Featured Artist Mark Levin

The sensuous organic forms of artist Mark Levin’s wood furniture and sculpture are inspired by nature’s curves and flowing movements. View more by visiting his website.

 

"Apple Side Table" Lacewood and Cherry, 21" x 33" x 28" by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Apple Side Table” Lacewood and Cherry, 21″ x 33″ x 28″

 

There was never the drive to be an artist.

I simply like making beautiful objects, and those objects painted me into the art world. Four decades later, I’m still attempting to come to terms with that world but have never found the right solvent.

 

"Betty Boop Bench" Cherry, 22" x 33" x 11-3/4" by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Betty Boop Bench” Cherry, 22″ x 33″ x 11-3/4″

 

The origin of my work takes place on the raggedy edges of my imagination, but the heavy lifting takes place during my daily walks along the New Mexico trails. Walking is an integral part of both my design process and my daily life, for it keeps that ball of string taut.

 

“Hair Pin Coffee Table” Walnut, 16” x 22” x 54” by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Hair Pin Coffee Table” Walnut, 16” x 22” x 54”

 

As I walk I let the design brew, slice and dice it with more miles, take it to the studio and choreograph with pencil and paper.

 

“Lacewood Pear Coffee Table” Lacewood, 16” x 36” x 30” by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Lacewood Pear Coffee Table” Lacewood, 16” x 36” x 30”

 

The technique I use for building my work is various stack lamination techniques where one layer of wood is glued on top of another creating a large “blank” from which the work is sculpted. The work is roughed out with chainsaws and automobile disc grinders, and then refined with sanders, rasps, files and hand scrapers.

 

“Marilyn Monroe Leaf Shelf” Walnut, 33” x 52” x 25” by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Marilyn Monroe Leaf Shelf” Walnut, 33” x 52” x 25”

 

The grain and beauty of the wood have little influence in the design of my work. I create with wood because of its intrinsic value, virility and quickness of execution. I visualize new work in matte black, for if it has presence adorned only in black, then the beauty of the wood becomes the dark chocolate frosting on the velvet cake.

 

“Nouveau Display/Book Stand: Homage to Wendell Caste” Walnut, 44” x 30” x 30” by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Nouveau Display/Book Stand: Homage to Wendell Caste” Walnut, 44” x 30” x 30”

 

I start a new work with the intention that the piece will be unique. But often after completing a piece, the work develops an aesthetic volition and extrapolates into other variations centered around the same theme. This expansion of how the Leaf Series, Fruit Series and others evolved.

 

“Pagannini Leaf Shelf” Alder, 39” x 46” x 21” by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Pagannini Leaf Shelf” Alder, 39” x 46” x 21”

 

Some series have a lifespan of a few years, while others continue to grow over the decades. Most all series share the commonality of the righteous curve intersection with perfect fluid movement, and that foreplay creates the various sensual personalities. The curves of the Fruit and Ripple Series are the lust of a one-night stand; the Leaf series are the curves of the soft caress, the Profile Series are the curves and movement of a flawless pirouette and the Flower Series are the curves of love and death.

 

“Santa Fe Wall Flower” Bleached Poplar, 36” x 54” x 26” by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Santa Fe Wall Flower” Bleached Poplar, 36” x 54” x 26”

 

Nature is the obvious inspiration for my work, but again it’s about curves and movement; the work of Richard Serra, Constantin Brâncuși, stiletto heels, a woman’s body, Le Corbusier’s Ronchamp chapel, the bridges by Santiago Calatrava, the rustling of leaves, and the arc between the first and last kiss.

 

“Sun Valley Leaf Hall Table” Cherry, 30” x 50” x 27” by artist Mark Levin. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Sun Valley Leaf Hall Table” Cherry, 30” x 50” x 27”

 

The future will bring a movement away from functional work and a larger investment of time creating sculpture based on the themes of fruit, flowers, leaves, body parts and a series of geometric work. It was almost a flip of a coin that I went with organic forms over geometric shapes. I have a large reserve of non-organic shaped designs in my sketchbook, for I worship the beauty of math and the Mondrian elegance of Microsoft® Excel.

 

Artist Mark Levin at Work on "Nymph Bench v4.0." See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

Artist Mark Levin at Work on “Nymph Bench v4.0”

 

I look at my sketchbook and models and recognize it’s not all going to come to fruition as I enter the fall of my life. My goals are now to keep that ball of string from unraveling, build some damn fine work and enjoy the denouement.

 

Artist Mark Levin invites you to follow him on Facebook and Instagram.

 

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