Featured Artist Gary Bigelow

Artist Gary Bigelow’s paper collages and paintings are derived from his experience with printmaking. Enjoy his surreal and enigmatic portfolio, and visit his website to learn more.

 

“Ciao, Baby! / Sophia” Paper Collage, 12" x 12" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Ciao, Baby! / Sophia” Paper Collage, 12″ x 12″

 

My paintings and mixed media developed naturally from my many years as a printmaker working in woodcuts, linocuts, engraving, serigraphy, and etching. Printmaking definitely influenced my aesthetic with the play of lights and darks, hard and soft edges, and linear elements.

 

“Dali” Paper Collage, 12" x 16" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Dali” Paper Collage, 12″ x 16″

 

Painting and collage have afforded me the opportunity to express myself with color rather than the black and white or limited color palette of traditional printmaking. Being a film “junkie,” many of my collages concern celebrities as well as artists. Collage allows a certain playfulness which I haven’t felt with other mediums.

 

“Frida with Calaveras” Paper Collage, 12" x 12" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Frida with Calaveras” Paper Collage, 12″ x 12″

 

As a young boy, my first sketches were surreal images, most likely influenced by several books my mother acquired for me which included monographs of the works of Dali, Ernst, di Chirico, Picasso, Miro and many others.

 

“Remedios Varo” Paper Collage, 12" x 12" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Remedios Varo” Paper Collage, 12″ x 12″

 

Later, I discovered female Surrealists such as Fini, Varo, Kahlo and Carrington and acquired an instant affinity for their imagery. The juxtaposition of surreal imagery and a hyper-dream state still intrigue me, and while I do not strictly paint surreal or fantasy images, I do revisit the style periodically for my own “fun-sanity.”

 

“All American Girl” Paper Collage, 12" x 12" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“All American Girl” Paper Collage, 12″ x 12″

 

Stylistically speaking, I believe that my art is ubiquitously enigmatic and, in some numinous way, mirrors what was, and what is, my life.

 

“Kissproof” Oil Painting, 12" x 16" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Kissproof” Oil Painting, 12″ x 16″

 

No one artist, regardless of genre, movement, style, medium, or prominence, has influenced me more or less than any other. I have always wanted to try it all regardless of failure or success.

 

“The Alchemist Stripped Bare” Oil Painting, 12" x 16" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“The Alchemist Stripped Bare” Oil Painting, 12″ x 16″

 

The first art books given to me of Picasso, the Surrealists, and Impressionists “opened the door” to my current style. This was an eclectic group of small books and very electrifying for a young boy who could not get enough of looking at art.

 

“Contemplation before the Birth of a Heroic Inheritance” Oil Painting, 12" x 16" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Contemplation before the Birth of a Heroic Inheritance” Oil Painting, 12″ x 16″

 

I was given a drafting set around age twelve and enjoyed designing “little abstractions,” futuristic cars and war machines, as young boys are prone to do. I also tried mastering color and composition at an early age by copying from art books from the Renaissance to Cubism.

 

“Renaissance Madonna” Oil Painting, 8" x 10" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Renaissance Madonna” Oil Painting, 8″ x 10″

 

For many artists after college, “life” gets in the way of making art, and we do not have the luxury of making art full-time. To accommodate this, we artists adopt an attitude of “whatever is within reach, whatever will solve the creative equation or urge” as the physics of a part-time approach to art.

 

“Sea Biscuit; or Friday Nite during Lent; or Still Life with Saltine” Oil Painting, 8" x 8" by artist Gary Bigelow. See his portfolio by visiting www.ArtsyShark.com

“Sea Biscuit; or Friday Nite during Lent; or Still Life with Saltine” Oil Painting, 8″ x 8″

 

Now I am able to continue to explore many genres and make gigantic messes for the sheer joy of finally being able to make art full-time. Art is a blessing and a curse, and artists would not want it any other way.

 

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