S_V_H The Blue Danube Final Image

The Blue Danube (2001 Space Odyssey) 82″ length x 35.5″ in height x 4″ in-depth

I posted a final video on The Blue Danube on July 4th.  The video explains how I connected the Artwork to the music, to the movie.  I have been working on this project since May 23rd.  Following the lead of The Theme from Schneider’s List, the overall color range for The Blue Danube resembles the look of the movie 2001 Space Odyssey. The main colors are neutral,  a mix of black, gray, white.  Beyond the color blue, I added small splashes of brighter accent colors, found in the movie, to add interest and contrast.   My style now is to stay away from the rainbow look of using too much and too many bright colors creating art that is strongly punchy.  When I see a lot of flashy colors in a lot of today’s contemporary art,  I think baby toys.  All that mix of bright colors diminishes the impact and can be a fallback tool to distract from the lack of originality.

For this work, I thought I would experiment with another wood frame.  My thinking was that the white-painted wood frame would match the movie better than a bright metal frame.  I did not see a lot of bright metal in the movie.  Because of the length of eighty inches for the frame pieces, I found cutting the wood a challenge.  They required a lot of sanding.  One advantage of using wood frames is that the music, also made of wood,  adheres strongly to the frame.  This is not the case when I am using metal frames for I am gluing wood to metal.  What I like about metal is its strength, straightness,  and modern look.

I specifically created The Blue Danube project for entry in this year’s Major fall art show at the Eau Claire Confluence center.  Since it is important to always submit the maximum number artworks, I also entered Giant Steps and The Turkish March (rejected for last year’s show).  I received this news on August 7th.

“Dear Scott,

Congratulations!  You have been selected as an exhibiting artist for the Confluence of Art Annual at Pablo Center at the Confluence.

The work selected for this exhibition is:

The Blue Danube

Pablo Center has kept images of all the accepted artwork for use in publicity for the exhibit.
Exhibition Dates:     September 13-November 3
Meet the Artists’ Reception and Awards Ceremony: Friday, October 4, 5-7pm
Rose Dolan-Neill
Visual and Literary Arts Manager PABLO CENTER AT THE CONFLUENCE
128 Graham Avenue
Eau Claire, WI 547011.715.471.6130
Pablo center. org •    

The exposure will be valuable.  The Pablo show is the next addition to this artist’s best showings including Eau Claire’s ArtsWest, The Secura show at the Trout Museum in Appleton, and the current ROOTS exhibition at the Center for the Visual Arts in Wausau.  Being at display at the Pablo may offer a greater benefit of turning this unknown, unknown artist, into the unknown local Artist. Looking forward to the reception.

I am close to finishing my current project, Walking in Memphis, that like The Blue Danube will be my primary entry for another exhibition later this fall at The Museum of Contemporary Art in Wausau.


This is my 600 Blog Entry.  Vincent Van Gogh sent Theo 663 letters.

Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H The Blue Danube image 3

In this third image of Blue Danube, I have both sections connected for a length of eighty-one inches.  In this image, you can see the mix of black and white objects.  If you could see the artwork from the side,  I have place white dots on the black stems to refer to deep space.  The white stems represent all the different spaceships from the movie.  They designed those spaceships with detailed and varying surfaces.  At first, I tried to used stencils to add some markings to the white stems. That did not work.  Instead, I used a mechanical pencil to draw in the shapes from the stencil and then sealed them with a white glaze.  In the lower section, right side, I have designed the highest note to look like the space station from the opening scenes from the Blue Danube video.  All this would look a lot more interesting if the background would be darker.

I have until the eighth of July to entry this artwork.  I still have a lot of decorative and interest items to add.  Those types of things are important to the look, and depth of the artwork.  The last thing then would be to add the stereo music system.


Scott Von Holzen

S_V_H The Blue Danube image 2

First image of the Top Moon section of Artwork

I am fortunate to bring this artwork into existents.  I base it on the music, The Blue Danube by Johann Strauss II, from the movie 2001 Space Odyssey.  Luckily YouTube offers a clip of the music from the movie that still amazes me, and that captivated my imagination then.  As a kid I grew up in the space age knowing the names of the nine planets, Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto (now considered a dwarf planet).  No matter,  from the start Saturn was always my favorite.  Its name started with an S (for Scott) and those rings made the planet even more special.  I remember having a paper cutout mobile of the solar system that hung in my bedroom.

One other recall, from that time, was a Christmas wish for a telescope, that I never got.  My parents said something about the order not being sent.  I never asked either of them if there was more to the telescope story.  Throughout my life, I debated buying a telescope;  I have not.  I now live in the city that has a bright sky,  street lights, and few stars which makes a telescope an impractical idea.  And yet, I found a new connection to my past.  Our latest house is on a hill facing south towards the city.  To my surprise, I can see the moon many nights throughout the year.  An unexpected delight is finding the moon, during the night, as it moves across our bedroom windows.  Didn’t need a telescope then.  Don’t need it now.  Wonderful that on many nights the spirit of that little boy, and the space age he grew up with,  lives on.

Scott Von Holzen