Here's a new batch in the order I did them. I recently started a relationship with The West Branch Gallery in Stowe, VT and because of this I was asked to compose the dreaded "artist's statement":
To be honest, there is not a lot of philosophical hokum behind these paintings. They all started out as drawings in my sketchbooks in which I have been drawing in earnest since 1973. At present I have completed enough of them to fill the trunk of a luxury automobile and am working on filling a small U-Haul. I try to set aside an hour every morning to draw for myself, to brainstorm with pen on paper. I seldom start drawing with preconceived notions and I never know where it will take me. I am not interested in rendering reality, because frankly I’m not that good at rendering reality. I much prefer to bring a free ranging intellect to the process, that and some fairly primitive drawing skills.
The good drawings I make into paintings. Consequently, my paintings are conceptually all over the map. Working this way keeps me from being bored. The thread that runs through them all is certain off-kilter sensibility that I am told goes way back in my family.
I did this as a gift for my friend, Barbara Korecki, who is the pottery teacher at the local HS and has been very supportive of "The Mayforth Boys," two of whom graduated this past June....
Barbara's husband, Kenny, with whom I've been playing blues with for years, wanted a painting that was sold, so I talked him into a Blues King painting....
Brainstorm-Collaged onto the background of this are xeroxed sketchbook pages. I wanted to start out simple....
All Inclusive Holiday-I had been working on a large painting with collaged sketchbook elements that was giving me fits. I put that on the back burner and completed this over the weekend....
Oh. My. God.
I love them ALL.
As I looked at each painting, I thought, "THAT one's my favorite!" Then I started at the top again and kept right on thinking the same thing as each one scrolled by.
Right now I'm stuck on Brainstorm!
Leo EspinosaJuly 9, 2007
Juba kicks jubo!
Wesley WillisJuly 9, 2007
Blues guy and brainstorm are a baseman ripoff
Randall EnosJuly 9, 2007
Killer stuff as usual....love 'em to death. I had fun showing Gothard all your switchplates when he visited the other day.
Your artist's statement is right here....it begins "To be honest...."
ragJuly 9, 2007
You're at a pallet of no return. Keep on cranking these beauties out brother!
Steve BrodnerJuly 9, 2007
Love these very much Hal.
Cathleen ToelkeJuly 9, 2007
Keep on Truckin'!
They're really a delight.
Brian StaufferJuly 10, 2007
Each of these is a gem. I especially love the All inclusive Vacation image.
Michael SloanJuly 10, 2007
Hal - These look great. Alphabet Afoot is very funky. I'm inspired by your productivity.
Rob DunlaveyJuly 10, 2007
Alphabet ones are personal favs.
Love the shoes on Mr. Brainstorm.
The King and Queen are a bit to cute for my taste (but tastefully done).
I bet if you twisted reality a bit more you'd be in a spot all by yourself --and that's a good place for an artist to be! Know what I mean? Mash together Marsden Hartley and Miro and see what you get.
I don't know Hal. Sometimes I think I just have to get out of my head and draw stuff I see rather than stuff I make up just to touch down a little and give the real world as much love as I give my own paint covered doodles. Find some place in between. The New Land.
Guess it's time for bed! I'm not making any sense.
Baseman ripoff? Puh-leeeeeeez!
J.D. KingJuly 10, 2007
Hmmm, no back-patting from Wesley Willis.
Oh-key: Baseman rip? Or are both, along with Crumb and Guston, drinking from the same old-time cartoon well?
randy enosJuly 10, 2007
Wesley Willis the dead jazz musician and painter was nothing but a Steinberg ripoff.
Steve WacksmanJuly 10, 2007
Love that artist's statement, Hal. I'd buy a painting sight-unseen from any artist that had that to say about himself and his work. Well, if I had any money I would.
Juba (a great and rarely-uttered word, BTW) is fantastic- I love how it's immediately familiar until you focus on it and realize that it isn't. Great color and motion, too.
Love the collage element of Brainstorm, too - looking forward to seeing this technique in future offerings.
As far as Baseman is concerned, only a philistine with no sense of history would attribute the 'bulb nose/saucer eye' aesthetic to Gary Baseman. I assume that's what your astute critic is dimly referring to. To you, Mister "Wills", I say:Hit a library, Bub- that gag's been around since the Pleistocene era. Our esteemed mister Mayforth is taking a age-old artistic tradition to the level PAST the next level. Put that in your myopic pipe and smoke it!
MarcJuly 10, 2007
Beautiful as always, Hal. The Clay Queen is my favorite; great colors and expression.
David GothardJuly 10, 2007
Keep on truckin, Hal. These are beautiful, honest, witty and ORIGINAL.
Alex MurawskiJuly 10, 2007
Wow Hal, I really like the first and last ones the best. They seem to have that cripness and clarity I admire in your watercolor and ink work. Rich color in those as well. What I really admire is your drive to step up and try all sorts of stuff... if you want it to pay you've got to play, and you sure do that. Good luck with your gallery!
Richard AllenJuly 10, 2007
Hal, the paintings are a treat. You're also far too modest about your own abilities.
WW: I'm all for debate on Drawger (I know some folks find it all too cosy), but snide, anonymous sniping's not cool.
Mike MoranJuly 10, 2007
You always knock me out with your painting Hal. You just TKO me!
Audrey Winchall FergusJuly 10, 2007
Easy on the slathering praise, Zina. It's not like Hal can give you work LOL
randyJuly 11, 2007
LOL....LOL.....LOL??? What have we got here a teenager in our midst?
Lay off my girl friend Zina or I'll bust ya in the chops!!!
Hal MayforthJuly 11, 2007
I'd like to thank my friends and colleagues for the kind comments. I was much more concerned about hearing from David Goldin saying I was ripping off his little arms and legs. I hate to make this a closed forum. I think there are many caring, thoughtful people out there who enjoy being able to comment. But to those who post their little jabs anonymously, consider yourself ignored.
Dale StephanosJuly 11, 2007
Fun stuff Hal. Keep it up.
Edel RodriguezJuly 11, 2007
Hal, very nice work. I really like the things you do with the funky alphabets. The xeroxed sketchbook pages look good too.
Robert HuntJuly 11, 2007
I like these, Hal, especially the alphabet paintings.
Nate WilliamsSeptember 19, 2007
amazing work .. I love all the lettering .. great job Hal
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