The Tango – Por Una Cabeza image1

•10/14/2018 • Leave a Comment

Por Una Cabeza is an Italian Tango whose lyrics certainly do not translate well, and would not have been a first pick for the tango if it was not for the 1992 movie Sent of the Woman.  That dance scene made a lasting impression on me, that I had forgotten until I added this music to my potential artwork list.  Even though I have seen much better dancing on Dancing with the Stars, I am still touched today by this performance.

This Tango is my last major large artwork for this year.  It also uses the smallest canvases, five by seven-inch, and of immense importance this artwork, for the first time,  breaks a foundation rule that I shared with sheet music the entire twelve years of painting music.  What I have changed is that parts of the flow of the music are now offset. That means this art no longer matches the up and downs of sheet music.

I can blame that hesitation for this change on the musician in me that finds it extremely uncomfortable to break this greatest fundamental rule of sheet music.  The results of that decision is that I now can move this art style in different directions.   A bad effect will be that the casual viewer, along with musicians (my core support group), will find it difficult to follow the flow of the music.  This is a troublesome move that speaks to the art and not the reputation, to seeing where I can take music painting, and a rebuke to the need of conformation that all these ten-of-thousands of hours where worth all the effort.  So goes my choice, so goes I.

Scott Von Holzen

 

Scott

S_V_H Beethoven’s 5th Final

•09/18/2018 • Comments Off on S_V_H Beethoven’s 5th Final

Beethoven’s 5th first nine notes. 21 3/4 inches high by about 25 inches in length.

Beethoven’s 5th Symphony first nine notes is finished.  I created two versions of this artwork that I showed at the Lakeville Art show this last weekend.  Everyone enjoyed playing the music, with reactions of surprise and smiles all around.  In this image you can see them both on opposite sides of the entrance.

Here is a short video with the music:

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H The Full Beethoven image 1

•09/07/2018 • 2 Comments

This first image shows the two similar artworks I am creating for the tent Art Show in Lakeville Minnesota. My theme for each of these paintings is The Full Beethoven.  What that means is that I am portraying the first 8 notes of his 5th Symphony.

Music courtesy of Wikipedia. Wow, that sounded good.  So good that I will be adding the music to each of these artworks.

It is unusual for me to make all the pieces ahead of time and then build the artwork.  Generally, I build complete sections of a project and then attach them on the artwork.  The plan to create these two same artworks together, was that I thought creating two of everything would save time. What actually occurred is that I lost efficiency by doubling everything, while at the same time trying to fix errors and solve multiple build issues. I have loss a lot of time and materials creating two of every mistake along the way. All the delays have resulted in me doing the three-step Tango throughout this project.

To paraphrase a favorite poet,  Robert Frost, “Moving right along, for I have no where else to be, and miles to go before I am finished.”

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Rhapsody in Blue final image

•08/27/2018 • Comments Off on S_V_H Rhapsody in Blue final image

Rhapsody in Blue 87 3/4″ in length by 21 1/2″ maximum height.

I built Rhapsody in Blue from the previous artworks, Vogue, and Ronda All Turk.  These three works are the major artworks for 2018, not only because of their size, but because they may have given me the opportunity to shake the artistic tree.  This final image of Rhapsody’s contributes to that shake up.

Rhapsody in Blues obviously quivers the tree visually, because of its unusual handling of the subject matter.  Portraits, and landscapes, and abstract paintings are all positioned  on their backgrounds. This is not true with Rhapsody where the subject matter is physically independent from the background.

What is that rustling of the leaves I am hearing?   Well that is Rhapsody presenting a  look that drops the stylistic use of the splish-splash use of color seen in much of today’s art.  Rhapsody also combines two different forms of abstraction seen in the expressionist coloring of the music  while the rest of the painting uses the solid colors of colored color field painting. The limbs and leaves of the artistic tree are now swaying about.

And finally, to shake the fruit from the tree,  I replaced much of the background with space and air leaving the stretched canvas, decorated in Art Deco, to symbolize a background that serves little purpose.

Each of these paintings could help to define music to the viewer as something that is not to be heard but felt.  If that is so than I am heading in the right direction. If the viewer see these three paintings as original fine art pieces than I am certainly staying this course.  And yet I am far from seeing any of that happening.  None of these artworks have sold,  or received any attention including appearing in public.  Until that day arrives I will keep doing what I have always done: move on to the next project, while keeping my focus on shaking that damn tree.  To step up the pace I might have to bring out the saw.

The Giving Tree, a favorite book of mine by Shel Silverstein

 

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H Rhapsody in Blue Image 2

•08/16/2018 • Comments Off on S_V_H Rhapsody in Blue Image 2


For Rhapsody in Blue, I am following my current practice of building the artwork in sections off of the canvas frame.  In image two you can see the seven sections that compose this work.  Each part is carefully constructed so that when added to the artwork everything aligns.

What makes it practical to create these artworks this way is that I have all the beams parallel the frame of the artwork. This removes a common style of sheet music, where the beam changes it angle based on the up or down positioning of the flow.

I have always depicted accurately the up and down flow of the artwork. Breaking these artworks in sections has me thinking of  Cubism.   I would like to find a way to allow the artwork to still flow from left to right but in a lot loser, and disconnected format that still represents the music I am portraying.

Scott Von Holzen

 

S_V_H Rhapsody in Blue image 1

•08/11/2018 • Comments Off on S_V_H Rhapsody in Blue image 1

Rhapsody in Blue first image may be a little strange-looking considering it is long and narrow with the main subject matter above the framework of the canvases.  Right now this artwork is 85 inches long by 16 inches high.  I am seeing a lot of challenge ahead because of this unusual configuration. Luckily, I have a copyright free version of the music so that will be attached to this artwork.  Although most of the music runs together and includes a lot of orchestration I did find a small clarinet solo for this artwork that begins and ends nicely.

Here is Rhapsody in Blue from the Disney movie Fantasia 2000. The music this artwork is portraying is from 4:14 to 4:18:

Thinking I have gone to far,  I am backing off of the fairly wide and random use of color seen in my two previous Mozart works, Rondo Alla Turca, and Serenade No. 13.   I went in that direction after seeing this trend in commercial and local artists that got me thinking about the Color Field painters. The problem I am now realizing is that there are a lot of loud looking and disjointed use of solid colors in today’s art.  I see this as not advancing the early great colorist like  Mark Rothko, Frank Stella, Morris Louis, and Piet Mondrian, What I am feeling is that this type of art is generally boring and uninspired,  and often visually devaluing color.  Generally, I do not like mural painting, but for all its prettiness, I eventual went from very colorful to being dismissive of this 2018 mural image located downtown:

Those feelings led me to the realization that the current crop of in the style of color-field artists are not getting their inspiration from Art history,  but instead from baby toys:

That leads me to this totally over the top mural by this seeming respected street artist Hense:

Still, the kid lives on: the bigger the Crayola box the more crayons and colors to surprise. But I am moving on with the help gained from my experience at the Minnesota Marine Art museum in Winona.  That trip has given me the incentive to revisit the fundamental reasons for color in art.  By taking a closer look at how the past masters in art handled color, maybe I can find a new direction.  Even a hint of an idea could offer an interesting twist on the color blue,  that is Rhapsody in Blue.

Scott Von Holzen

 

S_V_H Mozart Serenade No. 13 Final Image

•08/06/2018 • Comments Off on S_V_H Mozart Serenade No. 13 Final Image

Summer can be busy and that may be the reason I forgot to post this final image of Mozart’s Serenade.  Besides not posting this image earlier I also forgot to create a video demonstrating the music that is part of this artwork.  That happened because I wanted to add this artwork to a show of my recent works at our local gallery, Artisan Forge.

This is the second of my works, Rondo Alla Turca was the first, to have the music built into the artwork. If you look at the lower left of the above final image there is a red button to play the music that represents this artwork. Top to bottom on this forward panel on display through this month of August, are the artworks, Runnin’ Down a Dream, The Mozart Serenade, In The Mood and my favorite polka, Polka, POLKA! artwork. In the back display, the long green and tan artwork on display for the first time, Mr Brightside, I painted in 2016.

I have mentioned that the use of a lot of solid bright colors on this work and the earlier Rondo Alla Turca are very similar.  I hope to change that trend starting with my current project Rhapsody in Blue.  I plan on pulling back on the miscellaneous, splish, splash, use of solid colors.  One  reason for making this change, is that too many solid colors placed randomly on an artwork, lessens the value, and impact, of the adjacent colors. I will explain my decision to change direction, and why so quickly,  in my next blog entry. For now,  if you wish to buy this amazing bright-colored Mozart artwork the price is a reasonable $800.00 at the local Artisan Forge gallery.

Scott Von Holzen