John J. is relatively new to the art program at ASI. After giving a variety of art activities a try, John’s art teacher Ani Hoover recalls 2 key projects she presented to her classes, which introduced John to his favorite art-making method: wrapping. The first project involved wrapping cardboard discs with yarn to create geometric, optical patterns. The second project, based on the working method of artist Judith Scott, involved wrapping balls of clay with yarn to make them easier to handle (for those students tactile-sensitive to clay). This sparked a pure connection with John’s natural interests and soon he was creating beautiful and intriguing wrapped pieces made from fabric and rolled paper. One, nearly 6 ft. tall, was included in ASI’s “Synapse” group exhibition at Daemen College Visual and Performing Arts Center in June 2013. John’s work demands energy and physical involvement. “John prefers to stand and evaluate his work from different angles – he looks up, he looks down, actively making aesthetic decisions.” Ani says. The words used by the Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum in Ridgefield, Connecticut, to describe Judith Scott’s work could just as aptly describe the art made by our own John J. “…highly idiosyncratic objects: organic structures assembled from found materials that challenge – and actively resist – our attempts to rationalize them as sculpture. Working intuitively, [his] cocoon-like structures are of startling complexity and provoke an almost endless set of formal and psychological associations.”
Simple lines and bold colors define a majority of Erich’s works; but simple can have tremendous impact when you work at the extremely large size that is typical of his art. Though it’s hard to capture the monumental scale of Erich’s paintings in a website, just picture any of the works below, dominating an entire wall and you’ll get the idea. There is also a graphic nature to his paintings that lends itself well to his affinity for commodity and consumer products, especially in his line art drawings, which almost seem like initial sketches for logo design.
There are few, if any, with more style than John O.B., whose daily trademark suit and tie is borrowed from the fashion aesthetics of game show hosts. Not surprisingly, a number of John’s paintings are re-creations of gameshow graphics, a favorite subject rivaled only by his fascination with restroom appliances.
When Ricky first saw an art room he refused to step foot in it; a few years later he became CEPA’s Best of Show winner for outstanding photography. Ricky’s innovative work begins with a color field laboriously drawn on long, narrow sheets of paper (as long as 200 feet), a small portion of which functions as a landscape for toy animals that are creatively arranged and photographed. The result is a slice of fantasy wildlife that exists nowhere in the real world, but in our world, as seen by Ricky.