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RANDOM THOUGHTS

January 16, 2010

TITLE: Paradigm

SIZE: 48″ x 48″

MEDIUM: copper gilt gypsum; 2 step patina; artist oil; on panel

PRICE: $2,501.00

ARTIST: Blake Wilkinson

If i were a proper writer I’d write about the closing reception of the White Show and Samuel Kho’s thought provoking and interesting presentation. He talked about food and fine art. His presentation brought to light and language things that most artists probably already know intuitively such as how it is that cooking and the creation of meals is in fact art. Something I already knew, kind of. When I was 16 I got a job in a restaurant as kitchen help which is mostly dishwasher and general gofer. The owner had managed to hire a true european trained chef, (neat trick in Laramie Wyoming) every meal he served was a presentation. I once commented that his meals really shouldn’t be eaten, they should be hung on a gallery wall. George said that is how it is supposed to be, that dining is intended to be an experience not only for the olfactory senses, but visual as well. As with food, tastes vary for visual art. But I am not a proper writer, so i won’t in this post, write about the similarities of visual art and food.

After Mr. Kho’s presentation, and since he was the juror of the show, there was a discussion between artists and himself about why he picked their particular piece, and the artist was encouraged to share the inspiration and methodology of their creative endeavor. Methinks that I’ll write about Shannon White’s work in a later blog, because there is much to write. Besides for me the piece is heart rending and I don’t feel like crying tonight. Add to that: I don’t have a picture of it to present just yet, tomorrow I plan to help photograph each piece of the show before it is taken down and moved. So I hope to get an image and permission to use it then.

So I’ll write a few words about inspiration. What inspired me to create that particular piece? Truth be known: I was bored and wanted to just play around with textures and papers and processes and see what it looked like gilt with copper and etched with solutions. The piece in the show was originally aged copper leaf, umber and green. When Darin said my submission had to be white or mostly white, i thought of finishing another piece and gilding it in silver and doing a whitewash over it, but that turned into too daunting of a task because that piece begs to be copper not silver, and with greens, umber, ambers and coppers. So i snagged the one I called Tinman’s Laurels, and i changed it to Tinman’s Laurels in White by gilding it with composition silver (aluminum leaf) and painting it, then burnishing the paint back. I do pieces like that because my career consists of painting walls and buildings. Creating “faux” finishes is very much a part of what I do so I incorporate that into my artwork. So much for high inspiration and hoity-toit “what is the artist trying to express” (or “just what the hell was he thinking?” when he did this mess). Though much of my work is out of spiritual expression the Tinman series really is mostly experimentation and learning. That people like it isn’t an accident either, people like the special finishes I create, so I kind of figured I was on to something when I started that series.

The dragons… I’m not sure I have the ability to put into words the reason I gild dragons. Perhaps being a derelict  drunk living under a bridge has something to do with it. On one particularly cold winer night in Denver, (must have been around ’81 or -2), I was wondering the streets with nowhere to go and nothing to drink when I came across a large cardboard box behind a furniture store. I crawled inside it to get out of the wind and snow and discovered some candles, so i lit them for warmth (surprisingly it actually warmed the place up a bit). I couldn’t sleep because i hadn’t drank enough to pass out, and because of that the dragons came to visit and talk with me. Yes, that’s crazy… my life was a huge trainwreck and I was crazy. Alcoholism is crazy. And alcoholics are crazy. Anyway I have a propensity to feature dragons in my art. God knows I’ve seen (and talked to) a few.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Fred Urutia permalink
    February 1, 2010 5:18 am

    Blake, I like it. I’m not really an art critic, but I “love” dragons;;;;my e-mail, gorak, is the name of a dragon I read about many years ago and the 323 is DAD on the phone keypad…thus..dragondad…I never knew you were this talanted. You should be very proud of your craft.

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