Website Makeover: Before and After

Screen Shot 2016-02-23 at 1.17.23 PMEvans Robinson Jr. has long been one of my favorite Artspan artists. I love his evocative, keenly observed landscapes and cityscapes. He was using one of our oldest templates, which showed up small and cramped on a regular computer, and was not viewable on mobile devices. I switched to a newer template, and updated the text to some of our newer fonts. I tried to use the colors on his original site, though by necessity they showed up in different parts of the design. I added a home page, with an image that draws you into the site. And with the new template, the galleries are automatically arranged in a way that makes it easier to view the individual artworks.

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Five Questions for Dan Murphy

We sit down with sculptor Dan Murphy.

1. I like the combination of darkness and light in your work…your sculptures are sinister and humorous at the same time. Do you think about this balance as you create?

Definitely. Nobody likes getting hit on the head with a hammer, which is what happens when the work is too dark. The flip side is nobody looks at the work seriously if it’s just humorous. Since I see myself primarily as a storyteller, I have to have conflict, and that conflict between light and dark is as fundamental and universal as you can get.

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Five Questions for Gerald Barnes

Artspan sits down with collage artist Gerald Barnes

Your collages are like boxes of memories. How do you choose your images? Are any of them specific to your life? Your own relatives? Or are they historical figures?

The images I use reflect the things that interest me – art, literature, architecture, history, travel, graphic design and the human condition. I have a large library of material that I’ve collected over the years, ephemera, old magazines and newspapers, stamps and notes. I also use my own drawings and photographs. Usually I select one particular image and then build around that.  I have in the past used family photos but there are only so many times you can use Grandma and Grandpa! Some images are of historical figures. Mario García Menocal was President of Cuba from 1913 -1921 and looked like a Hollywood movie star.


 Numbers Series #79

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Five Questions for Kelly Burke

Opposing Forces in Nature

An interview with abstract painter Kelly Burke

 Toujours Fidele

Your work seems very personal and connected to your mood or your view of the world on a particular day. You strike an interesting balance between feelings and ideas…the vague and the specific, the soft and the harsh. Do you paint in response to specific events in your life or the world around you? Do you find that your mood changes while you paint…that the very act of exploring your state of mind changes your state of mind?

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Five Questions for SUSAN SORRELL HILL

An interview with painter and illustrator Susan Sorrell Hill.
When I was little, the illustrations in certain books gave me so much pleasure I would pore over them for hours, and the characters became almost as real as friends. Did you have books like that? What were they? Which artists have inspired your work?
Head Tossing
There weren’t many picture books around when I was growing up, so my exposure to imagery and stories came from comic books, the Sunday funnies, a dry encyclopedic set of folk tales illustrated with line drawings, and magazine features like National Geographic’s spreads on Egyptian artifacts and the Bayeux Tapestry. I did love libraries though, and I was a huge fan of the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mysteries. It wasn’t until college that I discovered—a revelation!—the world of picture books, where words and pictures are so delightfully intertwined. Much later, because of an interest in Jungian psychology, I began reading folk and fairy tales and understanding that they were much more than simple entertainment. I have stories that I pore over now as an adult, and the majority of artists that I admire are from what has been called the Golden Age of Illustration: Arthur Rackham, Edmund Dulac, Beatrix Potter, Aubrey Beardsley and others. There are contemporary illustrators that I am in awe of too, including Lisbeth Zwerger, Gennady Spirin, Angela Barrett, Maurice Sendak and Edward Gorey. On the Fine Art side of influences, I’m drawn to artists who have used line, color and composition masterfully to tell stories on a larger scale, including Paul Gauguin, Edgar Degas, Gustaf Klimt, and Andrew Wyeth. There are so many past and present narrative-inspired artists working in both intimate and large scale…truly a feast for an artist’s soul.

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