Friday, January 28, 2011

Romance of the Tropics #7, version 1

I continue to dwell on the "gay male body," the lush florid (a) subtropics, the beach, HIV/AIDS, friends lost, and found, sex and pleasure, youth and age, life and death. I have a great deal of personal iconography that appears in these works; airplanes, antique and modern clocks, Magritte's Castle of the Pyrenees processed through the World War II Observation Towers to be found on beaches up and down the Atlantic seaboard, butterflies, drops of blood and that other specifically male body fluid, the 1960’s flying saucer located at the Airport in  lower Sussex County, DE., Hibiscus blossoms and other tropical bloom, my silver foil man, Isaac “Stolzfuts,” flying triangles and wedges, thin stripes of color that divide the picture plain into sections, and, finally, Distressed paint templates. I leave it to the viewer to create their own narrative based on these elements, though I have constructed my own semiotic system around them.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Romance of the Tropics #6

In 2008 I added photographs of butterflies to the symbolic mix in the Romances. I have photographed them at Butterfly World near Fort Lauderdale, Florida during the past five years. As part of my cosmography they symbolize beauty, peace and our brief existence on this earth. Number Six is one of my favorites because the central nude figures stance implies bravery and strength. I struggle with composition in the Romances, moving images, lines and shapes about, changing size, and transparency over and over, but this is one of the most successful compositions of the series.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Romance of the Tropics #5

This is the 2nd time I used the Warhol technique of drawing over top of the image.  The Photoshop image has 36 layers, and only one print sold, that one at the Camp Rehoboth Sundance Art Auction in 2008.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Romance of the Tropics #4

This montage was completed July 7, 2006.  It is much less complex than most in the series - not sure why.  This was the first time I drew lines over top the image, like Andy Warhol, and I seem to have left those lines out more recently - may try to bring those back since I like the look.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Romance of the Tropics #3

The third in the series, I’m happier with this one more than most. The more recent works loose track of the old distressed paint surfaces though there is more of the beach in them. The beach means so much to me– the mother of us all, the rhythm of the planet dwells in the tides and weather patterns of the seas - as it does to almost everyone who has spent time on Gaia’s shores. There is, I think, a pacing in the placement of shapes, lines of white and red spots, and floral elements in #3 that echoes the rhythm of the sea without it’s obvious presence.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Romance of the Tropics

We moved to south Florida in 2005 and I was fascinated with the tropical landscape, flowers, beaches, and I felt as though the tropical climate, sun and moon predisposes us to a heightened awareness of our sexuality.  At the same time, I also felt that awareness did not require the pornographic representation of the male form.  Rather, a more subtle presentation would hint at the way we deal with sexuality in our culture, certainly the way I personally deal with my own sexuality.  It is like a mine field to be negotiated through carefully to avoid injury.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Photomontage Journal

Some notes about creating the images

I use Adobe Photoshop to create the photomontages (started in the 1990’s), and my own photographs from an extensive morgue that includes almost everything from clouds to alebrijes (wood carvings from Oaxaca, Mexico). At first the images were small, 72 pixels a square inch and 8 x 10 inches, perhaps 15 or so layers. * They have become much more ambitious over time, 16 x 21 inches with over 70 layers. I intend the newest to be printed at 30 by 42 inches. The photomontages have a very personal cosmography that I know will be interpreted by others in light of their own experience. They are time consuming as the process includes a great deal of manipulation of the individual images and layers. Often I must change older layers because the image in a new layer affects all the layers beneath. All the photomantages (so far) are produced in editions of ten, and one has been retired because the edition is complete. I will consider larger editions should the images obtain greater popularity. Meanwhile, as in all the artwork I create, I make the image as a form of thought provoking meditation, and the act of production has nothing to do with selling the art object. Sale of images is an unfortunate but necessary afterthought.

*Occasionally I use images of single objects or figures found on the Internet if I have been unable to obtain that specific referent on my own. These are removed from larger images that have no copyright, or I have requested permission from the owner/creator of the image from which I then extract the object of choice.