Nicholas Baxter

Blog posts tagged “group show”

IGOR at 1261

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I just shipped out my painting “Dying In America” to Gallery 1261 in Denver, for the 11th annual International Guild of Realism juried exhibition, mentioned in my last blog post. My painting is for sale and available through the gallery for the duration of the exhibit, so please contact them with inquiries.

I had a chance to check out the online preview of the entire show and WOW, it’s full of nothing but mesmerizing realism in representational art. It is a stunning representation of classical painting and drawing technique, that as you will see here, is still very much alive and well today. I am honored and humbled to be included.

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I won’t be able to attend the opening reception or see the show in person but if you’re in that area of the country, do yourself a favor and have a look. Digital and printed reproductions of this genre of art, and especially the oil painting medium in particular, do absolutely zero justice to the live experience of the paint’s luminosity and depth.

"Dying In America," 2015, oil on linen panel.

“Dying In America,” 5 x 14 inches, 2015, oil on linen panel.   Also, check out my recent technique blog post about this painting.

 

 

Summer Exhibitions

This has turned into quite a busy summer for me, as I have various recent paintings scattered across the globe in several current group exhibitions. Even though it’s been a whirlwind of packing, shipping, emailing, posting, and filekeeping (custom-made art inventory Excel spreadsheet FTW!), I’m honored to have my work included in these shows. Check out the list below and see if any are near you!

 

I have one recent still life included in the juried biennial of the Peto Museum in New Jersey (see recent blog post for more info).

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“To The Nadir”, oil on linen panel, 11 x 14 inches, 2016

I’m showing 4 recent paintings in Austin, Texas gallery Art For The People‘s “Off The Wall, Off The Flesh” exhibit.

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"Hand Of God"

“Hand Of God”, oil on panel, 24 x 24 inches, 2012

I have 4 recent still lifes in Rome, Italy at the MACRO museum’s “Tattoo Forever” exhibit, featuring the fine artworks of noteworthy tattooers from around the world.

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"July", oil on linen panel, 12 x 9 inches, 2015

“July”, oil on linen panel, 12 x 9 inches, 2015

 

I have a recent painting from my Apostasy series exhibiting in “Flesh to Canvas” hosted by Last Rites Gallery at the Empire State Tattoo Expo, a yearly group show featuring non-tattoo fine artworks by many of the top tattooers in the world.

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“The Offering,” oil on linen panel, 11 x 14 inches, 2015.

After it returns from AFTP’s current exhibit, my recent still life is slated for inclusion in the 11th Annual International Juried Exhibition of the International Guild Of Realism, which will happen at Gallery 1261 in Denver Colorado in late August.

"Dying In America," 2015, oil on linen panel.

“Dying In America,” oil on linen panel, 5 x 14 inches, 2015

2016 Peto Biennial

I’m very honored and excited to have been among the artists whose work was selected for the John F. Peto Studio Museum’s 2016 Biennial. This marks my second time being included in the show, which is a juried exhibition with cash awards at stake.

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The piece selected this time around was my recent still life “To The Nadir,” which is first in a series of new work tentatively titled “Blood Rituals.”

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To The Nadir, oil on linen panel, 11 x 14 inches, 2016

I’ll be debuting this new body of work (which I feel is some of my best yet!) later this year. More details to follow on that exhibition, and hopefully some writing about the themes and symbolism of the series, so stay tuned!

For now, if you’re in the New Jersey area and into classical still life painting, don’t miss what will surely be an amazing show full of mesmerizing technical mastery.

“Flesh To Canvas” Group Show

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I’ll have my recent painting Singularity for sale in Last Rites Gallery’s annual Flesh To Canvas group show next weekend at the Empire State Tattoo Expo in NYC, July 10-12. Please contact the gallery for inquiries on this piece or my other recent work currently in their inventory, Sacrament (Vanitas).

Singularity, oil on canvas, 18 x 20 inches, 2014-15

Singularity, oil on canvas, 18 x 20 inches, 2014-15

 

Sacrament (Vanitas), oil on panel, 16 x 20 in, 2014

Sacrament (Vanitas), oil on panel, 16 x 20 inches, 2014

The 13th Hour Group Show

This past month I’ve had the honor of my painting Sacrament (Vanitas) being on display at Last Rites Gallery in NYC, as part of their annual Halloween group show The 13th Hour.

Sacrament (Vanitas)

Sacrament (Vanitas), oil on panel, 16 x 20 inches, 2014

This year’s lineup of artists was exceptional, and I’m sad to not have been able to attend the opening reception last month. From what I saw in the online preview, the pieces in this show were top notch.

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 If you’re in the NYC area, you can check them all out in person until November 15th. My painting is for sale through the gallery until that date.

Time: Tattoo Art Today

For the past few months I’ve had a painting hanging in a groundbreaking exhibit at Somerset House in London, showcasing the fine art of contemporary tattooers and commemorating the newfound crossover and intermingling of the previously disparate tattoo and art worlds.

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Having just returned from London where I viewed the exhibit, I can say that the museum and curators did an excellent job representing the tattoo world that I’m a part of alongside my fine art pursuits. The collection of works is impressive in scale and in its variety of mediums and styles, with a great quote by legendary American tattooer-turned-painter Don Ed Hardy on the wall as you walk in.

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If you want to own the entire exhibition in printed form, luckily a gorgeous catalogue was published, featuring quotes by every artist as well as essays by the curators and aforementioned Hardy. Unluckily, though, there is no way that I can find (as of writing this blog post) where you can buy the book online. You can however buy it in person, in the museum bookshop.

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My contribution to the exhibition, Heals All Wounds, 50 x 70 cm, oil on panel, 2014. Showing the evolution of a wound over time, with various features of the composition combining to form the shape of an hourglass.

More information on the show can be found here, and you can read a more informative review of the exhibit on this blog.

I haven’t been posting anything here lately in the midst of a bunch of life changes, but wanted to celebrate this amazing exhibition I had the honor of participating in, since it closes for good at the end of this week.

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Heals All Wounds (detail)

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Heals All Wounds (detail)

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Heals All Wounds (detail)

The 13th Hour: Worlds Within

I’m honored to be part of two group shows this fall, one of which I announced previously, and now the 6th annual “The 13th Hour” Halloween show at Last Rites Gallery in NYC that opens tonight, October 26th. Here’s the press release from the gallery website, and here’s a link to the online preview.

The 13th Hour
6th Annual Group Exhibit

October 26 – December 7th

NEW YORK, NY (October 26th, 2013) – Last Rites Gallery opens its sixth annual The 13th Hour group exhibit, celebrating the spirit of the Halloween Season.

In its annual exhibit, Last Rites sets out to present a broad-spectrum representation of Dark Surrealism. Held days just before Halloween, the show is the gallery’s largest group exhibit, and features renowned artists from around the globe working in an array of mediums including painting, drawing and sculpture. From gothic elegance to finely crafted grotesquery, the beauty within the darkness is embraced and brought into the spotlight.

Artists include: Stefano Alcantara, Agostino Arrivabene, Tom Bagshaw, William Basso, Nick Baxter, Blood Milk, Matthew Bone, Scott G Brooks, Matt Buck, John Cebollero, David Choquette, Ryan Matthew Cohn, Jason Goldberg, Carl Grace, Fred Harper, Naoto Hattori, Stephanie Henderson, Jeremy Hush, Sarah Joncas, Jed Leiknes, Eli Livingston, Dave MacDowell, Chris Mars, Megan Massacre, Marco Mazzoni, Jim McKenzie, Vince Natale, Buddy Nestor, Richard J Oliver, Anthony Pontius, Michael Ramstead, David Richardson, Paul Romano, Matt Rota, Richard T Scott, David Stoupakis, Tin, Yosuke Ueno, Redd Walitzki, Jasmine Worth, Vincent Xeus, Kate Zambrano

 

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The image I painted for the show is a representation of the Many-Worlds Interpretation and “observer effect” phenomena involved in quantum physics research. It was actually inspired, of all things, by song lyrics from my favorite band and longtime artistic influence Catharsis, whose ultimate goal was total transformation of reality through armed resistance and revolutionary anarchist struggle. Their lyrics were oddly and perhaps unintentionally connected to the aforementioned theories in that they focused on the ability of the embattled individual to redefine themselves and change their very reality…to imagine a world of their own choosing, to believe in it wholeheartedly, and thus to fight for it passionately. Their song “Obsession” begins with the following lines:

To sow seeds in barren fields

When there’s no more fertile ground

To bear the fragile worlds within

Through the ruined one that surrounds

For many years these words have given me strength to be true to myself through hard times by holding fast to the inspired visions and emotions that populate my inner world, and working to manifest them in the outside world. They took on new significance after I started learning some of the basic concepts (very, very basic. haha) of quantum physics and became fascinated by the philosophy of metaphysics. The connection between the lyrics and these sciences is the tentative yet intriguing assertion that the world out there exists as it does only because my mind first creates it in here.

 

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Worlds Within, oil on panel, 16 x 20 inches, 2013

 

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Worlds Within (detail)

 

National Juried Trompe l’oeil Exhibition

I’m honored to have two paintings on display at the John F. Peto Museum in Island Heights, NJ as part of their national juried show, described on their website:

“The John F. Peto Studio Museum invites artists working in the trompe l’oeil style to participate in its National Juried Show of Contemporary Trompe l’oeil. The purpose of this exhibition is to showcase contemporary art work that ‘fools the eye’ and demonstrates the innovative ways in which artists continue to express themselves through trompe l’oeil.”

Trompe L'oeil Poster

I’m glad they appreciated my contemporary and edgy take on the classic trompe l’oeil look, as I attempt to merge the traditional and modern into one presentation. The pieces chosen for the exhibit:

"Denial Vanitas", oil on panel, 11 x 14in, 2012

“Denial Vanitas”, oil on panel, 11 x 14in, 2012

"Sacrificial", oil on panel, 12 x 12in, 2012

“Sacrificial”, oil on panel, 12 x 12in, 2012

 

Invocation Of Trust

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Invocation Of Trust, oil on panel, 4.5 x 8 inches, 2013

Here’s a recent piece I completed for submission to an upcoming charity art exhibit at The Egan Gallery in Fullerton, California, curated by friend and fellow artist Cody Raiza who is a passionate animal welfare activist.

 

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This tiny painting was inspired by events this summer at my house in Austin Texas involving the rescue of 2 baby raccoons from a rain catchment bin in my backyard by my partner and I. These two little fuzzballs, normally capable of being quite ferocious, were reduced to  feeble, trembling snugglebugs by their traumatic night spent flailing and trying not to drown. They instantly grasped and climbed my extended arms seeking warmth and comfort, and stole our animal-loving hearts in the short time before we entrusted them to the care of an area wildlife rehabilitation center.

Of course, never one to miss any artistic photo-op, I snapped away with my iPhone camera and ended up with some gorgeous, heartwarming shots, which after the usual in-phone editing, made their way first to Instagram*, and then to the easel when I realized they were perfectly suited to the theme of this upcoming art show.

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Edited reference photo from my Instagram account.

 

Here’s the evolution of this image, which just as the title declares, was intended as an invocation of trust in my life, to overcome barriers of fear and isolation, and to elicit sacred tender moments of unity between humans, other beings, all life.

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Pencil transfer drawing and Grisaille, followed by color block-in and 2-3 layers of color adjustment and glazing.

 

(*This is the first time I’ve painted an image originally intended solely for my Instagram gallery…not sure how I feel about that. I routinely attempt to post content there which is reminiscent of my paintings, and certainly aligned closely with my overall artistic aesthetic, often self-critiquing them afterwards as if they were paintings…but I really despise the over-saturation and cultural-race-to-the-bottom of social media, despite my own degree of participation in it. I’m curious to see how the Ig creative outlet will affect my art in general. To be continued…)

Dissecting Art, Intersecting Anatomy

I’m a bit late with this post, but I’m still thrilled to be included in this currently running group show co-curated by Vanessa Ruiz of Street Anatomy Blog, who featured my work last year on her entertaining site that celebrates all manner of anatomically-themed art.  Here’s the official show flier and press release for the current exhibit in Chicago:

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New Exhibit Will Take the Pulse of Cutting-Edge Anatomical Artwork While Honoring an Innovator

“Dissecting Art, Intersecting Anatomy: Merging Contemporary Art with the the Works of Pauline Lariviere”

On view March 9 to 16, 2013, at S3 Gallery in Chicago

CHICAGO, Feb. 11, 2013 — A new gallery exhibit will pay tribute to Pauline M. Lariviere, a mid-20th century artist and groundbreaking medical illustrator with Chicago connections.

“Dissecting Art, Intersecting Anatomy: Merging Contemporary Art with the Works of Pauline Lariviere” will be on display at S3 Gallery, 1907 N. Mendell St, Suite 4-H, Chicago, from Saturday, March 9 to Saturday, March 16, 2013. Public hours include the exhibit opening and reception from 6 to 10 p.m. on March 9 and also noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday, March 10. Other hours are by appointment. Admission is free.

In addition to original art by Lariviere (1906-1988), a French-Canadian artist influenced by Picasso, the exhibit will showcase approximately 50 recent cutting-edge works in an anatomical vein by more than 20 rising and established artists and illustrators from across the U.S. and overseas working in diverse media.

All of the pieces on exhibit are for sale, including those by Lariviere.

Exhibit curators are Chicago artist and industrial designer Phillip Schalekamp, owner of S3 Gallery, and Vanessa Ruiz, Chicago-based art director and medical illustrator and founder of Street Anatomy, which maintains a visual blog and produces gallery shows.

The show will include 10 of Lariviere’s original oil paintings, which were reproduced as anatomical charts for medical classrooms and offices. Also on view will be 20 photographic glass plates of Lariviere’s illustrations used in the print production process.

“Her unique use of abstraction was new to the realm of anatomical art,” Schalekamp says. “She used it to convey dense medical information through visual symbols that are easy to grasp. Her departure from realism was controversial, but it was highly successful. Her style is still used in medical illustrations today.”

The contemporary artists in “Dissecting Art, Intersecting Anatomy” work in media ranging from oil, pencil, watercolor, acrylic, and photography to sculpture, furniture, video, human hair, and chocolate. Their work has appeared in solo and group shows and in publications.

Schalekamp says some of the pieces were created expressly for the show. Others are existing pieces that extend Lariviere’s pioneering work in applying modern art techniques and perspectives to science illustrations.

The following U.S.-based artists will be represented in the show:

  • Alexandra Baker, Ashville, N.C.; pencil and Adobe Photoshop
  • Nicholas Baxter, Austin, Tex.; oil on panel
  • Sung Jang, Schaumburg, Ill.; hair on canvas
  • Whitney Johnson, Chicago; collage
  • Vesna Jovanovic, Chicago; watercolor, ink, graphite
  • Michael Koehler, Chicago; sculpture/mixed media
  • Robyn Maitland, Chicago; acrylic on canvas/glass
  • Geno Malusek, Indianapolis, Ind.; photography
  • Nathan Mason, Chicago; photography/collage
  • Emily Portugal, Chicago; video
  • Dan Price, Chicago; sculpture
  • Danny Quirk, Springfield, Mass.; watercolor
  • Billy Reynolds, Los Angeles, Calif.; oil on linen
  • Brandy Rinehart, Chicago; sculpture/mixed media
  • Phillip Schalekamp, Chicago; oil/mixed media
  • Stephen Shanabrook, Cleveland, Ohio; chocolate
  • Andrew Svek, Chicago; furniture/walnut

International artists will include:

  • Emily Evans, London, UK; pencil
  • Alvaro Hidalgo, Viña del Mar, Chile; mixed media
  • Patcho Quinto, Quezon City, Philippines; pencil and Adobe Illustrator
  • Giselle Vitali, Barcelona, Spain; pen, ink, watercolor, colored pencil

Lariviere studied art at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Montreal and London’s Slade School of Art and studied medical illustration at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Md., under famed illustrator Max Bodel.

Pauline_Lariviere_TopographyLariviere’s work appears in editions of Grey’s Anatomy and in numerous medical and nursing textbooks. A 1942 profile of Lariviere in the Montreal Standard said, “Streamlining kidneys and glamorizing intestines, while emphasizing their detail like a scientist, Miss Lariviere has obtained international fame.”

As a freelance medical illustrator, Lariviere painted anatomical charts for Chicago’s Denoyer-Geppert Company (now headquartered in Skokie, Ill.), producer of anatomical models and other medical education materials.

Some of her original works for Denoyer-Geppert were exhibited on Chicago’s Navy Pier in June 1948 during an American Medical Association conference there. Chicago Tribune writer Eleanor Jewett observed, “Three beautifully presented anatomical charts by Pauline M. Lariviere . . . are of the greatest consequence. . . . The charts are painted in oil and are truly remarkable.”

The Baltimore Sun profiled Lariviere in June 1950, noting that she “is pioneering a new type of medical art.” The newspaper said she creates charts “which not only are edifying and accurate, but are aesthetically pleasurable.”

Schalekamp of S3 Gallery says he discovered Lariviere’s work while browsing in a Chicago science surplus store, where he came across a set of glass printing plates. He bought the plates and later acquired a set of Lariviere’s original oil paintings from Denoyer-Geppert, where they had been in storage for decades. Intrigued, Schalekamp began researching Lariviere’s life and work and delved deeper into the field of medical illustrations and models.

 

Three paintings of mine featured in the exhibit:

"Sacrificial", oil on panel, 12 x 12in, 2012

Sacrificial, oil on panel, 12 x 12in, 2012

Light of the World

Light of the World, oil on panel, 12 x 24in, 2012

Anointing

Anointing, oil on panel, 24 x 24in, 2012

Wildlife In the Post-Natural Age

I have two recent photographs included in a group show this month at the Williamsburg Art & Historical Center in Brooklyn, NYC, called Wildlife in the Post-Natural Age. This thoughtful and gorgeous collection of work, featuring several renowned contemporary artists (who I’m humbled to be showing alongside), was curated by my talented friend Cara DeAngelis.  If you’re in the Northeast and have any interest in wildlife, ecology, or environmentalism, this show is worth checking out.

Cara’s eloquent press release describes the concept that inspired the exhibit:

“The show focuses on work that addresses the interplay between wildlife and our domesticated selves and spaces. It probes the persistence of wildlife in American culture and individual imagination through the work of a diverse group of city-based artists. The varied works evoke a reconsideration of the term ‘wild’ in what Gary Snyder has called a Post-Natural Age, and the role that artists are playing in exploring these issues.”

The photos I submitted for the exhibition are from an ongoing series of macro studio photography I’ve been working on for approximately 2 years now. These digital images are a scientific document of the myriad lifeforms I discover or interact with in my travels and adventures on Planet Earth. This project was partly inspired by the Terry Gilliam version of 12 Monkeys, a surreal post-apocolyptic harbinger, which took hold of my teenage brain and hasn’t ever truly let go.

The photos below reveal some of the process of preparing my prints for display, followed by the original digital versions of the images featured in the show.  Stay tuned for more images from the series, which has a working title of Specimens.

At Jeff’s house proofing the images. Taking an image from digital to print for the first time is tricky–this was an all-day affair.

A print emerging from Jeff’s monster EPSON 5million (ok, thats not a real model number. But it’s huge). The reds in this image proved incredibly difficult to dial in.

Back at the studio with all my proofs. Hand-painting, signing, and numbering each one to make a little series of prints I can sell. No sense in throwing away all these proofs that were nearly indistinguishable from the final full-sized print.

Hand painting some effects on the full-sized prints that will be mounted and sent to the exhibition.

Mounted up and varnished, drying.

Detail of some of my paint/re-touching effects.

“Frailty (Grackle, Austin, Texas)”, photo/digital, 2011

“Gluttony (Engorged Wood Tick, Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation, North Dakota)”, photo/digital, 2010

Second Skin Group Show: Denial Vanitas

Below is a preview of my submission for the Second Skin group show opening this weekend at Copro Gallery in California.

Previously I blogged about the technical process involved in creating this painting here and here.

Thematically, the painting and its title “Denial Vanitas” refers to the pioneering work of Ernest Becker, cultural anthropologist, who studied the phenomenon of mankind’s denial of death.  He came to believe that each individual’s primal fear of death is a subconscious motivational factor in nearly all of our actions–especially in aggressive or violent ones–which culminates, finally, on a societal scale in the form of wars, bigotry, or genocide.

Download the full map of Becker’s ideas here.

This theory coincides with Buddhist teachings on the nature of self, or Ego, as a psychological construct constantly seeking to substantiate itself in concrete terms, as an (ultimately futile) antidote to the fundamental groundlessness and impermanence of existence. A human ego (either individually or collectively) reaches a pathological state when it resorts to acts of aggression or violence in order to claim power and thus prove it exists.

I worked these concepts, using very non-traditional subject matter, into the long tradition of Vanitas still life painting as a statement on the tragic ironies of postmodern consumer culture.

“Denial Vanitas”, oil on panel, 11 x 14in, 2012

Death permeates our lives in these times where everything seems designed and destined for the dumpster, quickly disposed of, after a short and meaningless servitude. Yet surprisingly, a collective denial deepens as the energetic, smooth-skinned bodies and carefree attitudes of the young are fetishized and promoted as the ultimate achievement.  Death is taboo, a relic buried under layers of styrofoam and sealed in cardboard boxes, forgotten in dusty attics and closets. But skeletons emerge from this denial, as wars rage across the earth and the planet’s very life-sustaining capacity threatens to collapse from our industrialized aggression.

Only after we’ve uncovered the denied aspects of our motivations, finding wholeness in a once-fractured psyche, can we truly embrace each fleeting moment and deeply appreciate the preciousness of all life.

Realism Techniques 4.5

Here’s the followup and conclusion to my earlier post featuring a texture experiment with some new subject matter. The results are now in, and personally I feel that the styrofoam packing peanut texture attempt #1 was a success.  Here’s a detail sequence of the major steps of the layering process.

Descending into madness, otherwise known as, the building of styrofoam texture.

This painting will debut at a Copro Gallery group show curated by renowned dark pop-surrealist Chet Zar, which promises to be an amazing display of the elite fine art talent in the tattooing scene–which has long been denied access to and credibility within the mainstream, or establishment art world.

But, times are changing, and Chet is an impromptu ambassador of sorts, working on the forefront of this shift while treading the boundaries between several art scenes with his own career.  Many thanks and much respect goes out to him for his efforts.

Kingdom Animalia Preview

Tomorrow night, June 29th, in California is a group art show organized for a great charity: Big Life Foundation. The lineup of artists who agreed to submit works for this generous effort is quite impressive–I’m humbled and flattered to even be considered, let alone included.

A few weeks ago I posted a detail shot of my painting which will appear in this show, and now here is the whole thing.  See the attached flyer for more info on the show.

“Proximity”, oil on panel, 11 x 14in, 2012

And note that the host, Land Rover of Anaheim Hills, is keeping no money whatsoever from sales at this show: all of it goes to help animals in Africa.  Awesome!

 

Kingdom Animalia

Recently I was invited to participate in a group show to benefit the kind people working to save wildlife in Africa from poaching and related horrors.  Naturally I’m stoked on this amazing cause and flattered to be included with a great group of artists.  Here’s an advertisement for the show, and a detail shot of a painting I just finished, which will most likely be my contribution.

"Proximity" (detail), Oil on Panel, 11 x 14 in, 2012