The show, which featured two painters and a sculptor, is entitled “A Painterly Solid Paradox” featuring Dennis King, Mark Stinson, and Leonard Brown.
The grand finale event of October’s Dunsmuir Second Saturday over the weekend was the opening of the new gallery show at the Siskiyou Arts Museum. The show, which features two painters and a sculptor, is entitled “A Painterly Solid Paradox” featuring Dennis King, Mark Stinson, and Leonard Brown.
King described the process of how he created his newest piece, an oil on linen, entitled “Fisherman.” King, who makes both his own canvases and frames, said he painted the “Fisherman” piece from photos he had taken of a friend of his who was fishing on the upper Sacramento River. From the photos, King painted three separate pieces of varying sizes on the large canvas. From there, King said he painted the surrounding background in stages, until he finally achieved the effect he wanted. One would never know, when looking at the finished work, that the painting had originally had a grassy, golden background. King changed the background color, then painted in fish, then finally painted images of rocks, to achieve the full watery effect of fish and moving water, with the three initial paintings appearing to be superimposed over the fluid background. While the final piece is remarkably original in its composition, unlike anything he’s ever done, King commented that it is “completely local” in subject matter.
Sculptor Stinson is currently showing a sophisticated collection of high contrast black-and-white ceramic pottery sculptural pieces at SAM, in combination with several starkly dramatic metal sculptures. Stinson said he loves working with metal, and described his unique signature approach to how he works with the medium. Rather than the traditional method of first sculpting a form out of wax, clay, or wood, and then making a mold of that into which molten bronze can be cast, Stinson does something completely different. Similar to how a clay sculptor would reinforce clay appendages with an internal wire armature, Stinson first painstakingly builds an armature by creating his entire sculpture as a solid mass of copper wire. He then goes through the expensive and painstaking process of laying down a bronze “skin” over the copper wire armature by using bronze welding lead. Stinson calls this process “braising.” During this part of the process, Stinson said that when he was working on his braised bronze “Why” sculpture, he would go through $40 of bronze welding lead in a day. When the entire piece was finished, Stinson gave it a patina by immersing it in a hot spring, then brought it back to the studio to buff by hand to bring out the desired colorations brought about by the bronze braising process. In creating his braised bronze statue called “Why,” the entire project, from start to finish, took Stinson 13 months to complete.
Brown said when he began painting as a little boy, his parents enrolled him in a watercolor painting class. Brown said his favorite painting of his, at the moment, is an oil on canvas entitled ALAXSXAQ (pronounced “a-LA-shuck”) which is Aleut Eskimo Indian for “Alaska.” Brown said that in his travels, he found the Aleut Eskimo Indian people to be a very warm and kind people, and wanted to create a painting that was expressive of the vivid Eskimo Indian folk art images he had seen while in Alaska. His ALAXSXAQ was the result of that desire, and is a dramatic departure from any of his other paintings, which are more realism in style, some of which have been featured in the “Forgery Shows” in Mt. Shasta. Some of Brown’s oil paintings, (including ALAXSXAQ,) and one of his watercolor paintings, are available in giclée prints on canvas, ready for framing.
King’s “Fisherman” and his other compelling paintings, Stinson’s braised bronze “Why” sculpture and his other works, and Brown’s collection of original paintings – including his ALAXSXAQ, and a moody clown painting which he created as a young boy – will all be on exhibit at SAM through Saturday Dec. 7.