New work at ‘Under the Influence’ show

Alphonse Mucha's 'Bieres de la Meuse' poster

One of my favorites by Alphonse Mucha

Now showing at Artisan Gallery: Under the Influence, a group show by Gallery Artists wherein we each pick an artist that has an impact on our work, and create a piece(s) that is influenced by that artist.

For mine, I picked Alphonse Mucha. Pas de Deux, below is the result. Here is the text that accompanies the print, currently up at the gallery:

‘Pas de Deux’ Influenced by:
Alphonse Mucha + the Posters of Paris

I’ve always been inspired by Mucha’s posters of elaborate, beautifully drawn figures advertising products. His strong design-sense, line quality, gorgeous women, and rich, glowing color represent the ideals of the poster in his time. The fact that his exquisitely rendered scenes were fine art but also used in advertising (for the theatre as well as commercial products) is sort of the gold standard for me: Commercial and Fine Art. Communication crossed with beautifully rendered imagery all in one.

Colorful linocut of 2 chickens in floral scene surrounded by mulberries

‘Pas de Deux’ hand-colored linocut, edition of 10, 8in x 18in (image size). Click on image to enlarge.

I saw his lithographic posters last summer at the “Posters of Paris” show (19th century posters in paris) at Milwaukee Art Museum, and was astounded at the size of the work–most of them over life-size, often 6ft or taller. Along with these, there were huge circus posters (designed by other artists) of the time as well. That marked the beginning of a plan to make Mucha-inspired and circus-inspired reduction woocuts the size of my pressbed (4ft).

This piece, ‘Pas de Deux’ is the 2nd small-size experiment in this style (The Amazing Dancing Dog was the first). Now that I did my first 4ft reduction print earlier this year (a goose), I can start planning the bigger 19th century poster-inspired series as reduction block prints.

The show is up through July 21st and is a wonderful show — the other works in the show are super-inspiring to me.

One thought on “New work at ‘Under the Influence’ show

  1. I saw this piece hanging in the Artisan Gallery in Paoli, and loved the subtle shading on the backs of the chickens as well as the strong colors throughout the piece. A very nice takeoff from Mucha’s style.

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