collage miniature by J A Dixon
6 x 7 inches
Purchase this artwork!
Archive for October, 2015
“A special thank you to Helen Reiss, who brought me this crazy manuscript and thought I might like to illustrate it. I had a better idea!”
– Allan Bealy
I am pleased to share an announcement from Allan Bealy that his newest publication is available— ABCurdities: A Collage Alphabet, and it is an honor to be part of an outstanding group that includes Allan, Matthew Rose, Ted Tollefson, Nikki Soppelsa, Zach Collins, Marc Deb, Fred Voigt, Musta Fior, Michael Tunk, and many other fine collage practitioners. Allan assigned 26 collage artists from around the world a letter of the alphabet and asked each of us to interpret a corresponding absurdist poem by Helen Reiss. The delightful result is now available for online purchase!
Helen’s wild verse for “N” offered a wealth of associations and challenged me to illustrate the perfect level of “visual naughtiness.” I also wanted to embed the letterform, but not in a way that would be too obvious. Do you see it? Some may not. I find it fascinating to observe how each of us used her poems as a catalyst for creativity, while investigating an individual approach to the medium — one more example of how collaboration can enhance the artistic process. A tip o’ the cap to the designer/compiler!
collage miniature by J A Dixon
a contribution to ABCurdities: A Collage Alphabet
8 x 8 inches
Oftentimes on the internet, it’s more a culture of ‘Look at me! Look at me! My thing! My thing!’ and it’s competitive.”
— Joseph Gordon-Levitt
“There is no design without discipline.”
— Massimo Vignelli
Perhaps it is disingenuous for a blogger to bring up the subject of routine self-exposure, but I cannot help myself today. The level of unbridled disclosure on the Web is out of hand, and there is no sign of moderation on the horizon. Out of respect for your time and consideration, it would make sense for me to stay on the subject of collage. You have your reasons for visiting this site, and I doubt that they have anything to do with my general opinion of social media.
Let me be blunt: Too many people who create collage are posting too much, too often. This viewpoint is coming from someone who is a big fan of the positive influence and cross-pollination in our medium. I can see no benefit from working in a vacuum. On the other hand, there is something to be said for a bit of restraint, and we all have a need for greater discernment before deciding whether or not our most recent composition is worthy of public display.
So, now I have to come up with a suitable image (or unsuitable, depending on one’s perspective) to illustrate this rant. Here we go:
(for educational purposes only)
“In 1998, Ma founded Silkroad, a nonprofit outfit that connects diverse cultures and musicians not only through Ma’s Silk Road Ensemble (for which more than 80 pieces have been commissioned), but also by supporting education and cross-cultural business and artistic partnerships.”
Today is the 60th birthday of Yo-Yo Ma, among the world’s most impressive creative individuals. When he brought his Silk Road Ensemble to my hometown in 2013, I was inspired to begin a series of collage poems dedicated to East-West understanding. I can think of no living artist with a greater curiosity for diverse influences, or a wider versatility, fusing cultural traditions with innovative experimentation.
Silk Road Details
digital compilation by J A Dixon
a birthday salute to Yo-Yo Ma
“The purpose of this challenge is to have some fun, and to experience the challenge of finishing a collage that someone else has started. That someone else was me.”
– Terry R Flowers
I may be getting the hang of this shared-authorship thing. Veteran collaborator T R Flowers offered a spot to me in his bingo-card “zine” project, so I grabbed it. His prolific creations are characterized by wit and humor, so I pushed myself in that direction. Here is the original card. Here is Terry’s start that he sent to me. Stay tuned for a look at some of the other interesting contributions rolling in.
collage collaboration on bingo card
start by T R Flowers, finish by J A Dixon
4.5 x 5.625 inches