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Thursday, April 5, 2012

The Overseer

"Pop's Corner"
watercolor 22 x 30 inches
"The Overseer"
Watercolor 21 x 29 inches

I haven't painted at all seriously for quite some time . . . .as you know, I have been busy with all sorts of stuff, consulting, Presidential duties of a large art society, teaching and mowing my lawn (Ha!).

Two years ago, China innaugurated an enormous, globally encompassing watercolor competition. By their own admission, the Chinese felt that their highly esteemed artists had been living in a closed country and had not had much exposure to what was happening in the outside world in the way of watercolor art. So, they opened this world wide competition to ratchet up association of fellow artists from around the globe. Entries come from all over the world and they are some of the most amazing works anyone has ever seen.

Contrary to the western world, where oil painting is revered, watercolor painting in China has been honored as the highest form of painting for centuries. It is a key part of their heritage and, believe me, their art is astoundingly special! We have much to learn from their extraordinary painters.

This year, I committed to enter that competition. Two of my friends entered two years ago, John Salminen and Mark Mehaffey . . . .and each won an all expense paid trip to China to receive their very prestigious awards. I figure that I cannot lazily sit by and watch this happen again without taking a shot at it. So I did. For the last three days, I put everything I knew about painting into this painting, "The Overseer" and really got excited as I was putting brush to paper. Not wanting to submit trite subjects, I tackled this city scene with two figures in a very structured value composition.

We'll see what happens. Mind you, I am not holding my breath, but I do have my fingers crossed to be accepted. I entered another piece which has won praise in other societies here in the USA, "Pop's Corner." That piece is moody and has an underlying meaning to many whose fathers or grandfathers had workshops in their basement or garage. Maybe it will speak, also, to the jurors who are selecting the show in China. Just maybe!

9 comments:

Fred Spratt said...

Pop's Corner looks like my dads shed, I can see what you mean hahaha, well its now referred to as the 'shedudio' as one half is a work shop and the other white, covoured in paintings in the works...
I stumbled across some old catalouges of contemporary Chinese art and I must say, there were some of the most spectacular peices I've seen since I discovoured Peter Lanyon!
Best of luck with the compotition!!! :)

Ross Lynem said...

Beautiful, amazing work. Both pieces. I hope you receive good news from the Chinese and a trip over.

Mayra Mancebo said...

Hello I am your new blogger Mancebo Mayra ... I love your work, your style. and how well you learn watching, I add to my list of blogs that I follow to also learn from you ... congratulations very good these two jobs.

Joyfulartist said...

I love Pop's Corner, it's just so interesting to look at. The Overseer is well done, too, but not quite as interesting to me but then I like a lot of color so it's probably just personal preference.
Good luck to you, I hope they both get in the show and that you get to go to China!

Robin Weiss said...

Both are the clean fresh watercolor that I love....both have strong composition with stories for the viewer to tell....I think you will make it Mike!!

Well done! Hope to see you in June!

JANE MINTER said...

all the very best with both your enteries Mike.. "pop's corner"is reminiscent my grandfather's cellar ..beautiful composition so much to see and discover ..i like both versions and light of "the overseer" ..i enjoy you how you depict everyday life

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