Tag Archives: Norman Rockwell

Patriotic Artwork Presented to Family on Military Makeover

After hard work and home renovations, the Military Makeover® team welcomed the Phinizy family to their new South Florida home. The military family stepped inside to find beautiful new appliances, refinished wood floors and their very own Park West Gallery art collection.

“It’s so fulfilling to have the opportunity to bring art into people’s lives who probably wouldn’t have had the opportunity before,” Park West Gallery Director Morris Shapiro said.

Park West Gallery was proud to join the award-winning producers of Designing Spaces® on the mini-series Military Makeover. Throughout the show, Military Makeover serves a deserving military family by completely overhauling their home. This season, Military Makeover thanked veteran Billy Phinizy for his service as an Army combat medic in Afghanistan.

To help make the Phinizy’s house a home, Park West Gallery added the finishing touches with artwork from Peter Max, Norman RockwellRomero Britto and Tim Yanke. Park West Gallery’s master framer also custom-framed several photos as well as an American flag presented to Phinizy upon his retirement.

In recognition of Billy Phinizy’s service, Park West Gallery gifted the Phinizy family with several patriotic works of art:

Artwork from Peter Max’s 9/11 Series

Peter Max 9/11 art

“God Bless America – With Five Liberties” (2001), Peter Max

Max uses the Statue of Liberty as an icon in his 9/11 Series. To adorn the Phinizy family’s walls with eye-catching artwork, Park West Gallery presented the family with 2 of the 6 unique variations in Max’s series.

Custom Tim Yanke “Yanke Doodle”

"Yanke Doodle" (2016) Tim Yanke

“Yanke Doodle” (2016) Tim Yanke

To personalize the Phinizy’s home, Yanke created a custom “Yanke Doodle” specifically for the military family. The “Star-Spangled Banner” is written across the colorful flag, creating a multi-layered work of art that adds a patriotic pop to the room.

Norman Rockwell’s “A Pictorial History of the United States Army”

"A Pictorial History of the United States Army" (2012) Norman Rockwell

“A Pictorial History of the United States Army” (2012) Norman Rockwell

Rockwell’s patriot artwork offers a classic interpretation to the Phinizy family’s new art collection. The painting’s serious nature speaks to the solemn reality of war, a reality Phinizy experienced first-hand as an active military member.

“I Love This Land” Romero Britto

Romero Britto

I Love This Land” (2014) Romero Britto

Britto’s “I Love This Land” is a heartwarming tribute to the freedoms United States citizens experience because of military sacrifices. The colorful, three-dimensional artwork adds a warm glow to the Phinizy family’s newly-remodeled home.

Watch Military Makeover airing on Lifetime TV® Friday at 7:30 a.m. EST/PST. Check out artwork from well-known artists in Park West Gallery’s Holiday Sale Collection online.

From the Streets of Paris: Nineteenth Century Lithographs, Nightlife and the Development of Modern Advertising

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“Louis Valtat (Delteil; Stella 38)” (1919) by Pierre-Auguste Renoir. Park West Gallery Collection.Many have heard of the Belle Époque, the innocently idealized period in Paris before World War I, but few realize how much really happened during this time. The Industrial Revolution was in full steam and divisions in social classes were quickly changing, bringing about modern nuances in our lifestyles that we’ve kept up through today. By looking at 19th century French lithographs, you can trace the development of the beginning of modernism in Paris, spreading throughout the world.

The Rise of the Middle Class
Especially with the recent prevalence of Occupy Wall Street in the media, our own demographics are on the minds of millions. Maybe we don’t think of our society in terms of traditional social classes, but it’s a topic of interest nonetheless. What does that 99% really look like?

In Paris, before the nineteenth century, people generally lived in the countryside, spread out over rural areas. There was barely a middle class at all and the upper and lower classes hardly interacted. In the midst of the Industrial Revolution, there was an increase in the use of the railroad between Paris and the countryside, making traveling to the city more affordable and frequent. Because of the improved technology and, later, Haussmannization (the expensive renovation of Parisian streets and buildings by Baron Haussmann between 1853 and 1870), people were moving to the city in droves, setting up bakeries, groceries, small shops, and businesses. These small business owners defined a new social class division called, le petite bourgeoisie. Many others trained to be doctors, lawyers, and other white collar professionals, beginning the largest growth of the middle class in history.

More Time, More Money
Paris was filling to the brim with a quickly growing population of working-class people. The entire middle class (upper and lower tiers) were working hard during the week, earning more money than ever before. This new experience, having money to burn, created new capitalist desires, bringing about the advent of the weekend. Suddenly, people had the ability to take time off at the end of every week. They had money to spend and public transportation (the railway) to get them out of the city. Nights and weekends became a time of leisure, spending money at cafes and theaters, and on weekend trips.

With this growing market for leisure, venues began to advertise more than ever, catering to a working-class society that sought ways to brighten their day-to-day lives. Plus, entertainment was only part of this new consumerism. Households began to spend significantly more money on food and household products, hosting numerous guests at weekly dinner parties. Advertisements began to spotlight food and alcoholic beverages suitable for entertaining. Think: origins of the salad oil and advertisements for chips and beer (although Chandon and salad oil are a bit more elegant).

Advertising & the Culture of the Café
Parisians were suddenly living within a voyeuristic society, spurred by ballerinas, circuses, boating and horse races – an endless supply of entertainment. With all these options, venues and retailers began advertising their shows and products, showcasing anything from brands of cognac to plays at a theater. Bicycle manufacturers catered to their leisurely new public, portraying the mobility of the weekend lifestyle that each person desired. With an increase in literacy and a pressing need for advertising, the lithographic process was perfected, one of the city’s first forms of artistic pulp culture. Below is an example of a similar American lithograph advertising the Richards Brothers Wild Animal Shows in 1900.

Vintage Poster, Richard Bros./Wild Animal Shows, c.1900. Park West Gallery Collection.

From Outside In: Jules Cheret and the “Cherettes”
Jules Cheret (1836-1932) is occasionally referred to as the “father of modern lithography” because of his three stone process of printing. Before this time, each color had to be printed separately, very carefully. With Cheret’s new process, printers could print any color through a combination of three stones and transparent ink.

C“La Femme Nue” by Pal (Jean de Paleologue, 1860-1942). Park West Gallery Collection.heret’s often large-scale lithographs became incredibly popular for their bright colors and provocative subjects. His lithographs usually advertised themes of Parisian nightlife (theater, alcohol, and dancers) through depictions of scantily clad women, dubbed “Cherettes.” These women were used to promote an idealized lifestyle, saturated with the glamor of the new Paris.

The female images became so popular that other artists began copying Cheret’s style. Lithographs were rising as an artistic medium and artists of fine art began testing the waters at print houses. People were tearing artists’ lithographs off the sides of buildings, taking them home to frame and place on their own walls.

Between 1890 and 1900, Cheret capitalized on the idea of publishing artists’ lithographs as saleable portfolios. The “Maîtres de l’Affiche” (Masters of the Poster) were sold as packets of small-scale, 11 x 17” works, created by well-known contemporary Parisian artists. Ninety-seven artists worked with Cheret’s print house, Chaix, to create these small-scale works for people’s homes, printed on a heavier, more durable paper that would last longer than the mass-produced advertisements. Furthermore, the word “affiche” means more than simply a poster. It refers to the art of the people and of the streets, a different tone than the connotations of mass production that the English word “poster” implies.

Developing Style in a Progressing Age
Like every great artist, each developed his own style, drawing from or pushing against artists before him. For Cheret, it was the Rococo. His effeminate, vivacious figures fell neatly along the eighteenth century florid and graceful style, highlighting playful and fluid pastels.

Like the Impressionist painters working at the end of the nineteenth century, commercial lithographers began to develop their own styles, drawing from the newly popular Japanese prints with their heavy outlines, flat perspective, and bright planes of color (see Toshihide’s example below). Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864-1901) was an artist straddling the line between commercial and fine art, developing works that easily bridged the gaps between his advertisements and paintings.

“Actors (Diptych)” (c.1890) by Toshihide. Park West Gallery.

Lautrec was not the only artist to work in both commercial and fine arts, either. Alphonse Marie Mucha (1860-1939), nicknamed the “Father of Art Nouveau” is known for doing the same. His commercial lithography was famous for his signature depictions of long, fluttering hair, which he transferred to his few, but significant, decorative panels. For Mucha, everything was about beauty, so the coinciding style of Art Nouveau (originally named “Mucha Style”) had no commercial or intellectual message, solely founded on aesthetic principal. This didn’t mean that Art Nouveau wasn’t applied to advertisements, however, because it was. Art Nouveau was all-encompassing, seamlessly connecting fine art with architecture, furniture, jewelry, fashion, and interior decoration, defining an entire visual identity between 1890 and 1910. By 1900, Mucha was one of the most famous commercial artists in the world. He created pieces for the 1900 Paris World’s Fair, designed to position Art Nouveau as the style of the twentieth century. Mucha worked in many different media, as well, like his jewelry below.

“Snake Ring (Gold/Rubies)” by Alphonse Marie Mucha. Park West Gallery Collection.“Flower Brooch” (1995) by Alphonse Marie Mucha. Park West Gallery Collection.

The “father of modern advertising”, Leonetto Cappiello (1875–1942), was the first artist to tug on the subconscious to sell his products. By using a solid black background and singular, intense characters, he was able to link a brand to an idea without showing the product itself. Advertising mogul, Leo Burnett, would expand on this idea in the 1930s, arguing that subliminal advertising like this created visual triggers to sell the product.

Premier Fils, Beverage Poster (c. 1936) by Robys (Robert Wolff). Park West Gallery Collection.

Then and Now
By the time the twentieth century approached, heavy cultural stereotypes had been created. An idealized body image for women came out of Cheret’s lithographs, something western culture has yet to shake. Our consumerism, from food and beverages, to fashion, entertainment and travel, follows us everywhere. Advertisements of every medium – from historic lithographs to print ads and digital campaigns – shed light on the journey of our capitalist society.

But it’s not all bad! The really great advertisements and illustrations turn a mirror on their audience that provides insight and a new perspective through design, humor, and intelligence – without the tricks. Great ads provide an enlightening social commentary – advertently or inadvertently – of the culture from which they were produced. And who does a better job of questioning the world than the artist?

Today, artists and advertising still go hand-in-hand. (Forgive the corny analogy, but…) like Superman’s alter ego is Clark Kent, thus the artist is an art director. They are the same, living in different environments. In fact, the majority of fine artists have begun their careers as commercial artists, quite often as illustrators and graphic designers. Norman Rockwell is a wonderful example of a commercial artist using his magazine covers as social commentary. Andy Warhol, Edward Hopper, and Man Ray, also worked as commercial artists. Others like Jeff Koons and Roy Lichtenstein have been incredibly influenced by popular advertising, pulling its subject matter into their work.

Many of the artists you’ll discover at Park West Gallery have a relationship with commercial art and design, either as an initial career or simply inspiration. Check out Alfred Gockel, Peter Max, Misha Lenn, Leslie Lew, or Tim Yanke and you’ll realize that these artistic superheroes demonstrate that their art is both beautiful and interpretive, reflecting the changing culture in which we all live.

A variety of nineteenth century lithographs are available for purchase through Park West Gallery and its cruise art auctions at sea. For more information, please visit www.parkwestgallery.com.

It’s a Norman Rockwell Kind of Holiday

It’s that time of year again when fluffy white flakes and yuletide carols fill the sights and sounds of suburban Michigan. And just down the street from Park West Gallery’s Southfield location lies the historic little town of Franklin, twinkling with holiday spirit.

Jolly Postman by Norman Rockwell, Park West GalleryFranklin Village, Michigan, Park West Gallery

Like it was yanked from a Christmas snow globe, downtown Franklin lights up with cheer, perfect for antiquing or site-seeing, looking for gifts or stopping for tea. Visitors to the town will definitely feel like they’re in a Norman Rockwell painting, nostalgic for the era of “The Saturday Evening Post.”

Painting what he knew, Rockwell studied his friends and neighbors for more than fifty years for his famous magazine covers. With an ongoing theme of childlike naivety, gentle teasing, and family values, more than 300 covers were painted throughout his career.

In the mood to experience even more holiday merriment? Works by Norman Rockwell are currently on display at Park West Gallery in Southfield – just minutes from charming downtown Franklin.

And don’t forget: the Park West Gallery Holiday Sale doesn’t end until December 26, so if there’s still someone special on your Holiday to-do list, gift them something they’re guaranteed not to have!
Through association with the Norman Rockwell Licensing Company (the estate of the artist) and Curtis Publishing (owner of the copyrights of The Saturday Evening Post artwork), Park West Gallery has been able in recent years to bring new and exceptional collecting opportunities for Norman Rockwell artworks to enthusiastic collectors. For more information, please call 800-521-9654 x 4 or email sales@parkwestgallery.com

For more information about Park West Gallery’s land and cruise ship auctions, visit our website at www.parkwestgallery.com.

August is American Artist Appreciation Month

American Flatlands (fig. 36), Tim Yanke, Park West Gallery Collection
“American Flatlands (fig. 36)” by Tim Yanke
Park West Gallery Collection

QUICK! Name an American artist! 

Who was the first to pop into your head? Was it Norman Rockwell? For many of us, he’s the one we think of right away. But there are so many others that shouldn’t be forgotten.

From Andy Warhol and Andrew Wyeth, to Georgia O’Keeffe and Mary Cassatt, America has been the birthplace for some of art history’s most talented and celebrated artists. Throughout August, all of them will be honored as we observe American Artist Appreciation Month.

But you don’t have to visit a museum to appreciate American fine art. The Park West Gallery Collection showcases a variety of works by American artists, including Norman Rockwell. And the works of Park West Gallery contemporary favorites such as Leslie LewTim Yanke and Marcus Glenn, are also not to be missed. 

So during the month of August, take a moment to learn more about American artists. You never know what you might discover.

Discover the Artists at Park West Gallery →

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Art News — July 18, 2011

Marilyn-Monroe-Sculpture-unveiled-in-Chicago“Forever Marilyn” will stand through Spring 2012 in Chicago. Credit: UPI 

“Forever Marilyn” in the Windy City:
Artist Seward Johnson‘s 26-foot high sculpture of Marilyn Monroe was unveiled Friday in Chicago’s Pioneer Court. Spectators haven’t wasted any time walking around—and underneath—the massive replica of the actress, positioned in her famous stance from the 1955 film “The Seven Year Itch.” {via Chicago Tribune}

Obama borrows a Rockwell painting: On Friday, President Obama met with Ruby Bridges, the subject of Norman Rockwell‘s iconic civil rights painting, The Problem We All Live With. The painting is currently on loan to the White House in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Bridges’ famous walk Nov. 14, 1960. (Read more: Park West Gallery stories featuring Norman Rockwell) {via NOLA}

Now on view: Through October 11, 2011, the National Galleries of Scotland presents Dürer’s FameAlbrecht Dürer (1471-1528) was the most important artist of the Northern Renaissance and one of the most celebrated artists of all time. This exhibit showcases a selection of drawings, paintings and iconic prints, including Melancholy, Saint Jerome in his Study and Knight, Death and the Devil. (Read more: Park West Gallery Artist Biographies | Albrecht Dürer) {via National Galleries of Scotland}

***Have an interesting art news story or upcoming arts event to share with our Park West Gallery Blog readers? Submit your art-related news links via email to marketing@parkwestgallery.com.

The Year in Review: Top 10 Art Stories of 2010

Steve Bloom, Park West Gallery“Champagne” by Steve Bloom | Park West Gallery Collection

The New Year is just days away, but before we say goodbye to 2010 and raise our glasses to ring in 2011, the Park West Gallery bloggers decided to take a look back at some of our most popular art stories from the last twelve months.

Today, the Park West Gallery Blog boasts a whopping 700+ postings — a good portion of which were published during the last year. Using some trusty analytics, we’ve compiled a list of the most-viewed art stories posted on “The Official Blog of Park West Gallery” in 2010.

And now, for your reading pleasure…

The Park West Gallery Blog’s TOP 10 ART STORIES OF 2010:

1) Freud’s Influence on Dali’s Surreal “Dream” Painting
(Posted Feb. 9, 2010 / Read it now → )

2) Honoring MLK Day: Norman Rockwell and the Civil Rights Movement (Posted Jan. 18, 2010 / Read it now → )

3) Yaacov Agam and the Mystical Number “9”
(Posted Feb. 11, 2010 / Read it now → )

4) Pop Artist Peter Max Paints Taylor Swift
(Posted March 31, 2010 /Read it now → )

5) Art Gallery Finds Rare Chagall Painting at Auction 
(Posted Jan. 8, 2010 / Read it now → )

6) Focusing on Matisse as a Printmaker at the Tampa Museum of Art (Posted Feb. 15, 2010 / Read it now → )

7) Dalí + Disney = Destino (Posted Nov. 12, 2010 / Read it now → )

8) Wildlife Master Andrew Bone Paints a “Life-Size” African Elephant (Posted July 20, 2010 / Read it now → )

9) A New Approach to Joan Miró
(Posted Jan. 26, 2010 / Read it now → )

10) Art Auctioneer Series: Married Life at Sea 
(Posted Nov. 22, 2010 / Read it now → )

Park West Gallery would like to thank all of our loyal readers and we look forward to bringing you the most exciting art, artist and gallery news in 2011!

What was your favorite art-related story of 2010? Share it with us in the comments section below!
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An Election Day Tribute to Norman Rockwell

Norman Rockwell, Election Day“Election Day” by Norman Rockwell. October 30, 1948 cover of The Saturday Evening Post.

Today is Election Day in the United States; it is a day when Americans will flock to the polls and exercise their freedom to vote for their favorite political candidates.

Perhaps no other artist is more closely associated with depicting the freedom of the American spirit than Norman Rockwell. His illustrations evoke messages of family, equality, tolerance, love of country and imagination. 

(Learn more about Norman Rockwell at Park West Gallery Artist Biographies.)

Much has been written about Norman Rockwell, but the best way to really experience his message is to look at his body of work. The following video segment shows a terrific montage of Rockwell’s famous cover illustrations for The Saturday Evening Post, all set to the swingin’ sounds of Benny Goodman, another American original. Please enjoy! (And remember to get out and vote!)

Vodpod videos no longer available.

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Through association with the Norman Rockwell Licensing Company (the estate of the artist) and Curtis Publishing (owner of the copyrights of The Saturday Evening Post artwork), Park West Gallery has been able in recent years to bring new and exceptional collecting opportunities for Norman Rockwell artworks to enthusiastic collectors. For more information, please call 800-521-9654 x 4 or email sales@parkwestgallery.com

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Telling Stories: Norman Rockwell from the Collections of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg

George Lucas, Stephen Spielberg, Norman Rockwell Telling Stories[Photo credit: CBS] Director George Lucas stands in front of Norman Rockwell’s “Shadow Artist” (1912).

“If I hadn’t become a painter,
I would have liked to have been a movie director.”
—Norman Rockwell

WASH., D.C.—The Smithsonian American Art Museum is currently hosting an exhibition featuring the private art collections of two of America’s best-known modern filmmakers. Telling Stories: Norman Rockwell from the Collections of George Lucas and Steven Spielberg is on view through January 2, 2011, and showcases 57 major Rockwell paintings and drawings.

norman rockwell, polley voos fransay

According to the museum, Telling Stories is the first major exhibition to explore in-depth the connections between Norman Rockwell’s iconic images of American life and the movies. During frequent visits to Hollywood in the 1930s and 40s, Rockwell designed posters for several studios and immersed himself in the culture of the movie industry. Rockwell’s exposure to Hollywood and movie productions affected the process that he used to construct his images and the stories he depicted in his paintings.

Norman Rockwell was a masterful storyteller who often went to great lengths to stage the scenes for his paintings. He auditioned the models, chose their costumes, arranged props, lighted the sets and, like a movie director, demonstrated poses and facial expressions. The artist created scenes that parallel themes also found in movies, popular fiction and current events. The films of Lucas and Spielberg, like Rockwell paintings, evoke love of country, small-town values, children growing up, unlikely heroes, acts of imagination and life’s ironies.

For more on this exhibit, please visit americanart.si.edu

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Through association with the Norman Rockwell Licensing Company (the estate of the artist) and Curtis Publishing (owner of the copyrights of the Saturday Evening Post artwork), Park West Gallery has been able in recent years to bring new and exceptional collecting opportunities for Norman Rockwell artworks to enthusiastic collectors. For more information, please call 800.521.9654 x 4 or email sales@parkwestgallery.com

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