In the Studio #25

I finally finished my Maybe Baby series last week with great relief. The series took far longer then I anticipated, but given the fact that I had to balance several other pressing concerns over the past few months I feel lucky that I completed the series at all. Maybe Baby was intended to be a set of works inspired by cave imagery. I wanted the colors to feels eerily subterranean and murky. Here are the original six images I worked from for the series:

 

I also wanted the series to pay homage to a previous drawing series I did about a 15 years ago called “Sometimes Maybe”. In that original set of works I allowed large blocks of color to peek through surrounded by rocky outcroppings and misty smoky mark-making. That original series featured two character that merely spoke to each other in a simple back and forth similar to my Puppet Pal Friends series. Here are some examples of the Sometimes Maybe series:

For Maybe Baby I keep the originally Sometimes Maybe characters but added the Aluminum Pixie Pus to give the whole set a dramatic punch. I like using the Pixie Pus character because she helps me direct and focus attention in any work she’s in. Here one of the first times I used this Aluminium Pixie Pus character in a work back in 2001 in a series of the same name:

Anthony Smith, Aluminum Pixie Pus 2, 24 x 30 inches, mixed media drawing, 2005

Over the span of this series Maybe Baby, the works seemed to progress from a more literal interpretation of caves to a lesson plan on contrasting and pulsating colors and shapes. I love it when these developments occur and its a large reason why I work in series to begin with. Here are all six pieces in order:

Anthony Smith Jr, Maybe Baby No. 1, 16 x 32 inches, mixed media painting, 2016Anthony Smith Jr. Maybe Baby No. 2, 16 x 32 inches, mixed media painting, 2016Anthony Smith Jr. Maybe Baby No. 3, 16 x 32 inches, mixed media painting, 2015Anthony Smith Jr. Maybe Baby No. 4, 16 x 32 inches, mixed media painting, 2016Anthony Smith Jr, Maybe Baby No. 5, 16 x 32 inches, mixed media painting, 2016Anthony Smith Jr, Maybe Baby No. 6, 16 x 32 inches, mixed media painting, 2016

 

Now onto whats been inspiring these works musically. I’ve been in a weird music mood over the past few weeks. I moved on from my Tribe Called Quest obsession of last week and am now really into that pop-star Sia, thanks to my friend King who showed me a video of her doing Carpool Karaoke with the late night TV host James Corden. On completely the other end of the music spectrum I’ve also been really into jazz lately, particularly Charles Mingus. Both artists over the last week carried me through as  I wrapped up things on Maybe Baby and began preparations for my Vermont residency. Here’s Sia with Corden and also Mingus’s “Peggy’s Blue Skylight”:

 

 

Next time I’ll go into my thoughts on this months First Friday at the Banana Factory. Until then …

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s