Visual Language Magazine Contemporary Fine Art March 2013 Vol 2 No 3


Visual Language Magazine is a contemporary fine art magazine with pages filled with dynamic fine art, brilliant color and stimulating composition. Visual Language is the common connection around the world for art expressed through every media and process. The artists connect through their creativity to the viewers by both their process as well as their final piece. No interpreters are necessary because Visual Language crosses all cultures around the world.



contemporary fine art


March 2013

Volume 2 No. 3

Cover Artist Linda McCoy



Contemporary Fine Art

Subscribe today.

March 2013 Vol 2 No 3


Linda McCoy

Moody Blues

Sunlight fuels my passion to create art. I am

fascinated by the way it passes through a transparent

flower petal, how it dances through

glass, warms the top of an apple and appoints

sentiment to ordinary objects. Capturing that

transformation when an object is illuminated

into something previously unseen is what truly

inspires me. This light is what drives me to share

my perception with others; and is a reminder to

cherish the nuances of life.

Contemporary Realist, Impressionist Palette, describes

my approach to both oil and watercolor.

I have been painting for over twenty-five years,

forever chasing the light filled still life, landscape

or person. I enjoy working with clients to create

personalized works of art of their family members,

homes, pets, or places they have visited.


VL Cover Artist

Yolko Oh No


Annie OBrien Gonzales

Look of Love

content VL

New Artists and Art Picks Pages 5-6

Painter’s Keys - Robert Genn Page 8

Artspan Gallery Visit Pages 21-26

Annie OBrien Gonzales

CFAI Art Challenge Pages 29-32

Best of Show: David Patterson

VL Gallery Visit Pages 35-40

Pamela Blaies

Artspan Artist Spotlight Pages 41-46

Richard Newill

Colors on My Palette Pages 49-50

Carolee Clark and Barbara Churchley

Artspan Review Pages 59-64

Photographing the Body, Capturing the Soul

by Sarah Hucal

Guest Art Review Pages 65-68

Glenn Ligon by Christopher Hutchinson

CFAI Reviews Pages 71-74

Features include Maryann Lucas & Bebe Ruble

Daily Painters Pages 93-94

CFAI Collection Starters Pages 113-116


new artists on

Seshadri Sreenivasan

Reza Soufdoost

Ally Benbrook

Rosemary Bonnin

Denise Bossarte

Mary Opat

Nancy Taylor Levinson

Beverly Fagan Gilbertson

Jonelle T. McCoy

Maria Kitano


Susan Santiago




Contemporary Fine Art

Visual Language Magazine Staff


Editor -in-Chief Laurie Pace

Executive Editor Lisa Kreymborg

Managing Editor Nancy Medina

Consulting Editor Diane Whitehead

Consulting Editor Debbie Lincoln

Feature Contributor Robert Genn Painter’s Keys

Artspan Media Manager Sarah Hucal

CFAI Contributor Kimberly Conrad

Feature Editor Art Reviews Hall Groat II

VL Sponsor ARTSPAN Eric Sparre



Marketing and Development

Director Laurie Pace

Senior Director Lisa Kreymborg

Amy Whitehouse “Fruit Bowl” 20 x 20 Oil

Hall Groat II

“Blood Money”

24 x 30 Oil on Canvas


All Artwork is Copyrighted by the Individual Artists.

Visual Language Vol 2 No 3

Painter’s Keys

with Robert Genn

The Matthew Effect

January 30, 2013

Dear Artist,

Robert Genn’s

Studio Book

“The Matthew Effect” in economics was named after the verse in Matthew in the New Testament of the Christian

bible: “For unto every one that hath shall be given, and he shall have abundance: but from him that hath not shall

be taken away even that which he hath.” (25:29) A popular way of saying this is, “The rich get richer and the poor

get poorer.”

The Matthew Effect as applied to education was first described in 1990 by Canadian psychologist Keith Stanovich.

You can get the idea with all the talk these days about the importance of third grade. Children who move into

fourth grade without knowing how to read suffer significant disadvantages for the rest of their lives. Learning to

read is the vital precursor to reading to learn. Poor readers drop out. Later on in life, good readers get the good

stuff, and poor readers don’t.

The Matthew Effect can be applied to art. Historically, would-be artists who didn’t learn the basics of drawing,

composition, colour and form put themselves at a disadvantage. But with the widespread democratization of art,

particularly in the Western hemisphere, folks these days often feel self-expression is up ahead of proficiency. It

seems many artists are simply educated with a sense of entitlement and audacity.

In many places, big, decorative art is popular. Artists with very little training or academic instincts can often make

effective, even sensitive, wall-fillers that make people happy. One of my more conservative dealers calls it “the end

of connoisseurship.” He tells me people are not looking so closely for exquisite rendering, good drawing or the skillful

nailing of light and shadow. “Right now they want ‘em mighty, moody, and splashy,” he says.

“Because traditional skills aren’t so respected anymore,” my dealer says, “there’s an industry in teaching people to

be amateurs.” As he said this I was remembering Picasso’s remark: “It took me four years to paint like Raphael, but

a lifetime to paint like a child.” I’m curious about this. Is “painting like a child” just a trend Are skill, technique,

and connoisseurship truly on the endangered list If so, what is this doing to people

Best regards,


PS: “Slow reading acquisition has cognitive, behavioral, and motivational consequences that slow the development

of other cognitive skills and inhibit performance on many tasks.” (Keith E. Stanovich, Department of Human Development

and Applied Psychology, University of Toronto)

Painter’s Keys - Robert Genn

Esoterica: Another friend regularly attends courses where everyone is encouraged to throw paint onto giant, inexpensive

surfaces--often from a lineup of commonly-shared pots of colour. The idea of these events is to free up the

creator within, express oneself, shake out demons, and have a good time. Colour mixing and other basics are not

part of the curriculum. After a weekend of emoting and splashing, my friend asked if she could bring her results

to me for a crit. In a diplomatic manner I pointed out what I thought were their strengths and weaknesses. After a

while she hesitantly asked, “How much do you think I should charge for them”


artspan picks

Selected Members Worldwide

Vivian Wenhuey Chen


Sarah Lou Newman


Kenneth Johnson


Michele Colburn


John Counter


Cathy Berg


Eric Palson


Judy White




Irreverent A

Workshops with Liz

February 8, 9, 10 Austin, Tx. @Dragonfly Gallery

March 4 WEEK CLASS, Conroe , Tx. Art League

March 22,23,24 Dallas Workshop

April 2, 3 Bryan Texas Workshop (art center)

May 9,10,11 WENMOHS RANCH (Hill Country)

June HOUSTON, TX. Art Expo in the Woodlands (The Marriot)

September 11,12,13 Midland, Texas

t - Liz Hill

Barbara J. Mason

Titled: Garden Gathering

Medium: Pastel

Artist: Barbara J. Mason

Acrylic on Canvas 20 x 16

Holly Hunter Berry




Kerry Stuart Coppin

Louise Daddona

Paul Bloomfield



Dutch Art Gallery Invites A


Paintings by Nancy Medina -

tists to Show


Show is open to all artists over the age of 18 living

in the United States. First Place Win $1000.

The Dutch Art Gallery brings world-renowned art to the southern region of the United

States, located in Dallas Texas. For over 45 years, The Dutch Art has represented artists

from around the world and showcased many well known American artists. Rites of Spring

is a new juried exhibit that will feature winning works in the unique space of the Dutch

Art. It is open to all artists over the age of 18 residing in the United States. Media eligible

for admission include paintings, watercolors and statuary. There will be fifty pieces chosen

for the month long show in Dallas. First Prize is $1000, additional cash prizes for second

and third place. Entry fees are $40.



41 21


Artspan/CFAI member Annie OBrien Gonzales at home

in her studio.

There’s just something about still life paintings that grabs me. It’s slightly voyeuristic-but

yet private--like peeking into someone’s life. Henri Matisse’s “Goldfish” painting (or poster

I should say) was the first piece of art I ever purchased (probably $10 at World Market).

I put it up in my college dorm room in a cheap plastic frame. I’m not sure I knew

a whole lot about Matisse at that time but I knew that I loved this painting. Later trips

to museums allowed me to see the real thing and I was wowed. Matisse has always been

my favorite painter--the color, the looseness, the pattern-love it.


Lets Fall in Love

My personal journey in art began after a considerable time lapse after art school while of

necessity, I entered the “real world” of work. When I restarted my art life, I began while I

was still working with art quilting because it was so portable and not as messy as painting.

And it also met my criteria of allowing me to work with color and pattern--I thought my

opportunity to paint has passed me by. When I got the courage to begin painting again 8

years ago, I tried it all--landscape, abstract and still life as I relearned how to handle the

paint. This year, I decided to focus on still life painting--my love since that first Matisee

poster and try to find my own style. I am deeply in love and find still life painting endlessly

fascinating. So fascinating that I have started my first blog--Common Objects: Modern

Still Life Painting on my website. On the blog I’m studying modern still life paintings as I

continue to work on my own paintings. ANNIE

Begin the Beguine


Too Marvelous


World of Marbles

J A N C L A Y Art Challenge “

Best of Show D

CFAI Art Challenge

Best of Show

Glass Macro Photography

by David Patterson


Shiny and New” January

avid Patterson

First Place

Tomato with Basil

by Tatiana Roulin

CFAI Art Challenge


Second Place

First Barefoot Walk the Sunlight Tammy Sorrell

CFAI Art Challenge


CFAI Art Challenge

Third Place

Yellow Shoes Nancy Taylor Levinson

Submit your portfolio to join

Contemporary Fine Art International


Amy Whitehouse

Earth laughs in flowers. ~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Barbara Churchley


Studio Visit with Pam

ela Blaies


Texas Artist Pamela Blaies

I am inspired by light and how it affects the world around me. The

warm gleam of a copper pot, reflections on a polished table, and sparkling

shadows cast through colored glass onto a white tablecloth are

some examples of subjects that intrigue me. I often use chiaroscuro in

my painting, which incorporates contrast to create dramatic light.

Green Apples

Comparing Apples to Oranges

Peonies and Stacked Books

I love to paint from life. Seeing lines, colors and shapes in full glory right in front of

me has taught me to see on a deeper level. There is always more to experience than

first meets the eye. I work “alla prima” style, finishing each piece while the paint is still

wet. This wet-on-wet technique imposes a time limitation that motivates an energetic

pace to my work and helps to keep my inspiration fresh. With endless subject matter

and significant control over composition, the still life genre allows me the opportunity to

paint from life on an almost daily basis.

Studio Visit with Pamela Blaies

I never received formal art education and did not discover my passion for painting until

right after starting a family. At that time, my children were sad about our family’s recent

move to a new home. To lift their spirits, I created murals on their bedroom walls. I

found myself anticipating each morning filled with painting. Soon, I began experimenting

with painting on canvas. This started me on a journey toward a lifelong commitment

to the pursuit of painting. Over the years, I have studied with many talented and accomplished

artists. I’ve also discovered that self-study and experimentation work well for me.

Through dedication and hard work, I enthusiastically pursue my art as I continuously

strive to grow as an artist.

Visit my blog “Alla Prima” where I love to share my art and inspiration:

ARTSPAN Artist Spotlight

Richard Newill

Contemporary Fine Artist

When did you realize you loved art and wanted to be an artist I developed a love for creating art at an

early age, but did not begin my professional career until I was in my forties. Even as a child growing up in the

small town of Dawson, PA. I wanted to be an artist. Of course, just like the other kids, I dreamed of being a

cowboy or a baseball player when I grew up, but I knew I would be an artist.

Who has been your mentor, or greatest influence to date As a young child, I stayed with my grandmother

quite often. Although not an artist herself, she loved art, and she introduced me to that world. She taught me

how to draw. I learned about perspective, lighting and shading, composition. And then she passed away, and

that was the end of my brief art career. But I never forgot the things she taught me about life and art.

Who is another living artist you admire and why Daniel K. Tennant. He is an amazing realist painter. I

have learned so much about painting from his book “ Realistic Painting”.

What is your favorite surface to paint on I use Fredrix 7oz. pure cotton duck unprimed canvas rolls. I cut

the size I need, then apply it to plywood board. so I will have a hard surface to paint on. I apply a number of

coats of gesso to the canvas until I have the right suface to paint on. When my painting is complete I transfer

my canvas from the plywood to the strecher boards.

What is your favorite brand of paints to use I like Winsor & Newton artists acrylic, because of their strong

colors and no color shift from wet to dry.

Do you have a favorite color palette Not really. My palette changes with each painting.

What is your favorite color in your closet Blue.

How often do you paint how many times a week I try to paint everyday, even if it is for a half hour or so.

On average about 25 to 30 hours per week.

What is the one thing you would like to be remembered for. I never really thought about it. I would like to

be remembered as a good husband, father, brother and friend. And of course, a good artist.

There are many culprits that can crush creativity, such as distractions, self-doubt and fear of failure.

What tends to stand in the way of your creativity I believe self-doubt and the fear of failure are a part of

our eveyday lives and painting process. For me, the biggest culprit that can crush creativity is distractions.

How do you overcome these obstacles You cannot let any of these obstacles stand in your way. Over the

years I have trained myself to deal with distractions. When I am in my studio painting, and somethng comes

up that I have to do, I do it, then go back and pick up where I left off.


Penny Candy

What are your inspirations for your work Inspiration can come from where you least expect it. For me, I just love to

create art, and that’s all the inspiration I need.

What is your favorite way to get your creative juices flowing I enjoy being an artist. I love the fact that I can take a

blank canvas and create a piece of art. To be passionate about the path my art appears to be taking. To be challenged as

an artist to find beauty in what others may overlook or even concider mundane.

Do you have any final thoughts With so many things in the world to make us uncomfortable, I want my art to provide

the viewer a feeling of serenity. Those small intimate moments of life. And one final note. Life is so precious. Every

single moment should be blessed and lived to the fullest. Embrace life with passion and follow your dreams, regardless of

the odds.


ARTSPAN Artist Spotlight

Richard Newill

Autumn Sonata

Still Life with Violin

Up Close and Personal

What book are you reading this week

I rarely read books. I do read the newspaper daily.

Do you have a favorite televion show

Seinfeld reruns

What is your favorite food

Anything italian

What color sheets are on your bed right now

My wife, Ronnie, loves penguins. There are all these

penguins all over the sheets.

What are you most proud of in your life

My daughters Amanda and Elizabeth.

Who would you love to interview

Jan Vermeer.

Do you have a passion or hobby other than painting

What is it

My wife Ronnie and I love to attend or watch

sporting events on TV. especially Pittsburgh sports.

Who would you love to paint

Mona Lisa, What is it about that smile

If you were an animal what would you be and why

That’s easy. My sister in law Patti’s dog Max.

He has got the life.

Rich and his wife

visiting the White House.

ARTSPAN Artist Spotlight

Richard Newill



Masterpiece with Crayolas



‘You are Here’ 30 x 30 Acrylic

Carol Engles

Colors On My Palette

Carolee Clark

When did you realize you loved art and wanted

to be ‘an artist’ My mother dabbled with

paints when I was growing up so I always had

crayons and pencils in my hand and loved it. I

was encouraged to enter business as a profession

so that I could “earn a living,” but knew that I

would return to art as soon as I could.

Who has been the greatest influence from

your past to mentor you to this career The

Willamette Valley has amazing artists and I was

lucky to be included in a critique group of very

strong artists. I learned a lot from all of these

amazing friends.

Who is your mentor today, or another artist

you admire and why There are so many incredible

contemporary artists that I admire. The world

has become very small with the internet and one

may see inspiring art at every click.

What is your favorite surface to paint on Describe

it if you make it yourself.

I now paint on gallery wrapped canvas.

I used to paint with watercolor but became

very tired of the framing. Also the

galleries with whom I dealt didn’t really

want any more works under glass so I

changed to acrylic and haven’t looked back.



Barbara Churchley

When did you realize you loved art and wanted to be ‘an artist’

I have been drawing since about 4 years of age. I created art through

high school. Then, like so many artists, life took me along a different path

for many years. I re-discovered my passion for art through the medium of

pastel about 7 1/2 years ago and oil about 5 1/2 years ago. When I travel,

which is often, I carry sketch books, pencils, and watercolors.

Who has been the greatest influence from your

past to mentor you to this career My mentor and

I am proud to say, friend, was Ann Templeton, a well

known abstract expressionist who was best known

among many artists through her many pastel and oil

workshops. Sadly, she succumbed to cancer last year,

and I still miss her.

Who is your mentor today, or another artist you

admire and why My mentor, and friend, today is

Walt Gonske, whom I met through Ann Templeton. I

admire his work so much, as he conveys such emotion,

style, and energy in his work. He paints primarily

en plein air, and his strokes are confident, free, and

expressive. He seldom paints over a stroke, wanting the

viewer to feel the energy and impression that the artist

felt when in front of the scene. I paint with him at least

once a year, usually at his home in Taos, NM. My approach

has become much more confident and free due

to his influence. I am one lucky artist to know Walt.

He is a treasure, both artistically and as a friend.

Colors On My Palette

What is your favorite surface to paint on Describe

it if you make it yourself. My favorite surface to

paint on is birch For larger paintings, I have to consider

the weight of the panel, so linen and cotton are

preferred then. I also paint on gallery wrapped canvas.

The surface I paint on somewhat depends on the gallery

that the painting will be hung in.



Buckets of Fun

Kay Crain

Buffalo Beach


Mixed Media Workshops Limited Space Available

Please see Carol’s website for details and contact information.

2/25-28 Wenmohs Ranch Art Workshops, Texas

3/15-16 Littleton, Colorado

3/27-29 Westminster, Colorado

4/15-19 Raleigh, North Carolina

5/6-9 New Orleans, Lousiana

9/2-5 Dillman’s Art Retreats, Wisconsin


Love is the flower you’ve got to let grow.

John Lennon


When I judge art, I take my painting and put it next to a

God made object like a tree of flower. If it clashes, it is not art.

Paul Cezanne



Gibson Pottery and Glass

1837 Panther Creek Pass

Mount Vernon, TX 75457

Beverly Fagan


Lucian Freud and Artspan Artists take a

In 2012, a year after his death at the age of 88, there’s hardly been an artist talked about

more frequently than Lucian Freud. In his lifetime he was lauded as an old master, wellloved

by those within the artistic community. Yet in the last two decades of his life, he was

continuously skipped over by dealers and collectors in favor of Hurst’s bedazzled skulls

and the work of various Turner Prize-winners.

It wasn’t until his exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery early last year, that the artist’s

work once again had the Art world abuzz. Freud continued to paint until the day of his

death, and his final labors of love were not lost to both gallery-goers and critics that attended

the blockbuster event. Recently voted the best exhibition in 2012 by The Guardian,

Freud’s portraiture proved that the painter had a tender, loving side, despite his penchant

for what many consider to be crude and cruel depictions.

From nude portraits to both gigantic and close-cropped works, an entire floor of the vast

museum was devoted to the painter and his work. “Not cruelty, but a raw appetite for life

is what came through in this selection of a truly great artist’s works” said Jonathan Jones

of The Guardian. What became apparent through the exhibition was Freud’s desire for

honest depictions—he kept his eye clear, unmarred by sentimentality. “If his art has an icy

hauteur, its lucidity is grandly compassionate for humanity.” said Jones.

Freud’s well-known portrait of Big Sue Tilley entitled Benefits Supervisor Sleeping, shows

one of the painter’s first models displaying her bulk proudly—a slap on the face to the

many airbrushed supermodels in today’s magazines. The huge Irishman – another of

Freud’s greatest subjects – sits perched on a chair many sizes to small for his girth. Then

there are the frequently-occurring familial subjects, such as his doe-eyed daughters Esther

and Bella. Freud has a way of painting children as dolls and society hostesses like tawdry


Many of Freud’s early works featured in the exhibition were particularly unforgiving.

Paintings of his first wife, Kitty Garman displayed incredible tension, love seeming curiously

absent. Hotel Bedroom, a 1954 painting of Freud with an aged version of his second

wife, Caroline Blackwood, presents an undeniably bleak representation of their crumbling



n honest look at Portraiture by Sarah Hucal

Freud’s signature style of thick, creamy strokes

is easy enough to recognize, but if that doesn’t

clue in the viewer, his subjects’ poses are a dead

giveaway: naked bodies spread-eagled on a bed,

sprawled on rags, huddled on chairs, twisted,

eyes down or averted. Through his meticulous

process of reworking and correcting, even the

slenderest and most agile of sitters were made to

appear massive, or roughed up.

Picture to right: Lucian Freud, Hotel Bedroom


Picture Below: Lucian Freud, Big Sue


Portraiture continued

The same frankness is apparent in the portraiture and drawings of Artspan Artist Bonnie

Shapiro, whose work frequently features overweight nudes sprawled on sofas, or forlornlooking

women with less than perfect figures. “For as long as I can remember, I’ve always

had a fascination with the motivations behind ordinary behavior,” says Shapiro, who is

based in South Florida, and who’s work has been lauded by MiamiArtZine, New Times

Broward-Palm Beach, Coastal Living, and more.

Because of her motivation to express human emotion in its rawest form, Shapiro said: “

drawing the human figure is one of the most challenging tasks I’ve undertaken.”

Her ink drawing Sonia in Repose, with its swirling lines and approximations of a generous

figure are reminiscent of Freud’s well-known Big Sue portrait, as is her graphite

drawing, Vesna at Rest. She cites the work of the Ashcan School, particularly Hooper and

Glackens, for their depiction of every day life in unsentimental forms.

Like Freud, who repeatedly painted himself, as well as those closest to him in his life, Shapiro

has formed relationships with her models, whom she has worked with over the last

six years. “We have developed close friendships” says Shapiro, “and those relationships

serve as an inspiration for my drawings and paintings.” She has no interest in the perfection

of what she calls ‘fashion magazine body types,’ and prefers to portray the people she

knows and sees in her daily life. “I strive to set a mood and a sense of place in both my

paintings and drawings.” she shares.

Irish-born artist Jackie Hoysted is similarly inspired by the mundane. Hoysted’s work is

featured on Artspan site Gallery 555, which is dedicated to promoting the work of artists

in the DC area.

Irish-born artist Jackie Hoysted is similarly inspired by the mundane. Hoysted’s work is

featured on Artspan site Gallery 555, which is dedicated to promoting the work of artists

in the DC area.


Bonnie Shaprio ‘Vesna at Rest’


Portraiture continued

Jackie Hoysted ‘Lisbeth’

Hoysted’s figurative work mirrors the bluntness of Freud’s, whom she considers one of her

greatest inspirations. Her work for Gallery 555 comes from the collection “Out of Context/No

Context” which was as she says “adversely motivated” by a friend and former art critic who

told her an earlier body of her work lacked context. “I felt that it should be possible to create a

painting that stood on its own without revealing any background information.”

Indeed, her subjects stand alone powerfully. The women featured in her paintings sit in front

of muted backgrounds, some gazing questioningly at the viewer, such as Antigone in her yellow

bathing suit, while others avoid the eye-contact, their faces cast down dejectedly, like the

despondent Lisbeth. “My goal was to challenge traditional depictions of women as sex objects

and receivers of the gaze” says Hoysted, “I did this by creating images of women that are

beautiful and exude mental strength. They challenge the viewer to decide what they are really


Hoysted’s subjects are wiry and minimally clad, yet their pale, greyish pallor gives them a

nearly corpse-like quality, challenging traditional depictions of femininity. Hoysted has said

that her motivation in using the high-key palette was to suggest a particular mood and sense

of contemplation, much like the way Freud used color and stroke to create a certain aura

around his sujects. As for her greatest artistic influences, she cites the expressionist movement

because “they excel at depicting our base qualities and humanness” as well as the minimalist

movement for its purity. The artist hopes to marry these two styles in her current work by

“limiting the palette and confining mark making to suggest essential form.”

The inverse of Freud’s thick strokes, which force the viewer to see the paint before the subject,

Hoysted uses no more than what she needed, yet managed to similarly depict a haunting

frankness in her subjects. But like Freud, her desire to delve into the human psyche—the

intelligence, moods, feelings and passions that we experience— is more important than staying

true to form. “I am not interested in achieving a likeness,” says Hoysted “I don’t mind if I

misrepresent form, I am only interested in humanness and not the particulars of a person.”

Freud and Shapiro would likely agree with Hoysted when she says “Beauty alone doesn’t make

for a great painting or a great person.” It’s the complex set of emotions that we humans experience

every day— from the bitterness of an unhappy marriage stunningly portrayed in Freud’s

“Hotel Room,” to the aura of strength in Hoysted’s subjects—that really counts.


Critique of: High Museum of Art prese

by Atlanta Art Professor C

Glenn Ligon is a conceptual artist whose work explores

issues of race, sexuality, representation and language. Born

in the Bronx, Ligon still lives and works in New York. With

a BA from Wesleyan University in 1982, Ligon was chosen

for the Whitney Museum of American Art’s Independent

Study Program in 1985. His work has since been featured in

solo exhibitions at impressive venues including the Hirshorn

Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Brooklyn Museum,

Dia Center for the Arts, the Studio Museum in Harlem, The

Power Plant and most recently a mid-career retrospective

traveled from the Whitney Museum of American Art to the

Los Angeles County Museum of Art, closing its tour at the

Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth.

From a Postcolonial viewpoint Ligon exemplifies the lens to which African American art should be

evaluated, from its own aesthetics and through its own lexicon. The fact that one has to know who

Richard Pryor, James Baldwin, Zora Neale Hurston, Malcolm X all point to the mandatory reading

required and excluded from Western art dialogue. He uses African American culture and language as

the primary source material of his work.

Ligon lecture was the very best artist conversation the High has hosted, he was so candid about his

influences and progression as an artist, and it was truly refreshing. Ligon discussed the retrospective

and why those particular works were included in the exhibition. How his Malcolm X piece came to

be, as well as his noted neon’s. It was great to see and hear the conflict between medium and concept

that became present in Ligon’s text based works, leaving the “painterly “ behind to pursue a precise


This lecture illuminated some inconsistencies between Ligon’s personal conversation and the commonly

accepted “text-based conceptual artist” dialogue about his work. These discrepancies demanded

an analysis/ rereading of Ligon’s retrospective. Upon rereading his work, it is often formulaic,

iconic, illustrating concept rather than conceptual.


nts A Conversation with Glenn Ligon

hristopher Hutchinson





Ligon discussed the shift from abstract painterly paintings to his well-known stenciled text

based paintings. The battle to incorporate text and paint together has been a clash for most

painters-with painters either choosing text or paint. He abandons the painterly and focuses

on the text. When he does this the process becomes most important. This praxis can be seen

as repetitive formulas that lead to the exact same result, a gradient. Ligon’s stencil begins, as

clear as a representational painting, and then slowly gets destroyed by the process. Yes the

text is important, but more important is the formal visual element of the calligraphy. Ligon is

responding to the typography as an icon to be smashed, similar to aspirations of the abstract

expressionist DeKooning’s woman 1. This body of work has more to do with obliterating the

icon of type than it does the deconstruction of text.


“Even my Richard Pryor paintings,” he went on, referring to a series of work based on jokes

told by that black comedian, use a common racial epithet. “Turn on the radio,” he said. “A

word like that is so archaic, it’s not of this time. It’s about language.”


Glen Ligon

Using Icon’s in artwork is a deception that has immediate implications. The work no

longer belongs to the artist; it now has to contend with the reputation of that Icon.

This is discernible in his Richard Pryor text pieces. For those who don’t realize Richard

Pryor’s work the pieces are just troubling transcripts that are hard to read. But if

you are conscious of Richard Pryor, doesn’t it just summon one of Mr. Pryor’s comedy

shows again Richard Pryor’s Icon dwarf ’s the artist’s message. The best this work can

accomplish is denoting the original source material. Should these instructions be the

occupation of art At best this is only appropriation.



What is the point of Ligon’s work then Is it to put up arbitrary quotes to examine

your intellect What crafts this effort as distinctive from those people on Facebook

with their mundane daily affirmation Ligon’s handling of these quotations is “irresponsible”

name-dropping that amounts to proselytization. It is not deconstructed,

or intertextual. It is derivative. The possibility of deconstruction originates when the

viewer does not identify the quote/text. When the observer assumes and generates

meaning for him/herself.


Even though, Ligon never spoke of being a conceptual artist in his conversation at

the High, He is regarded as one by many. In one of his latest pieces, “One black day”,

Ligon uses his black neon in a text form that reads Nov 6, 2012.

“Depends on who you’re voting for and who wins,” Ligon said evenly. “It’s a ‘black

day’ either way. You just have to think about it.” Ligon giggled. “It’s just a different


Yes the work is charged by its racial implications to this post-racial American farce,

but is this conceptual art or the direct meaning illustrated It is definitely postmodern

by poking fun and being irreverent, more appropriately POP “all the same it’s easy

stuff ”.

by Christopher Hutchinson January 17, 2013


Judith Goolsby

Vibrant Crisp Colors, Lively Brushwork

Truchas Mission


Cfai Blog Review

Cheri Homaee

Carol Smith Myer

Pamela Blaies


Judith Babcock

Still Life Artists

Dottie Martz

Carol Smith Myer

Barbara Churchley


CFAI New York Artist Spotlight

Maryann Lucas

Gretchen Kelly


Bebe Ruble

Barbara Fox

CFAI New York Artist Spotlight


Pat Meyer

Meet me in the Garden...

Suzy Powell

Isabelle Gautier

Kristine Kainer

Commissions welcome.

Judith Fritchman


Daily Painters Abstract Gallery





Joyful, buoyant oil paintings to raise your happiness level.

Amy Hillenbrand

Karen Taddeo

Kimberly Conrad

Contemporary Artist

Pouring Color into

Your Life


Painting with

Step by Step Demonstrations

Hall Groat II





ily Painters.comDaily

Tom Brown

Barbara Fox

Theresa Paden

Carol Nelson

Rick Nilson

David Larson Evans

Mark Adam Webster

Linda McCoy

Debra Hurd

Marina Petro

Kimberly Conrad

Diane Hoeptner

91 93

Carol Nelson

Ruth Andre

Debra Sisson

Carolee Clark

Susan Cox

Carol Engles

Kay Wyne

Connie Chadwell

Nancy Medina

Debbie Grayson Lincoln

Leslie Saeta

Hall Groat II

Kay Smith

Felicia Marshall

Diane Mannion

Delilah Smith

Kay Wyne Kimberly Conrad Linda McCoy Delilah Smith


Anne Hines


Spirits of the West 22”x30” Transparent Watercolor with Matte Medium

I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers.

~Claude Monet

Mary Jo Zorad

Sheep Incognito


Conni Togel

Rebecca Zook

Tempy Berg-Gilbert

Watching and Waiting...

Marchita Priest

Hall Groat II

The Delicacies in Life

American Fine Artist

To Each Man is His Choice.







L. McKinney Graphics

Offering design services for art marketing including:

Blog design

Social media page design and graphics

Non-HTML artist websites for easy site maintenance by the artist

Email blast marketing and newsletters

Gallery opening/show announcements and flyers

Please email

to view portfolio or with questions.


Nancy Medina


Artists Retreat at t

Art Workshop Sc

Lodging is available on a first come, first serve basis. There is additional hotels and motels in nearby Marble

Lunches are prepared for you and in the evneings, everyone brings food to share along with a favorite bottle

for over eight generations and is today an active cattle ranch.


Oils/Studio February 9-10



Oils/Studio Working from photos or

mannequins February 19-21



Acrylic/ mixed medium/ St

abstract February 25-28



Drawing and painting the

figure in mixed media

May 9-11



Watercolor/ Studio

May 20-23



Oils, Pastels/ Plein Air

October 25-27



he Bunkhouse

hedule for 2013

Falls. Our aim is to make you happy and see to it that you have your best learning experience ever.

of wine. Life is truly good at Wenmohs Ranch. The Texas Ranch has been in the Wenmoh family



Oils/ Studio/ Plein air 2 days of each

March 4-7



Oils/ Plein air

March 20-22



Acrylic, Studio/ abstract

April 1-5


Also soon to schedule will be the great teaching team of KAREN


For those of you looking for a great holiday gift idea--other than

a class at the WENMOHS RANCH, En Plein air Pro is offering a

15% off until the end of 2012 on all of their artist easel packages.

See you at the Bunkhouse!


Oils/ Studio/ Plein air 2 days of each

November 4-7


Dena Wenmoh

112 Collectors

Kimberly Conrad

Lorrie Boydston http:


Lisa McKinney


Art under $200


Carol Schiff

aria Kitano Collectors

Laurie Pace

Tim Lincoln

Patty Ann Sykes


Art under $200

Linda Rupard

Dutch Art Gallery

Painting by Anton Zhou

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