- BA University of Colorado Boulder, Fine Arts 1969
- Studied printmaking under Wendell Black, MFA Univ. of Iowa
- Studied water-media painting under Gene Matthews, MFA Univ. of Iowa
- U.S Air Force
- Teaching Assistant, Painting, University of Colorado 1973-74
- MFA University of Colorado Boulder, Painting and Printmaking 1974
- Studied painting under Gene Matthews; Frank Sampson, also MFA Univ. of Iowa
Denver Art Museum
Perth, Australia Drawing Exhibition
William Kasten Gallery, Cherry Creek, Denver
CPC, Chicago Printmakers Collaborative
Grinnell Arts Center
Iowa City Press Co-op
Taag Studios & Gallery One-man Show
Figge Art Museum
University of Iowa Health Care (Hospital Complex)
Range of Focus
Most of my art journey has not been about developing a style as such, but chasing an ideal. I could not define the ideal so I eventually grew tired of most phases and moved on with different techniques and solutions as shown below and on the “Circles in Phases” page. My most prolific phase is now in the Iowa City Paintings.
“Pit”, 1982, acrylic on Masonite, 2′ x 4′
“Tudor Window”, 1991, acrylic on Masonite, 32” x 48”
“Church Ceiling”, 1992, acrylic on Masonite, 32” x 48”
I’ve explored a wide range of graphic themes, many of which were developed in extended series, but what emerged early was a spatial configuration that I named “space-stacking”.
Our normal vantage point is on the surface of the earth utilizing a multi-point perspective, i.e. the Renaissance window: accurate, natural, well-practiced in all forms of visual endeavor. But, there is a more primitive, archaic form of spatial depiction that is child-like in the placement of objects above, not beyond, to represent distance from the observer. This orientation has allowed me to map my abstract intentions onto invented scenes that recently have incorporated fences, trees, clouds, etc. in a purposeful, if slightly artificial, manner as in the examples below and in the Iowa City paintings.
My favorite influences are Chinese paintings, Japanese Ukiyo-e woodcut prints, early Russian Icons, Jean Dubuffet, Howard Hodgkin, Paul Klee, Ben Nicholson, Francis Bacon, Barnett Newman, Agnes Martin, Robert Mangold, and of course Jasper Johns (plus 439 Works Online.)
As a young adult I developed a strong appreciation of Mauricio Lasansky’s work, and in the early 1980s I met Mr. Lasansky and Phillip Lasansky in Iowa City. Eventually I purchased four of his prints over the next 20 years. My affection continues, which means I often visit the outstanding rotating collection of Lasansky’s work at the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art where I enjoy a membership. It must be the foremost assemblage of his work anywhere at 239 pieces.
Because of Lasansky’s long shadow in my life, we moved to Iowa City, IA, in 2017 to devote full time to expanding my personal art portfolio including some of my time being a member of the Board of Directors of Arts Iowa City.
I am working on a series of 69+ (current count) acrylic on paper 22.5” x 30” and 3′ x 4′ on Masonite paintings dealing directly with 2-D, space-stacked constructs of abstracted objects.
My method is to work on a flat surface, and one piece at a time. My current preference is to constrain the images by using 15, 30, 45, 60-degree guidelines for angled items and to tilt the plane up as much as possible in a vertical format. Some objects are collaged in a precise manner, and specific surfaces are developed by area before color is introduced. Paint is generally applied by wet brush then rubbed like ink in intaglio printmaking. Scrubbing and sanding are always used.
My preference is to “arrive” at a finished work as well with its individual portions. That means my hand actions are not painterly nor direct. I work from a sketch, but only know when I am done when it happens! Because I do not want to mimic, I do not paint from seeing, so finishing is somewhat of a surprise. As the cliche goes: when all the pieces fall into place. The surface, the paint viscosity, its wetness, the area, its shape, its color, its under-color etc. are all conditions that I try to manage to produce an engaging image. I do, however, edit small mistakes with direct, thin brush strokes.
I have been using Microsoft Paint for 30 years with all of its limitations, and this year I converted to ArtRage6 for more functionality to edit my paintings. Late in a painting’s evolution I need to decide those final steps but don’t know what they are without trying. The cognitive ideas show up first as “I should do this or that”, but I need to get beyond those dumb imperatives to natural impulses. That’s too much painting on the actual painting to get it right. Hence digital import of the painting’s current state, and layers of revisions are accomplished in ArtRage6. Then back to the real painting.
Experience has proven to me that I must tie my abstraction efforts to depictions of space so as to avoid the non-objective and decorative. The space is most important, and is spare, as are my methods. The “foreground” is at the bottom and the “background” is at the top. A supporting duality exists between structure and intuition. That Yin/Yang, for example as in clouds and gates, gates and trees, rivers and bridges, guides the location and amounts that each plays in the paintings.