Tyler

Technically accomplished, narrative painting with

They Call It, "Bella Notte."

I think this painting is all about sex without being graphic. The evening is not yet over.

Oil on canvas, 48' x 43"

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Isaac. Falling Series #2.

This painting was inspired by a black cat I know named Isaac who in this painting is fleeing down the stairs. The apple print on the skirt honors Sir Isaac Newton. The woman is having serious trouble with gravity. I love the motion of breaking beads and used a lot of expressive "painted space" as opposed to detail in this work.

Oil on canvas, 40" x 30"

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Rain

 

A woman carries a letter and umbrella through the pouring rain. The viewer feels a part of the scene due to the huge raindrops in the foreground. I made the raindrops closest to the viewer huge, up to seven inches long. By creating such large foreground elements, I placed the viewer right in the picture, in the rain, not merely looking at it from afar or thru a window. You would have to be very close to a falling raindrop for it to take up so much visual space.

 

42” x 48”

Giclee available too.

RainStiched

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Picnic with St. Sebastian.

 

For centuries St. Sebastian has been a homoerotic icon in the church. Somehow, Sebastian ended up looking a lot like me. I painted this as a parody of the outdated symbology of the senusal martyr yet turned out to be a revealing self portrait in ways I could not have even imagined at time.

 

Oil on Canvas 48" x 44"

The Grown-ups is one of my favorites. It recalls my childhood fascination of listening to and watching the adults at my parents’ parties. Thus, the girl is the only one you make eye contact with. The irregular perspective places you at the table, and a little drunk. No one liked the carrots, but the meat was a big hit judging from the bones. The hostess goes on and on as she pleases so I gave her a crown. The gentleman has heard her stories a few too many times.
 
Oil on Canvas 48" x 56"

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Peggy’s Fury is based on a quote from the outrageous art patron Peggy Guggenheim's autobiography. Notoriously promiscuous, she wrote, "I am so furious at all the men who, while they were sleeping with me, were only thinking of sleeping with the other men I had been with." I thought of all the injustices in this world, what a silly thing to waste one's fury on!

Peggy is on her back, a position she well knows. It is the same pose found in a Barbasol ad opposite Life Magazine's famous article about Jackson Pollock that she is conpiculously absent from even though her sponsorship freed him to paint. By duplicating the pose, I put her on the page in Life she should have been on.

The prone Peggy caresses the face of her gondolier while he is thinking of another guy. Even her bird is thinking of another bird (her husband Max Ernst always painted himself as a bird and yes, left Peggy for another woman.) One of her many lap dogs (that she is buried along side) is dreaming of a bone as food is more important to a dog than sex. Peggy is holding the odd shaped pipe like removable erection from Marino Marini’s Sculpture Angel of the City that graces her Grand Canal terrace. The nuns used to float by her house every Wednesday and Peggy would unscrew the erect phallus so as not to offend them. However, I wonder if nuns would be more offended by a man with a vagina than a man with an erection?

Anyway, as much as it is a painting about Peggy, I really think of it as a painting about me and my summer working in Venice at her museum and the adventures I had there.

60" x 50"

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Flight2501

Last Light on Lake Michigan.

This could be many differen places, depending on the viewer's own interpretation and experience. To me, it also evokes Cape Cod Bay. But in my mind it is a very special and specific location known only to those who have imagined what became of a loved one lost in a mysterious tragedy.

In 1950, Northwest Orient Flight 2501 disappeared from radar over Lake Michigan and plunged into the lake killing all on board including Leo Wohler, my daughter's great grandfather. At that time, it was the deadliest commerical American airline crash. Wreckage has never been found, and each year to this date a crew still looks for it. This is how I imagine the secret resting spot. The light reflected creates a guiding tunnel, a portal into the unknown.. The lone boat represents the continuing search and hopes. I feel like the image was there in the pattern of the wood grain all the time just waiting to be brought out

The moon or sun is setting on the horzion and sparkling across the water, I leave it to the viewer to decide which and in fact what this place means to them.

18"x 21"

Bruz and Casey Entertain

A portrait of Bruz Fletcher. I wrote a book based on my research into this fascinating character. Also depicted is his partner the multi-talented artist Casey Roberts. It is circa 1929 and the brillant pair are beginning their intense and wild but tragically short life together.

Theirs is dramatic and complicated story of lost but fabulous riches, 3 suicides, fantastic success, devistating fires, sensational trials, madcap partites, movie stars, car crashes, fascinating friends, pet monkeys , secret lives, double entendres, compelling art, silly novels and wonderful witty songs.

Bruz is holding the sheet music of his first song that took me years to find.

Oil on Canvas 30" x 40"

The Two Louisa Fletchers in the Land of Beginning Again

Oil on Canvas 43" x 48".

Both women in the portrait above share the same name: Louisa Fletcher. Toward the end of the dock the elder Louisa is dropping her "shabby old coat" - a metaphor of her past grief expressed in her most famous poem written during her divorce from Booth Tarkington:

"I wish that there were some wonderful place
Called the Land of Beginning Again,
Where all our mistakes, and all our heartaches,
And all of our poor selfish griefs
Could be dropped like a shabby old coat at the door,
And never be put on again."

She is seeking a new beginning as is her runaway niece seen in the foreground. The younger Louisa has just been expelled from a second school. The two women are back to back and in contrast to the feminine pose of her aunt, this Bohemian Louisa is committing the then daring and shocking act of chopping off her hair and disguising herself as a man. It is 1920, she is about to steal a boat and ride the river to cast off the legacy of her name and family to live under the alias of Willie Sullivan. Like her mother before her and her brother after, she will soon die young. The building clouds symbolize the change and turbulence everyone faces when choosing a new course for their life to follow.

. My whole style goes against the contemporary trend of narrative content tied to painterly realism. One can be technically accomplished without turning to realism.

Steps

From the Steppes of Russia to the Steps of Pittsburgh.

A Russian influenced painting of my Russian born Jewish grandparents in their adopted home of Pittsburgh. This is their house at 6352 Crombie Street. Modelled after 3 Russian paintings, it is an exploration of my genetic and artistic roots.