Good morning. It's Wednesday, April 29, and the world continues to be disturbing and strange, but there are signs of hope here or there.
Two worth mentioning: The worldwide reading party is tonight (and you're invited!) and the painter Anthony White continues to make brilliant, eye-popping paintings out of non-traditional subjects and materials.
In his message today, he has a few book recommendations for all of us, and then he takes us inside his studio for a glimpse of him working on a detail in a new work of art.
"I just wanted to check in today and let everyone know I'm thinking about you and that we are facing this difficult and challenging time together," he says at the start of his message.*
In a profile published in 2018, art critic Jasmyne Keimig wrote:
White is 24 years old and his work is maximalist to the highest degree. It has been causing waves in the Seattle art scene, and for good reason—it's really fucking cool, and it seemingly came out of nowhere.
Anthony graduated from Cornish College of the Arts, and almost immediately got scooped up by Greg Kucera Gallery, the most blue-chip art dealer in Seattle. He paints with plastic using a glue-gun-type tool. The results look like this:
As Jasmyne explained in her profile:
He makes his giant, vibrant paintings on handmade wooden panels, although calling them paintings is almost a disservice to them. They occupy a unique middle ground between painting and sculpture.
For the past year, White has primarily been working with a type of plastic used in 3-D printing called polylactic acid (PLA). Coming in a variety of different colors, the plastic is formed into one long, thick rod and unceremoniously shoved into a hot-glue-gun-like machine. The gun warms up the plastic, making it malleable enough to manipulate and fill in the penciled-in sketches on the panels while still maintaining a puffy shape.
Asked what the painting he's working on in his video message today will look like, Anthony told us that it's a 6.5-foot tondo (circle painting), and that the depiction on it is figurative, and that it was originally scheduled to be completed for an art fair in Dallas earlier this month. He put it to the side when the stay-at-home order was announced, and now he thinks it'll be shown at Seattle Art Fair (if we have one of those this summer). If not then, it'll have to wait for his solo show at Greg Kucera Gallery this fall.
Asked what it depicts, he said, "A lot of my figurative work has money, souvenirs, and luxury and banal objects scattered throughout them, like this one, but I don't want to go into too much detail about what you'll eventually be able to see."
Fair enough! And his book recommendations?
Any one of these would be fantastic to bring to the reading party.
Especially that art book. Flipping through it, looking at great paintings while listening to Paul Matthew Moore's piano playing sounds like a fabulous way to unwind later. (Join us, won't you?)
Thank you for this glimpse inside your art studio, Anthony. And also the glimpse at what's on your nightstand!
It helps knowing you're hiding out making beautiful works of art for us all to enjoy when this is over.
Have a good Wednesday, everyone.
Previously in this series: