I have been getting quite a few questions about the prints that go on sale today, specifically the Johnny Cash print. I hesitate to try to explain the meaning or thought behind my artwork since the reality is not everyone that views them will get to read my explanation. At some point you just have to let the viewer connect their own dots. However, since I have this platform and these are my first prints I will attempt to give some insight into my thought process.
So what’s up with the “Hi Mom” in the Johnny Cash print? I had recently read Cash’s autobiography and was struck by how conflicted he was as a human being. He remained a devout Christian throughout his life but had penned himself “the biggest sinner of all” and viewed himself as a complicated and contradictory man. As I sat and looked at the image I began to ponder whether the gesture he’s making and the emotion attached to it was directed at someone else or if it was really meant to be directed inward. I pictured him at the height of his drug abuse having a moment of clarity thinking about how far he had steered away from the values he was taught by his family and the guilt that would bring. He fully intends on writing or calling home but the continued abuse of drugs disrupts his sense of self and he never reconnects with his family. So stated simply, the “Hi Mom” is meant to represent the contradiction that exists in all of us and how we deal with the inner conflict that manifests when we betray ourselves and others.
The “4 Andies and 2 Edies” print was created around the concept that the Muse is really responsible for all creative activity that exists. Every artist will admit that often times we don’t know where the ideas or inspiration comes from, so there must be some divine source that assists us in some way. Edie Sedgewick was widely known to be Warhol’s muse, so I began to work with her image as almost a ghost in the background that was overseeing his work. I decided to add 4 Warhol images in the front of Edie to represent the idea that the inspiration from the muse multiplies when applied by the artist. Once I had laid out the images it struck me that the Warhol images almost looked like a Rorschrach ink blot painting which was never my concious intention but added another element to the design that I was attracted to. I liked the idea that the Rorschach tests were meant to get the viewer to think about what they saw in the ink blot and that people often see very different things when looking at the same object. This translates well to the art world for me as two people looking at the same piece of art often see very different things as they bring their individual bias to the picture.
Remember that the prints go on sale today at 6:00 p.m. Pacific Time here http://blakeart.bigcartel.com/ More prints to be released next week, so stay tuned!!!!!