Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Krampus for Dark Pop 2, NYC

"A Curious Shelter" by Amy Crehore 2009, 5"x7" (8 1/2" x 10 1/2" framed)
oil on linen
I did this little painting called "A Curious Shelter" for the Dark Pop 2.0 art show to be held in January at Last Rites Gallery, NYC. My monster looks somewhat like a version of Krampus to me. He comes to the girl's rescue, but who knows if he's good or bad. She's a bit vulnerable to say the least. Perhaps, instead of snow, I painted rain because that's what we have here in Oregon. It sort of reminds me of Edward Gorey a little bit. We all had to do a piece of "dark art" for the show and this is mine.
Please contact for purchase.
Participating Artists Include:
AIKO (Aiko Nakagawa), Esao Andrews, John Cebollero, Joshua Clay, Molly Crabapple, Amy Crehore, Yoko d’Holbachie, Leslie Ditto, Mickey Edtinger, Mark Elliott, Eric Fortune, GAIA, Stella Im Hultberg, Sarah Joncas, Aya Kakeda, Ben Kehoe, Dan-ah Kim, Daniel Hyun Lim (Fawn Fruits), Danni Shinya Luo, David MacDowell, Mike Maxwell, Simone Maynard, Dennis McNett, Tara McPherson, Michael Page, Nathan Lee Pickett, Leslie Reppeteaux, Mijn Schatje, Tin, Dan Witz, Jaeran Won and more.
Opening Reception: Saturday, January 9th from 7-11pm
Last Rites Galley – 511 W. 33rd St. – 3rd Fl. – New York, NY – 10001 – 212.529.0666
Arrested Motion has some more images from the upcoming show.
The Art of Amy Crehore

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Photos of the Past

The train set under the tree is a great tradition. How many of you had one? My friend Valerie in Barcelona sent me a terrific link to some old Christmas images -Papa Ted's Place: LINK. That's where I found these photos. The top photo was the Keen family tree in 1920 (image originally from Click on these pictures to see all of the tiny details! The bottom photo is not politically correct, but it's fascinating. I remember going to NYC when I was young to visit my grandmother and seeing all of the fabulous Christmas displays. Of course, these photos are way before my time!
Merry Christmas everyone!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Family Tradition

Family Tradition
Originally uploaded by BigalDavies
Big Al's Christmas nut
on flickr.

Progress in Painting (Amy Crehore)

Detail of larger composition for a new painting by Amy Crehore
Happy Christmas Eve! I'll be spending this day - and the weeks to come - holed up in my studio working on my series of new paintings. I have recently experienced some breakthroughs with my art -more freedom in my application of paint, more texture. If you have been following me on twitter , you'll know that I mentioned that I like to apply oil paint thickly. I am using a combination of brush strokes to get an impression of nature, not unlike the French in the mid to late 1800s. However, mine is an intuitive approach (not plein-air) which draws upon my memories and feelings of hiking around the hills where I live and other experiences.
My new paintings also have figures interacting with each other (and with nature). While I am still making preliminary sketches and composing my imaginary figures first (detail of one shown above), the settings they inhabit are being constructed as I paint them. Sometimes the process feels as though I am writing a novel without words, in my own made-up language. I am having fun inventing new people and taking them in a new narrative direction. More freedom of style, yet it is all basically rooted in what came before (in my art). Colors, music, mood, interaction of figures.
I can't wait to show you, but the only way for me to really be creative and make significant progress is to shut myself off from the world and get lost in the activity. To paint for myself first. Now is the time to do this. I give thanks to all of the wonderful supporters of my art in 2009. May 2010 be filled with new art to share with you. I'll still be blogging everyday about things that I find interesting, and periodically sharing my progress with you.
The Art of Amy Crehore

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

94 Year Old Carmen Herrera's Art World Success

Todd Heisler/The New York Times
After six decades of painting, Ms. Carmen Herrera sold her first artwork five years ago, at age 89. She had exhibited her art over the years, but had never sold any of it. Since that first sale in 2004, collectors have pursued Ms. Herrera. Her paintings have now entered the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Hirshhorn Museum and the Tate Modern. She just accepted a lifetime achievement award from the director of the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Read the rest of the article about this spunky 94 year old painter (written by Deborah Sontag):

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Don't Miss the Waterhouse Exhibit...

The Lady of Shallot, 1888, John William Waterhouse
It's a crime that this exhibit isn't coming to the U.S.A.! I think it was supposed to come here, but got cancelled. Anyhow, if you live near Montreal (or on the east coast), you should try to see this show (which is on view through Feb 7, 2010). It's the largest-ever retrospective of works by the great British artist John William Waterhouse (1849-1917). J. W. Waterhouse: Garden of Enchantment is the first large-scale monographic exhibition on Waterhouse’s work since 1978 and the first to feature his entire artistic career. This retrospective features eighty paintings and many drawings. Several of these works have not been exhibited since Waterhouse’s lifetime.
This guy is one of my all-time favorite artists. I saw his large painting, Ulysses and the Sirens, in a travelling show at the Portland Art Museum some years back and it blew me away. I saw some others at the Tate when I was much younger and living in England for a brief spell. I have a huge book on him published by Phaidon, but there is also a new catalog to accompany this exhibit. His handling of paint (very modern, French and thick), his ability to create naturalistic figures showing emotion and his classical compostions are unmatched. There is so much to be learned from studying his art. Plus, his paintings are gorgeous beyond belief. He could paint nature, landscapes, and figures interacting with each other like no one else. He made the myths both sexy and "real". He was born just as the Pre-raphaelites were first exhibiting their works. Here is a link to some images and a handful of videos with curator Peter Trippi:

Monday, December 21, 2009

Get a Blues CD with Each Calendar

It wouldn't be Christmas if the 2010 calendar from Blues Images wasn't under my tree. You get a free CD of hokum tunes inside each one. This year the CD features an unreleased Blind Blake song, two Henry Townsend numbers, Frank Palmes, Charley Patton, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Ida Cox and more. Plus, lots of interesting blues ad artwork from the 1920's for each month of the year. It's a great deal.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Degas Hated Them, but People Wept Over Them

James Tissot. Quiet. c. 1881.Oil on canvas.
Tissot's illustrated "Life of Christ" (1884-1894)

From Tissot's illustrated "Life of Christ" (1884-1894)
Degas hated them, but R. Crumb might appreciate them. What am I referring to? After spending over a decade as a successful society painter in London, James Tissot returned to Paris in 1882 to paint the fashionable women there, but switched gears and embarked on a 10-year campaign to illustrate ‘The Life of Christ’ instead. These New Testament paintings caused a sensation in the Paris Salon of 1894. The Tissot Bible was published two years later and the paintings went on a trans-Atlantic tour. Seen all together "the paintings are like stills from a Hollywood movie spectacular."writes Ken Johnson of The New York Times. The Brooklyn Museum purchased the 350 gouache paintings in 1900 (at John Singer Sargent's urging). 124 of these paintings are on display until Jan. 17, 2010. One can't deny that James Tissot was an accomplished and amazing painter. Follow link to view his art before the "Christ" series (as shown above in the top image).
of Brooklyn Museum Exhibit

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Mysterious Quays

Stephen and Timothy Quay (born 17 June 1947 in Norristown, Pennsylvania, United States), are identical twins known as the Brothers Quay who make amazing animated films. Here are two shorts from 1991 and 1988 that I found on YouTube.

Freaky Santa

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

We've Only Just Begun

The Carpenters owned two apartment buildings in Downey, CA.
The names of their hit songs are featured on the front of the buildings.

Contemporary Art

Julie Heffernan
Os Gemeos
Nick Cave
If I had gone to Art Basel Miami this year, I would have been interested in seeing these works: Julie Heffernan's paintings, an Os Gemeos' mural and Nick Cave's soundsuits (shown above).
I am also intrigued with Hernan Bas' paintings lately. He will have a show at Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin called "Considering Henry" opening in January 9, 2010 in Paris. Follow this link to view some of his images: LINK
He is actually from Miami and had a couple of shows in New York in 2009 including one at the Brooklyn Museum.
I chose to not participate in the Miami art fairs this year, although I was kindly invited to paint something for the Aqua fair. I flew back east to visit my family instead. Luckily, there are tons of photos of the artworks here: flickr.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Hysteria Exhibition at Freud Museum

If you live in London, you can see a sculpture exhibit called "Hysteria" by artist Mat Collishaw at the Freud Museum (until Jan 3, 2010). I had been watching TateShots, videos of artists on the Tate Channel, and I found this particular artist to be quite intriguing:
The photo above (from timeout) shows one of three tree stump sculptures, with turn tables built-in, playing bird songs. There is also a fascinating kinetic sculpture with many little cupid-like boys hammering large nests of blue eggs. And, a mirror with spooky, animated cigarette smoke. Collishaw's art installation goes perfectly with the whole Freud office/couch setting. It's very Victorian-feeling. Too bad I don't live in London.
More short films with artists can be found here:

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Short Films To Break Up Your Day

Watch award-winning short films like the animated "Madame Tutli-Putli" from Canada (winner of the best short film at Cannes Film Festival) here:
The Screening Room (YouTube Channel)
Inspiring stuff! I was a film/animation student myself...a long time ago.
The Art of Amy Crehore

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Detail of a new painting

Here is a detail of a small, new painting that I did for a group show in NYC opening on Jan 9, 2010. Since it's a month off, I don't want to reveal the whole thing yet. The painting is called, "A Curious Shelter".
The Art of Amy Crehore

Monday, December 07, 2009

My Special Offer Ends at Midnight Tonight (PST)

Reminder: A free, small pencil drawing of a pierrot, a cat or a monkey (your choice)- inscribed with your name and signed by me- to be included with any purchase of prints, t-shirts or Crehore fine art from Nov 25- Dec 7, 2009 (midnight PST) only. (One drawing limit per person.)

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Picasso Aquatints Found in a Book

Thirteen Picasso aquatints were found in a book of poetry that was once owned by his lover Dora Maar. "The aquatints were found by chance earlier this year when Professor Andrés Soria began leafing through the pages of an illustrated edition of a book of poems by the Spanish poet Luis de Góngora, which was bought by Spain's National Library a decade ago." It looks like Picasso had torn the original illustrations out of the book and replaced them with his own.
The 13 etchings are now on display in Madrid, at an exhibition dedicated to the influence of "The Generation of 1927", which includes the painter Salvador Dalí, the poet Federico García Lorca and the film-maker Luis Buñuel. Read article: by Giles Tremlett, the Guardian

Friday, December 04, 2009

Free Crehore Sketch With Purchase Until 12/7/09 Only

I am giving away small, original, signed pencil drawings with any purchase through December 7, 2009. Details are on my homepage:
Only a few days left for this offer!

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Glimpse of New Mark Ryden Painting

Paul Kasmin Gallery is showing a Mark Ryden painting at Art Basel Miami Beach . His big-eyed girl with snow-white hair is wearing a party frock made of meat this year. She looks to be dressed for a debutante ball in the old south. He is using a subdued color palette which brings to mind old faded prints found in an antique shop.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Surreal Saints of Breasts and Eyes

Agatha of Sicily
Giovanni Cariani (circa 1485 - 1547)
National Gallery of Scotland
Breasts on a plate
Saint Lucy
Francisco de Zurbarán Spanish, 1598 - 1664,
Eyes on a plate
detail from 'Saint Lucy', Francesco del Cossa, 1473,
oil on panel, National Gallery of Art
Eyes depicted as flowers.
Photo by Manuel Álvarez Bravo
Nude woman holding a plate of eyes.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Pink Lady of the Canyon

How the heck did that get there? The story goes: "One Saturday morning, on October 29, 1966, a massive 60-foot-tall painting of a nude pink lady holding flowers suddenly appeared as you headed into the tunnel on Malibu Canyon Road. " Read full story by marc at:

Monday, November 30, 2009

Fake Snow Portraits from the Past

My flickr friend, Steve Chasmar, posted these photos in his
and it got me thinking- could I find anymore cabinet cards portraits from the late 1800's of winter tableaux with fake snow? Sure enough
The American Photography Museum
has a page of them. I think these are quite dreamlike and fascinating! A lot of them were staged and shot in the summer months. Steve's photo shown here (bottom) looks to be touched up with white paint to get a snowy effect.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Surreal Bubble Woman #2

Sally Rand 1934
Alice Daquet (KAZUHIRO NOGI/AFP/Getty Images)
A couple years ago, I blogged about an American surreal bubble woman, Sally Rand. Here we have a modern French version, Alice Daquet (a.k.a. Sir Alice) who performed on November 25, 2009 at the opening ceremony of 'No Man's Land'- an art's festival located at the former office building of the French embassy in Tokyo. Hey, it looks like Sir Alice gets around. Here's a youTube of her that was made in Taiwan.
Photo/story via

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Kay Nielsen, Beautiful and Sad

Little Mermaid Sketch
Little Mermaid Sketch
Rapunzel illustration
In Powder and Crinolin illustration
Kay Nielsen (1886-1957) was an amazingly talented Danish illustrator in the first part of the 20th century. The book shown above was his first commission -completed in 1913. The next year, he did artwork for East of The Sun West of The Moon, old tales from the North. In 1924-25 he illustrated Hans Andersen's fairy tales and stories by the Brothers Grimm. In the years between these books, he designed stage scenery for Copenhagen theater. In 1930, another illustrated book called Red Magic was published.
Kay Nielsen travelled to California to work on a stage production of Everyman at the Hollywood Bowl in 1936. He decided to stay in California and he applied for a job in the Walt Disney animation department. He worked on designs for Fantasia and they were lucky to have him. He also did designs for future projects, The Little Mermaid (above) and a sequel to Fantasia, but, unfortunately, he was laid off in 1940. He was 54.
Kay Nielsen died in poverty in 1957, at age 71, in a house donated to him by friends. He executed four murals in Los Angeles schools and churches during the last couple of decades of his life. This is kind of a sad ending for someone who was truly one of the great, important artists of fairy tale picture books and who's designs for animations were equally remarkable and innovative. In 1975, a book was published that included his work and people began to appreciate him again. In 1977, some of his friends came forward with 42 paintings- never before seen- held in trust, for a book called, A Thousand and One Nights.
The Scepter : see more of Kay Nielsen's beautiful pastel/watercolor sketches for The Little Mermaid 1941
Golden Age Comic Book Stories Blog : lots of illustrations in color and B&W from Kay Nielsen's picture books.
Thanks, finsbry at flickr (set of KN images)

Friday, November 27, 2009

"The Believer" Art Issue 2009

I bought a copy of "The Believer" magazine's 2009 art issue the other day. First of all, the cover has very funny Charles Burns version of an Edward Hopper painting. Inside, there is a huge Jerry Moriarty poster and an interview (by Chris Ware) of the eccentric artist, illustrated by examples of his paintings. I always liked Moriarty's work, "Jack Survives", back in the days of RAW Magazine. (RAW was a large-format comics anthology edited by Art Spiegelman and Françoise Mouly from 1980 to 1991.) Buenaventura Press recently published The Complete Jack Survives as a hardcover book.
In this same issue of "The Believer", there is another cool interview with one of my favorite comic artists, Aline Kominsky-Crumb (creator of Love That Bunch, The Complete Dirty Laundry Comics and editor of Weirdo). This is a great ART issue with much, much more, but
if I told you everything my blog post would be way too long and gushing, so here's a link to see for yourself:

Thursday, November 26, 2009

1920's Board Game Art

My friend Janet alerted me to this vintage shop on Etsy called
Above are two games from the 1920s available in their shop (follow link). The cover graphics on old games are really interesting...especially this one called "Hokum" which I had never seen before!
Hokum is "The Game for a Roomful", not just a style of blues music.
(Thanks, Janet.)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Free, Signed Pencil Drawing with Purchase 11/25-12/7/09

Glimpse of Amy Crehore's Studio
Happy Thanksgiving! I did this special offer last year and I'm doing it again: I will include a small pencil drawing of a little pierrot, a cat or a monkey (your choice)- inscribed with your name and signed by me (Amy Crehore)- with any purchase of limited edition print(s), t-shirt or fine art (includes fine art ukes) from Nov 25- Dec 7, 2009 (limited to one drawing per person). Some of my signed, limited edition prints have special sale prices, although some do not (due to limited quantities). All items have free shipping in the USA! All items have been printed and produced by skilled professionals. Postcards are usually included, too, as well as certificates of authenticity.
Here is the link to my website
(click on the bar at the top of the home page to view different items):

Email to inquire about pricing on my original fine art pieces.
When ordering a print or t-shirt using paypal, please include a note to me with a name (for the inscription) and your image preference for the free pencil drawing.

Pigs and a Clown- Map of the States 1884

Click image to enlarge
"Puke, Sucker, Bug Eater or Fly Up the Creek" are all nicknames of the states on this fancy, illustrated map. It's brought to you by H.W. Hill & Co. Decatur Illinois, sole manufacturer of Hill's hog ringers, Hill's triangular rings, calf & cow weaners, stock rings, &c. Copy of this map mailed for 5 one cent stamps. Map of the United States showing the state nicknames as hogs. Lithograph by Mackwitz, St. Louis, 1884.
Thanks, trialsanderrors at flickr

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Andrew Warhola said....

Andy Warhol, famous artist, said some really choice things. He was such a comedian. I never tire of reading Warhola quotes (even if I do get tired of looking at his art):
"I've decided something: Commercial things really do stink. As soon as it becomes commercial for a mass market it really stinks."
"If you want to know all about Andy Warhol, just look at the surface of my paintings and films and me, and there I am. There's nothing behind it.
"Since people are going to be living longer and getting older, they'll just have to learn how to be babies longer."
"Fantasy love is much better than reality love. Never doing it is very exciting. The most exciting attractions are between two opposites that never meet."
Maybe this is why Andy is so lovable. It's his personality.

Monday, November 23, 2009

I'm a New Gigi Fan

(All images above by Josh Gosfield)
Who is Gigi Gaston? A mysterious French pop star from the 60's who disappeared without a trace. She is also the subject of a gallery show in NYC which closes in a couple of days. I just got wind of Gigi yesterday. Her creator is none other than the wonderful artist Josh Gosfield who somehow managed to invent and "nail" this female character from the 60's by producing a collection of bogus, yet authentically-vintage-looking, tabloid newspaper clippings, magazine covers, paper dolls, rock posters, album covers, music video and even a film trailer. There is a review of the show by Ben Davis ("Lost in Time") on ArtNet .
GIGI, THE BLACK FLOWER, an exhibit by Josh Gosfield at Steven Kasher Gallery, October 22 to November 25, 2009. 521 W. 23rd St., New York, NY 10011.
Je Suis Perdue :watch the music video with Gigi's hit song ("I Am Lost")
Gigi Trailer is the key to understanding the life of Gigi Gaston (it brings to mind that clever and crafty Woody Allen film, "Zelig")
Gigi Exhibit images at Steven Kasher Gallery, NYC
I may be a new Gigi fan, but I have been a long-time fan of Josh Gosfield's art. What could be more fun or more hokum than this gallery show? I'm just sorry that I can't see it in person. But, at least we have the internet.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

The Dark Side

I am currently painting a dark painting for a show, so I thought I would return to my blog archives and re-blog one of my most popular posts (June 2007): Demons Like You Have Never Seen Before. Above, are a couple of images of monsters from Cornell University Library 's collection of fantastic images.
The Art of Amy Crehore