Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Art Fair Update

     Hello again, and thank you, to all who managed to brave the weather extremes, to stop by and see me at the fair.  Mother Nature wasn't very kind to us, was she? We were sweltering one day, and wet and chilly the next.  But it was nice to see the old friends who could make it over for a visit, and nice to meet those of you who came by for the first time, and make your acquaintance.   We had some enjoyable chats, sometimes about deeper things than just the weather, although that did tend to dominate the conversations.

     Ah well, what can we do? You can't fight Mother Nature.  Maybe she will be kinder to us for the Spring events.

     Thanks again.
     Til next time,  Gene McNerney

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Come to the fair.

     This is the time of the year when we begin to see arts festivals popping out
 somewhere, on almost every weekend, in the Kansas City metropolitan area.
Most of these art fairs serve as promotional events for commercial retail districts
or shopping centers, but there is one annual fair in September, which stands out
as a benefit for a worthy, non-profit organization.   I am referring to PeaceWorks-
KC, an all volunteer group, working to promote a healthier and a more just and
peaceful world for everyone.  The UNplaza Art Fair is the sole, annual fundraiser
for the dedicated group.
     For those of you who live in this area, or who plan to be visiting here in late
September, and you are feeling the itch to go to an art fair, this one would be a
good one to mark on your calendar.  The UNplaza Art Fair takes place on Sept.
24th, from 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM, and Sept. 25th, from 12:00 PM To 5:00 PM.
The location is 4501 Walnut, on the lawns of the All Souls Unitarian Universalist
Church.  There will be a large number of booths, offering a wide variety of arts
and crafts to see and enjoy or buy.
     I am planning to be in attendance at the fair, showing paintings and prints, in
booth number thirteen.  I welcome the opportunity to show my work and have
a chat with those of you who would like to stop by and say hello.

     See you at the fair?
     Gene McNerney

Monday, August 1, 2016

Smiling Beneath The Greasepaint

                                                   An original drawing, in charcoal and pastels
                                                   12 X 9", unframed, - ( mat size, 17 X 14" )
                                                   $75.00, - ( plus $15.00, pack and ship )

                                                         ( click on image to enlarge )

     This is one of a number of such studies I have done in the past, as preparations for
doing clown paintings.  People seem to fall into two camps, when it comes to clowns;
they either love them or they hate them.  I can understand some of the antipathy for
clowns; professional clowns who have a genuine talent to amuse an audience are a
rarity.  Most of the "clowns" that young people are exposed to these days are clowns
in name only; they think that a silly costume, face paint and noise makers, are all it takes
to be funny.  A genuine clown has enough acting and mime skills to create a character
who communicates visually, and sometimes verbally, with his audience, to carry out a
theme or story, in common with, or recognizable to all.

     One of the best at his profession, was Emmett Kelly.  I have a personal memory of
seeing Kelly perform, over a half century ago, which I will try to relate in a future posting.
Glancing back through previous postings, I only see a couple of selections using artful
performances by mimes or clowns as subjects, (Silent Laughter, and Put On A Happy
Face).  So, I will try to get more of them photographed and posted in the blog.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

Ruby Ballerina

                                                      An original mixed-media painting, on illustration board
                                                      10 X 8", unframed, (mat size 16 X 14")
                                                       $135.00, - (plus $15.00, pack and  

                                                         ( click on image to enlarge)

     This is another example of the series of color studies I did of a ballerina, using
various gem-stones as references to suggest the changing colors of stage-lighting,
which can do so much to create and enhance the ethereal magic of the ballet.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Pears For Toulouse-Lautrec

                                               An original acrylic painting on stretched canvas
                                               15 X 19", framed - ( 12 X 16" canvas )
                                               $850.00, including frame, ( plus $35.00, pack and ship )

                                                         ( Click on image to enlarge )

     This painting, done in a fairly post-impressionist manner, still defies any photographer
to capture a completely accurate feel for its primary, visual characteristic.  That is the
result of the fact that it was entirely, under-painted in metallic gold, so that the luminous
qualities of the overlying colors appear to change, as the painting is viewed from different
angles and distances.
     I haven't used metallic paints or foils a great deal, in my art work, because they often
tend to compromise the illusion of depth in paintings.   But they work fairly well in the
style of the post-impressionists, who favored bold shapes, lines and colors, and the
flattened  depth-of-field, of the Japanese, wood-block prints, which they so admired.
Metallic elements can also be useful in work which is deliberately primitive in design,
 having no genuine perspective or sense of scale, and instead, using flattened patterns,
shapes and traditional themes, to create a feel for the history of an area.  I once did a
series of such paintings, designed to give a feeling of the art and history of the Eastern
Mediterranean countries, and which I printed as a Christmas card collection.
I have posted several of those paintings in this blog in the past ( such as Silent Night
and Glad Tidings Of Great Joy ), but again, the metallic elements do not show up well
in the photos.

     The burnished-gold, molding I selected for the frame, carries out the rich theme of
the painting without being overly elaborate.  This photo of the painting in the frame,
may give viewers a better idea of the visual effect of this gilded presentation of pears.


Emerald Ballerina

                                                   An original mixed-media painting, on illustration board
                                                   10.5 X 8.25", unframed
                                                   $135.00, ( plus $15.00, pack and ship )

                                                          ( Click on image to enlarge )

     This is another of  the jewel-toned color-studies I did in preparation for a much
larger painting of the ballerina.  In this one I was imagining the stage lighted for what
might be a setting from a forest scene, during a performance of one of the classic
romantic ballets, perhaps in a composition by Tchaikovsky.   I think it does capture
some of the evanescent and ethereal feel of a dancer poised in the glow of enchanted
stage-lighting, the magical, shimmering colored-lights which bring fairy-tales to life.

Monday, May 23, 2016

Still Waiting For The Music To Start Again

                                                    An original acrylic painting, on canvas
                                                    28 X 22", unframed
                                                    $2,600.00, - ( Plus $40.00, pack and ship )

                                                          ( click on image to enlarge )

     This painting may become the cover art for a children's book, depending on
whether or not the writing will be finished, and the book can find a publisher.

     This subject of a carousel horse, found seemingly abandoned in an old, decaying
barn, presented some interesting challenges for the composition.  The unusual
placement of the center-of-interest required a comfortable degree of informal balance,
and since this is a completely imaginary barn, there was the problem of creating a
believable, deep perspective.  The painting also required three different kinds of
light sources: a bright, warm sunlight at the front opening, a cool, shadowed light
from the opening on the far side of the barn, and a muted light source from an
unseen opening in the barn's loft.

     Perhaps this nostalgic look back at a salvaged part our childhood memories
will stir some blog viewers to recall their own innocent, cotton-candy days, of rides
on the merry-go-round, and reaching for the brass ring.