Acrylic on gessoed hardboard, 16 x 12"
Painting # 222, 2014
A few years back, I had the idea of incorporating some sort of Kerr's Candy in a Kerr Mason jar and entitling the piece, "Kerr's in Kerr". At this point, I think these lollipops are way past their expiry date for freshness since they've been in my studio for at least 3 years waiting for their turn to appear in a painting.
Last year we spent the long Easter weekend in Pittsburgh, Pa. It's a wonderful city with many top-notch museums, several professional sports teams, a great downtown core and the skyline view atop Mount Washington is breathtaking. We took in, a Pittsburgh Penguins hockey game with Sidney Crosby leading his team to victory. We also attended the hilarious "Broadway Across America" musical, "The Book of Mormons" at the Benedum Theatre, and Green Day in concert at the Consol Energy Centre. Philanthropists Andrew Carnegie, Andrew W. Mellon, Henry Frick and H.J. Heinz II have contributed greatly in creating a lasting legacy, making the city a sophisticated and cultural hub.
One of the major reason for that trip was to visit the museum of one of Pittsburgh's native son, Andy Warhol. I've been an admirer of Warhol's artwork for as long as I've been painting. It was never a question of if I would visit the Andy Warhol Museum, but when. Needless to say, I was not disappointed. Upon exiting, I even received a parting gift of a Brillo Soap Pads Box, an homage to Warhol by Charles Lutz, that was part of the exhibition, Regarding Warhol: Sixty Artists, Fifty Years.
Being in a Warhol state-of-mine when I got home, I matted and framed an image of Grace Kelly to put on a freshly painted wall of our powder room from a page of a 1991 Andy Warhol Celebrity Calendar which I had held on to for some twenty odd years.
It was during this time that the genesis for the painting took place. As I started flipping the pages of the calendar, I noticed that the colour combination of the jar / lollipops with the image in that calendar for the month of March, "Eighteen Marilyns" (Reversal Series), 1979, seemed like a perfect match. I then took out my camera, did a photo study and the narrative just came to me. The title suggest an encounter with Marilyn Monroe, a fantasy entertained by many. While she was alive, the probability of this ever happening, one would either have to be a real "sucker", naive, delusional or extremely lucky.
The image above is of my wife Suzanne with another of Warhol's Reversal Series image of Marilyn Monroe that was on exhibit at "La FIAC" (International Contemporary Art Fair) at le Grand Palais in Paris in 1989, when we visited "La Ville-Lumière" for the first time.
Last month, Suzanne and I spend 10 days vacationing in the states of Georgia and South Carolina. As luck would have it, we got to see a wonderful art exhibition entitled "Marilyn, Celebrating an American Icon" at the Jepson Center in Savannah, Ga. The exhibit includes more than 50 artists’ works, in styles ranging from Andy Warhol’s Pop Art to photographer Tom Kelley's 1949 famous nudes of Marilyn against a red velvet background. Click on the banner below for details of the exhibition that runs until July 27, 2014.
Elliott Fouts Gallery
1831 P. Street Sacramento, California, USA , 95811
Phone (916) 736-1429