Tag Archives: fine art

Path of Pilgrimage–New Paintings by Joshua Smith at the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity


New Works by Joshua Smith

An Inspire Exhibition at the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity
Opens October 13th

Costa Mesa, CA, September 1, 2015: Artists are often asked where their inspiration comes from; when Orange County artist, Joshua Smith, is asked that question he is quick to respond that he relies on his dreams and his faith for inspiration. Working in a vortex of color and often on over twenty varying sizes of canvas at a time, Smith, not unlike the dreams he credits with inspiring his work, paints in a fever of remembrance, memory, mysticism, and metaphor.

Into the Calm, oil on canvas, 40" x 40", by Joshua Smith

Into the Calm, oil on canvas, 40″ x 40″, by Joshua Smith

“I take my visual clues from architecture and from religion, allowing my paintings to be a reflection of art and of my faith,” says Smith, “and like a small child, I fanaticize my surroundings, the sky’s the limit.” A technically proficient oil painter, Smith, with his Masters in fine art from Hartford Art School at the University of Hartford, Connecticut, approaches his work like a metaphysical journey through some unknown reality; he believes in the omnipotence of the dream, the fantasy.

With his emphasis on landscape, his colors lay one on top of the other in a powdery mist of memory; chairs, paths, trees, butterflies, nests, and small home-like structures stand in lonely isolation, but still he imbues each canvas with the emotion of hope and of home. The paintings’ dense, fragile surfaces and areas of multi-chromatic richness recall ancient wall frescos.

“The Center is thrilled to present this Inspire Exhibition of work by the artist, Joshua Smith,” says Craig Kausen, chairman of the board and Chuck Jones’s grandson. “His work, like that of other great artists, inspires each of us to view our world a little differently, with faith and hope; and, perhaps, to question our responsibility to the world around us.”

Opening night reception for the artist is Tuesday, October 13 from 7 to 9 PM at the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, 3321 Hyland Ave., Suite A, in Costa Mesa at the South Coast Collection (SoCo). The reception is free and open to the public. The exhibit will close on November 30. A portion of proceeds benefit the programs of the Center, a 501(c)3 public charity.

A graduate of the Hartford Art School, University of Hartford (Connecticut) with a Masters in painting, Smith received his undergraduate degree at the Laguna College of Art & Design.  He has participated in over 30 group exhibitions and more than 25 solo exhibitions in the past 10 years. Awarded the prestigious Best New SOLO Artist at the New York International Art Expo in 2007, Smith recently exhibited at the Carousel du Louvre with the Socièté Nationale des Beaux. He has been involved in numerous projects with The Guildford Handcraft Center, taught as adjunct professor at the Hartford Art School and has been exhibition curator at the Nathan J Gallery, Farmington, Ct. Currently, he lives in Orange County with his wife and two children.

The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity was founded by the four-time Academy Award-winning legendary animation pioneer and creator, Chuck Jones in 1999. The Center’s vision is a world where creativity is known and experienced in every discipline, by the many, not just the few. It is located in the South Coast Collection (SoCo) at 3321 Hyland Ave., Suite A, Costa Mesa, CA. www.ChuckJonesCenter.org. 949-660-7793 x 107.

Chuck Jones Gallery at D23!

Going to D23 this weekend? Visit the Chuck Jones Gallery at booth #C1900 and say hello! We’ll be there from 9 AM to 7 PM Friday through Sunday, August 14-16. Four of our artists will be making an appearance at the booth, schedule below. Sign up to win a work of art! Ask about our D23 specials! We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

Scott and John installing artwork at the Chuck Jones Gallery booth #C1900

Scott and John installing artwork at the Chuck Jones Gallery booth #C1900

Almost finished! What you can't see is all of the terrific unframed art we have to share with you!

Almost finished! What you can’t see is all of the terrific unframed art we have to share with you!

Daniel Killen, Friday from 2 to 3 PM

Daniel Killen, Friday from 2 to 3 PM

Mike Kungl, Saturday from 11 AM to Noon

Mike Kungl, Saturday from 11 AM to Noon

Bob Elias, Saturday & Sunday from 3 to 4 PM

Bob Elias, Saturday & Sunday from 3 to 4 PM

Mike Peraza, Saturday from 6 to 7 PM

Mike Peraza, Saturday from 6 to 7 PM

The Chuck Jones Gallery Opens in Tustin!

The Chuck Jones Gallery has opened its doors at 3065 Edinger Avenue, Tustin, California (at the Jamboree Plaza & Tustin Metrolink Station.)  Sharing the loft-like space (skylights! 18' ceilings! exposed duct-work!, festively-colored piping!) with Linda Jones Enterprises (parent company) and the non-profit Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, the gallery is poised to become a destination for local art lovers as well as visitors from around the globe. 

Door sign
Welcome!  Open the door and come in to view the finest in film art from Chuck Jones and all major animation studios as well as the SPORT Magazine Collection of fine art sports photographs.

Gallery 4
If what you're looking for isn't on the wall, our expert art consultants will be happy to look high & low for the perfect work of art for your collection, at home or for your office.

Gallery 5
Of course, we have the largest selection of art created by the legendary Chuck Jones.  From original production art used in many of his most famous cartoons to his elegant fine art & everything in-between, you'll be delighted by the selection and his unique view of life!

When you visit, you'll want to take a moment to flip through the amazing "Stroke of Genius: A Collection of Paintings & Musings on Life, Love & Art by Chuck Jones" — a thoroughly enjoyable coffee-table art book that pictures many of Jones' finest animation character oil paintings alongside his timeless quotes.

Gallery 7
The Chuck Jones Gallery in Tustin has a fantastic collection of original art from Disney Studios as well as 20th Century Fox (The Simpsons!) for your viewing pleasure. 

Gallery 3
The Gallery is open Monday through Friday from 9 AM until 6 PM.  Call for more information, 714-516-9300 or 800-959-7175.  Or visit us online at www.ChuckJonesGallery.com, read our blog at Chuck Redux and the Center's blog at Now Hare This!  We look forward to your visit! 

Artist of Note: Mackenzie Thorpe

This Is All My Love1cropped for web
This Is All My Love by Mackenzie Thorpe

The Chuck Jones Galleries will be hosting a trunk show of rare & sold-out limited edition lithographs, serigraphs and sculpture by the internationally acclaimed British artist, Mackenzie Thorpe, on Saturday, March 27th from noon until 6 PM.  Our special guest will be Kari Guhl, Thorpe's publisher and collaborator.  Please join us with your RSVP at SanDiego@ChuckJones.com or by phone at 888-294-9880.

Mackenzie Thorpe was born and raised in the British industrial town of Middlesbrough in the 1950s where his father worked as a laborer and his mother as an auxiliary nurse.  With mixed emotions Thorpe recalls the strong feeling of community spirit, the warmth and humor that flourished in the face of adversity, as well as the loneliness and isolation.

Struggling with dyslexia throughout his childhood, Thorpe found confidence in painting and drawing.  He sought out whatever raw materials he could find in order to express himself; drawing on cigarette packs with stubs of pencils, or using eye-shadow and lipstick cribbed from his mum's makeup bag.   Thorpe quit school with formal qualifications, taking on a variety of manual, unskilled jobs while continuing to draw and paint. 

Bearer of Love
Bearer of Love, fine art serigraph on paper by Mackenzie Thorpe

Thorpe eventually gathered up the courage and entered the local art college.  His lack of education and an barely legible application did nothing to warrant support, but the strength and volume of work that he presented, coupled with his enthusiasm and commitment, won him a place at the Middlesbrough College of Art and subsequently, the Byam Shaw School of Art in London. 

After art school, Thorpe spent several years working with inner-city children in London.  Eventually Thorpe left London and with his wife, Susan and children, Owen and Chloe, set up a home and studio in North Yorkshire where he resides today.  His work expresses an entire range of human emotion, from the special bonds of love and friendship to the importance of self-reflection and individual triumphs.  His works are a tribute to the creativity within all of us and are a vivid expression of hope and the ascendancy of the human spirit.

Walking on Love
Walking on Love, a fine art serigraph on paper by Mackenzie Thorpe

Thorpe's perspective on life is clear.  He doesn't hid the fact that often life is a struggle, a dark tunnel which, at times, can seem endless.  However, he passionately believes that our frail dreams are worth nurturing and that love and honesty will triumph over adversity.  Throughout his artistic working years, an iconography (symbolic references) has emerged, some of the more prominent are:

CHILDREN WITH FLOWERS: "Children are the source of love; they plant it at our feet, nurture it and help it grow throughout our lives."

BIG FEET:  "The big feet symbolize that I never want to forget where I came from, no matter how different my life has become.  It can be dangerous to forget your roots.  Your ego takes over, and you've got wings on your feet suddenly.  If I got to full of myself, I wouldn't be the man Susan fell in love with and married.  I wouldn't be the father of my children.  My feet are firmly planted on the ground and that's where I want them to stay, totally grounded.  It's important never to become bigger than your shoes."

Out for a Walk
Out for a Walk, fine art lithograph by Mackenzie Thorpe

SQUARE ANIMALS:  "When I started drawing the square sheep they represented society's narrow-mindedness and rejection of things new or different.  But after I had a near-fatal car accident, the sheep came to mean something different to me, more to do with my wife and kids.  My family is one of the biggest influences on me now, I love them with all my heart.  So now, these big square animals are about love and closeness we are so privileged to share.  They fill the entire space of the canvas, as if the feelings we share for each other stretch to the very edge of our world."

Taking Them Home
Taking Them Home, fine art serigraph by Mackenzie Thorpe

To learn more about Mackenzie Thorpe, his art & iconography and to preview the trunk show, please contact your Chuck Jones Gallery art consultant.  San Diego: 888-294-9880, Santa Fe: 800-290-5999 and Tustin: 800-959-7175.