Thursday, February 19, 2015

Homage to the Green Light

There is a light across the street from my house, and it is in such stark contrast to the other lights that it holds my attention. It provides a baring like that of the north star and a unique brilliance. At first I did not know that there was a literary connection between a green light and the sentiments (i.e. sense of longing and hope) that held sway over me. However, I was not surprised to find that a similar light is featured prominently in F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby and it has much the same impact. This is discussed on NPR's program Fresh Air with Terry Gross. In the segment How 'Gatsby' Went From A Moldering Flop To A Great American Novel, Gross illuminates the charged meaning of the light.

"The Green Light"

At 11 minutes and 56 seconds into the program Terry Gross states "one of the most famous things about The Great Gatsby is that Gatsby is always looking across Long Island Sound at the dock where Daisy lives. And he sees the green light that she has on at night on the dock. And he's always looking at that light and yearning for his dream - for her."

Gross makes it clear that a beacon can shine more than literal light. With a mind willing to venture to emotional realms, the light symbolizes the meditative place and connections needed to bring forth insight and far reaching speculation. Prior to my conscious knowledge of Fitzgerald's green light, I began to created my own homage to this emerald glow. This was an exercise not just to test out a range of greens but to call on feelings I did not yet have words for.

Kip Deeds, Homage to the Green Light, Watercolor, Ink, Acrylic Paint, and Collage

Friday, February 6, 2015

Facebook Art Challenge Part 5

The following are my offerings for the last day of the Facebook art challenge. Two of the works were created because I was tempted by a commercial for the Roto Zip. The commercial made it seem like you could cut shapes in wood as easy as cutting paper with scissors. Initially I wanted to cut shapes out of wood for relief prints. However, while at a residency, I became intrigued by the shapes of the scraps from my collage work. Putting the best scraps together, I decided to recreate them in wood. This is the only time I used the Roto Zip. However, I had many fun outings to Lowe's while making these sculptural paintings. 
I called the scraps "Stuffing" and the first work has this as the title. Also included is a work in progress view of Stuffing. The second image uses the the leftover shape from cutting out the "stuffing". It looked to me a bit like Great Britain and I had liked Billy Bragg's song "New England". I particularly liked the song because of the way he said "a new England" rather than "New England" (another place altogether). This is a simple but big difference. So my piece is titled A New England.
The last work shown here is a drawing/ painting where I use the shapes from Stuffing. It is titled Spring Training

Kip Deeds, Stuffing, 48"x 42"x 2 3/4", Acrylic & Collage On Wood, 2009

Kip Deeds, Stuffing as it was being built
Kip Deeds, A New England, 42"x 23"x 2", Acrylic & Collage On Wood, 2009
Kip Deeds, Spring Training, 16" x 12 1/4", Watercolor, Acrylic, ink, & Collage, 2009

Lastly, I nominated Marcus Howell for this challenge. Marcus and I hung out and made prints for three years at the University of Illinois 1998-2001. Marcus's work is often dark, but he is a skilled draftsman and printmaker who has a distinct perspective about social justice that he applies to his narrative work (also see Sue Coe). Those that are corrupt or suffer from vanity do not escape their moral short comings. Below I am pictured in front of one of his printed works.

Kip with Marcus Howell's artwork
Marcus Howell, Magical Apparition, Mixed Media Mono-print 

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Facebook Art Challenge Part 4

(Note: The challenge required posting 3 images of artwork a day for five days and then nominating another artist to do the same.)

My Facebook art challenge day 4 featured characters I had either invented or developed in a unique way. Because I had documented two out of three of these figures previously on this blog, I will not repeat myself.  However, offered here are links to these posts featuring Mr. Wisor and Phil Poppin. Sophia (as seen below) was the last representative shown on day 4. A friend recently asked me about Sophia, and I replied: "With regard to Sophia, she is associated with wisdom and this was my grandmother's name. Also when reading about Sophia, I found that for those that do not understand wisdom Sophia takes on the appearance of a haggard old woman where as her beauty becomes more apparent for those who understand wisdom."

Kip Deeds, Sophia, Ink and Collage, 2014

Next, I nominated artist Walter Andersons for this art challenge. In 1997 I drove out to Chicago for the first time, Walter was among several people that saved me. I had very little planned. Walter, barely knowing me, spent a free day with me and took me around town in style. Below is a post card I have kept pinned to my bulletin board since 1999. The front features one of Walter's paintings. Andersons's art often features meticulous studies of photocopied source material (often art related images or text). This content is coupled with an abstract background. Here painting enlivens subject matter that, being derived from photocopies, are often several generations from its source. These images offer qualities and observations that are both reflective and altogether new. Included are two links to Walter's artwork, one site features paintings from the late 1990's and another presents more recent offerings.

Front (painting by Walter Andersons) and back of exhibition post card from 1999