Tess for Warhol and Gehry gicleé print on watercolor paper, Limited Edition of 25, 23.5 inches by 30.5 inches
The Story ofTess for Warhol and Gehry
Artists Andy Warhol and Vincent Van Gogh, and architect Frank Gehry are my art idols. This is a digital painting I made in their honor.
My niece Tess models for many of my paintings, and my depiction of her in graphic Warhol style here is obvious. Of all the artists who would be blossoming with the new computer art technology, it would be Warhol. I stand on his shoulders and explore the evolution of media art that he began during his career.
One of the seminars I give is on the subject of copying in the digital world, and the history of copying in art. The lecture was inspired by one of my professors, Saul Bernstein, who lectured to me as a student on the history of artists copying one another. In the Digital Age, with the ease of copying/sampling imagery and music, this topic takes on new meaning, and the attorneys and corporate business people are lacking in an understanding of the tradition of copying in art that results in new art and new movements of art. When Van Gogh copied a fruit still life of Gaugin, for example, Gaugin wrote to Van Gogh that he was honored that he considered one of his pieces worth copying!
In this digital painting, I sampled images of one of Gehry's buildings, and created repeating tiles of the sample. You see one tile across the bottom of the painting, and another in the background behind Tess.
After I finished the painting, it occurred to me that at the slow rate of acceptance of digital art, Frank Gehry or I might die before he ever had the opportunity to see this piece in a gallery or museum! So, I mailed a print of it to him. I wondered if he would ever even see it - it was kind of like sending a note off in a bottle. I couldn't afford to frame it, so I wrapped it in a beautiful metallinc colored box with metallic colored paper - thinking that was very Gehryesqe!
On the day after the LA County Museum Rental Gallery rejected my work - in other words, on a particularly down rejection day - I received a letter from Frank Gehry via his assistant. It said that Frank was traveling but wanted me to know that he thought my digital painting was marvelous, and that he was always pleased to see what his work inspired. The letter went on to say that with digital artists like me working, it would not be long before digital art was accepted by the world. That letter is hanging on my studio wall. I was not expecting it. All I had hoped for was that Frank Gehry would look at the piece he inspired. Now I have this wonderful letter hanging in my studio that I can turn to whenever my digital work is rejected again! A compliment from one's idol, coupled with one's own self-confidence, is all the support an artist could ever need!
Tess for Warhol and Gehry was exhibited at the Poway Art Center in San Diego as part of a digital invitational exhibit in 2008. It was also exhibited at Disney's Gallery at the Marloboro School in 2006 as part of a 3-person show on the digital arts. It was also my honor to spend a full day with the students there after the exhibit opened, talking about my art and multimedia with the students, and seeing their new media projects.
Others of My Digital Paintings
Ice Tea also there are images on the Gallery Page (button above) and more paintings with details posted soon as I rebuild my website.