Book Review: Envisioning Howard Finster

Envisioning Howard Finster: The Religion and Art of a Stranger from Another World, by Norman J. Girardot, University of California Press, 304 pages, 16 color plates and 20 b/w illustrations, 2015. ISBN 978-0520261105. Paperback, $29.95 The prolific southern visionary Howard Finster was something of an enigma. How much of his colorful output was a matter […]

Tour the Lakefront Stone Carvings: Oct. 11

Chicago is home to the greatest collection of outdoor stone carvings in urban America. Generations of beach-going carvers whiling away the hours left their marks on huge limestone blocks installed during the Depression to improve and protect the city’s park-lined lakefront. Many of these anonymous carvings have been destroyed as part of more recent anti-erosion projects. […]

Stanley Szwarc’s Visionary Vases

Vases by Stanley Szwarc, master of stainless steel, who died in 2011. Stanley complained that his vases took too much effort to make, but he kept creating them nonetheless. They are among his most elegant works. Visit the Stanley Szwarc visionary cross gallery Visit the Stanley Szwarc portrait gallery The Stanley Szwarc boxes Stanley Szwarc in color 2016 […]

Stanley Szwarc Portrait Gallery

Stanley Szwarc’s most typical creations are marvels of decoration, stainless steel boxes lathered in abstract ornamentation. But he also applied his geometric talent to creating faces, some ominous, some cartoony, some robotic, and some quite dressy. When the book keeper turned metal worker took up representational imagery, his imagination was stunning. Visit the Stanley Szwarc visionary cross gallery View […]

Stanley Szwarc’s Visionary Cross Purposes

Stanley Szwarc, a Polish book keeper turned metal worker and then artist after arriving in the United States, gave no indication of being particularly religious, but he did like making crosses. A prolific creator of objects from scrap stainless steel, always demonstrating over-the-top imagination, Szwarc made hundreds of crosses, if not thousands. He produced jewelry, he made crosses to be hung on the […]

B.F. Perkins and Jimmy Lee Sudduth

Two fine artists: B.F. Perkins and Jimmy Lee Sudduth at Perkins’ environment in Bankston, Alabama. Sudduth gave me this Polaroid in 1990 or thereabouts, along with directions to Perkins’ place. Sudduth was a genius with mud. Perkins’ environment was continuous with his art. He repeated himself, but his best themes, like the “Cherokee Lovebirds,” were […]