On our annual August trip to Mt. Desert in Maine this year I opted to pack my oils but had no clear idea of what I was going to do or paint. We stay with some artists in a very basic cabin on one of the lakes there and thought I might find some inspiration. I’ve I didn’t. However, one morning while I was having coffee I picked up my iPad and looked though some of the photos I had taken. I did a couple of scrolls and noticed a picture of MacMillan Wharf in P’town I’d taken in 2012. I don’t store a lot of pics on that tablet and rarely look at the photos but I stopped on it. It was a wide shot from the beach and I became intrigued by it the more I zoomed in since it lost its recognition. I suppose the semi-abstractness of the cropping is what led me to start the series. Provincetown is awash with component landscape studies. I wanted to capture the feeling, much like my Sean Mick work of perception portraits, without it being completely realistic or abstract. That idea became MacMillan Wharf (I). It seems a interesting direction from when I first starting painting scenes of Provincetown a few years ago. It feels like stepping on the first rung of a very tall ladder.
I’ve always loved walking the dog on the town beach in Provincetown. From where I live in the East end, it affords a full view of MacMillan Wharf where the ferry from Boston docks. It’s no secret the light and air play a big part of artist inspiration here at the end of the Cape. Hawthorne, Hensche, Hofmann, Hopper and hordes and scads of artists and writers have interpreted this environment through their disciplines. It has also inspired me to do a study of the wharf as a series since I find the shapes of the outbuildings, boats, posts, masts, lines and rigging to be fascinating and somewhat abstract. My palette so far is derived from a morning fog and overcast that comes just after dawn many mornings in spring. I look to capture the salt of the air more than the true rendering of a sloop.
Robert Morgan and Sean McCabe
Opening reception: Friday, August 19, 7–9 p.m.
Alden Gallery | 423 Commercial Street, Provincetown
It’s been MONTHS since I’ve posted anything. Busy.
I’m part of two juried shows under my alter-ego, Sean Mick. The first is 3s Artspace in Prortmouth, NH. That show is up August 5th – September 3rd. It was selected by Christopher French for the 3S Juried Exhibition: On The Map.
In Boston, I’m part of the the Juror’s Choice at Uforge Gallery selected by Elizabeth Devlin up August 5th – 28th.
Please visit these extraordinary galleries if near by.
These geometric constructs represent individuals I’ve met. People and animals have an energy to them, a vibe, a presence. There is a feeling of wavelength involved and these indelible energies reflect what we are inside; contradictions, hopes, addictions, ego, love, self awareness, doubt – all part of our complex composition. This work looks to visually interpret the presence of the subjects. A sort of portrait or study drawn from the immaterial and intangible yet somehow recognizable, or at least equatable, of who they are.
Some new ink block on paper works of mine will be shown during this month’s First Thursday at Caramelo Clothing Company. The work is a departure from paint on canvas and somewhat of a reaction to our trip to Spain and France this fall. Influenced by street art (Europe is packed with great work), contemporary art, and printmaking this is my first in these series. For the portrait series, I approached the print blocks not as the method of predominately creating the image but instead serving as a building components of the image. Thematically it’s a reflection on how we eat, what constitutes food and at what expense. Although the “vocabulary” of the printing blocks will expand, I started by using my styled initials that serve as a signatures for my canvases and other works. In the second block printing approach, I’m using repetition to make spot paintings reminiscent of Thomas Downing and Andy Warhol. I’m fascinated by color blocking and association told in primitive form. I also admire repetition as way of allowing the viewer to observe color, and not the subject, to convey distinction.
If you’re in JP tomorrow, or at all during November, please stop by this beautiful store and take a look. Price sheet will be up front. The holidays are coming. Just say’n. – SM
Over the summer I made a small batch of few-of-a-kind t-shirts. Provincetown has no shortage of marine and old-timey themes in stores, tourist shops, and art galleries like whales, ships, lobsters, seagulls… all that shit. I kind of smooshed that idea together with the real flavor of town that’s not hanging out in the ocean – the bears, drags, dykes, circuit queens, and bearded scenesters. Limited edition run, all hand painted, and kinda sloppy. You can find them at Trevor in Provincetown and Caramelo in Jamaica Plain. Hit them (or me) up if you want one.
These works are about impressions, as opposed to locations, of Provincetown. A sort of semi-abstraction french kissing illustration. The recognizable elements of any realism has been cast off to color, line, and shape. Loose subjective forms suggest a hurried pace, long waits, and chance encounters. The use of mixed media (acrylic, oil, charcoal, oil stick, pencil on canvas) serves as a crucial representational element to convey the complex diversity of the town by being both harmonious and discordant. There are many imperfections – just like those that constitute the soul of any village at the end of the road.
Having a gallery show is new territory. I have no expectations and look forward to criticism and feedback from the art savvy and casual observers of Provincetown. Grateful for the opportunity to be represented at William Scott Gallery and looking forward to what’s next already.
The show is up until August 5th. Come to the opening if you’re around Provincetown on the 24th. Stay for the free wine.
I’ve been thinking a lot about what excites me as a painter. Lately, I’ve sort of fused two obsessions of mine; representational and hard edge. This thought became the series Self Portraits originally but I wanted to try it with landscapes. I sketch in pencil and vine charcoal and I noticed an almost primitive paint-by-numbers thing happening so I kept it.
This is my first season at William Scott Gallery in Provincetown. I’m incredibly honored to be part of a group or artists and gallerists that are well known as purveyors of strong work. Opening salon is May 22nd from 7-9PM and some of these works will be on display. I have a show coming up there on July 24th. That’s not so far away…. I better get painting…