Zorthian

Bacchanalia

Colonel Jirayr Arnak Hanparzoom Hovsep Baldanose Zorthian. I visited his ranch when I was doing THE HOLYLAND performances and temple of sacred retardation in my early Los Angeles days. We became friends and comrades in art. His birthday parties, called Bacchanalia, were legendary. His friendships with various luminaries over the years was extraordinary, from Charlie Parker to Richard Feynman. I could go on for about a mile worth of narrative but I will leave it to the professionals. God Bless you Jirayr.

Das Helmut

Daniels helmet hut

I met Daniel Davis by chance and for completely different reasons. It turned out we had a lot in common. Love of music and motorcycles to name a few of our common interests. He invited me to his home and after several months I finally made the visit and was completely unprepared to discover his passion for making these character helmets. These are all normal DOT helmets to which he has applied various materials and turned them into works of art. Then he rides around town on his scooter wearing them. He’s never had an exhibit of his work so he gracefully agreed for me to post them here. He is a dedicated artist and his work is available here.

Buoyancy

5 years ago

This is not a Gofundme ask. Kista Cook started the relief effort when I was busy bailing water and loosing my mind. I have not looked at this video in 5 years. I didn’t want to look. It’s just to remind me of what can happen and the people I love in my life.

I have rebuilt. IAM Residency is still floating. Always grateful for those who stepped in to rescue me and those who still lift me up today. We have wonderful friends and a full plate.

Excerpt from an article by Patrick Fischer from Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville when I first began hosting artist workshops at IAM Residency in 2017, also the year of the flood.

“In 2014, production artist and designer Brett Waller bought a quaint mid century modern house on the banks of the Ribault River in Northwest Jacksonville. It was Waller’s vision to renovate the once foreclosed home and launch an interdisciplinary arts and music residency program along Florida’s First Coast. The intensive residency program would train students of all ages in traditional and manual art forms. The curriculum would be led by internationally recognized artists who would teach and expose the community to traditional methods and techniques in art and music. It was Waller’s mission to preserve and extend historic knowledge and social practice through tactile experience, outside of academia. The house, located at 2709 Ribault Scenic Drive, would include housing, studio, and workshop space for artists interested in pursuing an independent pedagogical study towards personal development. With his goal in mind, Waller spent three years working on the house, which was in terrible disrepair when he purchased it.” –Patrick Fisher, Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville

As I write this blog.

Constancy

I used to watch Spongebob Squarepants with my daughter when she was a toddler and thought to myself he was the embodiment of constancy and cheerful purpose. I love Spongebob. Complete self-awareness in which nothing diverts his purposefulness for long. Richard McMahan possesses this quality. Olympia Stone made a wonderful film about him. He has written a book since I first met him and his Mini-Museum project is never ending. I will curate an exhibit design of the mini-museum one day using a maze as a conceptual theatre for viewing his work. I promise.

Muse

Hazel and Loy

I used to think muse only meant a beautiful naked model that artists needed as an inspiration to create. It can also mean a creative relationship with another person who is a beacon of light in the darkness of doubt. Kista Cook is a creative who seems to inspire everyone she meets to do their best work. She’s an excellent graphic designer and multi-disciplinary artist with firm grounding in the handmade and a backbone of creative support for every project she embraces. The reason IAM Residency still exists because of her skills and encouragement . She is a force of nature.

Kista Cook Design
Kista Artist

Welder etc.

Copper Box

Chas Smith will tell you he is a welder. He is, and a good one. I hired him do do the structural work on a 60′ tall sculpture I was in charge of fabrication for artist Jonathan Borofski. We became friends and as I got to know more found out he was also a very unique and in demand musician and composer for film scores with instruments he creates. Here is a link to “Copper Box” being played by him, as well as a link to all his music/film work on IMDB. Here is a link for his CDs. You have heard his work and didn’t know it. He is very humble about all his incredible skills, except welding. He will tell you he is a good welder. He has created kinetic motion work for many artists too. I recently came across a piece he created for artist Paul McCarthy that is amazing. It’s up on his FB page here. He is a humble guy with rare skills. Here’s a nice long interview where he’ll tell you all about it.

Smile, Enzo

Dancer-Bronze at the Cummer Museum

Enzo Torcoletti always has a smile when he sees you. He lives in St Augustine but I met him in Jax as he seems to show up at every opening of all the artists he knows. He is the most supportive and loving artists I know. His work is all over the place and he has been a fixture here for over 50 years as a teacher, advocate and working professional artist. He always welcomes me even when I show up unannounced at his home/studio which he shares with his wife Gayle on Moultrie Creek. Both of their work can be found here.

Nailed It!

Thom’s Black Conte portrait

It’s such a pleasure to see Thom Buttner when he shows up to our Tuesday Night Portrait session at the Art League. My parting comments to him after a session include, “Nailed it!”. I really admire his drawing skills and always learn from him. Whether it’s the medium he uses (conte lately) or his vast knowledge of Illustrators. He turned me on to Nicolai Fechin’s work. Thom worked as an illustrator in advertising and teacher. He has delightful personality and a distinctive and almost sculptural style to his drawings. You can see more of his work here.

Cluck!

This was the first artwork I saw by Molly Riefler. She came across my FB feed as a friend of a friend so I guessed she was local. I searched out more of her stuff here and found an old fashioned drawing style by a young woman which reminded me of The Fleischer Bros. animations of the 1920s and 30s (Betty Boop). We became friends and she ended up being one of my daughter’s favorite art teachers in middle school. I really love her stuff.

Artists are beautiful

Having an extremely non-productive day

Whether they are onstage or in the studio and the moment hits when it all comes together you can see their halo. I am fortunate enough to know many artists personally. I buy their art. I am drawn to the flame.

On this Blog, for the indeterminate future, I am going to introduce you to them in hopes that you will love them too.

I have another site which I started when I was teaching illustration here. These are artists that I am aware of and have reposted because I think that students show know them. Go get lost in this one.

This blog will be about artists in my life. My daughter is now an artist and I am teaching her about the life of an artist and showing her their ways and how to find them and learn from them. These are artists I know and part of my life and have affected me and and who I am. I hope you love them too.