Posts Tagged ‘modernism’

Artist of the moment……Carter Potter

Carter Potter was born in Los Angeles, California in 1961. Potter  grew up in California and thus has a unique medium for his painting surface, film! The artist is renown for painting on oil stills and experimenting with different ways to use the film as his medium of choice. The films leave abstract shapes that repeat themselves to the works easily make a great form of abstract art. On some occasions the artist doesn’t paint on the still at all.

For his artistic education Potter attended the University of California at Los Angeles earning both a bachelors and masters degree in art.

price range information: Works range from $2,000 to $6,000.

On occasion the artist is able to use film stills from popular movies such as the The Lion King.

In this brief talk the artist talks about the different kind of film he uses in his work.



Artist of the moment….Alfredo Ramos Martinez

Alfredo Ramos Martinez was a wonderful artist born in Monterrey, Mexico in the year 1871. Throughout his life he lived in Paris, France, Los Angeles, and Mexico city and was renown as a teacher and painter. Martinez had a style that blended modernism with the figure. His father was a merchant and he was the 9th child of the family.

price range information: The artist has broken the $4 million dollar mark at auction. Martinez worked in many mediums including watercolours and pastels which can be found for less than six figures.

When he was 14 years old he won a prize for the best portrait of the governor of Monterrey. The prize was a scholarship that allowed him to study at the Academy of Fine Arts located in Mexico City and the family soon relocated to allow him this opportunity.

As a student Martinez worked mainly in watercolours. He was able to sell many paintings as a student, but knew to fully succeed as an artist he would have to relocate to Europe. His family had money, but not enough for him to accomplish this dream. Fortunately the artist was lucky and was invited to a dinner for the president of Mexico and Phoebe Hearst. The artist made some works to showcase his talent to Hearst. Phoebe Hearst came from money and was the mother of William Hearst who would go on to be become chairman of the Hearst Publishing Empire. Phoebe loved his work, purchased some works, and agreed to pay for him to study abroad in Europe. Martinez took for Paris in 1900. He would receive $500 francs per month from the Hearst family.

In Europe he was able to see works by the Impressionists and the Dutch masters Van Gogh and Rembrandt.

Participated at the largest show at the time for artists, the Paris salon. He would go on win the gold medal. With this recognition the Hearst family quit paying him the $500 and he would start earning his way through life as an artist.

The artist did well in Paris but returned to Mexico when it was in turmoil throughout the country due to politics. The president resigned and eventually Alfredo Martinez would become director of the National Academy of Art.

The artist would eventually marry and have a daughter that had a disease that required the family to move from the climate of Mexico to Los Angeles, California.

Once in California he was collected by the elite of Hollywood from Albert Hitchcock to the legendary Jimmy Stewart.

Great selection of works by Alfredo Martinez set to music.


Artist of the moment…..Jimi Gleason

Jimi Gleason is an American painter born in 1961. He grew up in Newport Beach, California. Gleason is renown for his abstract and minimalist works painted in acrylics. His mentor was Ed Moses. His paintings have a great surface texture to them and as the viewer’s eyes moves about the image one can find many varieties of texture in the corners and in the middle just a flat monotone. The artist is great at playing with light and luminosity.

For his collegiate education Jimi Gleason attended the University of California at Berkeley.

In this clip below we visit a show by Jimi Gleason and his mentor Ed Moses.

After college he met Ed Moses and worked as his studio assistant for seven years.

One technique the artist uses hand made instruments  to use pearlescent acrylic white paint as a base. Another great innovation Gleason uses to get more texture in the corners as he pulls the white paint to get a smooth texture in the middle but he allows it to build up in the corners and edges of the canvas.

What interests me with Gleason and Ed Moses is that these artists have been experimenting with ways to produce different textural affects, and now companies have those affects in a bottle for us to use. If you would like a textured canvas with a crackle affect, you may buy the crackle medium! I encourage you to try and experiment with textures if you work with acrylics, its fun!

Price range information: Works range from $1,500 to $50,000.


Artist of the moment… Zhan Wang

Price range information: Works range from $2,000 to $600,000.

Zhan Wang  is a fantastic artist  born in Beijing, China in the year 1962.  His first breakthrough came as an artist with a show dealing with the figure. Though he produced them in a traditional fashion the end result was quite unique in that Zhan Wang took the posed figure and then set them up in unlikely positions outside a building.

For his artistic education Wang attended Beijing Industrial Arts College. He then went on the Central Academy of Fine Arts in Beijing where he studied sculpture.

Not only does Zhan Wang produce sculpture, but the artist also produces installations, video, and photography.

Here we see one of his signature floating stones. Very interesting and modern from the Singapore Biennale in 2008.

Zhan Wang  is renown for his work with stones that are sometimes called Scholar Rocks.  Here the artist concentrates on abstract shapes with a great amount of texture. The works are coated with chrome giving a modern touch to the rock shape.

Louis Vitton helped fund a project that was called My Personal Universe. Here a rock explosion was photographed and studied by the artist. With many assistants the project cost more than $60,000 and was funded by Vitton. In the clip below we revisit this project.

And to close with this wonderful clip from New York City from March of 2013 with more of Zhan Wang’s  stone art.

Zhan Wang lives and works out of Beijing, China.

Zhan Wang’s sculpture works were the first Chinese Contemporary pieces of sculpture to be purchased by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.

Its great to see sculpture being taken to the more organized abstraction we see all around us. I also love the blend of materials, steel and chrome. Very modern but at the same time with such ancient subject matter.


Artist of the moment….Philip Taaffe

Philip Taaffe is an American artist born in Elizabeth, New Jersey in the year 1955. Taaffe is renown collage and works with mixed media using paper. Taaffe is a great example of a modern Pop- Artist as he sometimes mixes ideas from two different cultures.

For his collegiate education Taaffe attended Cooper Union located in New York City.

Some heavy influences on the artist are Barnett Newman. For these type of appropriation works he takes an original motif, and then expands on it. As you can tell in the gallery another artist he has explored is the great Op Artist from the U.K. Bridget Riley.

Part of prominent museum collections including the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, the Whitney Museum of Art, and the San Francisco Museum of Art.

Lives and works out of New York City.

price range information: Works range from $2,000 to $435,000.

In this clip we visit our dear art lover friend James  Kalm for a great report on a show featuring the artist. Actual show clips start around one minute and thirty seconds into the clip.

In this clip we visit a show at the Gagosian Gallery from 2010.

What a great sense of design from this artist. A throwback to the days of fun shapes and colors last seen during the Pattern and Decoration Movement.


Artist of the moment…..Charles Sheeler

Charles Sheeler was a wonderful printmaker and artist born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the year 1883.  Some of his favorite subjects were florals, architecture and buildings, and interiors and interiors of buildings. He worked as a painter and also as a photographer.

In the clip below a montage of works of Charles Sheeler, only the last piece is not his and was painted by Charles Demuth.

price range information: The artist has had a work break the one million dollar barrier at auction, this was an oil painting.  Photographs range $5,000 to $50,000.

For his collegiate studies attended the University of Arts Philadelphia and the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts.  A big influence during this time period was his teacher William Merritt Chase.

Worked for Ford company many years traveling to various plants and taking photographs and making paintings of their factories.

He was a founder of the precisionism movement. A style that was comprised of simple flat color and clean cut lines.

For many works used a combination of tempura but not on paper or canvas, rather he used plexiglass.

In 1920 along with Paul Strand made a movie titled Manhatta, which covered the daily life  of  someone living in Manhattan.

Below a clip from their movie “Manhatta.”


Artist of the moment………Karoo Ashevak





Karoo Ashevak was a leading artist of the Inuit tribe of Canada born in 1940. Similar to TC Cannon the artist died at a young age. Ashevak was killed in a house fire. His work is highly unique and collectable. For his sculpture works he carved them out of whale bone. His art is included in the national museums in Canada.His art from a native person of the region is just as much a detailed scientific goldmine in addition he added stone, antlers, ivory, as nd other found materials.

Price ranges: sculptures from wood and stone range $5,000 to $50,000.
In this clip view an auction for a sculpture of Ashevak.

Despite dying in a housefire Ashevak lived much of his life as a nomad.

Settled in Taloyoak, Nunavu.

Whilst here he took an arts and crafts program that forever changed his life. He gained national and worldwide critical acclaim at a young age for his unique whalebone sculptures.

Died in a house fire in 1974.

Artist of the moment….Gregory Kondos

Gregory Kondos is a wonderful landscape artist with a very modern feel to his work. Kondos was born in Lynn, Massachusetts in the year 1923. The family moved from the east coast to California in 1927.

For his collegiate education Kondos attended Sacramento Junior College. The artist also attended California State.

Kondos was featured in a documentary done by the public broadcasting systems in 1998.

The artist has been associated with Medicine Man Gallery and here we see a great interview with the artist.

Kondos was also part of the teaching faculty at Sacramento City college.

In this clip we listen as the artist talks about what motivates him.

The artist was elected to the national academy of design in 1995.

In this clip we see a short montage of works by George Kondos.

Price range info: The artist has worked with pastels which range from $2000 to $8000. Oils range from $5,000 to $60,000.

Part of museum collections in the United States and Europe.

If you enjoy this artist make sure and check out the artwork of Melissa Chandon. Chandon is an American artist born in 1952. She works mainly with acrylics, but I find her palette very close to that of Kondos. I enjoy her paintings  of the beach and swimming pools. Here is an example of Chandon’s artwork.


Another more abstract artist I am reminded of when looking at Kondos is the wonderful painter Richard Diebenkorn. Diebenkorn is best known for his OceanPark series of painting. Another series which features wonderful blues similar to Kondos’ palette. Here is a great example of a birds eye view landscape from Diebenkorn. Diebenkorn was born in 1922 in Oregon but is most associated with the Bay area movement and also the Abstract Expressionist movement.


When Kondos first started out his favorite artist was William De Kooning. As he matured he also made several key artist acquaintances including Wayne Thiebaud. Thiebaud would become an important mentor and friend, important in his career in the art world.

Kondos is a wonderful artist and I love looking at his paintings of the sea the most. His layering of complimentary colors using warm colors under cooler ones gives the viewer a real feeling of warmth and heat. You can see this in his portrayals of trees and their leaves. Take a nod from the featured artists today and try painting an ocean view, first paint it in orange or cadmium red and then paint using your normal method on top of that. Its amazing how much an underpainting can change the feel of work of art.


Next entries »