Category Archives: Modern Art + Objects

A Tall Order: Commissioned Painting

You may remember that I painted a mural at Three Chairs Co. a few months ago. A wonderful family saw the piece and commissioned me to do a large-scale painting for a two story wall in their living room.

My first question was what style they wanted the painting done in: they style they had seen in the store or more painterly with broken brushstrokes, like Matisse. Their request was to paint something really modern and clean, nature-themed and balanced to the eye. I came up with a few sketches and they chose Palette A.

Being heavily design oriented, I wanted the painting to have vibrant presence. I made a few suggestions and the family opted for a 48″ x 72″ canvas, which is exactly 6 inches taller than me. This was going to be fun! Once you go over 48 inches, everything arrives by freight and a truck delivers the goods. (Luckily N was home that day to be the brawn)!

I got started immediately and used graphite to replicate the motif freehand. Then I started blocking in colors using a myriad of Liquitex Professional heavy body acrylics. Not only do they have exceptional lightfastness and thick viscosity for consistent coverage,  they  hold up well in sunlight. (I don’t ever recommend hanging oils or prints in direct sunlight but acrylic can withstand it to a certain degree).

I took some liberties with the scale of the canvas once the painting started to take form. There were negative spaces that I wanted to balance so I strayed from the original design a bit. I allowed each layer to dry completely before moving on to the next one. Here’s the piece 99% done.

Voila! What do you think?

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Bye American

“I was born in ______ in the United States of America. My skin is ______ and I’m a ______, and believe in  ______. I work ______ and pay ______ and don’t believe in ______. I exercise my right to ______ and appreciate the ______ of those before me. I eat ______ and am not scared of all of the ______. I feel that ______ should be free and that ______ is our choice. I’m not for ______ intervention, but feel that ______ is necessary. I know that ______ don’t get paid enough, while ______ live lavish lifestyles. Each night I watch the ______ only to see ______ over and over again. To me, it’s obvious this country has forgotten how to ______.”

-______

Nick Azzaro ©

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The Process

Our ideas begin here.

They’re given life here.

The keepers are then digitized.

Lastly, they’re printed on high quality archival photo paper in rich, saturated colors and sent to you.

The end.

-NY-

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Icy hot.

My father has always enjoyed photographing wooded winter landscapes, while I like more urban and abstract scenes. The sun broke through the clouds yesterday just before sunset, allowing me to capture the winter woods as I see them (and then some).

-N-

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Che succede?

Che succede is Italian for “what’s happened” or “what’s changed”. The English equivalent is “what’s up”. Although both phrases determine the same results, “what’s up” literally means to verify that which is above.

-N-

(photos c/o Art Azzaro and Nick Azzaro)

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Got art?

It’s here! Our online shop offers original photography and art, which can be viewed here. Every piece is edition marked, hand signed and shipping is included in the price.

I’ve included travel shots from Taiwan, Italy’s Amalfi Coast and the ever-changing Chicago skyline, which I shot for almost two years from the same spot. There’s also a limited edition Enter the Dragon print in time for Chinese New Year. We’re really flexible and enjoy working on projects so if you have a combination or request for something larger, let us know. Thanks for the continued support!

-N-

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Looking Ahead: 2012 Art Exhibits and a Moment for John Chamberlain

We’re taking a few days to break and enjoy the food, company and warmth of the holiday. We wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukah. Here are a few highlights current and upcoming to look forward to this winter.

Freelancing photo journalist and innovator Weegee (1899-1968) has a show opening at International Center of Photography in New York opening this February. His current exhibit, Naked Hollywood, at Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles runs through February 27th.

Weegee Liz ca. 1950 International Center of Photography, Bequest of Wilma Wilcox, 1993, © Weegee/International Center of Photography/Getty Images

Beauty and the Book, an exhibit of 19th and 20th century decorative art folios begins at The Art Institute of Chiacago on February 28th.

Kondakov, Nikodim Pavlovich. 1892.via The Art Institute of Chicago

The curiosities and unanswered of the 1960s movement Fluxus is explored at University of Michigan Museum of Art this February.  (February’s turning out to be a busy month)!

Flux Year Box 2, 1966, five-compartment wooden box containing work by various artists. Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, George Maciunas Memorial Collection: Purchased through the William S. Rubin Fund; GM.987.44.2.

On a more serious end note, I want to take a moment of pause to ponder the works of John Chamberlain, who passed away yesterday at the age of 84. His larger-than-life metalworks and mixed media pieces made of discarded car parts awed us with their intimidating scale and gnarled presence.

John Chamberlain, May 2011 via New York Times

Flores Awning, photograph, 1990

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Hit the streets.

This is a very busy time of year for everyone. However, that’s no excuse.

Stay focused. Get out there and get inspired. Show the world how you see it.

Sketch, if that’s what you do, or paint or sculpt. It doesn’t matter what you do, so long as you do.

-N-

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