Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Art and Music: An Online Show - Part Two

This post continues the online show of submitted images of works about music or musicians or works that are inspired by music. The deep connection between music and the creation of art becomes very apparent as you read the text sent in with each image. The texts also give an aural connection to each artist's studio so that if we can't see what the studios look like, at least we can imagine some of the soundscapes surrounding the artists as they work. (NOTE: CLICK ON IMAGES TO ENLARGE.)

Mood setting - image from the internet

Linda Womack, Portland, Oregon

All Seeds Awaken, 2011, encaustic on limestone clay, 28" H x 12" W

Linda says:
I always have music playing when I paint and I find the influence of what genre I'm playing really makes a difference in how my work progresses. I usually pick music based on my mood or what's happening in my life so what I choose is rarely random. Whether it's rock, classical or Hawaiian, the glyphs I use in my work become an extension of the song. It's as if I'm conducting an orchestra, or better yet, choreographing a dance within my painting. This piece and several others were painted when I was really homesick for the islands and was leaning heavily on music from my favorite Hawaiian musicians like Israel Kamakawiwo`ole.

Catherine Carter, Holliston, Mass.

Honeysuckle Rose, 2009, acrylic, ink, fabric collage on canvas, 30" H x 20" W

Catherine says:
This painting was inspired by the song “Honeysuckle Rose” as sung by Lena Horne. I didn’t intend to illustrate the song. But I realized after I had completed the painting that the moods, colors, and motions Ms. Horne had conveyed in her interpretation – which I had been listening to while I was working – had seeped into my consciousness during the process of creation.

Lisa Sisley-Blinn, O'Fallon, Missouri

l.v. (A musical term "laissez vibrer" meaning allow the sound to continue, do
not damp, let it ring.), 2011, diptych, encaustic with oilstick and metal leaf on cradled panels,
24.5"H x 28.5"W

Lisa says:
Along with many talents, my husband is a very fine cellist. Over 35 years of marriage, I have had the privilege to listen to his daily practice, attend concerts that he has performed in, and listen intently to regular
quartets or quintets in our living room.

One of my favorite experiences in careful listening has been to hear the ring of music hanging in the air during a pause, break between sections of music, or at the end of a piece. The notes seem to linger, dance, vibrate
with a golden resonance that fills me with joy. I painted this piece for him and his love of perfected technical craft and soul inspiring musical expression.

Michele Thrane, Arlington Heights, Illinois

Cool Riffs, 2010, beeswax, resin and pigment on paper, 9" x 12"

Lisa says:
I painted Cool Riffs after hearing a jazz concert by saxophonist, Rudresh Mahanthappa, at Chicago’s Millennium Park in 2010. As I listened to this concert on a beautiful summer evening, I found myself visualizing the colors and layers of jazz riffs. The layering of beeswax, resin, and pigment seem perfect to reveal the jazz interaction of theme and variation.

Gregory Wright, Lowell, Mass.

Remixed I, 2011, oil on canvas, 40"H x 36"W

Greg says:
My Remixed series is based on my love for dance music. Songs are remixed and given new life with upbeat tempos and auditory embellishments to make them modern. I have done the same with older paintings of mine, taking cues from their past imagery and bringing them in line with my current sensibility. The intertwining movements of the colorful shapes dance to their new beat.

Joan Stuart Ross, Seattle, Washington 

Staccato Beat, 2011, collage, oil, encaustic on canvas mounted on wood, 48" x 48"

Joan says:
This painting was assembled from "repurposed" collage elements--the parts and cut-ups from my own paintings and prints from the past--the juxtaposition of color is the pulse--the beat goes on.

Marsha Hewitt, Harrisville, New Hampshire

Rhapsody I, 2003, encaustic, 20" x 20"

Marsha says:
Myy piece called Rhapsody 1, was inspired by music. The gesture, movement and color all convey a sense of rhythm in music.

Nancy Natale, Easthampton, Mass.

Ray's Riffs, 2012, acrylic on canvas, 24" x 24"

Nancy says:
This piece was part of a series of works in acrylic that I painted recently. Although I normally don't work in this medium, I enjoyed the freedom to compose and mix colors more easily than in my usual constructed works. The canvases felt to me like jazz compositions as I divided up the space of the canvases to create juxtapositions of shapes and colors that were a bit unexpected but still harmonious. 

This piece reminds me of piano keys and I named it for Ray Charles, whose album "Genius After Hours: The Great Ray Charles," I was listening to repeatedly as I painted this series. The album is jazz piano, without lyrics, played by Ray with great accompanying musicians.

Melisse Laing, Battle Ground, Washington

Let the Sunshine In, 2010, fabrics hand-dyed by the artist, machine pieced and quilted,
45" H x 46"W

Melisse says:
As I was working on this piece the song from “Hair” kept running through my brain. At the same time a beam of sun hit the flowers outside my studio window. Both of these inspirations led to the title of this piece.

Beverly Rippel, South Easton, Mass.

Portrait of Raymond, 2012, oil on canvas, 12" x 12"

Beverly says:
In addition to my weekly studio practice, I have been painting this past year with a "Monday Model" group of artists associated with my Stoughton art center/gallery. Friends,students, and townspeople sit for the group of us for about 2 hours. Someone brings a cd of music- anything from jazz to blues and so on. The night I painted Raymond, someone had brought in a Chris Cornell cd that included his rendition of Ave Maria...something I only hear at funerals....and not usually sung by a man. Raymond is a very tall, poised, strong man with blueblack skin and a stark white beard. I stood directly in front of him to paint his portrait, and was captured by his warmth. He was composed and relaxed. When Ave Maria came on, I noticed that Raymond was deeply moved -by a memory or something from his unknown past. As his eye began to well with a tear, he became quietly uneasy with his vulnerable presence, and wiped away the tear- almost apologetically. I feel as though the music in the room- that song that night - embraced and connecetd me to Raymond in a silent circle of unspoken understanding. At the end of the session, he just stood about 10 feet from the portrait and stared at it...then said that he felt I had really captured him. It was such an incredible honor to have him let me in like that. The music was the catalyst, I am sure.

Roberta Lee Woods, Watsonville, California

The Barnes Book of the Opera, 2010, antique book pages with encaustic medium
on panel, 14" H x 18"W

Roberta says:
This piece is actually made from The Barnes Book of the Opera, but I love the opera (Phantom of the Opera, really). My titles are really secret, sarcastic ideas. One of my big secrets is trying to paint towards silence (da ticha in Czech), starting loud and turning down the volume (aka minimalizing the art). There is harmony in music and the silence between the sounds.

Tamar Zinn, New York, New York

Broadway 66, 2011, oil on panel, 16" x 16"

Tamar says:
In recent years my imagery has moved into geometric abstraction, but the work stems from my involvement in both music and dance.

My listening tastes are rather eclectic--ranging from Bach. Mozart and Bulgarian wedding dance music, to blues and jazz.

This painting is part of my Broadway series, which reflects a period when jazz was ever present in the studio. I am particularly attuned to rhythmic pattern and the interlacing of melodic lines.
While the paintings do not reflect specific pieces of music or performers, the palette sometimes mirrors the emotional tenor of the music.


So there you have it - a small online show of diverse work and musical taste. Perhaps this will encourage all of us to be more aware of music's influence on our work.

To send you off with one of my favorites, here is the great Etta James with Steve Winwood on "Give It Up" from the album The Right Time, which I highly recommend.


Gwendolyn Plunkett said...

Enjoyed this exhibition, Nancy. Was fun to listen to Etta at the end while looking looking over the first post. I listen to her in my studio and take her to school with me to play for my students.

Marsha Hewitt said...

Great idea for an online show, Nancy. Thanks for including my piece "Rhapsody". I suspect most artists listen to music as they work and that music either consciously or unconsciously influences them.
Also really enjoyed the Etta James song and will be checking out the album. Thanks

Unknown said...

Thank you for including me in your post. It was interesting and inspired me to get out my celtic music and paint for awhile!