Today I would like to introduce you to renowned Kansas City Area artist Robert Quackenbush
You will get to know him in the interview below as well as experience some of his amazing works of abstract art.
K) When did you first realize that you wanted to paint and create art?
R) When I was a kid I was a doodler. I also spent a lot of time with art books that my parents owned…hours and hours and hours. I had no idea at the time why I was so fascinated with these books. Later, when I was twenty-five years old, I had sort of an epiphany, and realized that I was supposed to be a painter. At that point, a lot of loose ends started to fall into place. I was living and working in the Philadelphia area where there are many art schools and, therefore, many art supply stores. I remember loading up on everything I could put my hands on to start painting. I had absolutely no knowledge of what I was doing, I just had to get started. About a year or so later I received as a birthday gift an Introductory Drawing Class at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art. The minute I walked into those cavernous studios at PAFA, I knew that I was where I was supposed to be. The rest is history.
K) What artists organizations are you involved in?
R) In addition to the Kansas City Artists Coalition, I am a member of the Hand Print Press working out of the printmaking studio at UMKC. Membership in both these organizations allows me to stay in contact with my fellow artists in the Kansas City area. I have also been able to take advantage of exhibition opportunities. KCAC has given me a one-man show and the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art has exhibited the work of the Hand Print Press, which included one of my prints.
|What Holds Up Your Sky #12|
K) What genre do you work in?
R) Although I started as an oil painter, I now work in several different fields. I still paint regularly using an assortment of mixed media which include acrylics, oils, enamel paint, water based mediums, spray paint, aluminum siding paint, found objects and other things I can attach to the surface of my work. In addition, I am a printmaker working as a member of the UMKC/Hand Print Press. Over the past couple of years I have started to make metal sculpture. I share some studio space in the Crossroads with Reilly Hoffman.
|What Holds Up Your Sky #11|
K) Where do you derive much of your your inspiration?
R) I have a huge inventory of photographs, print ads, etc. which I use to inform my work. I do a lot of drawings. Mostly, however, I use my imagination. I get a lot of input from dreams.
K) Where does the motivation to create art come from?
R) I keep my passion for making art alive by working every day. I have more ideas than I know what to do with (and, sometimes, that can be a problem). Being around other artists also keeps me fresh. And, I teach painting in my studio. Working as a mentor/coach to other artists is very invigorating.
|What Holds Up Your Sky #13|
K) Robert where are you currently showing your art and what exhibits are in the near future?
R) I am currently showing work at the Todd Weiner Gallery in the Crossroads. I have donated a piece for the KCAC auction which takes place in February. (see below) In addition, the American Jazz Museum has asked me to create a large scale painting as a centerpiece for their upcoming exhibition in celebration of Ella Fitzgerald’s 95th birthday. The exhibition, “ELLA: FIRST LADY OF SONG”, opens on March 2nd and runs through June 2, 2012.
Two of my works on paper have been juried into the “ARTI GRAS” exhibition which opens on Friday, February 24th at Leawood’s Community Center in City Hall
In the the summer, I will be participating in a group show called “SPACE FRAMES” hosted by the Kansas City Jewish Museum of Contemporary Art and curated by their Director, Marcus Cain. I plan to have both sculptures and paintings in this exhibition. And, the year is young….
|"Awareness" painting to be auctioned at The Kansas City Artists Coalition Annual Benefit held on February 18th 2012 Value $2400.|| |
K) What do you see in your future as an artist?
R) The future will bring what it brings. As well as making a steady stream of work, I am using the tools which I acquired as a participant in the first Artists, Inc. seminar in Kansas City to make my presence better known. A positive attitude helps, too.
|Donated to the Kansas City Jewish Museum’s URBAN/SUBURBAN Exhibition and Auction last Autumn|
K) What words of wisdom do you have for an aspiring artist?
R) Be prolific! Do a lot of work. Constantly improve your skills. One of the best lessons I ever learned from my mentor (Alexander Shundi) is not to be afraid of my imagination. If making art is your passion, go after it. Don’t wait for anything. As Chuck Close once said, “Inspiration is for amateurs…Get to work!”
|Untitled on Paper|
R) Thank you for this opportunity.
Please be sure to visit Roberts site ArtbyQ
Art by Karena
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