So … It’s share day here at the gallery.
Almost 13 years ago, my wife and I decided we wanted a beach wedding, but we were basically too poor to go to leave the country. In lieu of a proper Caribbean beach, we went hunting. I say “we,” but it was really her. She scoured the 12-years-ago internet and landed on Key West.
The more we read about the place, the more we liked the idea. We liked comparisons to New Orleans. We liked the history. We liked that it was in the Keys. And it had another appeal to me: Hemingway is one of my favorite authors, and he was all over Key West.
So instead of Jamaica ... Key West.
We don’t regret it. We had a pretty fantastic time. The first night, we wandered up and down Duval St. We did sunset at Mallory Square. It got better from there.
We saw the sights, drank the drinks. We had beers at Sloppy Joes and visited The Hog’s Head. We visited the Hemingway house and the docent, since it was the last tour of the day, let me behind the big metal gate in Papa’s writing loft where I sat in “the chair” and got to touch the typewriter (yes, I’m sure they are not the originals, but the place is the same). I have a pic of it somewhere. We had breakfast at Blue Heaven, and rented bicycles and rode around like crazy kids with no responsibilities.
Our friends showed up for the wedding, and we did it all again.
Then we got married on the beach at sunset, and that, too, was awesome. I can still see it all in my head. I would not change a moment of it. In fact, I’ve been kicking around the idea of seeing if the wife wants to go back sometime soon.
There’s a reason for all this Key West nostalgia.
Tuesday, Brian Slawson drove down from Kansas to deliver new work to us, and three of those paintings are of various spots in Key West (I "drove" around the island with Google Street Maps). There’s one of the Tropic, the island’s historic movie theatre. There’s a vignette from Duval Street. And then there’s an epic early evening scene of Sloppy Joe’s (which I’ve provided for your perusal).
Here’s the thing. I’m not the only one who loves Key West. I know you’re out there. I know, like me, you’d see Duval Street and want to go book hotel reservations and plane tickets. Sigh. In any case, since we’re all here in Tulsa together, if you want to come in and check out the sunny Florida vistas with me, maybe we’ll make a margarita and hang out for a bit.
Also, Brian dropped off six paintings, not just the three from Key West. You can check those out, too.
Since you’re coming by anyway, there’s something else you should know. We are inundated with new art. There’s so much more than just Brian’s.
Last weekend was the annual NatureWorks show, and several of our artists (Paul Rhymer, Matthew Higginbotham and this new guy I’m about to introduce) participated. As a result, we received some new art from the fellows.
Paul dropped off another handful of his Arizona Alphabet bronzes, and Matthew delivered five new paintings. Here’s one of them:
As for the new guy … Lovetts fans, please welcome Scot Storm. He’s a realistic wildlife painter and his attention to detail and ability to capture the … well, spirit of the animals he paints is impressive. Jack asked Scot about one of his paintings in particular, Doe.
“I’ve seen a lot of people paint whitetail deer before, but I don’t think I’ve seen anyone capture one as well as you have. What do you do differently?”
“I spend a lot of time in the field observing them,” Scot said.
Scot spends enough time watching his subjects that he can take the photo reference and imbue it with the living characteristics of the animals. As a result, they appear as though they could jump right out of the painting. It's uncanny ... and spectacular.
The Return of the Tim
When we first introduced Timothy Nimmo to you, there was the promise of larger works. He brought us maquettes of his Ibex Bust and Blackbuck Bust and said that after the first of the year, we’d be receiving their big brothers.
Last weekend, he delivered.
Ibex Bust stands 78 ½” tall and 23” wide.
The stone base is “Giallo Reale” travertine, but can be ordered in different colors if you’re inclined to wait. Tim also has the ability to produce mirrored image sculptures if you’d like a matched set.
I know I sound like a broken record, but you really, really need to come in and see these works of art. A picture may be worth a 1,000 words, but it's no substitute for an experience.
I'll see you soon.
Oh yeah. Showtime! Two weeks!
March 22, 2014.
Erica Norelius, Brian Kock, James W. Johnson and Ed Natiya.
We'll see you there.