works range from $2,000 to $60,000.

Was the main architect of the art and ceramics program at Otis College located in Los Angeles, California.

Peter Voulkos also taught at the University of California at Berkeley.

In this clip we view a live demonstration from 1978 at the Kansas City Art Institute featuring Peter Voulkos. Interestingly  the artist would die of a heart attack after giving a live demonstration at Bowling Green University in 2002. The artist enjoyed performing and working with an audience.

Peter Voulkos passed away in 2002 at the age of 78 years old.

Peter Voulkos’ art is included in many prominent collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Victoria and Albert Museum of London, England.

In this clip a brief talk about the artist and some more of his works. Voulkos was inspired by abstraction in his sculpture.

And last we view a work that a collector is looking to sell.


Artist of the moment……Kate MccGwire…

Kate MccGwire is a fantastic contemporary British sculptor born in Norwich, England in 1964. MccGwire is renown for using feathers in her works. In the gallery many varieties of bird feathers were used including crows, pigeons, magpies, and mallards.

For her collegiate studies the artist attended the University College for the Creative Arts in Farnham, England. She earned a bachelor of arts degree and then went on to the Royal College of Art located earning a masters in sculpture.

MccGwire is still based out of Norwich, England.

In this clip we visit a work made with pigeon feathers.

A visit to the artist’s own studio.

Price range information: Sorry none available.

Some themes are beauty and disgust. I love the organic shapes the artist creates and they remind me sculptor Ken Price, who made similar shapes in ceramics. Below is an example of Ken Price’s work. Price passed away only in 2012.


I guess we can class the artist as a found objects artist. What a creative use of feathers! Genius indeed!


Artist of the moment…..Sculptor Ruth Asawa….

The artist is a Japanese/ American that was born in 1926 in Norwalk, California. She is known for her organic shapes made with wire and other found materials. She was one of seven children. Her dad bought and sold trucks for a living. Then came World War Two and the family was moved to one of the Japanese Internment camps when Asawa was sixteen years old.

Asawa graduated high school whilst still at the internment center. She went on to college to become a teacher at the Milwaukee State Teacher’s College. She was unable to get hired for her student teaching work and left college without a degree. This degree was eventually given in 1998.

Asaway also studied with Josef Albers at the Black Mountain College located in Black Mountain, North Carolina.

Asawa is a well established painter in San Francisco. The San Francisco School for the Arts was renamed the Ruth Asawa San Francisco School for the Arts in 2010. She is an iconic figure in the San Francisco community where you can see her some of her large public commissions.

She became a national figure in the art world after being part of several group exhibitions at the Whitney Museum of Art in the 1950s.

Price range information on the artist:  She is mainly a sculptor but has also done works in watercolor which can be found for less than five thousand dollars. Works in bronze are the most affordable in a range from $1,000 to $5,000. Ceramic works can be found around $1,000. Copper works can range from $30,000 top $278,000. Steel works can cost up to nearly $400,000.

A great example of her sculpture here.

A great example of a sculpture. You get a great feel for her use of shape.

In this clip from the San Jose Museum of Art we here from a curator about a show featuring Asawa.

In this clip we see a local San Francisco television station’s segment on the artist. She helped to lead a group in San Francisco, of which one of her sons is part of, of working artists into public schools. At around the seven minute mark you can see Ruth working on a collaboration with this son.

The artist reminds me of Yayoi Kusama for her great use of organic shapes. Kusama is a great artist who has lived much of her life in a mental facility, but that doesn’t stop her from creating wonderful works of art. Below is an example of Kusami’s art. She was born in 1929 and became a United States citizen in 1966. Below is a great example of her unique style.  She is known for her abstract use of shape and her genre of gourds and pumpkins.


Another artist that comes to mind would be Ken Price. Price, who passed away in 2012, was a great artist who was known for his use of shapes with ceramics. Asawa and Price both do a great job of creating a shape that seems to have movement that never stops.


I think its important to remember the past. Asawa had a tough upbringing living in the internment camps, I imagine her as I child still playing and creating as all children do with their boundless energy. With the passing of the Senator from Hawaii Daniel Inouye a few weeks ago, it was a brief reminder of how asians were seen decades ago. With great examples like Ruth Asawa and  Daniel Inouye it should be an example to all people, not only artists, of what is possible with the human mind! No matter how bad your current situation is, CREATE SOMETHING, put that nervous energy to great use!