Yayoi Kusama Squirrel is complete. Here is a post when it was in progress to see underpainting, and more about Yayoi Kusama.
Today I finished Murakami Squirrel. You can see the underpainting for this piece here. This is part of a series I’m doing about the top internationally prolific contemporary artists of our day, and there will be some artists thrown in that I just think are Superad. Which of course is a play on words from Murakami’s self coined art term, superflat. I wonder if Murakami knows about my self coined term, Squirrealism? Ah well, I’ll ponder that another day.
I utilized this piece called, Flowerball Pink (below) to create the shirt design. If Murakami wants to start a t-shirt company, he can use this for his sample line, and perhaps buy himself a Superad Squirrel painting too.
Takashi Murakami (Murakami Takashi, born in Tokyo on February 1 1962) is an internationally prolific contemporary Japanese artist. He works in fine arts media—such as painting and sculpture—as well as what is conventionally considered commercial media —fashion, merchandise, and animation— and is known for blurring the line between high and low arts. He coined the term superflat, which describes both the aesthetic characteristics of the Japanese artistic tradition and the nature of post-war Japanese culture and society. Superflat is also used as a moniker to describe Murakami’s own artistic style and that of other Japanese artists he has influenced.
As many of you know my paintings are all prototypes for 3D figures, designer toys, and storybook characters. While I’ve done other characters as felted dolls and plush toys before, the painting of Saint Squirrel: Protecting You Cause You’re Nuts, is getting ready for the 3D scanner in all of his polymer clay glory. You might remember him from The Secret Squirrels show, or on the cover of Focus Magazine, December 2012.
I contracted the task of creating the 3D sculpture out of polymer clay to Kirsten Sawatsky. She’s been sculpting for many years, and was used to exacting the details I was looking for. Using a greeting card with the image of Saint Squirrel, she brought this funny character to life.
Yes, I am going the way of the Warhol, Koons and Murakami. Tell them I’m looking for a factory if they have an extra one kicking around. I have too many ideas and not enough time to take every concept and manufacture all by hand myself, and since we’re in the era of the artist as a brand, I see this to be no different than having any item created by expert craftsman under the guidance of the artist and/or the guidelines set out by the brand name. Louis Vuitton ain’t sewing his own handbags, and your accountant ain’t filing all the paperwork by herself if you catch my drift.
As I reported previously, I will be taking this 3D model to Protoype Equipment Design to be scanned into a 3D scanner. From there I will have a .stl file to work with, and am looking forward to seeing what materials I can recreate this in. I am tossing around the idea of limited edition designer toys out of vinyl, but rocking a Saint Squirrel on the dash of your car like a hula girl also appeals to me. Can’t you just see him all bobble head and everything? And then there’s the idea of a 100 ft gold statue, but I digress…
Saint Squirrel: Protecting You ‘Cause You’re Nuts!
More Saint Squirrel Greeting Cards will be added to my Etsy store soon.
Squirrealism: Carollyne Yardley, Artist.
This beautifully printed 45 page book contains 35 colour images of Carollyne Yardley’s squirrel paintings. Soft cover, perfect bound, 11.5″ x 8″ with a gloss laminate cover, pages printed on 80# gloss. Printed and bound in Canada.
Great for gift giving, art collector or supporter.
Now you too can get in on my cultural art movement called, “Squirrealism”, with this awesomesauce coffee table book.
Image is showing front cover and example of inside page.
Surprise photo on the back.
$30 + $5 shipping/handling
Banksy Squirrel is finally complete!
Behind the scenes photoshoot here.
Greeting cards available here.
I’ve been working on this painting since early January 2013. There have been several distractions, art shows, and other production tasks keeping me away from the easel. But finally, it is complete.
In between starting and finishing this piece, I watched Exit Through the Gift Shop, there was the Sotheby’s sale of ‘stolen’ Banksy mural cancelled at the 11th hour, a book was published called Banksy: The Man Behind the Wall by Will Ellsworth-Jones, and subsequent book reviews.
Since it took me so long to finish this piece, I was praying the entity known as Banksy didn’t pull a reveal in the meantime. It would’ve ruined the idea of him being a Secret Squirrel.
Banksy is a pseudonymous England-based graffiti artist, political activist, film director, and painter.
My thoughts behind this piece started from the basic idea, that Bansky qualifies as a Secret Squirrel. Totally covert operations.
Then I started thinking about how many people must know who he is. And to rent city blocks for longs periods of time has to mean he’s got some friends in high places, or he’s way more white collar on the inside than he wants many to believe. So taking from the only things a casual reader like myself could know, or have been led to believe by the Banksy media machine is this:
He’s British, funny and smart as shit, has worn a black hoodie at least once in his lifetime, uses the logo seen here at his website, goes on spray painting holidays to the Separation Barrier, probably hopes for a better world (little girl with hope balloon), and is anonymous.
And voila, we have Banksy Squirrel.
MORE ON SOTHEBY’S STORY HERE
A man takes a mobile phone photo of an artwork attributed to Banksy. The stencilled image depicts a poor child making Union Jack flags on a sewing machine and was located on the wall of a Poundland discount shop in the Wood Green area of north London. The work was later removed and was to be auctioned in Miami. It was withdrawn moments before the auction.
Here are two super sweet silhouette paintings that will be available at my upcoming art show, Romancing the Squirrel. They each have ornate golden frames
My first commission was a request made by a dear friend of mine, James (Jim) Mantle, Artist and Friend to the Environment.
James Mantle, is an alumni of the Nova Scotia School of Art and Design (circa 1980′s) and retired from the world of advertising and graphic design many years ago. While we both laugh about the good old days, we are happy to be back to painting now. More about James Mantle below.
James asked me to paint an image of a British Tin Solider, as a gift for his mother on Valentines’ Day. His mother, Betty Mantle had performed in a play in Britain just after WW2, and she maintained friendships with the other children in the play, all these years later. James wanted to tie in this special memory for her with one of my “squirrels”. How lovely. Here “she” is below.
Jim paints large spirit goddesses, inspired by his work cleaning Vancouver Island beaches using only his sailboat as transport, and his bare hands. He has removed hundreds of pounds of plastics, cigarette butts and styrofoam allowing the natural habitats of Islands like “Jimmy Chicken Island”, and others, to grow back vegetation, and encourage the wildlife to flourish.
His spirit goddesses are all intertwined with animal creates, painted by an automatic painting, guided by emotion and his sub consciousness. His works reminds me of Patrick Nagel, who worked as a graphic designer, had many commercial clients, and also did the album cover of rock group Duran Duran’s hit album, Rio.
First painting of 2013. Sneak preview posted here, watch for upcoming show dates. Pop Surrealism.
Titled Romancing the Squirrel, and also known as Topiary Squirrel, and alternatively as “I Love You Big Bush Squirrel!”
Idea to riff of the popular culture movie from 1980′s called Romancing the Stone, where the plot was a treasure hunt to find the largest emerald in the world shaped like a heart called La Carazon. This was my take on the idea using a heart, and emerald coloured squirrel found in a Victorian, topiary garden.
Shows a young girl reaching up in adulation to a giant topiary squirrel set in a manicured garden maze. The title references the ’80′s film Romancing the Stone, about an adventurous treasure hunt. The visual tension unherent in tamin g a wild creature within the higly manipulated branches of a topiary speak to the human interactions with nature, complicated by Victorian symbolism of the manicured garden as a reflection of virtue.
- Aaren Madden, Focus Magazine
Please remember to see my paintings at The ApARTment Gallery at 1016 Fort Street, Victoria BC until November 01, 2012.
If you are thinking of buying a unique wedding present, birthday, home decor or getting a jump start on Christmas presents, please consider buying a piece of original fine art. Locally created, hand made, using recycled materials (the frames came from antique mirrors).
Have lunch at JJ Wonton Noodle House or Da Tandor, breakfast at Avalon, take in the show for something different this weekend!
I’m making a few miniature paintings for Christmas, they will be available for sale sometime in November. Please watch my blog for more details and locations to view and purchase.
Many thanks to everyone who has collected a piece (or two) of my artwork. Very much appreciated, and I hope you are all enjoying your squirrel buddy.
Here is a snapshot of one of them. They will all be a bit bundled for warm weather